A mini cruise around the sea lochs of the Isle of Skye and the Small Isles (Muck, Eigg, Rum and Canna) has to be one of the best ways to visit the Hebridean islands. Extraordinary Scottish wildlife is everywhere from minke and occasional killer and humpback whales, dolphins, porpoises, basking sharks, otters to many species of rare sea birds, especially sea eagles.
Throughout the mini cruise you will anchor in secluded sea lochs and sail against a spectacular backdrop of dramatic, pristine island coastlines, high sea cliffs, wild mountains and forests. Don't forget your walking boots for stunning island walks and your swimwear for some tranquil wild swimming.
You start your cruise from Oban (Dunstaffnage marina) and visit the stunning Small Isles and the west coast of Skye, which in Loch Scavaig has the most spectacular wilderness anchorage in the whole of Scotland. We travel along the west coast of Skye and at the next anchorage you can even visit Skye's famous Talisker malt whisky distillery.
In addition, we have onboard, for your enjoyment, a very experienced art tutor Anthea Gage, RSW. Anthea has more than 30 years’ experience teaching artists of all ages and of all abilities.
During the cruise you will be discovering, through the use of several sketch books, how to record and capture the ever changing and beautiful Scottish seascapes around the boat, as well as ashore when appropriate. We will explore a wide variety of materials and techniques, from drawing with traditional media like pencils and oil pastels, to liquid watercolour painting, mixed media work and collage. The focus will be on developing individual skills and enjoying learning about new approaches to drawing and painting, using the sketch books to later produce a more finished and detailed work indoors. There are several sheltered spots on deck to work outside as well as space in the main cabin area, and everyone is welcome to take part wether you are a beginner or a more experienced artist.
You don't have to take advantage of Anthea's tutoring but, if you wish, we will supply all the art materials free of charge. Please note that you have to let us know if you would like to take part in Anthea's sessions when you book your cruise, so that we can organise the art materials in advance.
Please note that your voyage is weather dependent. Weather doesn't just mean good or bad weather. There are many considerations such as tidal gates, wind direction and strength, the strength and direction of currents, overfalls, and fetch. Depending upon the weather and nature’s conditions, wildlife viewing varies.
If you wish to visit a specific place or have a specific experience, such as sea eagle tours or whisky tasting, then please do let your skipper know and he will endeavour to meet your request. Excursions and visits ashore are at your own cost.
Some of the places we may visit are:
Oban: Your departure point will be Oban (Dunstaffnage Marina), the gateway to the Hebridean isles. After a short introduction to life on board our small ship we depart for our first destination.
Loch Aline: In the picturesque Loch Aline there are woodland walks and, at the head of the loch, is ancient Ardtornish estate and woodland gardens.
Tobermory: One of the most picturesque towns in the Hebridean Isles with its famous whisky distillery and colourful waterfront. You can wander along the streets, visit the delightful local museum, perhaps watch a pipe band, admire the wooden fishing boats and take in the long history of this lovely village.
Rum, Loch Scresort, the Small Isles: Rum Island is a National Nature Reserve and famous for its herds of red deer and sheer sea cliffs which are home to nesting sea eagles.
Canna, the Small Isles: Canna is possibly the most beautiful of all the Small islands. Its 200 metre high cliffs of Compass Hill rise dramatically out of the sea and we have a good chance of seeing both sea and golden eagles. The anchorage on Canna is one of the best of the Small Isles and a stroll ashore to see the puffins and wild flower meadows of Sanday's Machair is a pure delight.
Loch Scavaig, Isle of Skye: The most dramatic anchorage in Scotland, if not Europe. The loch is situated below the mighty Black Cuillins mountains, famous for their difficult rock climbs, and a large colony of seals on Sgeir Doigich. Make sure to make time to enjoy this breathtaking wilderness.
Loch Harport, Isle of Skye: Home to the famous Talisker malt whisky distillery.
Loch Drumbuie: Just south of Oronsay is secluded Loch Drumbuie, situated between the island and the mainland. A squeeze between high sided cliffs and we are in a perfectly sheltered anchorage.
Loch Spelve: A narrow entrance leads us in to the tranquil waters of Loch Spelve with its surrounding ancient oak forest. The anchorage gives us a different perspective than our previous views of the wonderful mountains of Mull. There are resident otters along the loch's shoreline. We can also pick up some locally grown mussels before we leave to our next destination.Enquire now
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Best holiday of my life!!!