We left Oban harbour very early that morning and like the previous days, the weather was not fantastic but I was hoping the sky would cleared up a bit in the afternoon. We had booked a tour that would take us to Staffa, Mull and Iona islands and we were very excited to discover that part of Scotland !
The plan was to visit Isle of Staffa first, a tiny island located 10 km from Isle Mull. From mid-April to early August, it’s possible to see nesting puffins over there so we were really looking forward to spot them. To get there, it’s quite tricky as you have to first take a ferry from Oban to Craignure on Mull, then take a coach from Craignure to Fionnphort. Once you are over there, you still have a 45 minutes ferry ride to the island of Staffa.
The first ferry ride from Oban to Mull was pleasant, but as it was raining, we didn’t dare going outside to take some pictures. Once we reached Mull, we jumped into the coach and at that time, the weather was really miserable. It was extremely foggy and rainy and we could see much outside as you can see on the picture below taken through the window of the coach.
After 30 minutes of driving, the sky got a bit better and the rain stopped, perfect timing for our boarding to the ferry that would take us on Staffa.
That boat ride was a bit horrendous, as the sea was really rough. It was raining and at that time, I was really thinking that trip was going to be a disaster. I only managed to take one picture that is not too blurry of the island from the ferry….
Once we reached the island (I was happy to be on land to be honest), the guide told us we had to chose what we wanted to do : either see the puffins or visit Fingal’s Cave (see picture above), another iconic feature of Staffa. I was a bit shocked to hear that we had to chose… when we booked the tour it was specified we would see both. Well technically they didn’t lie as we saw Fingal’s Cave while we were approaching the island… but still, I felt tricked. We decided to go for the puffins and if we had time, we would go and visit the cave.
We climbed up the steps and started to head towards the puffin nests at the tip of the island.These basalt columns remind me of Iceland and I felt nostalgic :-)
We were the only ones choosing that option, everyone else was going for the cave. And that’s what they have missed.
We arrived where the nests were supposed to be and we could see the nests on the side of the cliffs but all the puffins were on the water. We decided to wait a little bit to see if some of them would come back to the nests… and they did ! We managed to spot some ! I was so happy !
We stayed there for such a long time… it was so nice. After a while we decided to go back and to have a glimpse of the Fingal’s cave. We managed to get halfway through before we heard the signal that it was time for us to go back to the boat. Despite not having seen the inside of the cave, I was feeling very happy to have seen the puffins and the wonderful basalt columns :-)
(to be continued..)