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Four Day Basking Shark & Wildlife Tour
The four day tour is for people who want to maximise their time at sea and gain a fuller experience with the basking sharks. It also gives you far better chances with the weather. Our 2017 success rate was 100% on 4 day and longer tours, 2-3 day tours had ~83% shark success.
These trips are all based from the Isle of Coll and we visit Fingal’s Cave, the puffin colony (during puffin season), and the seal lagoon. If you are a qualified diver there is the option for an evening dive.
You will spend four nights on Coll, allowing you to get to know the locals a little better over a wee dram. You'll have a few more chances for early morning and evening otter spotting, or even some late night star-gazing as the island has a dark sky designation.
The schedule for the trip will be adapted to suit the group on board and the wildlife present at the time. We can spend the whole time with the sharks or add in as little or as much of the other highlights as desired.
These tours run exclusively during July, August and the start of Sept. Please see our itinerary below and click book now to see prices and availability.
2018 - SOLD OUT - still space on the week tour, freediving (advanced snorkelling) and research tour.Book Now
We will meet you at the ferry terminal on the Isle of Coll at approx 10am (depending on ferry schedule) where we will transfer you to our meeting room to be given a briefing on the trip. Afterwards you can check into your accomodation and you will have some free time in the afternoon to prepare for the next couple of days and get your bearings. Around 17:00 we will meet to arrange any hire gear you need and make sure all the equipment fits.
The first day we usually head to the crystal clear waters of the islands where there is a large seal colony. With the water only a few metres deep, the visibility excellent and white sand onto healthy reefs, it’s a stunning area. You can see more about this on our seal swimming page which we also run as a day trip from Oban.However we may choose a different location if the sharks are closeby.
After a good few hours here, we will spend the rest of the day looking for sharks and other wildlife. Whilst we are in the area, there are also good chances of spotting minke whales, common and bottlenose dolphins and porpoises. We even have rare visitors such as orca, sunfish and leatherback turtles! In addition there are abundant seabirds including bonxies, terns, fulmars, razorbills, guillemots and cormorants to name a few.
Today we will fully focus on looking for sharks and wildlife, the benefit of the location is we are right at shark central. Depending on the weather we’ll cover all our favourite spots in the area searching for sharks however there are plenty of wildlife watching and snorkelling opportunities in between.
On the evenings there are a number of options
- You can have a relaxing dinner and a drink while appreciating the view
- Take a stroll by yourself to look for otters, seals & more wildlife;
- For qualified divers we can take you for a stunning and sheltered dive. This normally occurs on a set evening. Hire gear is available and must be booked in advance.
Our search for basking sharks continues and depending on the weather we would look to add in some of the island landings on days 3 and 4. These include the nearby island such as Lunga to see the seabird and puffin colony (May to July). Landings from our RIBs are via dingy and our guides will escort you ashore where you can get very close to puffins and then visit the seabird city where there are thousands of nesting birds on nearby sea stack.
We sometimes combine this with visit FIngal's Cave on the Isle of Staffa where we hope to land you depending on the swell and in calm conditions we also swim in the cave. An amazing experience!
The last day will be flexible- if you are still hungry for shark action we will head out for more or if we haven't had a chance yet, it's another opportunity to fit in the puffins or Staffa. We plan to have another full day at sea so check out from the accommodation will be in the morning prior to the tour.
Normally we plan the schedule so that on return from this full day you will catch the evening ferry back to Oban after a memorable trip.You would normally arrive to Oban in the late evening.
Accommodation is based at the 5* bunkhouse on the island where we stay for the duration of the peak season. It's a five minute walk from the boat and very close to the hotel bar & restaurant, cafe and shop. It is self catering, but you can buy supplies at the shop, order packed lunches on the island and eat out for dinner. Otherwise you can self cater for the full trip if you prefer.
This facility has three bedrooms with bunk beds sleeping either 4 or 6 per room. We do try to keep the rooms to same sex but this is not always possible. There is a very large living space with lounge, kitchen and dining area which easily accommodates the whole group, 4 showers and 5 toilets.
For those who wish to have their own room, you can independently book the equally stunning Bed & Breakfast or Hotel. Costs vary depending on the room and view but based on 2 people sharing range from £40-£75 per person per night extra. We do have rooms reserved on the island during our tours so please contact us in the first instance.
- Four days shark and wildlife boat tour
- Ferry Pick Up
- Amazing wildlife, scenery and culture
- Knowledgeable and experienced guides
- Hot drinks and home baking snack after snorkelling
- Guided evening otter & wildlife walk
- Optional evening scuba dive for qualified divers
- Onboard binoculars, books and information guides
- Four nights bunkhouse accommodation on the island (B&B/ Hotel option available for additional cost).
What's Not Included
- Equipment Hire - please see here for gear hire.
- Weather or wildlife guarantees! Sorry we’d love to be able to do that but we really do believe that our trips give you the best chance of seeing sharks.
- Lunch - please bring your lunch with you for day 1. Packed lunches available on the island for days 2-4.
- Travel to the meeting point on the Isle of Coll (ferry information here)