Who can take part?
For those wanting to snorkel on the tour, we advise that you should be able to swim 100m comfortably in open water, along with general fitness to enable boarding a boat via a ladder. Due to fluctuating tide levels we may have to use a pier ladder to board the vessel in port. The minimum age is 8, with under 16s accompanied by at least one parent/guardian. Please contact us directly if you are unsure.
No scuba qualification or experience is required. We are able to conduct snorkelling instruction if needed, however you will enjoy the trip more fully if you already have some skills. We can do this prior to the tour with our certified Experience Snorkelling course.
How long will we be wildlife and shark watching?
Our day tours last around 8-9 hours including 2-3 hours travel time each way to the hotspot. During our multi day tours we also spend 8-9 hours at sea but have far more opportunity for exploring as we are already in the hotspot area.
Will I be cold?
The weather can be changeable in Scotland, so we advise you to be adequately prepared. As this is a boat trip, the temperature is always a little cooler than on land so we advise you to bring enough clothes to keep you warm. Please see the What Should I Bring FAQ below.
Water temperature over the season ranges from 10-16 degrees and we have a range of suits, boots, gloves and hoods which will keep you warm if you need equipment. You are very welcome to bring your own suit, either a wetsuit or drysuit. Please see the equipment and gear hire FAQ.
What should I bring?
Here is a list for you to check off:
- Cameras are a must as we have so many experiences to capture!
- Binoculars for spotting wildlife (we have a couple of pairs for sharing around).
- Warm clothes -waterproof jacket, fleece, hat & gloves.
- Sunglasses & sunscreen.
- Snorkelling gear - hire from us here.
- Lunch and water.
- Seasickness tablets if required (take before you get on the boat).
We provide hot drinks and home baking once you get out of the water.
Will I get hungry?
We provide hot drinks and home baking once you get out of the water. This will keep us going during our exploration, however please bring lunch and water with you. We would advise light meals as we are at sea all day and it is an active trip.
What about accommodation?
On our multi-day tours you have the option of bunkhouses, mid-range B&Bs on a twin or double share basis, hotels and, for the week tours, self catering cottages. If you require single rooms, this can also be arranged but may include a supplement, especially at the height of summer. For accomodation in Oban we recommend the following hostel where our clients gain 10% discount, B&B and Hotel.
Will I get seasick?
This depends if you are susceptible to getting seasick! As we are at sea most of the day, we advise you to bring seasickness remedies if you suffer from mal de mer. You need to take seasickness tablets prior to the trip departure, we would advise starting this the night before the trip.
We aim to look for sharks in areas of calm water but we can't guarantee they will be active in these areas. The best thing to do is err on the side of caution.
Do you have First Aiders?
All of our crew are qualified in first aid and we keep supplies on the boat. We also have a large supply of oxygen for oxygen administration.
Is there a toilet onboard the boat?
Our two main boats have 'emergency' toilets onboard as we prefer to stop for shore based flushing toilets. We aim to stop at least twice during the trip in addition to toilets being available just prior and after departure.
For private clients we do have a large 12m vessel available for charter which has a flushing toilet onboard.
What about the weather?
Although we get lots of fine weather with calm seas we can’t do anything about bad weather, which we do get from time to time. The great thing about Argyll is that it is rumored to have more coastline than the whole of France! Given this archipelago of isles, beaches and passages, it needs to be a really bad storm to stop us from operating. Our charter boats are cabin RIBs which are highly seaworthy and built for the Atlantic. During strong winds we can shelter in some areas to look for sharks taking short passages of rough crossings.
On our longer tours based out on the islands, we have some really great poor weather activities and have the flexibility to go out early or later in the day. However with short tours we may have to cancel as with 2-3 hours travel each way then we need to have a full day's weather window. You can find our cancellation policy in our terms and conditions and in this event we will give you as much notice as possible, offer you a different day or a refund.