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Mull Scenery and Landscapes Archive

Things to Know Before You Visit Mull

If you’re thinking of visiting Mull for the very first time, here are five useful things to know before you visit the island to make the most of your stay in the Hebrides.

The most popular route is from Oban on the mainland to Craignure on Mull

There’s more than one way to get here


The CalMac Oban (mainland) to Craignure (Mull) route may prove the most popular, but the island is actually serviced by two further ferries. Continue north on the mainland through beautiful Glen Coe, hop on the quick Corran ferry and then enjoy the scenic drive to Lochaline, where you’ll find another ferry service ready to deliver you to Fishnish on Mull. Further north yet still, on the rugged Ardnamurchan peninsula, is the third ferry service to the island, connecting Kilchoan to Tobermory on Mull.

Sea eagle dives for fish


Wildlife season never ends


While the most popular time to visit Mull is between April and October, Mull’s most dreamed of wildlife can be found here all year round. In the winter months, the young white-tailed eagles will often have left their parent’s territories and can sometimes be seen gathered in large numbers on the shore or skerries. Golden eagles, otters and red deer are here year-round too, with the latter often more easily seen as they descend the hills in favour of lower ground as winter arrives.

The single track road from Dervaig to Tobermory, looking out towards Loch Frisa


Taking the scenic route


There’s only two stretches of double track road on Mull, with the vast majority of drives spent exploring the island’s single track roads sitting quietly within dramatic landscapes. The road trips will be breath taking and you’ll soon get used to this style of driving, pulling into passing places to let traffic past and remembering to let vehicles behind you by to overtake if you want to slow down and enjoy the views.

Honesty box oysters are available from Croig pier in season


There’s loads of local produce to try


With wonderfully fresh and local produce, from seafood and shellfish to seasonal veg and sensational cakes. We’ve included a guide to help you eat your way around the island’s local growers, producers and restaurants here. The Mull and Iona Food Trail will offer plenty to add to the menu, too.

Looking back to the mainland from Gorsten House


Mull is closer than you think


The image of a Hebridean island can feel miles away from mainland living. And the character of the island is certainly unique, but it’s more accessible than you might think. In fact, you can see the Morvern hills on the mainland from Mull’s east coast, the Nevis range on a clear day from the south east, and the most westerly Ardnamurchan peninsula from the north. The ferry can be as quick as 20 minutes travelling from Lochaline, but even from Oban it’s just a short 50-minute crossing.

6 Ways to Enjoy Mull from the Water

As you disembark the ferry in Craignure and make your way to your holiday cottage of choice, the coast never feels far. Sea views appear at seemingly every turn along many stretches of road, with the water revealing itself as you clear the canopy of woodland or crest the brow of a hill. So, how can you make the most of the waters and wildlife around Mull on your next stay? Read on to find out more about six different Isle of Mull boat trips.

Looking over Tobermory Bay towards the harbourfront

1 Boat around Tobermory Bay

A new addition for the summer of 2022, thanks to Tobermory Bay Tours, guests can hop on board from the Tobermory pontoons and enjoy a beautiful cruise around the bay. Enjoy stunning views back to the colourful harbourfront, pass by waterfalls as they plunge into the sea and get a closer look at Calve Island and the colony of seals, among other wildlife, who call it home.

Discover six Scottish islands you can visit from Mull, with boat trips, walks and historical attractions to see, as well as abundant wildlife.
Meet puffins on the Treshnish Isles during the summer months

2 Travel to the Treshnish Isles

One of the most popular trips among visitors is to embark on an Isle of Mull boat trip to our outlying Treshnish Isles, visible from the island’s west coast. Take in the iconic contours of Dutchman’s Cap and land on Lunga to experience the archipelago ashore. From mid-April to July, these islands are abuzz with breeding colonies of sea birds, including the perennially popular puffins, who nest in burrows here. Trips depart from the west coast at Ulva Ferry with Turus Mara, or from Tobermory with Staffa Tours.

Iona from above
The whole of Iona from south to north

3 Sail for Staffa and Iona

Venture down to the island’s most south westerly village of Fionnphort and yet another adventure awaits for Isle of Mull boat trips. Skip the CalMac passenger ferry and instead embark with Staffa Trips on a voyage that takes in both Staffa, with its basalt columns and Fingal’s Cave, as well as Iona, with beautiful beaches and the historic abbey, before returning you home to Mull.

Dramatic basalt columns on Staffa

4 Paddle past seals in Salen Bay

Conveniently located in the centre of the island, Salen Bay Hire offers the chance to take to the water in your own time with the hire of kayaks and paddle boards. Paddle around the bay and its charming skerries, enjoy an alternative view of the Salen shipwrecks and almost certainly encounter an inquisitive seal or two.

A group of kayakers exploring Mull’s coastline

5 Ride the waves on the Ross of Mull

Visitors staying in the island’s south west will find all their appetite for adventure well satisfied with water sports, sea kayaking and sailing at Bendoran Watersports in Ardtun. With the help of an expert guide, spend a half or full day cruising around the coast, visiting little-known sandy coves and admiring the pink granite rock formations that this part of the island is well-known for.

Basking shark on a boat trip from Mull

6 Watch for whales from the water

Mull’s waters have been alive this summer with some truly exceptional marine sightings – including on rare occasions orcas! Minke whales, dolphins and porpoise may be more often seen, with the chance for the luckiest visitors to see basking sharks too. Sea Life Mull sail regularly from Tobermory to soak up the sights of the sea.

We hope these Isle of Mull boat trips have given you plenty of inspiration for your next island adventure. Book your cottage and bring your plans together.

5 Winter Wildlife Species to Encounter on Mull

Visit a Scottish island in the depths of winter? Really? Ewan Miles from Nature Scotland is here to tell us why the unlikeliest timing might just be the best…

Ewan Miles leads a wildlife tour in wintertime on Mull

Despite what you may think, Scotland can be a stunningly beautiful place to spend some time over the harsher winter months. Yes, the weather can be challenging. But,it can be equally as challenging in July and August too. The west coast is known for glorious white sand beaches, turquoise blue seas and comical puffins. The puffins are long gone in winter, but the Isle of Mull still has much to offer, including those beaches (and often you’ll be the only soul there).

So, come prepared with your waterproofs and wooly hats and hop on the ferry to witness some island wildlife. Here are five iconic species that you can encounter on the Isle of Mull throughout the colder season.

Photo courtesy of Ewan Miles, Nature Scotland

Golden Eagle

Secretive but splendid. The classic Golden Eagle sighting leaves you wanting more. Often, you glimpse a distant yet intimidating silhouette just before it vanishes beyond the crest of a hill. Particularly in the summer months, these wary raptors are focused (hopefully) on their eaglet in the eyrie and avoid humans where possible.

With the arrival of cold winds and snow on the higher mountain tops, Golden Eagles can be seen actively hunting in the shorter daylight hours.

In late winter these birds are already thinking ahead. They become yet more territorial, aggressively removing intruder birds from their wintery home and can be seen displaying to their partner. The male uses powerful wingbeats to gain height, before tightly folding them against his body and plummeting down, clearly sending a message to his mate and any would-be suitor. This sight is repeated against stunningly beautiful landscapes with snow-capped peaks and angry skies.

Photo courtesy of Ewan Miles, Nature Scotland

White-tailed Eagle

The Sea Eagle, fondly referred to as the ‘flying barn door’. The bigger (and better) UK equivalent to the American Bald Eagle. One of the largest eagles in the world, with a staggering 2.9m record wingspan, the White-tailed Eagle is a species to see.

The Isle of Mull has become an iconic location for this eagle since their reintroduction to the Isle of Rum, they set up home here on Mull in 1980s and got comfortable. Fame came in 2005 with Skye and Frisa and their eaglets Itchy and Scratchy.

Like Golden Eagles, these raptors are present here all year round, breeding in the summer months. However, encountering in the winter can be quite different. Often a gregarious bird, juveniles and sub-adults may congregate in small groups together when the going gets tough. They’ll make use of intertidal zones to scavenge any delightful, dead detritus that may have been washed up.

Adult pairs will remain territorial and can be spotted roosting together in trees or nest building before spring arrives again.

Photo courtesy of Ewan Miles, Nature Scotland

Otter

This elusive mammal is still an uncommon sight in mainland river systems despite their successful population resurgence. The Otter remains shy and is primarily nocturnal, making it a tricky species to encounter. Luckily for those visiting the Isle of Mull, particularly in the winter months, you have a good chance of observing these aquatic predators in our coastal waters.

Thanks to the icy cold sea water temperatures, Otters need to be actively hunting for large parts of the day to meet their energy requirements. This makes winter a great time to observe them and marvel at their ability to cope with the wild and choppy Atlantic ocean on our western shores.

They may look like cute, cuddly mammals, but don’t be lulled into a false sense of security. They’ll bring large prey like crabs, fish, octopus and lobster to land and make quick work of devouring the good bits, leaving slim pickings behind for the gulls and hooded crows.

Red deer stag on a bright winter’s day

Red Deer

Mull has a substantial population of the Red Deer, the country’s largest deer species. They’re an impressive sight to behold, particular in autumn and early winter. Wildlife watchers look forward to the ‘rutting season’ each year. The primal sounds of bellowing stags and the clashing of their antlers as they battle out for top mating position are worth getting up for.

Throughout winter though, Red Deer can be seen quite easily as they spend time on the lower, richer feeding areas. Female Red Deer (hinds) will remain in groups with their fast growing calves born earlier in the summer.

We’ve lost many of our larger native herbivores in the UK, including the Aurochs (wild ox), Tarpan (wild horse), Moose and the few Reindeer we do still have are confined only to the Cairngorms, so all the more reason to seek out the majestic Red Deer here on the Isle of Mull.

Ben More with a dusting of snow at sunset

Hen Harrier

Eagles rightly take a great deal of the glory among birds of prey. However, the Isle of Mull is home to another rare raptor, the Hen Harrier which despite a smaller stature is just as intriguing.

The Hen Harrier is present in greatly reduced numbers throughout much of England and parts of mainland Scotland and is unfortunately linked to ongoing raptor persecution incidents on managed land. Thankfully, many islands including Mull are safer havens for these ‘sky-dancing’ birds.

We often have a good number of these vole-loving birds breeding here in summer months. Yet, our oceanic climate provides a warmer region to overwinter on our lower grounds. A crisp, cold winter day can yield excellent views of harriers hunting across rough ground searching out small mammals and birds.

Colder months also spur these birds to communally roost together, a spectacularly unusual sight, but spending time here in winter might increase you chances of seeing multiple harriers arriving at a night time roost to settle down.

Book your winter break on Mull this year and find out more about Nature Scotland wildlife tours.

Exploring Loch na Keal

Ask any visitor to Mull to recommend their favourite places to visit, and almost all of them will mention Loch na Keal at some point. This sea loch sweeps inland along the island’s west coast, with the Ardmeanach peninsula and Gribun cliffs hugging the south shore, and the coastline leading round past Killiechronan to the north. Inside the bay lies the uninhabited island of Eorsa, as well as the island of Inch Kenneth.

The winding road passes the Gribun cliffs on Loch na Keal’s south shore

One of the island’s most beautiful drives

Loch na Keal is easily accessible from most corners of Mull, lying only a couple of miles’ drive across the narrowest part of the island from Salen on the east coast, to the loch on the west. But arriving at Loch na Keal from the south offers perhaps the most spectacular introduction.

First follow the road through Mull’s mountains in Glen More, then turn off. The road follows the northern shore of Loch Scridain, before rising up over the pass at Tiroran and then descending dramatically with spectacular views across Loch na Keal and yet more outlying islands at sea.

As the road reaches sea level, the views remain impressive. Hills rise up to your right, with the sea to your left as the road winds past the Gribun cliffs with pretty dry stone walls.

White tailed sea eagle flying over the loch on the Isle of Mull
White tailed eagle in flight across the water on Loch na Keal

A wildlife hotspot for Mull’s ‘big five’

Of course, surrounded by pockets of woodland, sweeping hillsides, scree-covered peaks and a tidal sea loch, there’s far more to see than landscapes alone.

Mull’s big five could all be sighted in the local area, so keep your eyes to the skies for sea eagles, scan the hilltops for herds of deer, and choose a spot downwind with a view over the water in the hope of otters, seals and – for the very lucky – perhaps even dolphins too, who have been known to visit.

View from the shoreline by Kellan Mill Lodge, at Killiechronan on Loch na Keal

Explore Loch na Keal and beyond

At the head of the loch, there’s also the opportunity to experience the surrounds from the saddle, with Mull Pony Trekking based at Killiechronan.

Following the north shore round, the single track lane continues for miles following the length of the island’s west coast. Continue on and pass Loch Tuath, opening up views over the islands of Ulva, Gometra and the Treshnish Isles, and you can continue all the way to the white sands of Calgary Bay. A lovely place to pause and take in the west coast sunset, or enjoy an ice cream from the boat shack earlier in the day.

Balmeanach Farmhouse enjoys an unrivalled location on Loch na Keal with a little-known beach in walking distance

Cottages on Loch na Keal

Loch na Keal feels every bit like true Mull wilderness, with Ben More, the island’s only munro, accessible from the south shore. Cottages are few and far between in this rural corner of the coast, but we do have a couple that will draw you back time and time again.

For couples, Derryguaig Smiddy is the perfect choice, nestled in the foothills of Ben More on the sloping grassland above the loch. For wildlife lovers, Kellan Mill Lodge on Loch na Keal’s north shore is a firm favourite, and for families or large groups, the beautiful Balmeanach Farmhouse at the start of the Ardmeanach peninsula is guaranteed to impress.

A Dog Friendly Day Out on the Isle of Mull

As the ferry sails into Craignure from the west coast town of Oban, it’s time for your adventure on the island to begin! Just across from the pier, you’ll find the lovely little café Blethers. The perfect spot to warm up with a steaming mug of coffee, often with treats for your dog too! They’re also known for an excellent fish and chip supper, should your ferry happen to coincide with lunchtime…

A winter walk onto the hills on Mull

Dog friendly day out on the Ross of Mull

Rested and refuelled, it’s time to hit the road and enjoy a taste of what Mull has to offer! For those staying on the Ross of Mull, then a stop at Ardura Community Woodland on the way to your dog friendly cottage is a must. From the parking area just off the Glen More road, a quiet track ambles along the meandering River Lussa deep into the glen, with wonderful views to Mull’s mountains through the oak woodland, as well as a memorial to John Jones, beside Pedlars Pool.

Follow the course of the River Lussa along the path through the Ardura Community Forest

Returning to the car, there are yet more views to soak up as you pass through the glen with steep hills rising to either side. As you drop down towards Pennyghael and Loch Scridain opens up before you, Ben More will tower to your right, and you find yourselves on the Ross.

Let your four-legged-friends stretch their legs on Ardalanish beach

If time allows, continue on before heading to your dog friendly holiday cottage and sample your first of many beautiful beaches. The fine sands of Uisken and Ardalanish will all be wonderful sights to start your holiday. Or, for those who venture as far as Fidden, there’s a taste of more to come with the outlying islands of Iona and Erraid in view too, both of which make excellent dog friendly days out during your holiday on Mull, with stunning scenic walks and coastline.

Refreshed by the sea breeze and salty air, wipe off those muddy paws and sink into the warm welcome of your dog friendly holiday cottage. A call before your arrival to the Lochbuie Larder comes highly recommended, meaning you can tuck into locally sourced, homemade ready meals for your first night on the island. The Argyll Arms pub in Bunessan will also be a welcome visit during your stay, where your four-legged-friends will feel at home too.

Exploring Traigh na Cille beach in north west Mull

Dog friendly day out in North Mull

For those staying in the island’s north, enjoy the scenic drive up along the edge of Salen Bay, stopping to see the iconic shipwrecks and the seals so often on the skerries. Just before the stone bridge with a left hand turn to Dervaig, make time for the first of many walks on the island as you follow the lane along the Aros river estuary to the ruins of the 16th century Aros Castle. This makes a great short walk with lots of birdlife to see to stretch your legs after the ferry.

One of several dog friendly walks around Aros Park, near Tobermory, which follows the shore of the lochan

Back in the car, continue up the east coast with great views of the Sound of Mull as you go. Then, as you near Tobermory, make a right turn and follow the rhododendron-lined driveway down to Aros Park. Here, a dog friendly wonderland of trails awaits, following the course of waterfalls, circuiting the lochan or hugging the coast all the way to Tobermory’s harbourfront. Pick any one of them or try them all – they’re sure to be a favourite with four-legged-friends.

Enjoy dinner in one of several pet friendly pubs on Tobermory’s harbourfront

As you arrive at your dog friendly holiday cottage on Mull, it’s time to pull off your boots, wipe off their paws and settle in for a relaxing stay. And if you fancy a night off cooking, you’re in luck, as many of North Mull’s cafes and restaurants are dog friendly. They’ll be all too happy to curl up beside the fire in the Mishnish pub, or to join you for dinner at MacGochans at the end of the harbour.

Book your pet friendly cottage for a holiday on Mull.

Cottages for Adventure Seekers

In the past 12 months, we’ve become better than ever at exploring the great outdoors that lies on our doorstep. As part of that, many of us have found new passions for outdoor pursuits, whether taking on testing hills or taking to the water for a bracing wild swim. With that in mind, we’ve compiled our pick of the best Mull cottages for adventure seekers, whatever pursuit most appeals to you…

The garden gate at Sands Cottage in Calgary

Cottages for wild swimming

Calgary’s sheltered horseshoe bay and glistening clear waters make a tempting case for braving the bracing temperatures and taking a wild swim. Where better to base yourselves, then, than Sands Cottage and Calgary Bay Cottage, where you can dash back up the beach and straight in the door to warm beside the fire afterwards. Bliss!

Derryguaig Smiddy’s fantastic location on the slopes towards Ben More

Cottages for hill walking

Tucked into the foothills of Ben More, Derryguaig Smiddy offers a prime position for those hoping to summit Mull’s only munro during their stay. There are plenty more interesting hills to tackle in the area too, from the challenging Ben Fhada to the difficult alternative ascent of Ben More via the A’Chioch Ridge.

Venturing south, Dobhran Croft promises some excellent hills close by too at Lochbuie. Ben Buie is, of course, a must. But with the remote and dramatic coastline towards both Laggan and Carsaig, and the hills of Craig Ben to discover, there’s plenty to entertain those who like to head off the beaten track.

Direct access to the shore from the garden at The Old Church

Cottages for kayaking

With Loch Scridain at the bottom of the garden, The Old Church has long been popular with guests hoping to enjoy Mull from the water during their stay. Launch your kayak from the rocky shoreline and get a new perspective of the beauties of the Ross of Mull coastline.

View to Salen Bay from the balcony at Scots Cottage

Cottages for paddle boarding

With the tranquil waters of Salen Bay (and, conveniently, paddle board hire available in the village too), Scots Cottage is the perfect choice for those who wish to dip their toes in the adventurous side of Mull, all with a welcoming and modern homestay to return to.

The River Ba and surrounding hills of Mull’s mountainous interior

Cottages for biking

Some of Mull’s most dramatic scenery and terrain lies deep in the heart of the island in a little-visited area called Glen Cannel. To get here, one must venture along the length of Loch Ba and then deep into the glen, surrounded by Mull’s mountain country on all sides. A fantastic cycle in wild surrounds, with a good chance of being joined by a soaring eagle or quartering hen harrier as you go. Macquarie House affords easy access to this wonderful part of Mull.

Geocaching on Mull: Five to Find

Think of it as a treasure hunt that every generation can enjoy. Geoacaching on Mull is a great way to find inspiration for walks to try, as you set off on new routes with a mission in mind: finding the cache! It might be hidden beneath a rock, tucked inside a tree stump or wedged within an old stone wall, or it may be stowed somewhere else entirely!

Geocaching on Mull will cultivate your curiosity as you explore new corners of the island that you might not have visited before. So, how can you get involved and where should you begin?

First, you’ll need to prepare your treasure hunting tools – that means having a GPS device, or a geocaching app downloaded to your phone to guide you once out hunting. You can also join geocaching.com, which is a great place to find cache coordinates and record your progress as you go.

Here are some of our favourite geocaching sites to discover on Mull:

Treshnish whisky cave

1 The whisky cave at Treshnish

One of Mull’s best walks in its own right, you’ll pass through wildflower meadows and along dramatic coastline where the Treshnish Isles appear impossibly close. If you can tear your eyes away from the stunning scenery, then there are a number of caches to search for here, including in the whisky cave.

Standing stones at Glengorm

2 The standing stones at Glengorm

After setting your coordinates and sussing out the location of this cache, it’s only a short walk through stunning coastal scenery, with great views of Glengorm Castle and often passing Highland coos, to reach the wonderful café at Glengorm. Don’t miss the hearty soups, delicious burgers made with Glengorm beef and the mouth-watering array of cakes.

Woodland walk in Salen

3 Salen Woods

A lovely circular walk that’s popular with locals climbs up through woodland, where at the high point fantastic views open up across to the Sound of Mull. Add a sense of adventure to this well-trodden footpath by finding the coordinates that conceal the cache.

Eas-Fors-waterfall
Guest image by Ben Ferguson – please take care around the waterfall and keep well back from the edge!

4 Eas Fors

Over on the island’s remote west coast, Eas Fors waterfall cascades down the hillside before plunging into the sea loch below. A stunning view to enjoy as you search for the cache located in the surrounding area close by. If you choose to venture close to the waterfall, please take great care around the slippery rocks and keep well clear of the drops and away from the edge.

Rubh nan Gall Tobermory lighthouse

5 Rubh nan Gall Lighthouse

A wonderful there-and-back walk from the harbourfront in Tobermory, begin at the far end of the Main Street by the CalMac pier. Follow the footpath through coastal woodland to reach the beautiful lighthouse. There’s a lovely picnic bench and viewpoint along this path that makes a great place for a picnic after finding the cache.

As with all walks on Mull, be sure to choose routes that suit your ability and head out prepared. We hope we’ve inspired you to try geocaching on Mull and discover more of the island on foot.

Fishing on Mull: 5 Expert Tips Plus Where to Stay

Fishing on Mull has long been a draw for visitors to the island. It’s a traditional way of life that has deep island roots, with many of the oldest buildings in Tobermory linked to fishing and the associated commerce that Tobermory’s sheltered harbour facilitated. Visit the harbourfront today and you’ll still find the fisherman’s pier busy with boats as catches are unloaded.

But of course, fishing on Mull isn’t limited to what you can find at sea. The island has some fine river and loch fishing to enjoy too. Guy Bolton is a local expert, providing a guiding service for keen anglers visiting Mull, and in this article he shares five top tips to enjoy the bounty Mull has to offer.

Expert tips for fishing on Mull

1. Dress for the occasion

Make sure you have the right foot wear and clothing for a days’ fishing on Mull, the weather here is very changeable and making sure you are kitted out for the day helps to ensure that you stay warm and dry and you are far more likely then to enjoy your day out.

2. Movement is key

Once you have chose a loch or river to fish, try not to get stuck in the same spot all the day. Move around, up and down the bank in different directions. Trout can be quite nomadic, moving around the loch looking for their next meal. It can be easy to spook them in these remote hill lochs, so stealth and keeping trying different places can help hugely.

3. Flies and lures

Keep changing them don’t thrash away for hours if the fly or lure isn’t working. Keep trying different things with the hope that you will present the fish with something it simply can’t resist.

4. Safe hands

When handling fish you have caught look after them, especially if you are intending returning them to the water. Try to keep them as wet as possible. If the slimy coating of the fish gets damaged or rubbed off too much, it leaves the fish susceptible to infection and disease.

5. Plan ahead

Let people know where you are thinking of going and give them a vague idea of when you are expecting to return home. This way if anything were to happen to you or someone in your party, for example a fall, then help will never be too far away.

Best cottages for fishing on Mull

Armed with the expert advice of Guy Bolton, you’ll soon be on your way to fishing success. And you can even enjoy it from the luxury of your own cottage, with these three perfect properties for fishing on Mull.

The Steading (sleeps 4) on Loch Assapol

The Steading, Loch Assapol

Venture straight to the loch shore from the front door of The Steading and enjoy some fine freshwater loch fishing on Loch Assapol. Then it’s only a short walk home with your catch to cook up a storm in the beautiful dining kitchen, complete with vaulted ceilings and charming beams. A great choice for all the family, with excellent walking, beautiful beaches and abundant wildlife in the area too.

Craig Ben Lodge (sleeps 10, pet friendly) on Loch Uisg

Craig Ben Lodge, Loch Uisg

Treat yourselves to a true Highland escape with a stay at Craig Ben Lodge, complete with a turret and exceptional loch views. The house affords easy access to the sea at Lochbuie and Loch Spelve, with use of a boat available on Loch Uisg too.

Macquarie House (sleeps 9-10, pet friendly) on Loch Ba

Macquarie House, Loch Ba

A stone’s throw from the dramatic freshwater loch, Loch Ba, which leads into Mull’s mountainous interior, Macquarie House is an angler’s delight, with a boat available to hire, permits available for river fishing on the River Ba, and even the chance to catch brown trout on a hill loch nearby. Throw in the close proximity of Loch na Keal for sea fishing, and a week simply won’t feel long enough.

Discover more inspiration for things to do on Mull and make your holiday truly memorable.

Wildlife Boat Trips from the Isle of Mull

It’s been an amazing summer for wildlife boat trips from the Isle of Mull, with regular appearances of dolphins in their droves, sightings of minke whales and harbour porpoise, and even in the last few weeks views of John Coe and Aquarius, members of the west coast population of killer whales!

Here, we catch up with Colin from Turus Mara to get the inside scoop:

Dolphin leaping off the Isle of Mull

Dolphins

It has been a really great summer for wildlife out on Staffa and the Treshnish Isles and surrounds, particularly for common dolphins with weeks of virtually daily sightings. ‘Dolphin soup’ has been the somewhat unpalatable epithet in use due to the sheer numbers of ‘Delphinus delphis’ in our plying area!

If the dolphins are feeding or otherwise engaged we just sit back and watch them going about their business – but often they choose to come to us – to play on the bow or just to spin around the boat clicking and whistling to the delight of our passengers.

Minke whales

It is rarer that a minke whale will come and associate with the boat – and these occasions can be intimate and almost emotional. One day this year all our passengers except a mother and son had gone ashore. We took the two ‘stayaboards’ to watch a juvenile minke nearby and it decided we required to be closely inspected.

We were stopped in the water and the young whale swam round and round the boat, also making several passes underneath, clearly visible in the calm water – even turning on its side to check us out. It really is incredible to look directly in the eye of a minke whale; a connection that few ever have the chance to feel – a privilege really.

Seal on off shore skerrie Isle of Mull

Staffa and the Treshnish Isles

September and October is a great time for a boat trip to Staffa and Fingal’s Cave, avoiding the busier months of summer.

The Treshnish Isles also have plenty to offer, with an influx of huge numbers of Atlantic Grey Seals. Over 1200 pups are born around the coast each year.

Our vessels depart from Ulva Ferry on the west side of Mull where there is ample parking. All our tours take place in the Loch na Keal National Scenic Area, with views of Ben More, Mull’s only munro (a mountain over three thousand feet), the cliffs of Gribun and Ardmeanach.

Wildlife boat trip from the Isle of Mull
Outlying island off the Isle of Mull with puffins

Wildlife boat trips from the Isle of Mull

Turus Mara boat trips cruise by Ulva, Gometra, Little Colonsay and Inch Kenneth – all islands with differing topography and fascinating stories in their own right. We endeavour to engage, educate and inform on topics as diverse as geology, history, nature and culture, all part of the magic of wildlife boat trips from the Isle of Mull.

Discover more about the island’s amazing wildlife, about our fascinating outlying islands, and the adventures you can enjoy when you stay with us.

Kayaking and Paddle Boarding on the Isle of Mull

Kayaking and paddle boarding on the Isle of Mull have become ever more popular as visitors look to soak up the scenery and sea surrounding the island.

Kayaking with Salen Bay Hire

A peaceful paddle in a kayak delivers you to hard-to-reach coves, and perhaps even brings an encounter with a seal or two. Paddle boarding is also a fun choice, and a great way to watch the sunset from a sheltered bay.

Find out how you could enjoy kayaking and paddle boarding on the Isle of Mull, with options in the north, east and south west for you.

Plan a family holiday on Mull that everyone will enjoy with these great tips for things to do, places to go and the best holiday homes to stay in.
Paddle board around Tobermory’s enchanting bay

Paddle boarding in Tobermory Bay

Yachts and fishing boats are a familiar sight in Tobermory’s iconic harbour, as well as the odd inquisitive seal or two. But now you can take to the water in an entirely new way, by enjoying a paddle boarding experience.

Choose between a one to three hour hire period and soak up the views, scenery and sights of the island’s harbour town from the water with Tobermory Paddle Hire.

Paddle boarding at sunset with Salen Bay Hire
Kayaking with Salen Bay Hire

Paddle boarding and kayaking in Salen Bay

Based in picturesque Salen Bay on the island’s east coast, Salen Bay Hire offer single and double kayak hire as well as paddle boards. Every hire comes with a life jacket and paddle, so it’s just a wetsuit to pack with you.

Sheltered from the wind, this is a lovely spot to spend an hour or two paddling and exploring. Enjoy a unique view of the Salen shipwrecks, so often photographed from the road but rarely viewed from across the water.

Fidden beach on the Ross of Mull

Sailing and kayaking on the Ross of Mull

If you’re staying on the Ross of Mull, then you needn’t miss out on the action. In addition to the treasure trove of sheltered coves for wild swimming on Mull, you can take to the water in a sea kayak with Bendoran Watersports. Choose between a half or full day on the water with a guide, or hire a kayak or dingie if you have suitable experience.