Ballachuan Hazelwood

Ballachuan Hazelwood cloaks a low ridge overlooking Cuan Sound and supports a large number of lichen, bryophytes and fungi. The wetland area provides a rich habitat for butterflies, and deer and pine marten roam the woodland.  

Otters have been spotted in the kelp and porpoises seen surfing the Atlantic waves.

A path with stiles leads through the reserve to a viewpoint.

Pine marten © Karl Franz

Why visit?

  • Atlantic hazel woodland
  • Abundance of lichens
  • Colourful butterflies
  • Chance to spot otters

Best time to visit?

  • Apr to Sep for lichens
  • May to Jul for butterflies
  • Sep to Nov for fungi

Visit for:

  • Butterflies
  • Wetland
  • Mammals
  • Scenery
  • Coasts
  • Wildflowers
  • Woodlands
  • Birdwatching


The reserve lies at the south eastern tip of Seil Island. From Oban, take the A816 south. Turn onto the B844 towards Seil Island after about 8 miles. Once on the island, take the B8003 at Balvicar. Parking is available in the car park and layby of Kilbrandon Church, 0.3 miles north west of the reserve from the B8003. There is space for a maximum of three cars, but not during church services.

Getting onto the reserve

The reserve can be accessed by foot down the private road to Kilbrandon House (Port Mor), which starts opposite Kilbrandon Church. Signage then directs visitors onto the reserve.

Getting round this reserve

Please keep dogs on a lead at all times as cattle are present on the reserve at various times throughout the year.


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