Cowal

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Cowal (Scottish Gaelic: Còmhghall) is a peninsula in Argyll and Bute, in the west of Scotland, that extends into the Firth of Clyde.

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Cowal

Cowal shown within Argyll
Cowal
Location within Argyll and Bute
Population15,560 (2013 est.)[1][2][3][4]
OS grid referenceNS 09111 85254
Council area
Lieutenancy area
  • Argyll and Bute
CountryScotland
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
UK Parliament
Scottish Parliament
List of places
UK
Scotland
56.022059°N 5.0644789°W / 56.022059; -5.0644789
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The northern part of the peninsula is covered by the Argyll Forest Park managed by Forestry and Land Scotland.[5] The Arrochar Alps[6] and Ardgoil peninsula in the north fringe the edges of the sea lochs whilst the forest park spreads out across the hillsides and mountain passes, making Cowal one of the remotest areas in the west of mainland Scotland. The Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park extends into Cowal.[7] The peninsula is separated from Knapdale by Loch Fyne, and from Inverclyde and North Ayrshire to the east by the Firth of Clyde.[8] Loch Long and its arm, Loch Goil are to the north-east. The south of the peninsula is split into three forks by Loch Striven and Loch Riddon (Loch Ruel). The Isle of Bute lies to the south separated by the narrow Kyles of Bute which connect the Firth of Clyde to Loch Riddon.

Cowal's only burgh is Dunoon in the south-east,[9] from which ferries sail to Gourock in Inverclyde. Other ferries run from Portavadie in the west to Tarbert in Kintyre, and from Colintraive in the south to Rhubodach on the Isle of Bute.

Much of Cowal was once held by the Lamonts.[10] Later, the Campbells[11] came to be one of the most powerful families in Cowal.