St Columba's Bay
The walk to St Columba's Bay is around 2.5 miles and 1.5 hours to reach it from the ferry. Head for the golf course and the “Bay at the Back of the Ocean” and, keeping the sea to the right, follow a rough track, passing the inland lochan of Loch Staoineag. Soon you will catch a glimpse of the ocean and St Columba’s Bay on the south coast of Iona where the saint is said to have first landed on Iona . A huge rocky outcrop divides the bay in two with the beach to the right piled with mounds of beautiful pebbles, fringed by flowering machair. The pebbles are all beautifully rounded and richly coloured and patterned, including white and green Iona marble. The hill with the cairn on the top is known as the Hill of the Back to Ireland. The story goes that St.Columba climbed this hill to make sure that he could no longer see Ireland, therefore he could settle on Iona and build his monastery.