- The Ross
Martyrs Bay is a lovely beach within easy reach of the Ferry Pier on Iona. From the village, take the road past the cafe and you will soon reach the long stretch of sand on your left which is Martyr's Bay (Port Nam Mairtear).This beach is a popular place for paddling or swimming on a fine day as the water is fairly warm (for the Hebrides!) as it comes in over a gradual shelf of sand, warmed by the sun. This is a good place to listen for the rare corncrake which are often hidden in the nearby beds of flag iris, but seldom seen.The name of the beach originated in the killing of 68 monks in 806 AD when trying to escape from marauding Vikings. The views from the beach are stunning, over the turquoise waters of the Sound of Iona to the Isles of Mull and tiny Erraid.