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Broadford to Armadale

Bicycle Ride · Scotland
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Map / Broadford to Armadale
m 80 60 40 20 -20 25 20 15 10 5 km
From the centre of Broadford return to Armadale on Skye's southern Sleat Peninsula, pass Torabhaig Distillery and Armadale Castle & Gardens with views across the Sound of Sleat to mainland Scotland.
Distance 26.1 km
3:30 h
190 m
190 m
Today's ride is a short one, taking you from Broadford back to Armadale. From the centre of Broadford leave the busy A87 as you turn onto the quieter A851. A steady climb across to Kinloch brings you back onto the south east coast of Skye overlooking the Sleat Sound. Follow the road south, returning to Armadale and the ferry terminal to take you back to Mallaig. Enjoy a leisurely day in the saddle whith time to visit Torabhaig distillery and Armadale Castle & Gardens if you wish. 

Author’s recommendation

If you have the legs and are feeling fit after a few days in the saddle you can take a challenging detour to the off-the-beaten-track village of Elgol, directly from Broadford before following the road south to Armadale, for excellent views of the Cuillin Ridge over Loch Corsuisk.  The detour makes the day an extra 45 km (72 km in total) with and extra 430 m of ascent (620 m in total) meaning this day falls towards the higher end of the moderate to strenuous grade category. 
Profile picture of Grace Brammer
Grace Brammer
Update: September 14, 2020
Highest point
89 m
Lowest point
6 m
Best time of year

Safety information

The A851 road you will be cycling along today is generally quiet but can have short busier spells with traffic heading for the ferry to Mallaig.

Beware of traffic particular when entering and leaving towns where traffic flow tends to be the highest. Remember to stay on the left hand side of the road. Be mindful of other road users. Obey local road signs and look out for any change in road conditions.

***Before starting your ride it's always worth inspecting your bike for damage. Check for damage to the frame, components and wheels. Ensure that there are no loose cables, tyres are properly inflated and the brakes are working. Bear in mind the brakes may work the opposite way to which you are used to.

If you are hiring a bike it is worthwhile taking a quick test ride when you collect your bike to familiarise yourself with the gears, brakes and to check your bike is setup correctly for you.

Always wear a helmet when cycling and if you have any concerns over the condition of your rental bike please call the office or your bike hire shop using the number provided in your information pack.***


Tips and hints

Points of Interest

Armadale Castle & Gardens

An 18th century castle ruins surrounded by stunning gardens and woodlands with an on site café.

Torabhaig Distillery 

A recently opened whisky distillery (one of only two in Skye) offering tours with a café off to the left of the A851.


Food & Drink

There are a few options along the route today to stop for a quick tea/coffee or a more considerable lunch if you prefer. Aternatively, you can get supplies from several shops and cafés in Broadford before leaving. Make sure to bring snacks along with plenty of water whatever you choose to do. Just off the A851 approx. 14 km into the route you'll reach An Crùbh (usually open 7 days a week from 10am-4:30pm during peak months), a modern cafe in a beautiful space serving tea, coffee, cake and light snacks.  Near the end of the route attached to Armadale Castle & Gardens you'll pass the Gasta resturant & cafe (usually open 7 days a week from 9am-5pm during peak months) at Armadale Castle. 

When you arrive in Armadale you can enjoy tea, coffee and cake at Cafe 1925, or wait until the evening for dinner at the Ardvasar Hotel - make sure to book the latter as there are very limited options in the village. 


Co-Op Supermarket, Broadford (11 m)
OS Grid
NG 64380 23472
57.241089, -5.906707
57°14'27.9"N 5°54'24.1"W
30V 324598 6347966


Calmac ferry terminal, Armadale

Turn-by-turn directions

0.00 km - In Broadford, with the supermarket on your left-hand side continue STRAIGHT ON the A87 road out of the town for 2 km. 

2.25 km - At the end of the town at the junction TURN RIGHT off of the A87 main road onto the A851 following the signpost for Armadale and Ardvasar. Continue STRAIGHT ON this road as you pass through the settlements of Ilseornsay, Teangue and Kilbeg en route to Armadale.

20.00 km - Continue STRAIGHT ON passing the Torabhaig Distillery on your left-hand side. 

25.10 km - Continue STRAIGHT ON passing the entrance to Armadale Castle & Gardens on your right you can stop here for a visit - there's a cafe, and a few lovely trails in the ruined castle's grounds. 

26.10 km - Once past the filling station and shop in Armadale BEAR LEFT on the road and continue until you reach the pier and Calmac ferry terminal to end today's ride.


all notes on protected areas


OS Grid
NG 64380 23472
57.241089, -5.906707
57°14'27.9"N 5°54'24.1"W
30V 324598 6347966
Arrival by train, car, foot or bike


Always be prepared to cycle through a change of weather conditions and check the local weather forecast before leaving. Remember to bring a waterproof jacket and a warm layer particularly as conditions in Scotland are never guaranteed! Gloves (fingerless mitts in summer) are popular to provide some extra warmth and handlebar padding when riding, and don't forget a battery pack to provide an emergency charge to any navigation equipment you may be using.

Basic Equipment for Bike Riding

  • Cycling helmet
  • Cycling gloves
  • Sturdy, comfortable and preferably waterproof footwear
  • Layered, moisture wicking clothing
  • Rucksack (with rain cover)
  • Protection against sun, rain and wind (hat, sunscreen, water- and windproof jacket)
  • Sunglasses
  • Ample supply of drinking water and snacks
  • Cell phone
  • Cash
  • Navigation equipment / map and compass

Technical Equipment for Bike Riding

  • Air pump or CO2 pump including cartridges
  • Puncture repair kit
  • Replacement inner tube
  • Tire levers
  • Chain tool
  • Hex keys
  • Phone / device holder as required  
  • Bike lock as required
  • Where applicable, the bike must meet requirements for road use by having a bell, front and rear lamps and spoke reflectors
  • The 'basic' and 'technical' equipment lists are generated based on the selected activity. They are not exhaustive and only serve as suggestions for what you should consider packing.
  • For your safety, you should carefully read all instructions on how to properly use and maintain your equipment.
  • Please ensure that the equipment you bring complies with local laws and does not include restricted items.

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26.1 km
3:30 h
190 m
190 m


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