Shian Wood

Important notice

Please note that parking is provided solely for the use of Trust staff, volunteers and visitors to the reserve, From time to time the parking area will be closed to enable delivery and storage of materials. There is no overnight parking.

An ancient wet semi-natural woodland. Shian Wood stands on a low, flattened ridge jutting out of Loch Creran. In spring, the floor is cloaked with wildflowers, enticing many butterflies. The reserve provides an important refuge for many rare moss and lichen species associated with temperate rainforest.

Why visit?

Highlights include:

  • Carpets of spring flowers
  • Saltmarsh on loch edges

Best time to visit?

  • May to Jun for spring flowers
  • May to Jul for breeding birds

Visit for:

  • birdwatching
  • woodlands
  • wildflowers
  • coasts
  • scenery
  • mammals
  • archaeology

Other information

Woodland birds dart through the trees and breeding birds nest where wet heath merges into reedbeds and saltmarsh near the shore.

The reserve is a wild and wet place. Access around the reserve is by rough track with some sections of aggregate path and boardwalk. The track can become extremely wet in places. Visitors are advised to wear stout footwear.

Please keep dogs on a lead.

As with most damp places in Argyll, sheep ticks are abundant. Please be tick aware.


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How to get there


Shian Wood lies on the south shore of Loch Creran, on a minor road off the A828(T) north of Benderloch. On the north side of Benderloch, leave the A828 and take the minor road sign posted to South Shian. After about 1.5 miles, turn left at the crossroads for the Island of Eriska. The parking area for the reserve is on the right, about 0.75 miles from the crossroads, just before you reach Balure Farm.

Get directions

Getting onto the reserve

The reserve is directly adjacent to the parking area. Go through the gate and follow the track uphill. Waymarkers indicate the footpaths.

Access restrictions

Cattle graze parts of this reserve at certain times of year. Please keep dogs on a lead.

Nearest town
Oban (13 mi / 20.9 km)
OS grid ref
Landranger map


What to look for and when

Explore all wildlife


About Shian Wood

Out & about

Nearby reserves
Rahoy Hills
Ballachuan Hazelwood

Local group
Argyll and Lochaber

Links & downloads

Reserve map


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