Self-Catering with a Difference: Stay Aboard our Small Ships Berthed in Dunstaffnage Marina, Oban

Our unique small ships are available, when not cruising, for self-catering and are berthed in Dunstaffnage Marina, a superb marina in an idyllic location, just three miles north of Oban.  (There are no crew on board and we will not go to sea.) Please contact us for availability. Contact us via phone on 01631 564121 or e-mail

Dunstaffnage Marina is perfectly located in beautiful surroundings with easy access to Scotland’s west coast. Nearby Oban is a bustling little ferry port and is the gateway to the Hebridean isles. You can visit local islands, take wildlife tours, sample the local whisky, explore beautiful sandy beaches, admire ancient castles, fly-fish for trout on the local lochs and play picturesque and challenging golf courses.

Our quirky small ships are the ex-tall ship St Hilda (maximum 6 people), the ex-Norwegian ferry Seahorse II (maximum 11 people) and the ex-cruising lifeboat Gemini Explorer (maximum 8 people). All of our vessels have been converted to ensure that you will have a unique self-catering experience both in comfort and style in an authentic small ship environment. 

  • Seahorse II: £396 per vessel per night for 6 to 11 people, £294 per vessel per night for 4 or 5 people, £250 for 3 people or less
  • St Hilda: £204 per vessel per night
  • Gemini Explorer: £294 per vessel per night
  • Minimum three nights stay
  • 30% deposit to confirm a booking and final payment two months before the holiday

Included: Electricity, gas (St Hilda), bed linen, shower and hand towels (not beach towels), tea towels, cleaning and washing up materials (dish washer tablets supplied on Seahorse II and Gemini Explorer)

Pets: Unfortunately we do not take pets onboard. 


We offer a range of mini cruise itineraries suitable for solo travelers, couples, groups and families and we recommend you book early to get your preferred dates. For a private charter of the whole boat we can customise the number of days and the itinerary.  

Our 2023 calendar and 2024 calendar are now available - private boat charters go very quickly so don't delay! Enquire now to secure your dates for your small ship cruising holiday on the West Coast of Scotland to the Inner and Outer Hebrides.

Self-Catering Reviews

 We had a wonderful time on board Seahorse ll and thoroughly enjoyed our brief stay in this spectacular area of Scotland. The boat was spotlessly clean, warm, comfortable and welcoming. Thank you for your attention to our needs. 
— Sara - UK, Self-Catering, August 2020Sara - UK, Self-Catering, August 2020Clare, UK, Self-Catering

 Life aboard St Hilda was everything I was looking in terms of a getaway. Something different and a little adventurous. St Hilda is ideal for liveaboard with everything needed to have a very comfortable stay – even in late October. The marina is a great place to just sit and watch and is a perfect base for exploring the Argyll coastal route. There is so much to experience from an archaeological, geological and scenic perspective. 
— Sara - UK, Self-Catering, August 2020Sara - UK, Self-Catering, August 2020Peter, UK, Self-Catering

 We had a fabulous time and will definitely be keeping tabs on the trips that your company offer.  The boat was a novel alternative for self catering accommodation and sitting on deck each evening with a chilled glass of wine watching the sun set was so special.
— Sara - UK, Self-Catering, August 2020Sara - UK, Self-Catering, August 2020Carole, UK, Self-Catering


 love being on boats so it was perfect for a getaway and to use as a base. Good communication with the owners who are most helpful.

The weather was particularly good but even if it isn't, this is a comfortable and different place to stay.

— Sara - UK, Self-Catering, August 2020Sara - UK, Self-Catering, August 2020Chris, UK, Self-Catering

 We had the most glorious 4 days on board the St Hilda, albeit moored in the Marina above Oban. This quaint vessel lived up to all our expectations and the service we received from the whole team at St Hilda Adventures was magnificent. The vessel proved a great base for visiting the surrounding beauty spots. We fished off the boat side and had to stop after one session due to the quantity of Mackerel we caught! The whole 4 day break with superb weather was truly memorable.
— Sara - UK, Self-Catering, August 2020Sara - UK, Self-Catering, August 2020Edward, UK, Self-Catering


We had a fabulous time aboard  St Hilda.

The team looked after us really well, giving us a warm welcome and a few essentials for the fridge! Nothing seemed too much trouble for them.

The scenery around the marina is magical and the night sky truly awesome. 

— Sara - UK, Self-Catering, August 2020Sara - UK, Self-Catering, August 2020John, UK, Self-Catering


A lockdown Covid experience that despite restrictions turned into a lovely holiday. The boat (St Hilda) was cosy and comfortable and Christophe made sure we were well looked after. The area is stunning and the weather was kind to us. Would love to come back and enjoy the full cruise experience! Thank you.

— Sara - UK, Self-Catering, August 2020Sara - UK, Self-Catering, August 2020Sara, UK, Self-Catering


COVID-19 might have prevented us from setting sail but the magic of the Western Isles, the view from the marina each morning and life on our quirky Norwegian ferry made for a wonderfully different experience.

Paul, UK, Self-Catering