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Monday, 20th February 2017

Wildlife

The Outdoor Capital of the UK offers an extensive range of landscapes and seascapes which feature a spectacular range of wildlife. From Summit to Sea visitors can spot creatures such as the Golden Eagle, Red Deer and Common Seals.

 

An annual "Wild Lochaber" wildlife festival takes place each year to showcase the fabulous environment we enjoy here in Lochaber, as well as the many nature-related activities that take place each year in this beautiful part of the West Highlands.

This years festival is set to be bigger and better with over 40 workshops and events from an extensive range of activity providers, wildlife guides and organisations.

There are many activities on offer including Wildlife Cruises, Red Deer Safaris,  Rock Safaris, Squirrel Hunts and even Beach Qigong!

The diverse wildlife landscapes throughout the area are home to many mammals such as Britain’s largest land mammal, the Red Deer. Although these are present all year round they are most likely to be seen in the winter months as they move to lower ground to graze. It is an especially fantastic time to view these mammals late September and into October as the rutting season begins.


Moving towards the lochs we can see Otters and Common Seals which are both seen all year round. However, although salt water Otters are relatively active during the day those who live in freshwater are nocturnal and are much more difficult to see.

Another nocturnal creature which is most actively spotted at dawn/dusk is the Pine Marten. Despite being a carnivore these mammals can be tempted to bird tables with jam and peanut butter.



The easiest large mammal to spot throughout the Highlands though, is the Highland Cow. Although these are relatively docile, visitors must be careful of their horns, especially if there are young around. 

 Whilst viewing mammals such as the Otters and Common Seals it may also be possible to view Porpoise and the world’s second largest fish, the Basking Shark. These can be found off the West Coast of Scotland and are a magnificent sighting.


Throughout various locations in Lochaber visitors can also make out a range of birds such as Scotland’s most iconic, the Golden Eagle. These birds are very shy of humans and therefore tend to be found in distant glens and very high crags where they are most active at dusk/dawn. The endangered Black Grouse (classified red by the RSPB) can also be spotted just after sunrise, this is best in March/April when the males are “Lekking” for female attention. Other birds with low breeding populations present in Lochaber are the not so common, Common Scoter, Black Throated Diver and Goldeneye Duck.


A breeding population of Osprey can now be seen throughout the Outdoor Capital after returning to Scotland in 1959, these birds are one of very few which feed exclusively on fish. Bird populations seen all year in the area include Britain’s most common bird of prey, the Buzzard as well as the Tufted Duck, Oystercatcher, Grey Heron and Great Spotted Woodpecker. Whereas the Greylag Goose can be seen along with the Osprey between April and September.

As seen on BBC 1’s The One Show, the Chequered Skipper Butterfly is an extremely rare butterfly which is now only found within 30miles of Fort William in the whole of the UK. These are most likely to be found during warm weather during May/June and in locations where there is high levels of purple moor grass.

Other butterflies which can be identified in the area include: Dark Green Fritillary, Common Blue, Speckled Wood, Scotch Argus, Red Admiral along with the Emperor Moth and Buff Tip Moth.
Golden Ringed Dragonfly, Common Blue Damselfly, Highland Darter
and the Green Tiger Beetle can also be recognized throughout Lochaber, mostly during the summer months.

As well as the insects and creatures wildlife enthusiasts can also explore the Flora of the Outdoor Capital area during the summer months. Three varieties of Sundew can be seen, this is a very distinctive plant which traps and dissolves insects. This can be found in boggy ground similar to the carnivorous plant Butterwort.
The Heath Spotted Orchid is a plant commonly found in the area found in damp, acidic soils on the moorland whereas the Greater Butterfly Orchid is more likely to be found in woodland and grassland.

Take a look at our latest Instragram Images for #wildlochaber

 Click here for a downloadable guide to spotting Wildlife in the Outdoor Capital

SealView our wildlife and nature attractions, actvities and events on the map below.

Zoom in on an area to find out about the best locations to view wildlife and nature, or use the search function in the right hand column.

Number of results:

Number of results: 110

  1. Town Pier, Crannog Restaurant

    Crannog Restaurant

    Restaurant

    Fort William

    Situated in the heart of Fort William, Crannog is a seafood restaurant like no other – in a quiet loch-side location on the Town Pier, the distinctive red roofs have been synonymous with fantastic West Highland seafood and relaxed fine dining for over 20 years. Using the freshest seafood and...

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  2. Nevispix

    Nevispix

    Camera Stalking

    Spean Bridge, Inverness-Shire

    Based in the Great Glen 10 miles north of Spean Bridge, Nevispix offers a variety of Photography workshops, photo safaris and tours. Trips start from our studio in South Laggan and transport is in a comfortable VW minibus. Full day trips include a picnic lunch and equipment such as tripods and...

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  3. Glencoe Mountain Resort Cafe

    Glencoe Mountain Resort Cafe

    Café

    Glencoe

    Scotland's oldest ski area provides a natural playground for all abilities. Ski hire, ski school, 2 mountain cafes, a base station restaurant and fantastic views!

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  4. Fingal of Caledonia

    Caledonian Discovery

    Boat Trip

    Fort William,

    Caledonian Discovery offers cruising holidays with activities on the Caledonian Canal based on our barges Fingal or Ros Crana.

    These two large, fully-equipped holiday barges cruise the Great Glen, Loch Ness and the Caledonian Canal in the Highlands of Scotland, providing a unique holiday...

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  5. Bistro at the Moorings Hotel

    Bistro at the Moorings Hotel

    Restaurant

    Fort William

    Situated on the Banks of Neptunes Staircase on the Caledonian Canal, with spectacular views of Ben Nevis, the Birstro at the Moorings Hotel really is the perfect setting for your Highland Dining experience. The Bistro serves freshly prepared home-cooked dishes every evening from 5 pm until 9.30 pm....

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  6. Arisaig Sea Kayak Centre Arisaig

    Arisaig Sea Kayak Centre

    Outdoor Activity/Pursuit Centre

    Arisaig

    Interested in kayaking on your holiday? Come and enjoy the magic of Arisaig bay and surrounding area by sea kayak. Whether you are new to sea kayaking, experienced or want to learn more, we have the perfect location. Join or qualified coaches, on hand all year round, ready to take you out and give...

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  7. Bulas Bar and Bistro

    Bulas Bar & Bistro

    Restaurant

    Ballachulish

    On the shores of Loch Linnhe and Loch Leven and at the foot of the dramatic Glencoe. The Ballachulish Hotel provides a warm and welcome all year round. The baronial splendour of it's architecture and interior make it the perfect place for romantic breaks, stylish business events and exciting family...

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  8. Looking out at Glencoe from beside the Three Sisters

    National Trust for Scotland - Glencoe Visitor Centre

    Heritage / Visitor Centre

    Glencoe

    Tucked away from view, just off the A82, is the ‘family friendly’ Glencoe Visitor Centre, with exciting interactive displays and activities for both adults and children. ‘Living on The Edge’ explores the landscape, wildlife and history of this special place. Find out what it feels like to climb on...

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  9. Red Deer Hind

    Wild West

    Guided Tour

    Spean Bridge

    Wild West wildlife safaris and tours, spot all of the "Big 5" in the Outdoor Capital.

    Wild West offers a selection of wildlife safaris from 2 1/2 hours to a full day. Transport is by comfortable minibus. Species regularly spotted include red deer, golden and sea eagles, osprey, black throated...

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  10. ©Alex Farquhar

    Highland Cow

    Animal Collection

    Glen Nevis

    With its impressive horns and long, flowing coat of hair, the Highland Cow (or 'Coo') is a well known and much loved sight in the Outdoor Capital of the UK.

    Add Highland Cow to your Itinerary

  11. Glen Loy Oakwoods Walk

    Glen Loy Oakwoods Walk

    Nature Trail

    (Gaelic: Gleann Laoigh meaning “calf glen”) Glen Loy is a lovely quiet glen near Fort William. There are no formal walks but you can explore the glen by either the public road running along the river, or a stretch of path through the oak woods at Erracht, where there is a small carpark.

    This is...

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  12. Laggan Dam ©Nevispix

    Laggan Dam

    Waterfalls

    Spean Bridge

    Laggan Dam is a dam located on the River Spean south west of Loch Laggan in the Scottish Highlands. The dam is 700 feet (213 metres) long and rises 170 feet (52 metres) above its foundations, and is part of the Lochaber hydro-electric scheme. The structure was built by Balfour Beatty for the...

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  13. Land, Sea & Island Centre

    Land, Sea & Island Centre

    Sub-Attraction

    Arisaig

    The Land, Sea and Islands Visitor Centre opened in July 1999 on the site of a derelict smiddy in a stunning situation in the heart of Arisaig village.

    A community project, it houses an exhibition that celebrates the social and natural history of the area old and new with photographic displays...

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  14. ©Alex Farquhar

    Highland Cow

    Animal Collection

    Glen Coe

    With its impressive horns and long, flowing coat of hair, the Highland Cow (or 'Coo') is a well known and much loved sight in the Outdoor Capital of the UK.

    Add Highland Cow to your Itinerary

  15. ©Forestry Commission Scotland

    Sunart Oakwoods

    Woodlands

    Sunart

    Situated as far west as you can go on the British mainland, this is one of the very few such forests remaining in Europe, and has the best selection of mosses in Europe.

    Discover Sunart for yourself; sheltered woodlands and windswept moors, sparkling waters and glowering skies, verdant springs...

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  16. Group at Loch Arkaig

    Glenloy Wildlife

    Field Studies Centre

    Fort William, Inverness-Shire

    Glenloy Wildlife offers exclusive wildlife holidays in the Lochaber area. All breaks are fully inclusive of comfortable accommodation, delicious home-cooked meals, transport and guided excursions. Based in beautiful Glenloy, we will explore the West Highlands taking in the magnificent scenery and...

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    guide price

    from £230.00 to £695.00 Package

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  17. Glen Nevis Rangers

    Glen Nevis Rangers

    Walking Tour

    Fort William,

    Countryside Rangers guided walks and events. Visitor centre with tourist informatoin on Ben Nevis and Glen Nevis. Retail section with maps, outdoor equipment, books and snacks.

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  18. Glencoe Mountain Resort

    Glencoe Mountain Resort

    Outdoor Activity/Pursuit Centre

    Glencoe

    Glencoe Mountain Resort - the perfect setting for individuals, families and groups.
    The resort is situated in an area of outstanding natural beauty on Rannoch Moor and offers stunning views of the iconic Buchaille Eitive Mhor.

    In summer the centre offers mountain biking (Downhill and XC),...

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  19. Fishing Scotland

    Fishing Scotland - Wild Fishing and Fly Fishing School

    Outdoor Activity/Pursuit Centre

    Roy Bridge

    SCOTLAND'S ONLY VISITSCOTLAND 5-STAR GRADED FLY FISHING SCHOOL & WILD FISHING ACTIVITY PROVIDER

    Fly fishing is a wonderful way to experience and enjoy the wild grandeur of Scotland with Lochaber hard to beat for the diversity of fly fishing available. Whether you have never fished before and...

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  20. Glencoe Mountain Resort

    Glencoe Mountain Resort

    Adventure Park / Playground

    Glencoe

    Glencoe Mountain Resort - the perfect setting for individuals, families and groups.
    The resort is situated in an area of outstanding natural beauty on Rannoch Moor and offers stunning views of the iconic Buchaille Eitive Mhor.

    In summer the centre offers mountain biking (Downhill and XC),...

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  21. Mountain Gondola : Andy Gray

    Nevis Range Mountain Experience

    Sightseeing

    Fort William

    Nevis Range in Fort William is home to the UK’s only mountain gondola, transporting visitors to 650m on the mountain of Aonach Mor.

    The journey to the gondola top station takes around 15 minutes giving visitors ample opportunity to capture the stunning scenery of the surrounding lochs and glens...

    guide price

    Free

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  22. Crannog Cruises

    Crannog Cruises

    Boat Trip

    Fort William

    Enjoy this fantastic cruise under the slopes of Ben Nevis, Britains highest mountain onboard the historic vessel Souters Lass. The Skipper gives an entertaining and informative commentary as the boat cruises past a salmon farm, mussel farm and on to view Black Rock where seals can be seen most of...

    guide price

    Free

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  23. Grey Mares Tail

    Grey Mares Tail

    Waterfalls

    Kinlochleven

    Grey Mare's Tail waterfall is one of the most impressive in the region, with the Allt Coire nam Ba flowing off a sheer cliff in a single leap of almost fifty metres.

    Stage 1
    The walk begins from the car park adjacent to St Paul's Church in Kinlochleven; it is signed 'Grey Mare's Tail' from the...

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  24. Eagle-Watch Cruises

    Eagle-Watch Cruises

    Boat Trip

    Glenfinnan

    Unique guided cruises aboard the historic MV Sileas on the stunning, sheltered inland waters of Loch Shiel. Share the skipper’s fifteen years experience of spotting Golden Eagles, Red Deer, Black-throated Divers and a variety of rare wildlife while learning the history and geology of this special,...

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  25. Nadurra Centre

    Nàdurra Visitor Centre (formerly Ardnamurchan Natural History Centre)

    Heritage / Visitor Centre

    Acharacle

    The Nàdurra Visitor Centre provides visitors with an introduction to the breathtaking variety of flora and fauna to be found on the Ardnamurchan Peninsula, one of the most beautiful corners of Scotland. In our 'Living Building' interactive experience, we have harnessed our own passion and love of...

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  26. Abacus Mountain Guides

    Abacus Mountain Guides

    Outdoor Activity/Pursuit Centre

    Fort William, Lochaber

    Abacus Mountain Guides provide world class mountain adventures on the west coast of Scotland. With the highest qualifications in Mountaineering, Canyoning and Mountain Biking, plus twenty years of experience, we deliver expert coaching and guiding in the mountains.

    Choose Your Adventure!

    Hire a...

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  27. Loch Nan Uamh

    Rockhopper Sea Kayaking

    Outdoor Activity/Pursuit Centre

    Fort William

    Sea kayak tuition and expeditions. Rockhopper Sea Kayaking is a fully mobile provider of guided sea kayaking trips and sea kayaking instruction based near Fort William on the West Coast of Scotland. Sea kayaking is a really safe and fun activity enabling you to journey through new areas and...

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  28. Banavie to Gairlochy along the Caledonian Canal

    Bike the Caledonian Canal, Banavie to Gairlochy

    Waymarked Trail

    Location: Fort William
    Starting Point: Neptune's Staircase Car Park, Banavie
    Trail Length: 15 miles
    Time Required: 2.5 - 3.5 hours depending on how easy you take it!
    Route Type: Family / Recreational
    Grade: Beginner

    Trail Description:
    This is an easy ride along the Caledonian Canal, and...

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  29. Cow Hill Circuit

    Bike the Cow Hill Circuit

    Waymarked Trail

    Location: Fort William
    Starting Point: Braveheart Carpark, Glen Nevis Grid Re 122737
    Trail Length: 7.5miles, with lots of uphill!
    Time Required: 1-2 hours
    Route Type: Cross Country
    Family / Recreational
    Difficulty: Intermediate - Advanced
    O.S. Map: OS Explorer 392, Ben Nevis and Fort...

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  30. Bike Glen Nevis by road or forestry track

    Bike Glen Nevis by road or forestry track

    Waymarked Trail

    Location: Glen Nevis
    Starting Point: Braveheart Car park; Glen Nevis Visitors Centre, both Glen Nevis
    Trail Length: 15 miles / 25 kilometres
    Time Required: 2.5 - half day ride
    Route Type: Cross Country - Road
    Difficulty: Beginner - Intermediate
    O.S. Map: OS Explorer 392; OS Landranger...

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  31. Bike Fiunary Forest

    Bike Fiunary Forest

    Waymarked Trail

    Location: Ardnamurchan and Morvern
    Starting Point: Lochaline
    Trail Length: Various
    Time Required: Various
    Route Type: Cross Country, Downhill, Family / Recreational
    Difficulty: Beginner - Intermediate
    O.S. Map: OS Landranger 49 & 47
    Parking: At Lochaline
    Trail Description:
    Fiunary Forest offers...

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  32. Bike Liddesdale Loop road ride, Ardgour

    Bike Liddesdale Loop road ride, Ardgour

    Waymarked Trail

    Location: Ardnamurchan and Morvern
    Starting Point: Corran Ferry
    Trail Length: Around 40 miles
    Time Required: Day/ half day for the fit!
    Route Type: Road
    Difficulty: Intermediate - Advanced
    O.S. Map: OS Explorer 383, 390, 391
    Parking: At Corran

    Trail Description:
    A superb road ride...

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  33. Bike Drimnin to Doirlinn

    Bike Drimnin to Doirlinn

    Waymarked Trail

    Location: Ardnamurchan and Morvern
    Starting Point: Drimnin
    Trail Length: 11km
    Time Required:
    Route Type:
    Cross Country
    Family / Recreational
    Difficulty:
    Beginner
    Intermediate
    Grade:
    O.S. Map: OS Landranger 40, 47, 49
    Parking: Drimnin Pier
    Trail Description:
    This is ride 2 on the map.
    From Drimnin...

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  34. Bike Lochaline Forest

    Bike Lochaline Forest

    Waymarked Trail

    Location: Ardnamurchan and Morvern
    Starting Point: Lochaline pier
    Trail Length: approx 40 miles
    Time Required: Day Ride
    Route Type: Cross Country, Family / Recreational , Road
    Difficulty: Beginner - Intermediate - Advanced
    O.S. Map: OS Landranger 47 & 49

    Parking: At start
    Trail...

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  35. Bike the Donkey Hill Dirt Track, Ballachulish

    Bike the Donkey Hill Dirt Track, Ballachulish

    Waymarked Trail

    Location: Glencoe and Kinlochleven
    Starting Point: Carpark at Ballachulish Marina
    Route Type: Freeride
    Difficulty: Beginner - Intermediate
    Grade: Blue/Green
    Parking: Parking at Ballachulish Marina

    Trail Description:
    Young riders from the Ballachulish area were looking for an area to improve their...

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  36. Bike Round Loch Leven

    Bike Round Loch Leven

    Waymarked Trail

    Location: Glencoe and Kinlochleven
    Starting Point: Fort William/ Glencoe
    Trail Length: 40 miles / 20 miles shorter option
    Time Required: Day ride / half day ride shorter option
    Route Type: Road
    Difficulty: Intermediate
    Grade: Medium
    O.S. Map: OS Explorer 392 & 384 or Landranger 41
    Parking:...

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  37. Bike Camisky

    Bike Camisky

    Waymarked Trail

    Location: Great Glen
    Starting Point: Neptunes Staircase Car Park Banavie
    Trail Length: 24mls/38kms
    Time Required: 4.5hrs
    Route Type: Family / Recreational
    Difficulty: Beginner - Intermediate
    Grade: Easy
    O.S. Map: Landranger sheet 41 Ben Nevis
    Parking: Neptunes Staircase Car Park Banavie

    Trail...

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  38. Bike Bolinn Loop, Invergarry

    Bike Bolinn Loop, Invergarry

    Waymarked Trail

    Location: Great Glen
    Starting Point: NH 281 006 Allt na Cailliche Carpark Glen Garry Forest
    Trail Length: 12km approx
    Time Required: 3.5 hours
    Route Type: Cross Country
    Difficulty: Intermediate - Advanced
    O.S. Map: Fort Augustus
    Parking: Allt na Cailliche Carpark

    Trail Description:
    Turn left out...

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  39. Bike Achnacarry

    Bike Achnacarry

    Waymarked Trail

    Location: Great Glen
    Starting Point: Carpark at Neptunes Staircase, Banavie
    Trail Length: 26mls/40kms
    Time Required: 3.5hrs
    Route Type: Family / Recreational
    Difficulty: Beginner
    O.S. Map: Landranger sheet 41 Ben Nevis
    Parking: As start

    Trail Description:
    This route uses the first six miles of the...

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  40. Bike The Northern Shore of Loch Arkaig

    Bike The Northern Shore of Loch Arkaig

    Waymarked Trail

    Location: Great Glen
    Starting Point: Neptunes Staircase Carpark, Banavie
    Trail Length: 52 miles
    Time Required: Day/ half day ride
    Route Type: Family / Recreational , Road
    Difficulty: Beginner - Intermediate
    Grade:
    O.S. Map: OS Explorer 399 and 400
    Parking: At start, and also at Clunes Forest...

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  41. Bike Greenfield Circuit, Invergarry

    Bike Greenfield Circuit, Invergarry

    Waymarked Trail

    Location: Great Glen
    Starting Point: The Forestry Commission Car Park At White Bridge, Invergarry
    Trail Length: Approximately 14 miles, 22 kms
    Time Required: 3 hours
    Route Type: Family / Recreational
    Difficulty: Beginner
    O.S. Map: Ordnance Survey Explorer 400 Loch Lochy & Glen Roy
    Parking: At...

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  42. Bike Loch Oich Circular

    Bike Loch Oich Circular

    Waymarked Trail

    Location: Great Glen
    Starting Point: Neptunes Staircase, The Caledonian Canal, Banavie, Fort William.
    Trail Length: 91.5kms-52mls part 1 + part 2
    Time Required: 6-8 hrs part 1 + part 2
    Route Type: Cross Country
    Difficulty: Intermediate
    O.S. Map: O.S. Explorer 399 & 400
    Parking: Caledonian Canal Car...

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  43. Bike The Fersit Loop

    Bike The Fersit Loop

    Waymarked Trail

    Location: Laggan
    Starting Point: Carpark at Grid Ref 349 781
    Trail Length: 15 miles / 25 km
    Time Required: 2 hours / half day ride
    Route Type: Cross Country
    Difficulty: Intermediate - Advanced
    O.S. Map: OS Explorer 393
    Parking: At start

    Trail Description:
    The Fersit loop is a challenging...

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  44. Bike Laggan Wolftrax

    Bike Laggan Wolftrax

    Waymarked Trail

    Location: Laggan
    Starting Point: Car park at Base Camp MTB
    Trail Length: 2.3km to 7.8 km
    Time Required: 1 - 2 hours
    Route Type: Cross Country, Downhill, Freeride
    Difficulty: Beginner - Intermediate - Advanced
    Parking: At start

    Trail Description:
    The Wolf Trax trails in Strathmashie Forest (near...

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  45. paragliding

    Paragliding at Nevis Range

    Adventure Sport Centre

    Fort William

    In recent years Nevis Range has become a popular destination for paragliders and hangliders. The gondola offers a quick and effortless ride to a take-off altitude of 650m from either the Sgurr Finnisg-aig or Meall Beag viewpoints.

    Flying amongst Britain's highest peaks is a spectacular and...

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  46. Forest Walks

    Mountain & Forest Walks at Nevis Range

    Adventure Sport Centre

    Fort William

    The mountain habitat on Aonach Mor is unique, and what better way to explore the flora, fauna and wildlife, than on foot. Venture along one of the established mountain trails, which lead to panoramic viewpoints, and splendour in the spectacular views, which on a clear day can extend as far as the...

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  47. Rock Climbing

    Rock Climbing at Nevis Range

    Adventure Sport Centre

    Fort William

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  48. Nevis Range High Wire Adventure Course

    High Wire Adventure at Nevis Range

    Adventure Sport Centre

    Fort William,

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  49. Runduro

    No Fuss Events

    Activity Centre

    Fort William

    Welcome to No Fuss Events.

    What is No Fuss Events, you say? Basically we love the outdoors. We love events and the fun, camaraderie and craic that goes with them. We have tried to strip back some of the rules and regulations involved with sport that can be a wee bit off putting at times. By...

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  50. Highland Cow

    Highland Cow

    Animal Collection

    Fort William

    With its impressive horns and long, flowing coat of hair, the Highland Cow (or 'Coo') is a well known and much loved sight in the Outdoor Capital of the UK.

    Add Highland Cow to your Itinerary

  51. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Otters

    Animal Collection

    Fort William

    The otter's main habitat is along the sea shore and the banks of rivers, lakes and streams. They are territorial and their territories cover 1 - 3 km along the sea shore and 5 - 20 km along freshwater rivers and lakes. Otters do not migrate and live in their territories all year round.

    For more...

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  52. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Eagles

    Eagles

    Ardnamurchan Peninsula

    Lochaber is home of the iconic Golden Eagle. This majestic and unmistakable bird of prey can often be seen soaring high over hillsides as they favour the remote glens and islands that the region has in abundance.

    Add Eagles to your Itinerary

  53. ©Sunart Oakwoods

    Butterflies

    Butterflies

    Sunart

    The Chequered Skipper is an attractive butterfly with bright gold markings on a chocolate background on its upper side and a fringe of fine white hairs. The Chequered Skipper is one of the earliest of the butterflies to emerge and feed in woodland glades in springtime.

    The butterfly is believed...

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  54. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Otters

    Animal Collection

    Callop River

    The otter's main habitat is along the sea shore and the banks of rivers, lakes and streams. They are territorial and their territories cover 1 - 3 km along the sea shore and 5 - 20 km along freshwater rivers and lakes. Otters do not migrate and live in their territories all year round.

    For more...

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  55. Camusdarach Beach

    Camusdarach Beach

    Viewpoint

    Sitting just south of the Morar River estuary, the stunning white sandy beach of Camusdarach has been featured in UK press and billed as one of the best British beaches. With crystal clear water lapping at the shore line, Camusdarach beach is a great place to sit and relax.

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  56. Hidden Valley

    Hidden Valley [Coire Cabheil]

    Landscape

    Glen Coe

    Coire Gabhail is the hidden valley where the MacDonalds of Glen Coe hid their rustled cattle. A visit involves a very rough but intensely dramatic and scenic walk.

    For details of the route, visit the Walk Highlands website.

    Add Hidden Valley [Coire Cabheil] to your Itinerary

  57. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Black Guillemot

    Black Guillemot

    Corran Straits

    With Its striking black and white plumage and bright red feet, the Black Guillemot is easy to identify in summer.

    Unlike most other European auks the black guillemot is typically found in ones and twos, scattered around rocky islets.

    For more information, click on the above link to visit...

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  58. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Otters

    Animal Collection

    Drimnin Shore

    The otter's main habitat is along the sea shore and the banks of rivers, lakes and streams. They are territorial and their territories cover 1 - 3 km along the sea shore and 5 - 20 km along freshwater rivers and lakes. Otters do not migrate and live in their territories all year round.

    For more...

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  59. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Red Deer

    Red Deer

    Glen Etive

    There are two types of native deer in Scotland - red deer and roe deer. The majestic red deer is our largest terrestrial mammal, and undoubtedly one of the most impressive wildlife spectacles of Scotland; their sights and sounds are enjoyed by locals, tourists, and Autumn-watch viewers alike....

    Add Red Deer to your Itinerary

  60. Glen Roy National Nature Reserve

    Glen Roy National Nature Reserve

    Landscape

    The `Parallel Roads' of Glen Roy slash through the landscape, like the barely camouflaged remnants of a massive engineering project. Their straight, precise form makes it easy to see why this glacial leftover baffled scientists for so long. Below you, the River Roy splashes down its rocky course,...

    Add Glen Roy National Nature Reserve to your Itinerary

  61. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Otters

    Animal Collection

    Glen Uig shore

    The otter's main habitat is along the sea shore and the banks of rivers, lakes and streams. They are territorial and their territories cover 1 - 3 km along the sea shore and 5 - 20 km along freshwater rivers and lakes. Otters do not migrate and live in their territories all year round.

    For more...

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  62. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Mountain Hares

    Mountain Hares

    Glen Coe

    Mountain hares are smaller and have a more compact shape than brown hares, but vary geographically depending upon habitat and altitude. They are only found above 500m.

    Total body length ranges between 430 and 610 mm. and the black tipped ears from 60 to 80 mm. Unlike brown hares the ears of...

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  63. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Black Throated Divers

    Black-throated Divers

    Glenfinnan

    - These streamlined diving birds sit low in the water and dive with consummate ease. On land they are clumsy, barely able to walk with their legs so far back on their bodies.

    - They are easily disturbed when breeding and their vulnerability to marine pollution make them a vulnerable as well as...

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  64. ©Alex Gillespie

    High Bridge Path

    Landscape

    Spean Bridge

    The High Bridge path is an easy circular route passing through lovely woodland, alongside the River Spean and with great views to Ben Nevis and the Grey Corries throughout. It also takes in several historical points of interest :

    - the Commando Memorial, an impressive statue erected in 1952 to...

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  65. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Eagles

    Eagles

    Inverie

    Lochaber is home of the iconic Golden Eagle. This majestic and unmistakable bird of prey can often be seen soaring high over hillsides as they favour the remote glens and islands that the region has in abundance.

    Add Eagles to your Itinerary

  66. Basking Shark

    Basking Shark

    Basking Sharks

    Rum

    Add Basking Shark to your Itinerary

  67. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Wild Fowl

    Wild Fowl

    Kentra

    The ‘wildfowl’ are medium to large birds with rather long or very long necks, mostly short, broad bills, short legs and the front three toes joined by webs.

    Swans are the largest and longest-necked; one resident in the UK, two visit from autumn to spring.

    Geese are divided into two main...

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  68. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Eagles

    Eagles

    Loch Aline

    Lochaber is home of the iconic Golden Eagle. This majestic and unmistakable bird of prey can often be seen soaring high over hillsides as they favour the remote glens and islands that the region has in abundance.

    Add Eagles to your Itinerary

  69. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Butterflies

    Butterflies

    Loch Arkaig

    Lochaber is an exciting place for butterflies, with 23 resident species and three migrants seen in recent years. Seven of our species are UK BAP Priorities, as indicated in the list below.

    The Chequered Skipper is restricted in Britain to sites within just 30 miles of Fort William! The...

    Add Butterflies to your Itinerary

  70. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Wild Fowl

    Wild Fowl

    Loch Moidart

    The ‘wildfowl’ are medium to large birds with rather long or very long necks, mostly short, broad bills, short legs and the front three toes joined by webs.

    Swans are the largest and longest-necked; one resident in the UK, two visit from autumn to spring.

    Geese are divided into two main...

    Add Wild Fowl to your Itinerary

  71. ©Alex Gillespie

    Loch nan Uamh

    Landscape

    Road to the Isles

    The Sound of Arisaig in Lochaber, Scotland, separates the Arisaig peninsula to the north from the Moidart peninsula to the south. At the eastern, landward end, the sound is divided by Ardnish into two sea lochs. Loch nan Uamh lies to the north of Ardnish, Loch Ailort to the south. There are a...

    Add Loch nan Uamh to your Itinerary

  72. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Eagles

    Eagles

    Loch Sunart

    Lochaber is home of the iconic Golden Eagle. The majestic and unmistakable bird of prey can often be seen soaring high over hillsides as they favour the remote glens and islands that the region has un abundance.

    Add Eagles to your Itinerary

  73. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Wildcat

    Wild Cat

    Morvern

    How to increase your chances of spotting a wildcat :

    - Being out at dawn and dusk.
    - Visiting preferred habitats such as woodland edge, rough grassland, moorland fringe.
    - Being in an area that holds good prey numbers. Wildcats main prey are rabbits and voles.
    - Being quiet and still – view...

    Add Wildcat to your Itinerary

  74. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Red Deer

    Red Deer

    Rannoch Moor National Scenic Area

    There are two types of native deer in Scotland - red deer and roe deer. The majestic red deer is our largest terrestrial mammal, and undoubtedly one of the most impressive wildlife spectacles of Scotland; their sights and sounds are enjoyed by locals, tourists, and Autumn-watch viewers alike....

    Add Red Deer to your Itinerary

  75. Glen Nevis

    Glen Nevis

    Natural Feature

    Fort William

    Glen Nevis is flanked by a chain of high peaks to the east, including Ben Nevis, the highest mountain in the British Isles. These slope down to the Water of Nevis, as it plunges from high grass flats at Steall through the Nevis Gorge, a densely wooded cleft with a rich native woodland and remnants...

    Add Glen Nevis to your Itinerary

  76. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Claish Moss

    Landscape

    Sunart

    Between the south-west shore of Loch Shiel and Ben Resipol sits one of Scotland's finest and most unusual bogs. Burns uillt running from the hill to the loch divide Claish Moss into large sections. Each of these rises to a shallow dome, around which is a beautifully patterned blend of ridges and...

    Add Claish Moss to your Itinerary

  77. Glenloy Wildlife

    Glen Loy Wildlife

    Wildlife Tours

    Fort William

    Glenloy Wildlife offers exclusive wildlife holidays in the Lochaber area. All breaks are fully inclusive of comfortable accommodation, delicious home-cooked meals, transport and guided excursions. Based in beautiful Glenloy, we will explore the West Highlands taking in the magnificent scenery and...

    Add Glen Loy Wildlife to your Itinerary

  78. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Wildcat

    Wild Cat

    Ardnamurchan Peninsula

    How to increase your chances of spotting a wildcat :

    - Being out at dawn and dusk.
    - Visiting preferred habitats such as woodland edge, rough grassland, moorland fringe.
    - Being in an area that holds good prey numbers. Wildcats main prey are rabbits and voles.
    - Being quiet and still – view...

    Add Wildcat to your Itinerary

  79. Ariundle © SNH

    Ariundle National Nature Reserve

    Woodlands

    Nr Strontiian

    Visit Ariundle any time of year and you’ll find plenty of interest. One of the best ways to see the area is to follow the loop trail that starts in the Forest Enterprise car park at Strontian. This takes you through part of the National Nature Reserve and returns along forestry ground to the east...

    Add Ariundle National Nature Reserve to your Itinerary

  80. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Cetaceans (whales, dolphins, porpoises)

    Cetaceans (whales, dolphins, porpoises)

    Corran Straits

    Whether or not you see whales, dolphins or porpoises is largely dependent on the weather. If it is a windy day with whitecaps on the water it is much harder to spot cetaceans, as they often only surface briefly and usually only show their dorsal fins. Too much sunshine doesn't help either, as the...

    Add Cetaceans (whales, dolphins, porpoises) to your Itinerary

  81. Basking Sharks

    Basking Sharks

    Basking Sharks

    Eigg

    Basking Sharks are a regular visitor to the waters off Lochaber. Every summer, these majestic animals visit UK waters to feed. Despite often being around 6-8 metres (20-26ft) in length, sometimes more than 9-10metres (30-33ft), and weighing on average 5.2 tonnes, these stunning creatures are...

    Add Basking Sharks to your Itinerary

  82. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Manx Shearwater

    Manx Shearwater

    Eigg

    The manx shearwater has long straight slim wings, and is black above and white below.

    It flies with a series of rapid stiff-winged flaps followed by long glides on stiff straight wings over the surface of the sea, occasionally banking or 'shearing'.

    It breeds in colonies on offshore islands...

    Add Manx Shearwater to your Itinerary

  83. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Sea Birds

    Sea Birds

    Eigg

    A range of sea birds can be seen in and around Lochaber, some of which are rare and attract visitors from around the world. These include the likes of guillemots, gannets, Manx Shearwaters, grey herons and oystercatchers.

    Add Sea Birds to your Itinerary

  84. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Wading Birds

    Wading Birds

    Kentra

    Several species of Wading Birds visit the Outdoor Capital every year. There are specialised bird watching areas throughout Lochaber.

    Add Wading Birds to your Itinerary

  85. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Otters

    Animal Collection

    Loch Aline

    The otter's main habitat is along the sea shore and the banks of rivers, lakes and streams. They are territorial and their territories cover 1 - 3 km along the sea shore and 5 - 20 km along freshwater rivers and lakes. Otters do not migrate and live in their territories all year round.

    For more...

    Add Otters to your Itinerary

  86. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Ospreys

    Ospreys

    Loch Arkaig

    This majestic bird of prey, often referred to as the sea hawk or the fish eagle, can often be spotted fishing in the lochs of the West Highlands during the summer months. The raptors can have a wing span of up to five feet (1.52 metres) and return to the lochs in spring of each summer. There are...

    Add Ospreys to your Itinerary

  87. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Otters

    Animal Collection

    Loch Moidart

    The otter's main habitat is along the sea shore and the banks of rivers, lakes and streams. They are territorial and their territories cover 1 - 3 km along the sea shore and 5 - 20 km along freshwater rivers and lakes. Otters do not migrate and live in their territories all year round.

    For more...

    Add Otters to your Itinerary

  88. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Wading Birds

    Wading Birds

    Loch Moidart

    Several species of Wading Birds visit the Outdoor Capital every year. There are specialised bird watching areas throughout Lochaber.

    Add Wading Birds to your Itinerary

  89. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Bats

    Bats

    Loch Shiel

    BAT FACTS!

    - The species you are most likely to see is the Pipistrelle, which has a wing span of only 20cm.
    - Bats are nocturnal. They roost during the day in dark, sheltered places.
    - Watch for them at dusk when they emerge to hunt for insects - one Pipistrelle can eat up to 3000 midges per...

    Add Bats to your Itinerary

  90. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Red Deer

    Red Deer

    Rum

    There are two types of native deer in Scotland - red deer and roe deer. The majestic red deer is our largest terrestrial mammal, and undoubtedly one of the most impressive wildlife spectacles of Scotland; their sights and sounds are enjoyed by locals, tourists, and Autumn-watch viewers alike....

    Add Red Deer to your Itinerary

  91. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Manx Shearwater

    Manx Shearwater

    Rum

    The manx shearwater has long straight slim wings, and is black above and white below.

    It flies with a series of rapid stiff-winged flaps followed by long glides on stiff straight wings over the surface of the sea, occasionally banking or 'shearing'.

    It breeds in colonies on offshore islands...

    Add Manx Shearwater to your Itinerary

  92. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Cetaceans (whales, dolphins, porpoises)

    Cetaceans (whales, dolphins, porpoises)

    Rum

    Whether or not you see whales, dolphins or porpoises is largely dependent on the weather. If it is a windy day with whitecaps on the water it is much harder to spot cetaceans, as they often only surface briefly and usually only show their dorsal fins. Too much sunshine doesn't help either, as the...

    Add Cetaceans (whales, dolphins, porpoises) to your Itinerary

  93. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Sea Birds

    Sea Birds

    Rum

    A range of sea birds can be seen in and around Lochaber, some of which are rare and attract visitors from around the world. These include the likes of guillemots, gannets, Manx Shearwaters, grey herons and oystercatchers.

    Add Sea Birds to your Itinerary

  94. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Eagles

    Eagles

    Rum

    Lochaber is home of the iconic Golden Eagle. This majestic and unmistakable bird of prey can often be seen soaring high over hillsides as they favour the remote glens and islands that the region has in abundance.

    Add Eagles to your Itinerary

  95. Eagles

    Eagles

    Eagles

    Canna

    Lochaber is home of the iconic Golden Eagle. This majestic and unmistakable bird of prey can often be seen soaring high over hillsides as they favour the remote glens and islands that the region has in abundance.

    Add Eagles to your Itinerary

  96. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Sea Birds

    Sea Birds

    Canna

    A range of sea birds can be seen in and around Lochaber, some of which are rare and attract visitors from around the world. These include the likes of guillemots, gannets, Manx Shearwaters, grey herons and oystercatchers.

    Add Sea Birds to your Itinerary

  97. Waterfall

    Steall Falls

    Waterfalls

    Glen Nevis

    Britain's second highest waterfall with a single drop of 120 metres, this spectacular natural attraction is well worth visiting. Situated in Glen Nevis, the fall can be viewed from the path which runs through the Nevis Gorge, an area managed by the John Muir Trust.

    The John Muir Trust will be...

    Add Steall Falls to your Itinerary

  98. Waterfall

    Lower Falls

    Waterfalls

    Glen Nevis

    The Lower Falls is a fascinating place to visit, with water cascading down the rocks making its way to the river below. On a rainy day, the Falls take on an entirely new appearance as vast amounts of water falls from the rocks above down to the river.

    Add Lower Falls to your Itinerary

  99. Waterfalls

    Meeting of 3 Waters

    Waterfalls

    Glen Coe

    As the waters tumble down from the high mountains of Glencoe they give rise to spectacular waterfall, named 'Meeting of the Three Waters'. They then form the River Coe which widens around a mile later in the centre of Glencoe.

    Add Meeting of 3 Waters to your Itinerary

  100. Inchree Falls

    Inchree Falls

    Waterfalls

    Onich

    A short steep trail that takes you to spectacular views of the Righ Falls. From the car park, head for the open fields to access the walk.

    One of the top ten walks in the Forestry Commission, the views are well worth the effort. Once at the top you return to the car park via a forest road.

    Add Inchree Falls to your Itinerary

  101. Cia Aig Falls

    Cia Aig Falls

    Landscape

    Loch Arkaig

    (Gaelic: Eas Chia-bhalg possibly meaning “waterfall of the bulge”) A narrow road skirts the head of Loch Lochy before veering left through the romantically named Mile Dorcha or Dark Mile, at the end of which you reach the Chiag-aig Falls. Park in the Forestry Commission car park and take the short...

    Add Cia Aig Falls to your Itinerary

  102. Arisaig Marine

    Arisaig Marine

    Boat Trip

    Arisaig

    A small family-run business based in the village of Arisaig, they offer a chance to get up close and personal with the marine life in the waters off North Western Scotland. With more than 35 years of experience in running island and wildlife cruises, they visit the islands of Eigg, Muck & Rum to...

    Add Arisaig Marine to your Itinerary

  103. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Otters

    Animal Collection

    Sunart

    The otter's main habitat is along the sea shore and the banks of rivers, lakes and streams. They are territorial and their territories cover 1 - 3 km along the sea shore and 5 - 20 km along freshwater rivers and lakes. Otters do not migrate and live in their territories all year round.

    For more...

    Add Otters to your Itinerary

  104. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Red Deer

    Red Deer

    Sunart

    There are two types of native deer in Scotland - red deer and roe deer. The majestic red deer is our largest terrestrial mammal, and undoubtedly one of the most impressive wildlife spectacles of Scotland; their sights and sounds are enjoyed by locals, tourists, and Autumn-watch viewers alike....

    Add Red Deer to your Itinerary

  105. Seal ©The Underwater Centre

    Seals

    Seals

    Sunart

    You can see seals from vantage points overlooking their breeding or moulting grounds or from boats. During the breeding seasons, special seal-watching trips are often available. Seals are curious animals, and will often swim up to a boat to see what is happening. They can therefore be seen from...

    Add Seals to your Itinerary

  106. ©Forestry Comission Scotland

    Red Squirrel

    Red Squirrel

    Glen Righ Woods

    The Highlands of Scotland is one of the few parts of the UK where the red squirrel exists in the absence of the introduced American grey squirrel. Today 75% of the UK's population is estimated to be in Scotland.

    You may spot them anywhere in the Outdoor Capital of the UK, but the Forestry...

    Add Red Squirrel to your Itinerary

  107. Seal ©The Underwater Centre

    Seals

    Seals

    Fort William

    You can see seals from vantage points overlooking their breeding or moulting grounds or from boats. During the breeding seasons, special seal-watching trips are often available. Seals are curious animals, and will often swim up to a boat to see what is happening. They can therefore be seen from...

    Add Seals to your Itinerary

  108. ©Lorne Gill/SNH

    Cetaceans (whales, dolphins, porpoises)

    Cetaceans (whales, dolphins, porpoises)

    Eigg

    Whether or not you see whales, dolphins or porpoises is largely dependent on the weather. If it is a windy day with whitecaps on the water it is much harder to spot cetaceans, as they often only surface briefly and usually only show their dorsal fins. Too much sunshine doesn't help either, as the...

    Add Cetaceans (whales, dolphins, porpoises) to your Itinerary

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