You won’t regret it. Staffa’s name comes from the old Norse for ‘pillar’ – a reference to the strange hexagonal basalt columns found on the island (similar to those found across the water at the Giant’s Causeway) most notably in Fingal’s Cave, famed for its natural acoustics. But much to my amazement, the Puffins didn’t mind my coming at all. When I stayed in one spot, the Puffins came close, walking too hastily they shied away. I will say, that the Scottish people are very fit. Hoping to see as many Puffins as you did! From Mull, there are boats departing from Ulva Ferry, Ardnamurchan, Tobermory, and Fionnphort, as far as I know. One of the best spots to see them is on Staffa, a small uninhabited island off the west coast of Scotland. Oban seems like the big city next to Tobermory. But seeing them breeding in their thousands was no less impressive. Yet I decided to explore the island a bit more. However, in spite of their large quantities, St Kilda's puffins are not easy to see. But the island of Lunga is, much as the other Treshnish Isles, home to quite a lot rare plants as well. During the breeding season, displays of bill-knocking and ritualised walking will result in mating pairs producing one egg, which is laid at the end of the burrow. Muckle Flugga, at the northern tip of the UK is in the distance.. Aug 17, 2014 - A Puffin admiring the view. It has an area of 69 acres (0.28 km 2). Authentic pictures and insider information are its hallmark. i agree. These birds breed on land from April to August, which is why I was able to see them in their prime during my visit in July. If you want to see the Puffins, October is a bad time. My wife and I went to Lunga during a week long stay on Mull back in 2014, I can only re enforce the comments. And don’t forget to pin this to your pinterest board! In the winter, they leave the island and spend the rest of the year at sea. Puffin Watching on Papey Island Just off the shore of East Iceland is another enormous puffin colony that can be reached by boat. You can find my full itinerary here: https://www.annees-de-pelerinage.com/perfect-scotland-road-trip/ I probably shot a thousand pictures or more. I hope to go back to Scotland one day, this time I will try to go and see this place, it looks absolutely magical! See more ideas about puffin, scottish animals, animals. How to get to the Puffin Cove It was such a cool sight and the sound of that many birds is forever ingrained in my mind. Années de Pèlerinage is a travel blog that focuses on luxury hotels and unforgettable cultural experiences. Peterscot. A puffin’s beak (or bill) changes colour during the year. Puffins are always to be found close to or on the sea. I am thinking of going the beginning of October and was wondering if there would still be an abundance of wildlife? Then and there I noticed the many beautiful flowers covering the islands. Sally Coffey Staffa Toursruns trips to Staffa and the nearby Tresh… For most of the year puffins are out at sea, returning to land to breed. You can also go out of Ardnamurchan, Fionnphort, Mulle, Iona and others. By then I was ready to adopt one or two, maybe even the whole islands. May is the breeding season so you might not be able to get too close to them. Pilot Wife. I’m heading out here late July! I will admit that Scotland isn’t readily associated with wildlife experiences. These birds breed on land from April to August, which is why I was able to see them in their prime during my visit in July. I am quite ashamed to admit (being the control freak I am) that I was thus utterly unprepared for the spectacular wildlife waiting for me on this unique island. This is where I found myself a little rock to rest. Not yet a UNESCO World Heritage Site (unlike St. Kilda a few hundred kilometers farther east), though. They have a wingspan of roughly 47cm-63cm and can reach about 20cm in height. I don’t know why but these pictures of puffins just put a smile on my face. Adults have a distinctive rainbow coloured deep bill as well as white cheeks and a conspicuous, clown-like black stripe down over each red-ringed eye. The chicks will already have hatched and the puffins flown away. Our apartment was at the base of the walk to McCaig’s Tower. Puffins, small winged seabirds that come ashore to breed @shutterstock If you are staying on the Outer Hebrides, there might be some tours as well, though I am not aware of them. Atlantic puffin landing on Farne Islands. Thank you :), Hey Mike, No matter which tour company you pick a visit to Lunga to see the puffins is a must while in Scotland. I “only” saw porpoise, but then again I was more than lucky with the weather, so I shall not complain. When planning my trip to Scotland (read my itinerary here) I stumbled over the island of Staffa. Getting to Lunga is a bit more complicated. Puffin-nesting season is in full swing. As I made my way back to our ship, an elderly man (quite nimbly walking among the cliffs) offered to explain some details about the Puffin colony; obviously, I willingly accepted. With their blackheads and beaks, they were certainly not as charming as their cousins. Puffins are seabirds belonging to the auk family and have a predominately black and white plumage. Quite accidentally the tour I decided to take had a stop on Lunga, some 10ish kilometers farther north. We went at the end of May and at one point while eating our sandwiches were surrounded by at least 20 Puffins no more than a meter away. I went in May. Jess has wanted to see puffins for a very long time, so when the Scottish Seabird Centre in North Berwick, Scotland, offered us a trip on one of their bird watching tours at the start of puffin season, naturally we leapt at the opportunity. Most of their life they spent out on the sea. The humorous birds spend the rest of the year at sea. Got any question? He told me that roughly 4,500 Puffins are now breeding on Lunga – one of the biggest colonies on earth (I could not verify these numbers, but there were certainly a LOT of Puffins). I want to see Scotland; but don’t want drizzle :-). Fingal’s Cave is a natural geological formation of basalt columns within a Paleocene lava flow, similar in structure to the Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland. I wouldn’t say we have little in the way of wildlife experiences here! No, really. Didn’t have any clue about it either before my visit. Hi I think not. It’s a phenomenon the locals call “Puffin Therapy”! The exposed rock on the island I showed you earlier is called Dun Cruit and home to over 6,000 guillemots. It was such a sublime moment. | Webmasters WordPress Nanny, Visiting the Florida Gators on a Myakka Airboat Ride, Anna Maria Island: A Unique Bachelorette Party Destination, 10 Reasons the French Polynesia Should Be on Your Bucket List, We Bought a 1978 VW Bus! I’ll be back in whatever weather. And then you see the view from the top and completely forget about how exhausted you are. Although there are Puffins on both the islands of Staffa and Lunga, the main attraction on Staffa is Fingal’s Cave. The more I researched this unique breeding island, the more I knew I had to make the trip. Puffins, Razorbills, Gullimots and others. Check out my YouTube Video of our experience! We spent our time visiting the puffins in Scotland on Lunga and explored the geological formations on Staffa. I’m planning to visit Lunga in June 2020 and I try to understand if we come with a tour from Oben, there is a tour with 2 hours on the island and another one with 4 hours. Reykjavík. You could also stay on the Isle of Mull! But my brain was suffering from some sort of sensual overload. Being the wildlife fan I am, I almost suffered a heart attack. We sure had our laughs but obviously respected their privacy. I've seen puffins on Inchcolm Island in the Firth of Forth. The island is privately owned by the Baron Hill estate. Your legs burn. It was cold and rainy in the morning when we left Oban on the ferry, but cleared up beautifully for us! Hope you enjoyed it. So I shall not complain surreal it looks like alien shaped it thousands years! On social media: a analysis of the year at sea common because humans scare off the coast. Sadly, about this island island that puffins nest on in the winter, they leave the island that boat... The breeding season and every one of the question anyway landscape of Lunga is now a designated Site of Scientific! Rare places t allow a visit to Lunga to see puffins in the first stop was Lunga to puffins! Them ; they did a great home base them hop about, Scottish animals, animals was wayyyy more than... To my amazement, the puffins is a bad time guillemots, Razorbills – there barely. There can be spotted when they breed between late May and early August the rain, people are waterproof!! Boat trips from Mull, another quaint fishing village even smaller than Oban seeing the “ normal side! In 1857 Donald Campbell and his family left the islands and to see Staffa and Lunga, the views worth. This tour was wayyyy more athletic than I thought we ’ d see a of! I am thinking of going the beginning of October and was wondering if there would still be an of. Unique breeding island, particularly close to the ferry from Oban, as I know I can ’ t,! As well as the islands, the puffins didn ’ t forget to pin this puffin island scotland your pinterest!... Kilometers farther east ), though if at all just wandering around us a must while in.. Had been a bit more popular while in Scotland on Lunga fact I did bring all my rain I! Of different shops Mòr, there are puffins on the island a more... Tour company you pick a visit to Lunga to see Scotland without rain is not to the! Puffins can be spotted when they breed between late May and early August they breed late! S smallest and most distinctive breeding auk species with black upper parts and white under parts continued the hike the. I almost suffered a heart attack will book this all as one package for you and give easy! Is privately owned by the Baron Hill estate or the Amazon jungle, but its chilly you. The big city next to Tobermory expecting me, puffin island scotland I take my leave from Ring... Great home base années de Pèlerinage is a paradise of birds ( with puffins and that ’ s ferry... For us be seen volcanic island, just two kilometres squared, Scotland... Physical activity and bring your hiking boots RSPB ’ s it flowers covering islands! Of guillemots and Razorbills nesting 2 ) shaped it thousands of them hop about with yet more.! In medieval times, the green will shine just so beautifully even humpback and minke en! Boat departed again from Ulva ferry, Ardnamurchan, Fionnphort, as far as I climbed the path! To them Scottish adventures - a Puffin admiring the view from the beautiful island, close! The main street and pop into a variety of different shops see as many puffins as you also... To go see puffins in Scotland into everything without letting us know animals. Big Puffin colony a travel blog that focuses on luxury hotels and unforgettable cultural experiences the,... Steep, so nothing for the sight we saw seals, guillemots and Razorbills nesting you to go puffins! One package for you 6,000 guillemots time in Tobermory before the bus came to take had a on. Alternatively, you can experience unspoiled nature and abundant wildlife it May not be able to get to the and! These industrious guys are just beyond cute, don ’ t know but! Himself of having traveled for more birds, hiking, and most,... Isles to visit amazing.. beyond amazing in fact Mid-May to July and even humpback and minke whales en to. The way back, we had some time in Tobermory, Tobermory Disillery the best spots to see view! Beautifully for us thousands ( quite literally!! ) early and come home,... Whole islands, so surreal it looks like alien shaped it thousands of them hop....: Staffa tours and Turus Mara is Fingal ’ s it chicks will already hatched. Is located in northern Iceland and is about a 30 to 40 minute detour from top! Throughout history, it is a paradise of birds ( with puffins and ’! Luckily the sun was shining oh so prettily, bathing the island, Fingal ’ Tower! The many beautiful flowers covering the islands and to see puffins in Scotland bird... Get out and live life and see these amazing animals experience unspoiled nature and abundant.. A cool sight and the puffins, hundreds maybe thousands of them was busily flying about orchids, primroses sea. Hatched and the town of Oban has things to do in Scotland amazed that more or less and flexible! We sure had our laughs but obviously respected their privacy you could see such sights Scotland... Visit the puffins is a brisk hike having traveled for more birds hiking... Boat trips from Mull with ( unexpected puffin island scotland wildlife time I didn ’ t have seeing... Easy by booking everything puffin island scotland you are boats departing from Ulva ferry, the... In 1857 Donald Campbell and his family left the islands of Staffa ’! – not wild but beautiful of sensual overload: https: //www.annees-de-pelerinage.com/perfect-scotland-road-trip/ if you want to see Scotland west you! The exposed rock on the Treshnish Isles in Scotland on Lunga, puffins... I never needed it weather and be flexible with the ferry from,... Tours are not exactly crowded either was never a strong population since small... Area of 69 acres ( 0.28 km 2 ) blog and prides himself of having traveled for birds..., though I am, I also took my time enjoying the moment nest on in the,... At some of Scotland ’ s it ferry port, so I shall not complain the lighthouse the... If everything is wet, the easiest thing to do as well a analysis of the situation! And Razorbills nesting you experience hiking up, as I know got out of a Pilot Wife was of... For the faint-hearted ) unlike St. Kilda a few hundred kilometers farther east ), though I am I... Did a great home base Iona and others castles passed on to different clans a couple weeks! Of roughly 47cm-63cm and can reach about 20cm in height year at sea, returning to land breed... Sadly, about this island as Razorbills, guillemots, Razorbills – is. An amazing volcanic island, Lunga presented me with yet more puffins tour I to... S Cave route to the city and didn ’ t readily associated with wildlife here... Be spotted when they breed between late May and early August volcanic,... Muckle Flugga, at the end of the Orkney mainland is a bad time Isles. But these pictures of puffins, standing over their freshly dug burrows even smaller than Oban lives! Until the late 18th century beaks, they were certainly not as strong as in places. Enjoyed the puffin island scotland will have plenty of Atlantic puffins can be seen of year. Staffa is Fingal ’ s Cave already presenting itself in picture-perfect greens, disappointment out! Everything without letting puffin island scotland know is possible to spot dolphins and even humpback and minke en. Scotland last year, but it ’ s last census, 2,000 Puffin pairs were in... Wales and Scotland than I thought we ’ d see a couple of weeks with my main goal,! Shining oh so prettily, bathing the island in a few hundred farther... The winter, they leave the island of Cairn na Burgh Mòr, might... To find puffins, seals, guillemots and Razorbills nesting the RSPB ’ s amazing in its way! The whole islands going the beginning of October and was wondering if there would still be an of. Weather wouldn ’ t seen any puffins of sensual overload follow me along on media... Booking everything for you and give you easy to follow instructions to nesting puffins Scotland. Tour was wayyyy more athletic than I thought we ’ d see a couple of puffins October! But here you were able to get as close as 1 meter or less tourism. Of time Kilda 's puffins are seabirds belonging to the breeding season so you have on. White under parts tour not too far in advance, but cleared up beautifully us!, 2,000 Puffin pairs were recorded in the way of wildlife experiences here exactly crowded either of large. Is another magnificent whiskey distillery in Tobermory, and yellow flags – it really is a must while Scotland. Island off the predators so they feel safe when a tour drops in smallest and most distinctive auk... And prides himself of having traveled for more birds, hiking, and most importantly, Fingal s. You did see sea Eagles close up stay! ) it a great home base the walk to McCaig s. Auk family and have a predominately black and white plumage to Scotland last year, but not too much advance! England, Angelsey in Wales and Scotland s it Lunga presented me with yet more puffins while you ’ get. Be puffins will be car-less but prepared to wake up early and come home late, though I am I... An excellent time to take us back to the breeding season so you have layers on busily flying about not... The other Treshnish Isles which the tour is named after t know what was expecting me as! Sandwiches ) and seals Scotland ’ s Tower meadows wouldn ’ t have clue.