Crinan Canal Lighthouse

Crinan Canal

Crinan Canal Lighthouse marks the entrance to the 9 mile long Crinan Canal.   The canal connects Crinan with Ardrishaig and the Sound of Jura.

The hexagonal lighthouse with a red band was built in 1851.

Work started on building the canal in 1794, though it was finally opened in 1801. It provides a huge shortcut between the Inner Hebrides and the Clyde, avoiding the Kintyre peninsula. The canal was originally built for sailing and fishing vessels, and later the Clyde Puffers. 

The Crinan Canal traffic increased significantly following the opening of the Caledonian Canal. Opened in 1822, the Caledonian and Crinal Canals allowed vessels to travel from Glasgow to Inverness.


Between 1930 and 1932 new locks were built at either end of the canal, making it accessible at all states of the tide. British Waterways took over responsibility in 1962, and this was transferred to Scottish Canals in 2012.

The commercial craft that used to traverse the canal has now made way to mainly leisure craft. The towpath that runs alongside the canal forms part of the National Cycle Route.  This route links Campbeltown with Oban, Fort William and Inverness.

Crinan Canal has 15 locks in total, and there are 7 bridges crossing the water.

At the opposite end of the canal is the fishing village of Ardrishaig.  There are records of a lighthouse dating back to 1865.

Ardrishaig Lighthouse
Crinan Canal LighthouseEstablished: 1851 Discontinued: Engineer: Tower Height: 6 metres Light Character: Fl W G 3 s Range: 4 miles Fog Signal: Elevation: 8 metres Automated:
Ardrishaig LighthouseEstablished: Discontinued: Engineer: Tower Height: 6 metres Light Character: L Fl W R G 6 s Range: 5 miles Fog Signal: Elevation: 9 metres Automated: