|from £845* per person||6 Days||June, August, September
Exertion level: 3
|Operator: Wilderness Scotland
10 people max
The Scottish Sea Kayak Trail is an unofficial but excellent sea kayaking route from north to south up the West Coast of the Scottish Highlands. This is a new trip for 2011 and it has been designed to allow you to experience some of the best bits of the trail, undertaking a series of day trips which link together to form a journey through the most scenic parts of the route. Each night, we enjoy comfortable accommodation in Highland inns - which means that this is a great choice if you don't want to spend a week wild camping!
The itinerary is suitable for people with some previous experience of sea kayaking (for example, having completed our Introduction to Sea Kayaking course), this new trip will allow you to enjoy day trips on the sea before returning to comfortable accommodation each evening.
This sea kayaking trip is perfect for people with some previous experience but who are not keen on camping. You will develop your skills during the trip but the main emphasis is on fun, simply enjoying the incredible sea kayaking on offer on Scotland's beautiful west coast.
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Day 1 – Welcome and onto the water!
You will be met by your guide at Inverness Railway station and we’ll transfer to Loch Linnhe for an afternoon paddle, refreshing your skills and introducing you to the wonderful West Highland scenery. Late afternoon, we transfer to our first accommodation, located on the shores of Loch Sunart.
Day 2 – The Scottish Sea Kayak Trail: Sound of Mull
Today we have a choice of areas to paddle in. One option is to head south to the Sound of Mull and Loch Aline, which is part of the Scottish Sea Kayak Trail. This stretch of water is a good place to encounter all kinds of marine wildlife such as dolphins and minke whales. After an enjoyable day's sea kayaking, we return to our accommodation late afternoon.
Day 3 – Sea Kayaking in Loch Sunart
Loch Sunart forms the southern boundary of the Ardnamurchan Peninsula and offers some lovely sea kayaking. We can explore the islands of Risga, Carna and Oronsay, all of which offer interest to sea kayakers. We will look out for sea otters which are often spotted in this sea loch. Further west lies Ardnamurchan Point - this is one area that we will not sea kayak to as it is the most challenging section of the whole trail, and is for experts only! If time permits, however, we will drive to the point to admire the magnificent sea views. We then transfer to our next accommodation, a classic West Highland inn located on the waterfront with views across the Sound of Arisaig.
Day 4 – Sea Kayaking in Loch Moidart and Castle Tioram
After breakfast, we continue our journey along the Scottish Sea Kayak Trail. Today we explore the sheltered waters of Loch Moidart, kayaking past the dramatic ruins of Castle Tioram (dating from the 13th Century) to Eilean Shona (the beautiful island'). This is one of the most stunning places on the West Coast. Paddling past stands of Caledonian pines on the shoreline, we can paddle round the point all the way back to our waterside inn, passing an abandoned village along the way.
Day 5 - Sea Kayaking through the Arisaig Skerries
Heading north from the inn, we enjoy one of the best day trips by sea kayak anywhere in the world - kayaking through the Arisaig skerries. These beach-fringed islands which guard the entrance to Arisaig are home to countless seals, otters and seabirds, while basking sharks are also regular visitors. Even without any wildlife, it still makes for an amazing paddle through the turquoise waters of the skerries. On clear days, the Atlantic views west to the mountains of Rum and Skye are magnificent - this really is Scottish sea kayaking at its best.
Day 6 - Final morning’s paddle
After breakfast at the inn, we’ll enjoy a morning sea kayaking before we make our way back to Inverness. We often explore either Loch Ailort (easily accessed from in front of the inn) or Loch nan Uamh. We follow the coastline of the peninsula with its rich history of the Jacobite rebellion of the 1740’s. This is a great way to end the trip and we can reflect back on the experience as we load up the vehicle and trailer and make our way back to Inverness, arriving late afternoon.
More information from Wilderness Scotland: