United Kingdom·June 11 - 17 2022

RSPB Hebridean Wildlife Adventure Cruise

A unique wildlife cruise itinerary that mixes watching birds, whales & dolphins with a visit to St Kilda while also supporting the RSPB. 

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Overview

Join the MV Monadhliath and her crew as we take you on a fantastic journey around the RSPB’s Hebridean reserves + other bird & wildlife hotspots led by our experienced guides. We also plan to head out across the Atlantic for a visit to the remote islands of St Kilda (National Trust for Scotland) as another very special bonus on this itinerary. As this is a special RSPB fundraising trip, we have some unique access to the local RSPB experts of the area such as conservation officers and wardens who will share their knowledge of the local species and conservation efforts with us. This will include special talks, an eagle walk, and a private tour of the famous RSPB Balranald reserve on North Uist with the warden. Please see the itinerary for full details.

Highlights

Enjoy Scotland's iconic wildlife up close.

Enjoy Scotland's iconic wildlife up close.

An experienced guide will help you to spot whales, dolphins, porpoises, seals, eagles, otters, puffins and lots more brilliant birds on land and sea.

Private RSPB talks and tours.

Private RSPB talks and tours.

Meet up with local expert RSPB conservation officers and wardens at different locations for private talks and tours including RSPB Balranald.

Experience the Hebrides in a unique way.

Experience the Hebrides in a unique way.

See the Hebrides from the sea whilst cruising from Skye to North Uist, Harris and Lewis.

Take in the scenery of the Shiant Isles.

Take in the scenery of the Shiant Isles.

Walk ashore on the beautiful Shiant Isles whilst marvelling at the huge seabird colonies of puffins, guillemots and razorbills.

Limited to 8 guests only.

Limited to 8 guests only.

This small group trip will ensure that you are involved in every step of the journey and don't miss out on any wildlife spotting opportunities.

Responsible travel.

Responsible travel.

A relaxing and responsible slow travel option aboard our converted fishing boat.

This trip helps support the RSPB.

This trip helps support the RSPB.

Hebridean Adventures is donating 15% of the proceeds to the RSPB for local projects so by joining us, you ill be helping support them too.

Schedule

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Manxshearwater

DAY 1

Inverness - Rum

Minibus transfer from Inverness via Loch Ness to Mallaig. Board MV Monadhliath and we will head for the Small Isles and the island of Rum, hoping for the sights and sounds of the Manx shearwaters in the evening coming back to their nest sites. Alternative anchorage at Canna.

On the way we will enjoy views of the Isle of Skye to one side and the Small Isles to the other. There are good chances of spotting cetaceans like common dolphins, minke whales and harbour porpoise on our voyage over.

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DAY 2

Rum - Lochmaddy

Today we will cruise across the Little Minch to Lochmaddy on North Uist watching out for seabirds, whales and dolphins on the way. In the afternoon after lunch, we will head to RSPB Balranald for a private tour of this very special Hebridean reserve.

StKilda_wren_PaulSharmanOutdoors

DAY 3

Lochmaddy - St Kilda

If the weather and sea conditions look good then we will head out from Lochmaddy passing through the Sound of Harris and heading out approximately 4-5 hours sailing time across the Atlantic to the dual UNESCO World Heritage Site of St Kilda located 41 NM to the west of Benbecula. We will keep our eyes peeled for open ocean wanderers in terms of cetaceans and seabirds such as Risso’s and white-beaked dolphins and Leach’s Petrel. Arriving in the afternoon there will be time to go ashore for a wander around the historic settlement of Village Bay. Keep your eyes open for the St Kilda wren – often seen around the stone buildings. Overnight anchored at St Kilda.

Otter

DAY 4

St Kilda - Tarbert

After breakfast we will take a last chance to take in the view of St Kilda and Village Bay from the boat before sailing back towards the Isle of Harris, passing the neighbouring Boreray and its impressive sea stacks of Stac an Armin (the highest in Britain at 191m) and Stac Lee (165m), with their vast gannet colonies – the largest in the world!

In the afternoon we will cruise around the picturesque Sound of Harris islands spotting seabirds and other wildlife before heading to Tarbert on the Isle of Harris for the night. In the evening a member of RSPB staff will join us for a talk about conservation, island biosecurity and the Shiant Isles project.

puffin_fish_PSharman

DAY 5

Tarbert - Shiant Isles

Cruise to the enchanting Shiant Isles, watching out for cetaceans on the way and passing the photogenic Scalpay lighthouse at Eilean Glas. We will have the afternoon and evening at the Shiants for a shore excursion and taking our tender for a close look around the seabird colonies and maybe through the natural sea arch if the tide is right. We will anchor at the Shiants for the night with the sights and sounds of thousands of puffins, razorbills, and guillemots all around you – a truly amazing spectacle.

Corncrake2

DAY 6

Shiant Isles - Stornoway

Head for Stornoway through some great cetacean waters (Northeast Lewis MPA) to disembark after lunch on board.

After lunch, we say farewell to the boat and crew and book into our overnight hotel accommodation. In the early afternoon we will stop at Loch Seaforth for a private RSPB guided eagle walk. After an early-evening meal, we will continue the drive up beyond Stornoway to the RSPB managed Loch na Muilne LNR, famous for its’ breeding red-necked phalaropes usually from the end of May, but home to many other gorgeous species like other wading birds and red-throated divers too. From there we will continue to the RSPB’s Loch Stiapabhat reserve at Ness for an informal catch up with an RSPB warden about what the RSPB do for corncrake, which may already be calling if we are lucky.

Twodolphinswithbubbles_MurielHalle

DAY 7

Stornoway - Inverness

This morning you can either take a leisurely stroll in Stornoway to explore and enjoy the “Capital of the Hebrides” or join us in the minibus for a quick drive up to Tiumpan Head to go shore-watching for cetaceans in one of Europe’s hotspots! There are good chances of seeing Risso’s, common or white-beaked dolphins, plus minke and fin whales or even humpbacks and orca if we are lucky. You just never know!

At 2pm, we will catch the ferry back to Ullapool and then travel back to Inverness by minibus and say our farewells.

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HWDT Donation

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We work closely with HWDT who do great work in safeguarding and understanding our local populations of whales and dolphins. We hope you might like to support them with a small voluntary donation....
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Alternatively, you can join HWDT for just £2 a month via https://hwdt.org/membership.

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Thank you for any help you are able to give to support their work.

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RSPB Hebridean Wildlife Adventure Cruise

United Kingdom· June 11 - 17 2022· 6 nights

FROM$2513/pp