The Scottish Sea Kayak Trail - Introduction
The Scottish Sea Kayak Trail is Europe's first long distance sea kayak trail, stretching from Gigha in the south to the wonderful Summer Isles in the north. The trail was created by sea-kayaking videographer Simon Willis to encourage sea kayakers to explore Scotland's west coast, and has quickly been recognised as one of the best sea kayaking journeys to be found anywhere in the world.
Our award-winning trip is designed to allow you to experience some of the best parts of the Scottish Sea Kayak Trail over a number of day trips. Rather than camping, accommodation is provided a couple of sea kayaker friendly west coast inns, meaning that you always have somewhere warm and dry to return to after a day on the water.
This trip explores the central part of the Scottish Sea Kayak Trail, introducing you to wonderful areas such as Loch Linnhe, the Sound of Mull, Loch Sunart and the Sound of Arisaig. Each day, we move a little further north, enjoying some of the best sea kayaking to be found along the Scottish Sea Kayak Trail.
The Trail itself is completely unmarked and undeveloped so the sea kayaking offered is a pristine experience. Under the watchful eye of our experienced guides, you can develop your sea kayaking skills while discovering the amazing seascapes and wildlife of Scotland’s west coast.
At the end of each day, you can enjoy a hot shower and a visit to the local restaurant or pub for dinner before snuggling down with your duvet in our cosy accommodation. If (like some of us) you enjoy your kayaking and your home comforts in equal measure, then look no further than this itinerary!
Max group size: 8 clients and 2 guides
Start: Inverness 1030 / Fort William 1230
Finish: Fort William 1430 / Inverness 1600
Experience required: 5 days sea kayaking
If you don't have previous sea kayaking experience then we recommend that you join our Introduction to Sea Kayaking trip. If this is not the trip for you then please follow this link to our other sea kayaking holidays in Scotland.
What's Included on this sea kayaking holiday:
- 2 nights accommodation at a friendly inn near Loch Sunart
- 3 nights accommodation at a waterside inn located on the Sound of Arisaig
- Breakfast and packed lunches each day
- All transport throughout the trip, starting and finishing in Inverness
- All specialist sea kayaking equipment, including sea kayaks, paddles, spray decks, paddling jackets and buoyancy aids
- The services of our experienced and knowledgeable sea kayak guide throughout your trip
Day 1 – Welcome and onto the water!
You will be met by your guide at Inverness Railway station and we’ll transfer to Loch Linnhe for an afternoon paddle, refreshing your skills and introducing you to the wonderful West Highland scenery. Late afternoon, we transfer to our first accommodation, located on the shores of Loch Sunart.
Day 2 – The Scottish Sea Kayak Trail: Sound of Mull
Today we have a choice of areas to paddle in. One option is to head south to the Sound of Mull and Loch Aline, which is part of the Scottish Sea Kayak Trail. This stretch of water is a good place to encounter all kinds of marine wildlife such as dolphins and minke whales. After an enjoyable day's sea kayaking, we return to our accommodation late afternoon.
Day 3 – Sea Kayaking in Loch Sunart
Loch Sunart forms the southern boundary of the Ardnamurchan Peninsula and offers some lovely sea kayaking. We can explore the islands of Risga, Carna and Oronsay, all of which offer interest to sea kayakers. We will look out for sea otters which are often spotted in this sea loch. Further west lies Ardnamurchan Point - this is one area that we will not sea kayak to as it is the most challenging section of the whole trail, and is for experts only! If time permits, however, we will drive to the point to admire the magnificent sea views. We then transfer to our next accommodation, a classic West Highland inn located on the waterfront with views across the Sound of Arisaig.
Day 4 – Sea Kayaking in Loch Moidart and Castle Tioram
After breakfast, we continue our journey along the Scottish Sea Kayak Trail. Today we explore the sheltered waters of Loch Moidart, kayaking past the dramatic ruins of Castle Tioram (dating from the 13th Century) to Eilean Shona (the beautiful island'). This is one of the most stunning places on the West Coast. Paddling past stands of Caledonian pines on the shoreline, we can paddle round the point all the way back to our waterside inn, passing an abandoned village along the way.
Day 5 - Sea Kayaking through the Arisaig Skerries
Heading north from the inn, we enjoy one of the best day trips by sea kayak anywhere in the world - kayaking through the Arisaig skerries. These beach-fringed islands which guard the entrance to Arisaig are home to countless seals, otters and seabirds, while basking sharks are also regular visitors. Even without any wildlife, it still makes for an amazing paddle through the turquoise waters of the skerries. On clear days, the Atlantic views west to the mountains of Rum and Skye are magnificent - this really is Scottish sea kayaking at its best.
Day 6 - Final morning’s paddle
After breakfast at the inn, we’ll enjoy a morning sea kayaking before we make our way back to Inverness. We often explore either Loch Ailort (easily accessed from in front of the inn) or Loch nan Uamh. We follow the coastline of the peninsula with its rich history of the Jacobite rebellion of the 1740’s. This is a great way to end the trip and we can reflect back on the experience as we load up the vehicle and trailer and make our way back to Inverness, arriving late afternoon.
If you are keen to keep on kayaking, our trips which explore the Scottish Sea Kayak Trail South: The Whisky Coast section run the week before this trip, so the two itineraries can be easily linked together for a longer trip.
For a detailed itinerary and trips information please see our PDF Trip Dossier
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