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Grid reference: NR930506
Location: 55°42’17"N, 5°17’41"W
Population: 250
Post town: Isle of Arran
Postcode: KA27
Dialling code: 01770
Local Government
Council: North Ayrshire
North Ayrshire and Arran
Countryside near Lochranza
MV Loch Tarbert at Lochranza slipway

Lochranza is a small village with population of around 200 people located on the Isle of Arran, an island of Buteshire in the Firth of Clyde.

Lochranza, in the north-western corner of the island, is the most northerly of Arran's villages. It sits on the shore of Loch Ranza, a small sea loch providing a natural harbour. Ferries run from here to Claonaig on the mainland.[1]

The village is a spot for seeing wildlife. Area around Lochranza Castle in particular is a healthy red deer population and, on the northern shore, grey seals swim and bask. Otters and golden eagles are also spotted in the area.

A new pier was constructed in 2003,[2] allowing larger vessels easier access with the possibility to disembark passengers for a short tour of the village. Regular vessels which use the pier include the paddle steamer Waverley and the "Lord of the Glens", a small cruise ship.

Lochranza is the site of the Arran Distillery, built in 1995 and producing the Arran Single Malt.[3] The distillery is one of the major industries of the island.

Lochranza Castle[4] lies in ruins, the gaunt walls nevertheless reflecting the castle's former grandeur. It was built in the 16th century on an L-plan.

Geology students are catered for at a field study centre, the locality having an interesting geology. Nearby is "Hutton's Unconformity" to the north of Newton Point, where the "father of modern geology" James Hutton found his first example of an angular unconformity during a visit in 1787.[5]

Lochranza is reputed to have the fewest hours of sunshine of any village in the United Kingdom, as it lies in a north-facing valley on a sea-begirt island known for its rain. This ha snot stopped the village from being celebrated in verse:

On fair Lochranza streamed the early day,
Thin wreaths of cottage smoke are upward curl'd
From the lone hamlet, which her inland bay
From the lone hamlet, which her inland bay
circling mountains sever from world

The Lord of the Isle by Sir Walter Scott


  1. Caledonian MacBrayne
  2. Peters, Derek (June 2003). "Opening Lochranza Pier". http://waverley2003.mysite.wanadoo-members.co.uk/030629/index.htm. Retrieved 2007-07-24. 
  3. "Distillery: "the true spirit of nature"". Isle of Arran Distillers. http://www.arranwhisky.com/lmenu/distillery.asp. Retrieved 2007-07-24. 
  4. Garner, C.; Wright, P. (July 1999). "Lochranza Castle". http://www.darkisle.com/l/lochranza/lochranza.html. Retrieved 2007-07-24. 
  5. "Hutton's Unconformity - Lochranza, Isle of Arran, UK - Places of Geologic Significance on Waymarking.com". http://www.waymarking.com/waymarks/WM3F65. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 

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