Port Ellen is a photographer's paradise nestled along the southern coast of Islay. With its charming whitewashed cottages encircling a sheltered bay, it is a sight to behold. The town's prosperity is entwined with the whisky industry. Established in 1825, Port Ellen was home to the island's first distillery. Just to the east, you'll find three of Islay’s iconic distilleries – Ardbeg, Lagavulin, and Laphroaig – each contributing to the town's rich heritage. Nearby, the 8th-century Kildalton High Cross stands as one of Scotland's finest Celtic crosses, flanked by the ruins of an old parish church and intricately carved medieval grave slabs. The MacDonald Lairds once ruled the Hebrides from Dunyvaig Castle. Although now in ruins, this fortress built between the 13th and 16th centuries still maintains a majestic presence over Lagavulin Bay.
The surrounding area is peppered with intriguing prehistoric sites, including a Bronze Age standing stone at Kilbride. Overlooking the cliff edge of the Oa Peninsula, you'll find the towering 65-foot American Monument, a tribute to two U.S. troop ships lost in 1918."