Frequently Asked Questions
Useful Tour Information
Hopefully you will find the answer to all your Tour questions in the categories shown below. If not please feel free to contact us, we'll be more than happy to answer any questions over the phone or by email.
Our getting here page has additional information on getting to Oban and what to bring for the our boat tours.
Frequently asked question categories:
Booking a tour
When you click Book Online to book your chosen tour, confirm the date on the following page, then enter your contact details. Some on some tours you can select your point of departure - usually Fionnfort on Mull or just over the water on Iona.
You will then be asked to pay online using a Visa or Mastercard. Once confirmed, you will receive an e-mail giving your tour reference number, details of your tour and where and when to meet the boat. Print out the e-mail or take a note of your reference number and show it to a crew member. IMPORTANT: Passengers who have booked online MUST bring their booking reference number.
Our system is 100% safe. We use a very well established third party tour booking system to process card payments to ensure your financial safely. All transactions are secured by 256 bit SSL encryption. SSL technology encodes information as it is being sent over the Internet, helping to ensure that the information transmitted remains confidential. We take your privacy very seriously and will never pass any of your details to third parties.
Online payment can be made by credit/debit card. Our booking system accepts Visa and Mastercard.
Yes, of course. We look forward to welcoming you onboard!
You can book a tour as far in advance as you want. Tours usually run between April to October, the calendar displayed on the tour detail pages shows available tour dates - some tours only run on specific days, whereas others run 7 days a week. Please also look at the "Departure times" tabs which gives further details on departure and return times for specific tours - times over the weekends can sometimes be different from weekdays due to ferry timetables.
We recommend that you book tickets in advance to ensure your place and avoid disappointment, but tickets are available to buy on the boats subject to availability.
There is no charge for children under 5yrs.
On the boats
Yes, we can take wheelchairs on board but, unfortunately, not containing the occupant. Shore landings are not suitable for wheelchairs.
Yes, we are happy to have dogs on the boats, providing they are kept on a lead.
Unfortunately, no lunch or snacks are provided on the boats but passengers may bring their own packed lunch, snacks and drinks.
Yes, basic toilet facilities are available.
Onboard it is safe to carry babies in backpacks or baby carriers. However, when going ashore safety is the passenger’s responsibility.
During the Tours
Tours run from April to October and wildlife sightings vary through the season.
- Whales - Apr – Oct
- Dolphins - Apr – Oct
- Porpoises - Apr – Oct
- Basking Sharks - Apr – Oct
- Puffins – May to beginning of August
- Guillemots - May to beginning of August
- Sea Eagles - Apr – Oct
- Seals - spring and autumn
- Gannets - Apr – Oct, but only when their usual feeding grounds further north have stormy weather
Yes. Our crews are highly experienced and have a wealth of knowledge about Inner Hebrides wildlife, the history and geology of Staffa, Treshnish and Mull and will provide interesting and entertaining commentary from time to time during your tour.
Boat Tours from Fionnphort, Mull and Iona
- Staffa Tour - Tour duration: 2 hrs
- Wildlife Cruise, Treshnish Isles and Staffa Tour - Tour duration: 5 ½ hours
- Staffa ‘Early Bird’ Tour - Tour duration: 2 hrs
Boat Tours from Mull and Kilchoan, Ardnamurchan
- Staffa and Treshnish Isles Wildlife Tour - Tour duration: 6 hrs
Boat Tours from Oban
On the Islands
The boats berth at a floating pontoon and from there a short but moderately steep climb over some rocks is required to get close to the puffins and other seabirds at Harp Rock.
Due to some potential dangers, it is not advisable to carry babies on backpacks on the islands. Parents/guardians do so at their own risk.
Landings on Staffa and the Treshnish Isles are subject to favourable sea conditions.
All our tours except the Tobermory Bay tour make stops at either the Isle of Staffa, Lunga in the Treshnish Isles or the Isle of Iona. Please note that times are approximate depending on weather and tidal conditions.
Boat Tours from Fionnphort and Iona
- Staffa Tour: about 1 hr on Staffa
- Wildlife Cruise, Treshnish Isles and Staffa Tour: 1 hr on Staffa, 2 hrs on Lunga
- Staffa 'Early Bird' Tour: 1 hr on Staffa
Boat Tours from Tobermory, Mull and Kilchoan, Ardnamurchan
- Staffa and Treshnish Isles Wildlife Tour: About 1 hr on Staffa, 2 hrs on Lunga
Boat Tours from Oban
Our boats berth at the jetty, and from there a stepped path with a railing leads to the top of the island. Access to the causeway is to the left of the jetty. The causeway provides easy walking due to its stepped, hexagonal pillars although it can be slippery when wet. Fingal’s Cave has an access platform with railing and caution is required when wet.
Planning Your Boat Tour
For tours departing from Oban, please ensure that you arrive at the boarding point at least 20 minutes before departure time.
Unfortunately, no. However, you can take a West Coast Motors bus from Craignure to Tobermory or Fionnphort where our wildlife tours to Staffa and the Treshnish Isles depart daily.
Take the Calmac ferry from Oban to Craignure then a West Coast Motors bus from Craignure to Fionnphort. Visit the Calmac website for the Oban to Craignure ferry timetable and the West Coast Motors website for the Craignure to Fionnphort bus timetable.
Take the Calmac ferry from Oban to Craignure then a West Coast Motors bus from Craignure to Tobermory. Visit the Calmac website for the Oban to Craignure ferry timetable and the West Coast Motors website for the Craignure to Tobermory bus timetables.
No parking is available on Oban pier. Ferry passengers should use the adjacent Scotrail car park. There is also parking close at hand in Albany Street, two streets away from the ferry terminal, and also in Shore Street, one street away from the terminal.
Ledaig car park provides limited, free parking a short walk along Main Street from the Staffa Tours berth and Pontoons car park is adjacent to the Staffa Tours berth.
A large pay and display car park is situated at the approach to the slipway and a large, free car park 500m from the slipway.
There is car parking 50m from the slipway.