Kildalton Cross

Kildalton Cross

Route: Kildalton Cross

Area: Southern Islay

Date of walk: 21st March 2022

Walkers: Andrew and Gilly

Distance: 1.8 miles

Ascent: 100 feet

Weather: sunny

After this morning’s Three Distilleries Walk we still had time for another short afternoon walk. We drove past the Ardbeg distillery, which we’d visited earlier in the day, and parked in the small car park adjacent to the ruins of Old Parish Church of Kildalton. The 1,300 year old Kildalton Cross lies within the church grounds

The Kildalton Cross is sometimes called the Kildalton Great Cross or the Kildalton High Cross. It is one of the finest and most complete Christian crosses in Scotland and is made from a single piece of a grey-green coloured stone known as epidiorite. The stone is very durable, hence the fine state of preservation of the cross

After wandering around this atmospheric place we left the church and joined a track heading towards the sea. A few yards further along we passed by another cross known as the Kildalton Small Cross or the Thief’s Cross, on account of the theory that it marks the grave of a criminal as it stands in unconsecrated ground 

We passed through the gateposts to Ardmore House (the ‘private’ signs here refer to vehicles only) and continued along the track through woodland, with good sightings of roe deer and fallow deer along the way. We soon emerged at the far point of the walk – Port Mor, an idyllic place to sit and watch for seabirds.

We lingered here for a while and then retraced our steps back to the start of a short but sweet walk, which we’d enjoyed in complete solitude.

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