Glen Nant National Nature Reserve



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A lush Atlantic woodland of oak, ash, alder and birch blankets the slopes of the Glen Nant NNR today. But during the 18th century, the woodland was a hive of industry, providing 1,400 tonnes of charcoal producing 700 tonnes of iron a year for the furnace at Bonawe. Today however the coppiced trees are thriving, with lichens coating their trunks in colourful abstract patterns. The woodland is famous for its large nests of Scottish wood ants, and in summer you will hear the warblers, redstarts and woodpeckers and see the jays, tits and tree creepers that feed on them. You may also see signs of deer, pine marten and even catch a glimpse of the shy otters as they slip between the river and the forest. The reserve is part of Fearnoch Forest managed by Forestry Commission Scotland and it has a number of short trails and interpretation boards to help you find out more about its wildlife.

Glen Nant National Nature Reserve


About the area

Discover Argyll & Bute

This is a county that’s all about awe-inspiring landscapes and unique island cultures. Ex-Beatle Paul McCartney put the area on the map when he wrote Mull of Kintyre, recorded in 1977 with the local pipe band backing his group. Kintyre is a long, thin peninsula that points south from the mainland, sheltering the mouth of the Firth of Clyde from the open sea. It’s very nearly an island, with just a narrow isthmus connecting it with Knapdale, to the north.

Tucked away at the end of the Firth of Clyde, Bute has been the holiday playground for generations of Glaswegians and is home to some of the finest golden beaches anywhere on the west coast. It may not boast the wild mountain grandeur of some of Scotland’s other islands, but Bute is blessed with swathes of heathery moorland and a range of low, fertile hills, perfect for walking and studying the local wildlife. Such is the variety of landscapes that make up this county.

To experience the sights and sounds of the area, visit Dunoon in late August for the Cowal Highland Gathering, when more than 150 pipe bands from all over the world compete for prestigious trophies.

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