Ross Bay Retreat offers the one of the ultimate dog walking holidays. We are so lucky to have such wonderful countryside, wild coastal paths and great sea views direct from our doorstep. Walking is one of the very best ways to experience, enjoy and explore the natural surroundings. So who better to take out with you and share your adventures than your dog? There are many to be had with your four legged friends.
Below is a lovely countryside walk and adventure direct from the holiday cottages here at Ross Bay Retreat.
Mull of Ross Coastal Walk around the Ross Bay Peninsular & Brighouse Bay – 5.5 miles
The rewarding circuit walk around the Mull of Ross, Meikle Ross and the Ross Peninsula from Ross Bay Retreat via Brighouse Bay offers spectacular views out to sea above the cliffs at Fox Craig and Slack Heugh Bay. Walking up onto the headland and you can see out onto Little Ross Island and the infamous Little Ross Lighthouse and island. The coastal path is pretty well signposted with a few small climbs, fences and stone walls to negotiate en-route.
- From Ross Bay Retreat holiday cottages head toward Ross Farm where you will see the footpath markers. These will indicate a right turn up a track that takes you past the farmhouse. The track heads up quite steeply, then keep to the left of a fence as it climbs up and over a ridge and then drops back down through fields towards the small car park at the eastern end of Brighouse Bay.
- Take a walk along Brighouse Bay with its sandy beach and loop back along the beach again or via the road track behind the beach back to the same car park area. There is a path that tracks along the shoreline just below Rockvale House. Once beyond the house, the path heads up again, through gorse bushes and out onto a more open area. Then follow the headland round to reach the prominent cairn at Mull Point. If you are lucky you will be able to see out to the Isle of Man.
- Keeping the sea to your right you will head through some kissing gates, negotiate a few spiky gorse bushes often guarding the trail then after 2/3 of a mile you will reach another gate which gives you access down to the shores at Fauldbog Bay. From here you can head back up to the more grassy route which can be boggy or navigate your way round the pebbly shoreline.
- You can take the shortcut back towards Ross Farm or head out onto some of most spectacular coastline scenery included in this walk and the headland at Meikle Ross. The path will take you up to about 50m high above the sea cliffs teeming with sea birds and Slack Heugh Bay below.
- From Slack Heugh Bay, the track turns a little inland away from the cliff’s edge following the shallow valley between ‘Meikle Ross’ and the ‘Ree of Ross’ or follow the headland around to Fox Craig and get a closer view of the impressive cliff formations of steeply angled beds of sedimentary sandstone rocks called ‘greywacke’. You may see some of the local rock climbers on this section as it is a well known local challenge and certainly not for the faint hearted. There are some wonderfully named rock climbs here such as ‘Crab Slab’, ‘Little Zawn’ & ‘Limehouse Blues’.
- From the Meikle Ross headland you can also get a get a great view over the Solway Firth and across to the private island called Little Ross. The island hosts the now automated Little Ross Lighthouse and its infamous history after the grisly murder of one of the lighthouse keepers back in August 1960. There are also two small rocks just off it, called Sugarloaf and Fox Craig. You may be lucky and see seals and porpoises in the coastal waters below as well as spot some of the Peregrine falcons that are known to nest in and around the cliffs.
- Continue along the path through gates and along a track back down to Ross Bay. There are good views up towards Kirkcudbright along the estuary of the River Dee and back across the bay to our cottages. The unsurfaced track will take you back to the start at Ross Bay Farm and home for a well-deserved cup of tea or a wee dram of something stronger.
Checkout our interactive map for more details of the walk and highlights
Brighouse Bay Circular Walk – Optional Extension
If you are keen to extend your walk further then you can add the Brighouse Bay Circuit which can be taken from the end of Brighouse Bay beach, it is a further 4.5 miles, this will take you past the Brighouse Bay golf course. It will take you back to the beach where you can pick up the Mull of Ross Circuit again.
Tide Times & Local Weather
For the tide times & local weather at Ross Bay Beach see the Coast Radar website for live updates – – https://coastradar.com/places/united-kingdom/dumfries-and-galloway/kirkcudbright/ross-bay-beach/
Other Great Coastal Dog Walks Locally
Here is a good selection of the best beaches you can take you dogs for a walk nearby – https://rossbayretreat.com/2021/11/best-beaches-for-family-walks-dog-walking-in-around-ross-bay/
The Countryside Code
Please be aware of a few of the countryside code guidelines for when walking through farmland and coastal areas:
- Please leave gates as you find them and close them carefully
- Walk to the edges of crop fields, not across the middle and keep to the paths
- Keep dogs on leads in fields, especially if there is livestock in the field
- Cows with calves are very protective of their young and can be aggressive
- Please do not feed livestock, horses or wild animals as it can cause them harm
- There is a large tidal range in the Solway Firth, please be careful if venturing out into the tidal zone.
Have a great and safe walk and enjoy our lovely countryside and coastline.