The Applecross peninsula is a beautiful and remote area of Scotland’s northwest Highlands. A’Chomraich in native Gaelic, meaning the Sanctuary. Applecross sounds like it is the Anglicization of the native name Aporcrosan – where the river meets. Applecross comprises of various settlements the largest of which runs along Shore Street facing the Inner Sound and the Inner Hebrides island of Raasay and is most associated with the name Applecross.
The Sanctuary refers to the area’s ancient religious heritage stretching back to the 7th century when Irish missionaries arrived and established a Christian monastery.
It takes determination to reach Applecross by long, narrow, winding single-track roads with passing-places along the coast by Torridon and Shieldaig or the shorter but precarious route of steep hairpin bends on the single-track road known as the Bealach. Everyone should drive this road at least once for the Bealach na Ba (pass of the cattle) winds up to the summit at 2053 feet (626m) before descending quickly and dramatically to sea level.
Visiting drivers should note it is polite to pull well in to the safe side of the road to allow drivers coming in the opposite direction avoid careering down sheer drops to certain death. If you are a nervous driver do not attempt this route and endanger the lives of others. That said for the sensible motorist it is an experience like no other and hugely enjoyable with dramatic and jaw-dropping views across this lovely part of the world.
For traditionalists travelling to the Applecross peninsula by boat is, perhaps, a more leisurely approach.