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Treshnish Isles facts for kids

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Treshnish Isles
Gaelic name Eileanan Treisinis
Meaning of name unknown
OS grid reference NM278419
Coordinates 56°29′N 6°25′W / 56.49°N 6.42°W / 56.49; -6.42
Physical geography
Island group Mull
Area 128 ha (316 acres)
Highest elevation Cruachan, on Lunga 103 m (338 ft)
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Country Scotland
Council area Argyll and Bute
Population 0

The Treshnish Isles are an archipelago of small islands and skerries, lying west of the Isle of Mull, in Scotland. They are part of the Inner Hebrides. Trips to the Treshnish Isles operate from Ulva Ferry, Tobermory Ardnamurchan and Tiree


The archipelago extends over a distance of roughly 7 kilometres (4 mi), from the island of Bac Beag in the south (towards Cairn na Burgh Beag) to the north-east. The largest island in the group, Lunga, is 7 kilometres (4 mi) west of Gometra, 6 kilometres (4 mi) south-west of Rubha' a' Chaoil (on the Isle of Mull), 12 kilometres (7 mi) south-east of Coll, and 5 kilometres (3 mi) north-west of Staffa.

Other relatively large islands in the group are Cairn na Burgh Mòr, Fladda and Bac Mòr. There are numerous small skerries, particularly north of Lunga. All the islands are of volcanic origin.

Island Gaelic name Area (ha) Highest point (m)
Bac Beag Am Baca Beag &&&&&&&&&&&&&&06.7000006.7 &&&&&&&&&&&&&027.&&&&&027
Bac Mòr Am Baca Mòr &&&&&&&&&&&&&024.70000024.7 &&&&&&&&&&&&&086.&&&&&086
Lunga Lunga &&&&&&&&&&&&&059.90000059.9 &&&&&&&&&&&&0103.&&&&&0103
Sgeir a' Chaisteil Sgeir a' Chaisteil &&&&&&&&&&&&&&03.7000003.7 &&&&&&&&&&&&&026.&&&&&026
Sgeir an Eirionnaich Sgeir an Eirionnaich &&&&&&&&&&&&&&05.&&&&&05 &&&&&&&&&&&&&015.&&&&&015
Fladda Flada &&&&&&&&&&&&&020.60000020.6 &&&&&&&&&&&&&026.&&&&&026
Cairn na Burgh Mòr Cairn Bhuirg Mòr &&&&&&&&&&&&&&03.6000003.6 &&&&&&&&&&&&&035.&&&&&035
Cairn na Burgh Beag Cairn Bhuirg Beag &&&&&&&&&&&&&&02.2000002.2 &&&&&&&&&&&&&022.&&&&&022


There are several possible duns on the islands of Iron Age origin. Little is known of the early history, although these prominent landmarks would have been significant waypoints for the Norse settlers during their conquest in the early years of the Kingdom of the Isles, which lasted from the 9th to the 13th centuries. There are remains on Lunga of a village of blackhouses abandoned in 1857

The Isles were purchased in 1938 by explorer and naturalist Col. Niall Rankin and they were sold to the Hebridean Trust in 2000. The Trust are guardians of the islands to protect them and the wildlife and to monitor and study the ecology and archaeology.

Due to the beauty and remoteness of the Isles and the abundance of wildlife, particularly the puffins, they are very popular with tourists who visit by boat, generally to Lunga, for day-trips during the summer.


Treisinis is a Gaelic name of unknown meaning that includes the Old Norse root ness, meaning "headland".

Bac Mòr is also known as "The Dutchman's Cap" in English due to its shape. Bac Beag is from the Gaelic Am Baca Beag, with Bac meaning "bank" or "dune" and Beag simply being a diminutive in contrast to Mòr. Bac Mòr is also known as Baca Rois in Gaelic, which means "dune of the Ross" and is a reference to the shape of the island when framed against the Ross of Mull. Lunga is probably from the Old Norse lungr-øy, meaning "longship island". Sgeir an Eirionnaich and Sgeir a' Chaisteil are Gaelic names meaning "Irishman's skerry" and "castle skerry" respectively. Cairn na Burgh Mòr means "cairn of the large fort" and Cairn na Burgh Beg is thus "cairn of the small fort".

The name Fladda originates from the Old Norse for "flat island".

Natural history and conservation

The Treshnish Isles are part of the Loch Na Keal National Scenic Area, one of 40 in Scotland. They are also designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest, a Special Protection Area due to their importance for breeding seabirds and a marine Special Area of Conservation. They are also known for their Atlantic grey seals and ruined castles.

Treshnish Isles from above Port Haunn.jpg Treshnisheast.JPG
The Treshnish Isles from above Port Haunn on Mull. Nearest are Cairn na Burgh Beag and Cairn na Burgh Mòr. Behind are the low flat island of Fladda and the tallest island, Lunga, which obscures Bac Mòr and Bac Beag beyond. The Treshnish Isles from the east as seen from Loch Tuath. From left to right: (Ellean Dioghlum), Bac Mòr, Lunga, Fladda, Cairn na Burgh Mòr, Cairn na Burgh Beag.

See also

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