Kings Cave Walk
Where: Kings Cave Walk on the Isle of
When: July 2013
Who: J Parker
Why: A day out to Arran
Distance: about 3 miles round trip
The image below is of the Arran ferry
Caledonian Isles arriving at
Ardrossan. It costs about £7 per person
for a day return on the ferry, and about
£30 per return for a car, so many people
park in the large car park next to the pier
for a few pounds per day, rather than take
the car. If you are taking a car at weekends
or in the school holiday season, it is best
to pre-book, as the ferry can be fully booked
I was giving relations a tour round the
south side of the Island to the Glenashdale
Falls at Whiting Bay, the Torrylin Cairn at
Kilmory on the southwest side of the Island,
then dropping them off at Blackwaterfoot for
the beach, so took the car. I then went on to
visit the Machrie Moor Standing Stones and
the Kings Cave myself, as they are only a
couple of miles north of Blackwaterfoot.
Doing the four attractions in one day is a
fair amount of walking.
The image below is from the ferry car park
right next to the pier, it only costs between
2 and 3 pounds per day to park here.
Ardrossan Train Station is situated less
than half of a mile south of the ferry
terminal. You can normally buy train/ferry
tickets together with a discount. Train/Ferry
The first ferry normally departs Ardrossan
at 07.00 and the next at 09.45. Afternoon
ferries leaving Brodick are normally 16.40
and 19.20. In summer, there is also a smaller
ferry that runs so there will be more
crossings available. Price checks and
timetables for the ferry can be found at the
The image below is of one of the
restaurants on board the ferry. The crossing
takes about 1 hour to Brodick, so we had
plenty of time for breakfast.
The image below is from the ferry when
approaching Brodick. There should be buses
waiting at the Brodick Ferry Terminal for the
all the larger ferry crossings if you do not
take the car. Note, there are no buses that
run to suit the first early ferry though?
The bus stops are right next to the ferry
terminal and there should be three buses
sitting waiting. One goes north to Cladach,
Brodick Castle, Corrie, Sannox, Lochranza and
round to Blackwaterfoot. That is the bus you
would need to get to take you to the Machrie
Moor or Kings Cave car parks.
Another bus goes straight over to
Blackwaterfoot via the mountain road, and the
other goes south to Lamlash, Whiting Bay,
Kildonan, Kilmory, Lagg and round to
Bus Website .
Bus Tel: 01770 302 000
If you miss the bus, or are on the early
ferry, A.R.C. Private Hire are based in
Brodick. Tel: 0777 608 2752.
Lamlash based Taxi and mini bus hire call
George on 07967 587 481.
The image below is of the car park for the
Kings Cave walk. This is a scenic car park
specially built for the walk to the Kings
It is 28 miles round the north side of the
island on the bus to this car park. The route
is nice and scenic. The map link below will
show the route straight over the hill road,
drag the blue line from the middle, up to the
north road at Lochranza for the north map
The car park here is about 2 miles north
The car park for the Machrie Moor Standing
Stones is situated 1 mile north of this car
park. Many people take in the two walks on
the same day.
Google Map . Arran Attractions Map .
The image below is of an information board
in the Kings Cave car park. You can see the
two routes out to the caves. The south route,
left in the image, follows a good woodland
path most of the way. The north route,
follows a good path round the side of the
woodland. The north route has great views
over Machrie Bay and the northwest mountains
Most walkers go out one route and back the
other. I visited the Machrie Moor Standing
Stones first then got here in the afternoon
when the sun was round further and shining on
The image below is from the woodland path
going out the south side.
The image below is where the south path
leads down to the coast, about 100 yards
south of the caves.
The cliffs in the distance, and golf
course next to the cliffs, are situated on
the north side of Blackwaterfoot. It is about
2 miles to Blackwaterfoot from here along a
coastal path, round behind the cliffs, then
along a path through the golf course. You can
also go round the bottom of the cliffs,
although that is over large boulders.
A photo tour link for that route is at the
bottom of the page.
There is a narrow and fairly steep path
from here down to the shoreline.
The image below is of the first caves you
will see from the south route. The entrance
to the Kings Cave can just be seen through
the cave on the left, where the walkers are
The image below is of the Kings Cave with
metal fencing on the front. The gate seems to
be open all the time, so you can explore this
cave, and all the others. You need a torch to
read the carvings on the walls.
The image below is looking north to the
other route back to the car park. In summer,
the lower part of the trail is not too easy
to find, as there are a lot of ferns each
side of it, but leads up to the side of the
The image below is of the north trail back
to the Kings Cave car park. This is a good
trail with cracking views.
The image below is looking north from the
Kings Cave north path to Machrie Bay and the
2,365ft Mullach Buidhe mountain on the
northwest of Arran. Machrie Bay
has Golf, Tennis and a Tearoom that is well
You follow the path from here back down
into the woodland at the car park, passing a
Hut Circle just before the car park.