Walks & Spencer in Oban

We never tire of the sight of entering Oban, turning the corner on the brow of the hill and viewing the picturesque bustling port with glorious views of the Islands in the distance. Ships scuttling in and out of the Ferry Terminal.  Oban is the hub for the Islands.  Trains from Glasgow and vessels to Coll, Tiree, Mull, Lismore, Bara and the Outer Hebrides.  Even in winter, Oban is busy, in the summer its excitingly hectic as visitors from all over the world use the town as a gateway.

But Oban has now reached another significant landmark – it has a Marks & Spencer store!  In fact, it has all the stores you would associate with a large town in Scotland.  However, for those visitors from outside the UK, M&S provides chilled food that is high quality and luxurious albeit expensive.  Chilled food is a unique food category in the UK due to the relatively small size of the country which allows short shelf life products to be made and distributed nationally.  So, if you are heading to Oban – visit the store and indulge yourself. 

For us at Powdermills Bed and Breakfast in Inveraray, Oban is a regular trip and the hour-long drive is beautiful whatever the weather.  The drive starts from Furnace to Inveraray, then on to the A819 to Dalmally.  Round the tip of Loch Awe with views of Kilchurn Castle. Through the ages, the castle was the powerbase of Clan Campbell.  Its open to visit from March to October and the views are stunning.  A left on to the A85 and passed the village of Loch Awe, or occasionally a coffee and cake in the stunning Ben Cruachan Inn.  Several miles on is the Cruachan Power Station.  This is a hydroelectric station built in 1959.  The turbines are housed inside the mountain.  There is a visitor centre and there are spectacular views from inside the massive turbine hall.  However, the most important stop on this trip is to Fearnoch Forest where Mable and Boo enjoy a walk  – either an hour or two hours in length and after this physical exertion, Sue and I definitely need a treat from M&S.