The Mull of Galloway is the most southerly point of Scotland and one of the most beautiful.
The sign at the entrance to the lighthouse area says “Welcome to the Mull of Galloway Experience” and that`s just what it is – an experience!
No camera can ever do justice to the awesome scenery – it`s so vast! Huge expanses of sky and sea with ever changing light patterns and currents. Views of four countries – Scotland, England, Isle of Man and Ireland. A sense of being on a remote island miles and miles away from it all when, in fact, you are on the mainland not that far from a ferry port!
The Mull of Galloway lighthouse is one of only four in Scotland open to the public. It is by far the most accessible with a car park almost at it`s base. The climb up the 115 steps to the top is rewarded with an even better view than from the cliff-top. You can also descend 127 steps to the foghorn where you are even closer to the seabirds.
The lighthouse tower is open Saturday/Sunday, Bank Holidays and, in July/August, every Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday as well. The Mull of Galloway Lighthouse Exhibition is open daily from Easter to the end of October, 10.00am – 4.00pm. Lighthouse tours and exhibitions are run by friendy and knowledgeable volunteers from the South Rhins Community Development Trust.
The Mull of Galloway Lighthouse was built by celebrated lighthouse-builder Robert Stevenson. He began construction in 1828 and completed the build in 1830, when it was lit for the first time. The lighthouse tower is some 26 metres high. However, when the height of the cliffs is added, the actual light is about 99 metres above sea level.
The RSPB Centre close to the lighthouse complex offers weekly guided walks and live images from their cliff-cameras which monitor bird life from the ledges across the cliffs. The centre is open daily 10.00am – 5.00pm daily. Admission is by donation.
The Mull of Galloway is home to many species of sea bird while dolphins, porpoises, sharks and even the occasional whale can be spotted. A large colony of gannets nest on nearby Scare Rock in Luce Bay.
Walking on the Mull of Galloway
The Mull of Galloway and surrounding area offers many spectacular walks and the Mull itself is at the end of the highly acclaimed Mull of Galloway Trail a coastal trail from Stranraer which follows the Luce Bay coastline. It is hoped to build a further trail up the west coast from the Mull of Galloway to Portpatrick and some sections of this trail can already be walked although it is yet to be formalised.
Where can I get a coffee?
Gallie Craig Coffee House. This unique structure is built right on the cliff edge and the full length windows offer spectacular views in all directions. Deciding where to sit can be a problem depending on whether you prefer to look over the sea to the west or towards the Galloway Hills to the East. Gallie Craig Coffee House offers a wide range of home-made snacks and excellent coffee. It has an observation platform on the cliff-edge while the Coffee House itself is built partially into the cliff side and has a grass roof complete with wild flowers! It also has a well stocked gift shop.