In 2018 we are delighted to be able to support a new and local business venture, Isle GO.
You will travel to Lunga and/or Tiree in their brand new Redbay Stormforce 8.4 Rib, ‘Stormbringer II’.
Please note that guests on our boat trips should be comfortable with walking over rough terrain and prepared to access the vessel via a series of steps or a ladder, depending on tide conditions. Please contact us if you have any concerns over accessibility and we will be happy to help.
For 2018 we have added a trip to Tiree which will be guided by Tiree’s RSPB warden. Our IsleGO RIB will whisk us west across the wildlife-rich waters between Coll and Tiree, watching out for seabirds and cetaceans as we go. A minibus will take us from the pier at Scarinish across the fertile croftlands of Tiree to Loch a’ Phuill. This rich shallow machair loch is home to large numbers of breeding ducks, swans, waders, terns and gulls, many of which do not breed on Coll. The loch is also a magnet for spring migrants, often including scarcer birds, whilst otters can sometimes be seen. We will check the loch thoroughly from the public bird hide and then walk to the nearby beach of Traigh Bhi to look for more shorebirds and seabirds.
Lunga is designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest because of its abundant plant life. Many rare and endangered plants are native to the island. The flora includes Primroses, Birdsfoot Trefoil, orchids, Sea Campion, Thrift and Tormentil. Atlantic Grey seals inhabit the waters surrounding the island while birdlife includes Storm Petrels, Kittiwakes and Manx Shearwaters. Guillemot, Puffin, Corncrake and Razorbills breed on Lunga and on the Harp Rock, a sea stack separated by a narrow gut, which you can walk to on your visit. A trip through the Sound of Gunna provides the opportunity to see as variety of sea birds, stunning scenery and the possibility of seeing dolphins.
Most visitors take advantage of the puffin-therapy afforded by a trip to Lunga, where you can sit within a few feet of these iconic little sea-parrots and watch them interact. Lunga attracts over 2000 breeding pairs of puffins within a small area on a grassy plateau overlooking the sea, which makes for a fantastic spectacle.
For 2018 we have added a trip to Tiree which will be guided by Tiree’s RSPB warden. After enjoying the wildlife on the way past Gunna and down to Tiree, you will disembark and be taken by private bus to Loch a’ Phuill to view the wildlife of Tiree, which is quite different from Coll, if not always in species, at least in numbers. Previous visitors to Coll Bird Festival have enjoyed John Bowler’s talks about the differences between Coll and Tiree, and now you will have the chance to learn about it first hand with John as your guide.