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This is a stunning short walk, taking you to a lesser known part of Dunure, Ayrshire. A (sometimes overgrown) grassy footpath leads down to an area known as Port Schuchan (pronounced ‘Shuggan‘). Rugged coastal beauty awaits all around. Take time on the return leg of the walk to try the labyrinth and take a step back in time exploring the ruins of the 13th century Dunure Castle.
Parking available at Kennedy Park, Dunure (chargeable, seasonal). Local bus services to Dunure from Ayr.
Route: The walk starts at the end of Kennedy Park, next to the football pitch. You will see a wooden way marker with an arrow pointing down an indistinct grassy footpath. Follow the path through the fern and down the hillside. At the bottom on the hill turn left and continue through the long grass until you reach the rocky bay of Port Schuchan. After exploring the area return via the same footpath, keeping left at the fork to continue alongside the fern. Remaining at this low level, the path will eventually emerge out onto a shingle beach. Continue along the beach, scrambling over a rocky outcrop and then veering right up a steep grassy slope. At the top you will find the Dunure Labyrinth. From here climb the steps and turn left at the top to arrive back at Kennedy Park. Turn left to follow the track along to explore Dunure Castle then return to the parking area by crossing the grassy slope beside the skate park.
WALK REPORT: 20th June 2016
I visit Dunure regularly as I have family there and I absolutely love the place! However today was my first time exploring the area known locally as Port Schuchan, a walk recommended to me by my father-in-law. Definitely the lesser known side of Dunure, I felt a million miles away from the village, truly a hidden paradise.
My 3 year old accompanied me and enjoyed it every bit as much as I did. We spent a long time at the bay throwing stones in, looking for interesting shells and scrambling around the old red sandstone volcanic rock. I have tried unsuccessfully to find out some information about the history of Port Schuchan – even a Google search did not bear fruit. So if you are reading this and know something then I would love you to get in touch!
Sections of the path were admittedly a little overgrown but part of the appeal is the sense of remoteness you get from being there and the overgrown path just adds to that. On reaching the stony bay I was a little disappointed to see a fair bit of debris washed up and spoiling an otherwise perfect vista. Little can be done about that though: the position of the bay making it a dumping ground with each high tide and rendering clean up attempts pointless.
On the way back we opted for the low level walk onto the beach and Thomas enjoyed jumping from one rock to another. After a brief scramble up some grass we arrived at the labyrinth and he had a ball making his way to it’s centre. It is an interesting feature: circular, formed out of large stones with wild flowers growing in between and seemingly impossible to get lost in! Then we paid Dunure Castle a visit for the millionth time! I didn’t mind though: the views from the top are spectacular!