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Gaelic: Àrasaig
Grid reference: NM661865
Location: 56°54’40"N, 5°50’33"W
Post town: Arisaig
Postcode: PH39 4
Local Government
Council: Highland
Ross, Skye and Lochaber

Arisaig is a village in south-western Inverness-shire, standing on the west coast of the county. It is also the name of the surrounding natural district; a peninsula adjoining or forming an extension of South Morar.

The word Arisaig means "the safe place" in the Scottish Gaelic language.


On 20 September 1746 Bonnie Prince Charlie left Scotland for France from a place near the village following the failure of the Jacobite rising of 1745. The site of his departure is marked by the Prince's Cairn at Loch nan Uamh to the east of Arisaig. In 1770 the Gaelic poet Alasdair Mac Mhaighstir Alasdair died in Arisaig and was buried in the village's Roman Catholic cemetery.

Emigrants from this area founded Arisaig, Nova Scotia, Canada, in 1785.

During the Second World War the area was taken over by the Special Operations Executive to train agents for missions in Occupied Europe. Arisaig House, along with many others, was used as a training school.[1] The Land, Sea and Islands Centre[2] in the village has a display on the connection between the SOE and Arisaig.[3]

On 11 November 2009 a memorial to Czechoslovakian soldiers, who trained as SOE agents between 1943 and 1945, was unveiled in Arisaig.[4]

Tourism is the main industry in the Arisaig area due to the spectacular scenery and great beaches. A fictionalized Ardnish peninsula and Arisaig provide the setting for most of the "Ian and Sovra" series of children's novels by Elinor Lyon.

The Land, Sea and Island Centre

About the village

Arisaig has a post office, general store, restaurant, café, hotel with bar, and marina.

The Peninsula

Arisaig is a rugged peninsula on Inverness-shire's west coast, between Morar, and Loch Morar, to the northeast, and the Sound of Arisaig to the south, and the open sea to the west. Arisaig village is at the western end of the peninsula in a sheltered bay, Loch nan Ceall. The westernmost headland of Arisaig is Rubh' Arisaig.


Arisaig lies on the A830, which leads to Mallaig to the north and Fort William to the east. The route, which is also known as the Road to the Isles, has been upgraded from a single to a double-track carriageway. Work was completed in 2008.

The village is served by Arisaig railway station on the West Highland Line, which connects the village to Mallaig and Fort William. It is the most westerly station on the British mainland.

A small passenger ferry sails from Arisaig to the Small Isles of Eigg, Muck and Rùm. The main Caledonian MacBrayne service to the Small Isles operates from Mallaig.

Outside links


  1. Commando Country, Stuart Allan, National Museums Scotland 2007, ISBN 978-1-905267-14-9
  2. Land, Sea and Islands Centre
  3. Special Operations Executive: Para-Military Training in Scotland during World War 2, David M Harrison, Land Sea and Islands Centre, Arisaig
  4. "Memorial to Czechoslovak soldiers unveiled in Arisaig". The Czech Embassy in London. Retrieved 9 July 2012.