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Kinlochbervie,Scotland

Kinlochbervie is City/Area of Highlands, Latitude: 58.4587, Longitude: -5.04332

Kinlochbervie, Seen from its War Memorial   The main road to the far north west has been much improved over recent decades.

Kinlochbervie, Seen from its War Memorial
 
The main road to the far north west has been much improved over recent decades. With the exception of a short stretch over the bridge at Laxford Bridge you can now travel all the way from Edinburgh to the turn-off to Kinlochbervie without losing sight of the white lines in the centre of the road. Though only if you go via Ullapool: a glance at a map shows a shorter route via Lairg which still includes a 37 mile stretch of single track road. This, we are told, is the route preferred by locals.

North of the turn-of to Kinlochbervie in Rhiconich, the main road to Durness reverts to an earlier, single track, era. But it is no coincidence that so much effort and money has been put into improving the road to Kinlochbervie. (Continues below image…)

Kinlochbervie’s Newer Harbour, on Loch Bervie
 
This is because, surprising as it might seem, Kinlochbervie has become one of the major fishing ports in Scotland. Fishing boats, often based in east coast Scottish ports, land their catches here at the fish market built in 1988. The fish are then transported in large refrigerated lorries to destinations across the UK and throughout Europe.

Close to the harbour is the Free Presbyterian Church built in 1829 to a Thomas Telford design. The nearby manse has long been derelict. Moving away from the immediate vicinity of the harbour, there has been a fair bit of new building in recent decades. The new secondary school, contained within a single structure overlooking Loch Innes is an especially striking addition. The Kinlochbervie Hotel, superbly placed to offer views south and west, was built in 1968, to replace the earlier Garbet Hotel, built before World War Two, which had been destroyed by fire.

There are actually two harbours at Kinlochbervie. The modern harbour occupies one side of Loch Bervie, an offshoot of Loch Inchard. A short distance to the north west is a second, apparently rather older and less sheltered, harbour on Loch Clash, a sea-loch in its own right.

Many people coming to Kinlochbervie do so en route to Blairmore and the start of the walk north to the magnificent Sandwood Bay. If this is what you’ve got in mind, it is worth stopping on your return trip to experience the bustle of this outpost of the Scottish fishing industry. It is also worth bearing in mind that there are other gems on offer in the area, including the beach at Oldshoremore; the tiny settlement of Polin, complete with its own beach; and the picturesque old pier at Droman.

Four miles inland from Kinlochbervie, at the junction with the main A838, is Rhiconich. The services here include a police station and hotel, and are complementary to those in Kinlochbervie itself. Between Riconich and Kinlochbervie is the excellent Old School Restaurant & Rooms. Also between them is the rather bizarre sight of a collection of derelict construction vehicles, rusting away beside the road. This collection, which seems to evolve over time, has blighted the approach to Kinlochbervie for as long as we have been visiting, for over four decades. The best you can say about it is that it is soon behind you.

The View South East from the Road to Rhiconich
   

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