Clachtoll lies on the B869, the twisting single track road that follows the coast from Lochinver north then east to Kylesku. The road to the south of here is especially tortuous (see image at the foot of the page) and if approaching from that direction, Clachtoll comes as something of a surprise.
At first sight Clachtoll seems to comprise a scatter of crofts and houses, mostly to the east side of the road. The expansive grassy area to the west of the road is largely given over to the Clachtoll Beach Campsite. Visitors should look out for a signpost directing you along a narrow road through the campsite to a car park next to the Clachtoll Ranger Hut. From here you can begin to appreciate the real attractions of Clachtoll. (Continues below image...)
Clachtoll faces west over the Bay of Clachtoll. The southern half of the head of the bay, south-west from the car park, provides a truly glorious beach of white sand lapped by idyllic turquoise water. From the headlands either side of the beach you gain stunning mountain views to the south. For many this would be enough in itself to make the journey worthwhile.
North west from the car park is another inlet, which in marked contrast to its neighbour comprises layers of sloping rock strata and stone. This, and the rocks of the headlands either side of the sandy beach, make Clachtoll a renowned spot for geologists. Apparently it shows evidence of an ancient land surface covered by later rocks, and guarantees that you are as likely to see visitors heading for the beach with helmets and geologists' hammers as with flippers and snorkels...
Between the two inlets is a grassy headland on which you find a salmon bothy. This small stone building is part of the Clachtoll Salmon Station, preserved by the Assynt Historical Society. Displays show how the salmon station, which closed in 1994, would have operated. Less obvious than the bothy, and a little to the north-east of it, is the ice house in which the catch would be kept until transported to market. Close by is a memorial to the Reverend Norman MacLeod, born in Clachtoll in 1780. He was a preacher who defied conventional church teachings and led many of his followers first to Canada, and later to Australia and New Zealand.
A little north of Clachtoll and almost overlooking the next bay along the coast, the Bay of Stoer, is Clachtoll Broch. At their highest, the broch walls stand about 2m high (compared with an original height of some 10m), though the doorway and lintel above it still remain.