Dunoon is a town on the River Clyde, situated on the west coast of Scotland in the county region of Argyll and Bute. Dunoon is the major town on the Cowal Peninsula. The Cowal Peninsula, an area of some 67,000 hectares approximately 32 miles (57km) long by 8 miles (13km) broad, lies between Loch Fyne and Loch Long. In the north of the Cowal Peninsula the mountains reach to 900 metres high. Dunoon, the capital of Cowal, lies within an area of outstanding natural beauty, on the borders of Scotland’s first National Park – the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park.
By road, Dunoon is within easy travelling distance of Glasgow, the largest city in Scotland. By air, Dunoon is within just over one hour’s travelling time from two airports, Glasgow International Airport and Prestwick International Airport. By sea, two ferry crossings serve Dunoon. The population of Dunoon is approximately 12,000 people, which includes some 4,000 inhabitants of smaller surrounding towns. The area enjoys exceptional outdoor recreational facilities, sailing, walking, climbing, fishing, golf, and has a variety of supportive accommodation facilities for the visitor.
For the tourist, Dunoon and the surrounding area offers a wide range of events, activities, and attractions of a sporting, educational, cultural and leisure and recreational nature. Dunoon is the principal holiday resort town of the Cowal Peninsula, the main street boasting a variety of shops and restaurants which serve a variety of Scottish and international cuisine, bars and licensed premises which host regular musical events and are characterised by their particularly Scottish ambiences. Dunoon’s major indoor venue, - The Queen’s Hall, offers entertainment throughout the year.
Near the Queen’s Hall is Dunoon Pier, which is one of the two access terminals for the ferries which traverse the River Clyde. During the tourist season it is possible to enjoy a voyage on the World’s last original paddle steamer ‘Waverley’, which visits many of the islands and other small towns on the River Clyde. The newly refurbished Riverside swimming, leisure, and recreational centre is situated on the Dunoon waterfront. Near Dunoon, one can relax in the woodlands and gardens of Benmore Botanic Gardens, or enjoy the tranquillity and picturesque views on the shores of Loch Eck, with its surrounding mountains.
Of the major tourist events held in Dunoon and the Cowal Peninsula, the largest is the Cowal Games, held during the last week-end in August each year. Cowal Games attracts a gathering of international competitors and spectators for the traditional Scottish Highland Games events of athletics and field events. At the same time, Cowal Games also hosts the World Highland Dancing Championships. One of the highlights of the Cowal Games is the march of massed bands with some 1,000 pipers through the main streets of Dunoon. During Cowal Games, Dunoon is a busy meeting-place for tourists, friends, and competitors, coming together in one of the world’s foremost occasions in the Scottish traditional cultural sphere.
Dunoon, set in its position on the sea, and surrounded by mountains, offers the discerning visitor a multiplicity of experiences. Whether opting for relaxation and tranquillity, or activity and entertainment, the visitor will find a warm welcome, and a stay, which will remain in the memory. Dunoon and the Cowal Peninsula not only offers its inhabitants a splendid environment in which to live and work, but also offers a concentrated and enjoyable Scottish experience to visitors and tourists, and those who can only stay for a short break.