WILDLIFE BOAT TRIP

LOCHBAY ISLANDS, SEALS, SEABIRDS & HERITAGE

WILDLIFE BOAT TRIP

LOCHBAY ISLANDS, SEALS, SEABIRDS & HERITAGE

DURATION: 2.5 /3 hrs  |  COST: £30 per person 

CLICK ANY IMAGE TO OPEN SLIDESHOW

ABOUT THIS TRIP

Departing from the iconic and historic fishing village of Stein, this trip sails within the larger coastal area known as Lochbay, where the sea is more sheltered, and the boat trip is less weather dependant. The same trip is also available as Evening Wildlife, which is often chosen to unwind after a day of activities.

The rocky crags within the loch provide excellent habitat for red deer and are favoured nesting sites for golden eagle and sea eagles. The lower slopes extend down over small cliffs to a rocky foreshore, through a tumble of native woodland, wild garlic and honeysuckle, to reach perfect fishing ground for otter, which we spot very occasionally by boat.

Lochbay Islands are part of a Special Area of Conservation for common seals, and around the shores there are numerous haul-out sites, which they use for different purposes throughout the year. Common seals have their pups in early June and through the summer months we enjoy seeing them grow up. In the early weeks mum and her pups are often hauled out on rocky skerries suckling for rapid growth as they soak up the heat of the sun. The pups swim from birth and can be seen enjoying a ‘piggyback ride’ from Mum as they learn new swimming and fishing skills. Like all young they have less inhibition and are curious, so often approach the boat for a closer look at you.

We cruise on into deeper water outside Lochbay Islands, viewing the seabird nesting colonies of gulls, ducks, geese and more, as we head onto Ardmore Arches at the outer extremity of Lochbay. On the way we can encounter porpoise and dolphin as they pass through these deep-water feeding grounds. Ardmore Arches is an intriguing rocky structure, one that is home to nesting guillemot, razorbill, cormorant and shag, and of which we enjoy good views. From here, the birds can easily reach shallow reefs and deeper water for a choice of food to sustain their chicks.

The turning point of the trip, we head back through the islands, now perceived as remote by many, but, which were once the centre of the maritime super-highway. They enjoy a rich and vibrant heritage and were occupied by Vikings and Highland Clans folk until the early 1900’s. You will see the remains of the fishing station settlement, ‘the big house’ and other small industrial structures from the Victorion era. There are stories of clan rivalry, succession struggles and ‘Game of Thrones’ style murder to hear. For those who become intrigued by the islands, or who have ancestral connections, we offer 2 trips ‘Go Ashore & Explore – Isay Island’ and Isay Island Castaway Day.

If you hope to see whale, dolphin and puffin, then the longer trips ‘Wildlife -Waternish Pt’ or ‘Wildlife Puffin’ which are extension of this trip, might suit you better.

When we return to Stein, if you wish to explore more, we suggest you check out Visit Waternish website.

WHEN TO ARRIVE | WHERE TO MEET | WHAT TO BRING

Detailed instructions will be sent with your tickets. You might find our FAQ’s useful.

WILDLIFE BOAT TRIP

LOCHBAY ISLANDS, SEALS, SEABIRDS & HERITAGE

DURATION: 2.5/3 hrs | COST: £30 per person

CLICK ANY IMAGE TO OPEN SLIDESHOW

ABOUT THIS TRIP

Departing from the iconic and historic fishing village of Stein, this trip sails within the larger coastal area known as Lochbay, where the sea is more sheltered, and the boat trip is less weather dependant. The same trip is also available as Evening Wildlife, which is often chosen to unwind after a day of activities.

The rocky crags within the loch provide excellent habitat for red deer and are favoured nesting sites for golden eagle and sea eagles. The lower slopes extend down over small cliffs to a rocky foreshore, through a tumble of native woodland, wild garlic and honeysuckle, to reach perfect fishing ground for otter, which we spot very occasionally by boat.

Lochbay Islands are part of a Special Area of Conservation for common seals, and around the shores there are numerous haul-out sites, which they use for different purposes throughout the year. Common seals have their pups in early June and through the summer months we enjoy seeing them grow up. In the early weeks mum and her pups are often hauled out on rocky skerries suckling for rapid growth as they soak up the heat of the sun. The pups swim from birth and can be seen enjoying a ‘piggyback ride’ from Mum as they learn new swimming and fishing skills. Like all young they have less inhibition and are curious, so often approach the boat for a closer look at you.

We cruise on into deeper water outside Lochbay Islands, viewing the seabird nesting colonies of gulls, ducks, geese and more, as we head onto Ardmore Arches at the outer extremity of Lochbay. On the way we can encounter porpoise and dolphin as they pass through these deep-water feeding grounds. Ardmore Arches is an intriguing rocky structure, one that is home to nesting guillemot, razorbill, cormorant and shag, and of which we enjoy good views. From here, the birds can easily reach shallow reefs and deeper water for a choice of food to sustain their chicks.

The turning point of the trip, we head back through the islands, now perceived as remote by many, but, which were once the centre of the maritime super-highway. They enjoy a rich and vibrant heritage and were occupied by Vikings and Highland Clans folk until the early 1900’s. You will see the remains of the fishing station settlement, ‘the big house’ and other small industrial structures from the Victorion era. There are stories of clan rivalry, succession struggles and ‘Game of Thrones’ style murder to hear. For those who become intrigued by the islands, or who have ancestral connections, we offer 2 trips ‘Go Ashore & Explore – Isay Island’ and Isay Island Castaway Day.

If you hope to see whale, dolphin and puffin, then the longer trips ‘Wildlife -Waternish Pt’ or ‘Wildlife Puffin’ which are extension of this trip, might suit you better.

When we return to Stein, if you wish to explore more, we suggest you check out Visit Waternish website.

WHEN TO ARRIVE | WHERE TO MEET | WHAT TO BRING

Detailed instructions will be sent with your tickets. You might find our FAQ’s useful.

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