“Iona was the island that made me so passionate about the Scottish islands. I first visited here about 12 years ago and I’ve been back virtually every year since.
There is a spirituality and a sense of peace on Iona that I haven’t found on any other island. Also, apart from one day, everytime I have been there it has been bright sunshine!
There are a lot of day-trippers who visit Iona in the summer months, so it can get qute busy during these times. However, if you decide to stay on the island overnight, you will be rewarded with peace and tranquility, that makes the island seem almost magical.
If you are visiting the Abbey (and most people do) make sure you wait for a guided tour – they are usually on the hour. The tours explain about how the Abbey was built and renovated and the role of St Colomba on Iona and within Christianity as a whole. I found the tour extremely interesting and very informative. Iona is a place once seen, never forgotten”.
How do I get to Iona? There is a Caledonian Macbrayne passenger only Ferry from Fionnphort on the extreme west coast of Mull. It is also possible to go on a day trip to the island of Iona through Seafari, located on the island of Seil, near Oban. This trip takes about 75 minutes.
How do I get around Iona? Again, walkers and cyclists abound on the Isle of Iona. There is only a quarter of a mile of road and the terrain is quite flat, so there is no real need to bring your car over. Cycles can be hired at the Finlay Ross store.
What’s worth visiting on Iona? For such a small island, there is certainly a lot to visit on the island of Iona. Firstly, from the ferry slip head towards the ruins of the Augustinian Nunnery. Then head upwards towards the Iona Heritage Centre, built by Thomas Telford, which has fascinating displays illustrating the islanders’ lives over the past 200 years. The main attraction on Iona, apart from it’s peace and tranquility, is Iona Abbey. St Columba died on Iona and was buried by his monks on Iona. The Abbey was restored during the early twentieth century and was originally built around 1200. lona Abbey is a celebrated Christian centre and is said to be the burial place of early Scottish kings such as Macbeth and Duncan.
Where can I stay on Iona? There are two Hotels on Iona, the Argyll and St Columba. Also, there is the Clachan Corrach Guest House and the Cnoc-Oran Bed & Breakfast, where there is also a section for Campers. There is also Bed and Breakfast available at Ardoran House, Dalantober and at Finlay Ross. There is also Iona Hostel at the northern end of the island. Self catering is available at Ardbeg Self-Catering and Shore Cottage.
Any other information on Iona? The Book of Kells, now on display at trinity College in Dublin, was partially completed on the Island of Iona.
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