Whisky & wildlife on Scotland's west coast and islands (self-drive tour)

Audley Travel Preferred
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
4.9 . Excellent
98%
Travel Style: Array Full on
Physical Level: Walking or physical activity half to most of day - no carrying equipment. 2- Easy
Lodging Level: Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value (3*)
8 days
From: $ 2,995 $ 374 / day
Checking price

Overview

Highlights (Bullets)

  • Enjoy the freedom of your own car on this self-drive trip. Audley can arrange a rental vehicle for you if required.
  • Take a distillery tour and tasting at one of Islay's world-renowned distilleries.
  • Explore the islands in Oban Bay on foot and by bicycle, spotting wildlife with a private guide.
  • Kayak on Loch Lomond, surrounded by mountains.
  • Take a wildlife cruise along Islay's shoreline to spy seals and porpoises.

Short Description

Our Scottish travel guides reflect the recent findings of our specialists who travel regularly to Scotland to seek out new places to stay and visit as well as imaginative ways of discovering the well-known highlights. The guides give tips on everything from Edinburgh for first timers to the culture and history of Scotland, so that you can get the most out of your time there.

Our Scotland specialists can guide you along the way using personal experience and in-depth knowledge on pursuits from touring the region's whisky distilleries or its medieval castles, to exploring the Isle of Skye or hiking through untouched valleys.

Style Self-guided tour
See all the highlights and popular spots on a classic tour.
Itinerary Focus Classic Highlights
Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Lodging Level Value (3*)
Flight & Transport Inclusions All internal ground transport
Start City Oban
End City Loch Lomond

Itinerary

Day 1: Oban

Make your own way to Oban. Whichever way you're approaching the 'gateway to the isles', the last section of the drive is guaranteed to be a scenic route as you journey through the rugged hills of Argyll. We recommend passing by the ruins of Kilchurn Castle on Loch Awe, where you can stop to explore and stretch your legs.

Accommodation options While the itinerary price reflects the suggested accommodation, this itinerary is 100% tailor-made, and a specialist can help you select the option best suited to your tastes and budget.

Day 2: Oban

Your three-day wildlife exploration through some of the Inner Hebrides islands begins today. You'll head over to the island of Kerrera with your private guide (who’ll accompany you for the next three days), for a leisurely hike. You'll cover about 11 km (7 miles) over the course of four to five hours, with plenty of time to stop and rest and to explore interesting sights along the way. Lunch is included in a local teahouse.

Accommodation options While the itinerary price reflects the suggested accommodation, this itinerary is 100% tailor-made, and a specialist can help you select the option best suited to your tastes and budget.

Day 3: Oban

Today you take the ferry over to the Isle of Mull, where you'll spend the day with your guide watching for white-tailed eagles, golden eagles, seals and otters. Lunch is included.

Accommodation options While the itinerary price reflects the suggested accommodation, this itinerary is 100% tailor-made, and a specialist can help you select the option best suited to your tastes and budget.

Day 4: Tarbert

With your guide, explore the island of Lismore and the mainland north of Oban by bike today, cycling along easy, quiet roads and bike paths. You’ll learn about Lismore’s history as you cycle, including its role in early Christianity in Scotland. Once you've taken the ferry back to the mainland, we recommend stopping for lunch at the seafood restaurant in Port Appin. You’ll then drive south through Kilmartin Glen to the small fishing village of Tarbert, where you’re well-positioned to catch the ferry to Islay in the morning.

Accommodation While the itinerary price reflects the suggested accommodation, this itinerary is 100% tailor-made, and a specialist can help you select the option best suited to your tastes and budget.

Day 5: Port Ellen

After crossing to Islay, join a shared wildlife cruise along the island’s rugged coastline, passing hidden coves and beaches as you watch out for seals, porpoises, dolphins and many seabirds. Once back onshore, visit Bowmore Distillery for a tour and tasting. We also suggest visiting Kildalton Cross, an exemplary remnant of an early Christian cross adorned with intricate Celtic designs. End your day at the Museum of Islay Life, where you can learn about the way of life on this rural Scottish island.

Accommodation While the itinerary price reflects the suggested accommodation, this itinerary is 100% tailor-made, and a specialist can help you select the option best suited to your tastes and budget.

Day 6: Port Ellen

This morning, board the tiny car ferry that connects Islay with nearby Jura — a five-minute journey by water. Jura is one of Scotland's last wildernesses, with only around 300 inhabitants, but over 5,000 deer. Most of the island is inaccessible by road, but you'll join a shared tour with a local to visit some excellent viewpoints and learn about Jura's history. After returning to the main village, visit Jura Distillery for a tour and tasting, before heading back across to Islay.

Accommodation While the itinerary price reflects the suggested accommodation, this itinerary is 100% tailor-made, and a specialist can help you select the option best suited to your tastes and budget.

Day 7: Loch Lomond

Take the ferry back to the mainland this morning, then drive along the shore of Loch Fyne toward Loch Lomond. Here, you’ll meet your private guide for a kayaking trip out on the loch, enjoying the peace and stillness as you paddle its calm waters, before spending your final evening in Luss, a picturesque lochside village.

Accommodation While the itinerary price reflects the suggested accommodation, this itinerary is 100% tailor-made, and a specialist can help you select the option best suited to your tastes and budget.

Day 8: Return home

Your west coast Scottish adventure ends today.

Availability

Checking price
Price From $ 2,995
Price Per Day: $ 374 per day

Check Current Availability, prices, specials with Audley Travel.

Prices may vary due to local taxes and trip seasonality. Click "Request Info" to inquire directly with the tour operator for the final trip price.

3,255 Audley Travel Travel Reviews & Ratings

98%
4.9 out of 5 (100+ reviews)
Excellent 3,060
Great 102
Average 24
Disappointing 24
Terrible 45
Value
4.9
Guide
4.9
Activities
4.9
Lodging
4.9
Transportation
4.9
Meals
4.9

Whisky & wildlife on Scotland's west coast and islands (self-drive tour)

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Company Reviews

Wonderful trip

5.0
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Value5.0
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Lodging5.0
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Meals5.0
We had a wonderful 5 weeks in New Zealand partly with family and partly travelling round the North Island. Our itinerary was put together by Catrin Carter after we talked to her about what we wanted to do. Our international flights, 3 domestic flights, 3 car hires and the hotels were booked for us by Audley and everything went to plan. We stayed in some lovely boutique hotels recommended by Catrin which we would never have found by ourselves. Catrin also recommended 2 boat trips and an all day nature and coast tour which we very much enjoyed. We appreciated the personal service and advice we received and highly recommend both Audley and Catrin.
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A truly unforgettable and memorable trip

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Audley have specialist and experienced staff
This isn't the first time we have trusted Audley to plan a trip for us and certainly won't be the last!
They planned and helped us have an amazing trip to Canada recently.
We visited Vancouver, Victoria and Torfino on Vancouver Island, then had the most unforgettable experience staying at a Lodge in the Broughton Archipelago and the Great Bear Rainforest.
We really appreciated the level of detail that went into arranging this trip, keeping us safe and getting us back home to plan the next one.
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Excellent service all round

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Lodging5.0
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Meals5.0
We had a fabulous month-long trip to Indonesia and Singapore, and all went smoothly thanks to Mat and Harriet's efforts. Previously we have always travelled independently but decided the complicated nature of this trip was a step too far. We gave Audley a broad outline of what we wanted to do and see, concluding with a Sea Trek adventure at the end and they managed to make our vague plans into reality. The trip was delayed due to Covid but Mat and Harriet kept us up to date with developments. Excellent guides throughout and all the travel worked out well despite visiting many different islands. Thanks
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Well done Audley travel…

5.0
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Lodging5.0
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We recently wrote a review of a holiday to Canada arranged by Audley travel.Some issues we experienced were discussed at the highest level and immediate action was taken by them to address all our concerns.Audley definitely have the best interests of their clients at the heart of their operation and the way they dealt with our issues exceeded our expectations. Well done to Audley travel.
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So you removed my review

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So you removed my review!

It’s too late to try and treat me with any kind of respect. Ignorant!

Perfect Kenya adventure

5.0
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Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Natasha, our assigned expert, listened carefully to what we would like, and came up with the most perfect itinerary for us. Accommodation in both the city and game reserve were spot on, and she was able to move quickly when we needed to change our plans a little. Totally brilliant holiday.
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Details

Flight & Transport Inclusions

All internal ground transport

Group Size

Intimate Group - 12 max

Trip ID#:

WhiWilAud

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