On the west coast of Scotland, the mainland dissolves into cold blue waters, forming craggy peninsulas and hundreds of rugged islands. Now, one of those peninsulas and its accompanying islands are for sale for the first time in 70 years – and all for less than the price of a house in Kensington.
Twice the size of Gibraltar, the 3,380-acre Tayvallich Estate is located in Lochgilphead, Argyll. It spans most of the Tayvallich peninsula, a grassy finger of land extending into the Sound of Jura, as well as more than a dozen small islands, from tiny rocky outcrops to the 800-acre Danna Island.
The Estate, which is available to buy in its entirety or in 13 separate lots, comes with 13 houses and cottages, including two farmhouses, a modern house on the shoreline, a crumbling former blacksmith’s forge and a former school building with potential for development.
Some buildings, like the recently constructed Keeper’s House, are occupied by the Estate’s employees (a foreman, shepherd and stockman, for example), while others are rented or used as holiday lets.
Croshandrochaid House is the largest property: a four-bedroom, two-storey house built in 2011 from the stones of the old farm building that stood before it.
Used as the current owners’ accommodation, it boasts a modern kitchen, wooden floorboards and plenty of windows to showcase the house’s dramatic coastal views.
The “jewel in the crown”, however, is Danna Island, a rough crop of grazing land surrounded by inky blue waters.
Connected to the mainland by a causeway, it comprises three houses, a cluster of farm buildings, a boathouse and 8.6km of coastline, making it beloved to lobster and crab potters and water sports enthusiasts.
Sandwiched between the Atlantic coast of the Jura Sound and the calmer waters of Loch Sween, the sheltered An Grianan lagoon and Linne Mhuirich inlet, Tayvallich straddles three different marine ecosystems.
“That makes for a hugely variable landscape across one peninsula,” says local agent Robert McCulloch. “It’s unusual and therefore special in my opinion.”
Tayvallich’s peaceful waters are also a hotspot for sailers, with the local sailing club hosting the annual Jura race.
There’s plenty of wildlife to keep potential buyers busy too. Catch otters on the shores of Loch Sween, starfish in the tidal rapids or porpoises in the Sound.
On land, hiking and cycling trails weave through the mountains and woodland, where you might spot badgers, wildcats and deer.
The Tayvallich Estate has remained in the hands of the same family for the past 70 years, now belonging to the grandchildren of the original owners who have decided to sell it.
“Conventionally, these types of estates have appealed to self-made people who have a desire to own a sizeable tract of land, to invest in infrastructure, to develop the housing, to enjoy traditional field sports, to farm, to enhance the landscape – all of those reasons,” says McCulloch, who adds that the property also represents a promising green investment in the face of the climate crisis.
“It is a truly exceptional place,” he says. “It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity.”