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Sea Kayaking – The Summer Isles

  • Explore this archipelago of deserted islands, wild coastlines, rock arches and white-sand beaches.
  • Paddle in the crystal clear waters, enjoying the spectacular views of the coastal mountains.
  • Camp in beautiful, remote spots with spectacular views of the surrounding island and coastlines.
  • All meals, from lunch on Day 1 through to lunch on the day of departure. (Meals included indicated as B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
  • The services of an experienced and knowledgeable sea-kayak guide / driver throughout your trip. On trips with more than 4 clients, a qualified assistant guide will also be with the group throughout the trip.
  • All specialist sea kayaking equipment, including sea kayaks, waterproof cags and buoyancy aids.
  • All group equipment including tents, group safety equipment and cooking /eating equipment and utensils. Please note that sleeping bags are not included. However, sleeping bags and sleeping mats are available for hire.
  • All transport throughout the trip starting and finishing in Inverness.

Blue Graded Sea Kayaking Holidays 4-6

Our blue graded sea kayaking trips are suitable for fit paddlers with a minimum of 5 full days of sea kayaking experience, with a basic level of technical competence. You can expect 6/7 hours of sea kayaking each day, with plenty of breaks onshore to stretch your legs. You will also be asked to assist with carrying the boats to and from the water, working as a team.

The kayaking will be in coastal waters with few open crossings but you can expect to be paddling in some choppier conditions during the trip. This may be around Sea State 3 (with waves up to 1m high). On the higher Blue grade trips you may be paddling in more exposed areas and encounter stronger winds and waves up to Sea State 4.

If you are unsure about your experience or about Sea States, please give us a call or email to discuss. If you do not yet have enough experience we suggest our Green graded sea kayaking trips.

In the event of bad weather preventing us from kayaking your guide will offer an alternative activity such as a hike.

ACCOMMODATION AND MEALS

On this trip we wild camp near the shore in spectacular coastal locations. These camps may be remote and difficult to access by foot and this element of isolation adds to their appeal. We provide single tents unless you are travelling with a partner or in a group and would like a tent to share. We also carry a base camp tipi, which means that we can all gather together for dinner and a hot drink even if the weather is inclement.

Great food is essential to all our trips and expeditions are no different. While the guide will co- ordinate the cooking and help out, everyone is asked to lend a hand as this ensures the best meals in the shortest possible time after what are often long days. We will carry plenty of food to cater a varied and satisfying menu throughout the trip, and some of these may even be prepared on an open fire. Dietary requirements can still be catered for but please ensure we know at the time of booking.

ARRIVAL AND DEPARTURE
You will be met by your Wilderness Scotland Guide in the centre of Inverness Railway Station at 10:30 on Day 1 of your trip. You will be returned to Inverness Station for 4:00pm on the final day of the trip.

For advice on getting to and from Scotland please our travel advice page on our website: www.wildernessscotland.com/faq/travel-to-scotland/

Customer Kudos

Every client receives a feedback survey when they return from their guided, self guided or tailor made holiday with us.

Once completed the review is published on our website just as soon as our database updates. The little touches and details are important to us and where issues are raised we make positive changes to our trips to improve your experience.

That's why we read each of our client's reviews and although we don't respond to all of them, if it's glowing feedback then we get the satisfaction of helping to make your holidays truly memorable.

5 star 50

4 star 7

3 star 2

2 star 0

1 star 0

by Julie Lane 03/09/2017

5Pre-Trip Service

4Trip Comments

4Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Trip Comments
Accommodation and Food
Your Guide
The Bottom Line

by Ros Stokes 29/08/2017

5Pre-Trip Service

4Trip Comments

4Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

4The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Trip Comments
Accommodation and Food
The tipee was so good, given the foul weather.. excellent dinners, though I was glad I had taken plenty of nibbles for during paddling.
Your Guide
Howard and Sarah were an excellent team. Good balance of holiday and bits of instruction. Very safe in difficult weather. Good fun.
The Bottom Line

by Kate Taylor 23/08/2017

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
The website information is very clear. I found the trip grading video really helpful in choosing the right trip for me. The meet your guides video really helps you feel more relaxed about the trip. As a solo traveller it was great to have this introduction to Howard.
Trip Comments
The trip was expertly guided with every member feeling supported. Wild camping on the beautiful summer isles will be remembered for ever.
Accommodation and Food
The food was amazing. As we pitched our campsite Howard started preparing our evening meal. Everyone pitched in to chop and prepare a fresh and delicious meal every evening. This gave a real sense of belonging to the group, caring for each other and well being. I would highly recommend a wild camping trip.
Your Guide
Both Howard and Sarah were highly skilled. They checked what we wanted to do and kept us up to date with information too. I feel my paddeling improved through their support and advise. Just brilliant.
The Bottom Line
This was a trip of a lifetime, expertly guided in beautiful surroundings. I would strongly recommend the wild camping trip to anyone with a sense of adventure who wants to get back to basics and closer to nature.

by Hilary Clarke 21/08/2017

5Pre-Trip Service

4Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Trip Comments
Out of your control but weather and midges
Accommodation and Food
Food amazing in the circumstances
Your Guide
Howard and Sarah were wonderful. Unfailingly good humoured and witty but with reassuring skill and knowledge.
The Bottom Line

by Miguel Fernando de Luis Espinosa 20/08/2017

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

4Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
I cannot think of anything at this time
Trip Comments
Paddling by the splendid Tanera Mór isle to dock into its unique café, still on our cagules and water shoes
Accommodation and Food
Some of the food, was too spicy for us poor Spaniards :)
Your Guide
With Howard I knew at once I would always be safe, with its thorough knowledge of the sea and isles, and his constant care. After a couple of days, I also learnt he will always guide us to where fun and natural splendor war. //// As for Sarah, she was in constant watch for us, helping me prevent and correct any mistake that could lead to trouble or unwanted exercion.
The Bottom Line
This is proper kayaking, proper wilderness camping at its best. The weather would not always be fine, and the wind not always in your favour, but that's what makes it truly special.

by Michael Clarke 20/08/2017

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Sight confusion over whether we had a double or single tents but apart from that we were told all we needed to know and everyone was very helpful
Trip Comments
Brilliant guides in Howard and Sarah. Amazing to be camped on an island with no one else on it. For us oldies was great that it wasn't treated as a competitive triathlon.
Accommodation and Food
Tents were great and Howard and Sarah cooked amazing food on a camp stove
Your Guide
Howard and Sarah were both fantastic. They tailored the kayaking to our abilities and we had absolute confidence in them. The campsites were beautiful and the food was restaurant standard.
The Bottom Line
If you want to experience the beautiful wilderness of northwest Scotland up close and have a digital detox this is the trip for you

by Alan Rose 17/07/2017

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Trip Comments
An enjoyable experience. Mark's decisions in response to unfavourable weather forecasts, to move to Loch Maree and then to Shieldaig, led us to more enjoyable paddling and the sunny evenings with campfires were particularly pleasant
Accommodation and Food
I have never in my life eaten such enormous slabs of traybake nor do I expect to in the future but at the time they were just right. The meals were varied and imaginative and chocolate was abundant. All good stuff!
Your Guide
Excellent choices of route and venue, taking us through a variety of environments. I was helped to improve my paddling technique. Everyone was looked after individually too
The Bottom Line
Challenging, sociable, informative, skilfully lead. And (apart from the first day) the weather was amazing, much better than at home in Durham!

by Bob Edwards 09/07/2017

4Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Friendly communications
Trip Comments
Well informed guide of many aspects of the local environment
Accommodation and Food
A wide selection and sufficient quantity
Your Guide
Both guides worked well together. Kept us well informed of plans and reasons for changes where neeeded. Were good company
The Bottom Line
A great way to experience the environment in safe hands

by Serena Woodrow-Clark 07/07/2017

5Pre-Trip Service

4Trip Comments

4Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

4The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Staff very helpful with the questions I asked. Also helpful to see some remarks from others and the photos of previous trips.
Trip Comments
The trip was Sea Kayaking around the Summer Isles. I very much enjoyed the kayaking and camping, although very windy weather meant the trip was adapted a lot. The guides did their best to get us out on the sea, but ultimately it wasn't quite the trip I was looking forward to. Instead of feeling like a kayak camping journey, there was lots of driving about to different locations and loading and unloading of kayaks on to trailers.
Accommodation and Food
Food very good and plenty of it. The trip was a wild camping week. Camping equipment all fine, good size and quality of tents. Due to weather only 2camps were wild camps.
Your Guide
My guides were Mark Cox and Becky. Both very friendly and professional . Mark especially very knowledgeable on wildlife/history/landscape of the areas visited which certainly made the trip more enjoyable. They both tried hard to adapt the trip in view of poor weather conditions to get us out kayaking which I appreciate, but did mean it was a little disjointed.
The Bottom Line

by Diana Hayes 04/07/2017

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

4Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Trip Comments
Very well organised. Lovely guide and a good group.
Accommodation and Food
I really appreciated my gluten free diet being catered for and generally it worked well. The main thing was that I was not given any gluten so stayed well. The main meals were fine, no problems at all. Breakfasts were difficult. A box of five flavoured sachets of gluten free porridge was sent. One sachet is not enough and a packet of porridge would have worked better. It would then be possible to choose quantity and only add flavours and sugar if you wanted them - I didn't. Fortunately eggs were available for a couple of days and these helped make the porridge last. Gluten free muesli would have been an easier option as it does not involve an extra saucepan. As to lunches, the rolls, wraps and fillings were OK. Butter for someone on gluten free needs to be in a separate container so crumbs don't get in on knives. The container needs a very clear label so that it doesn't get used by mistake. What was difficult was watching everyone eat tray bakes and munch chocolate while I had nothing. The only sweet things for me were firstly chocolate cookies (the first box most of them got eaten by other people who had not realised - another need for a label). The second box I packed with my things and enjoyed. Aldi's banana flavour Hike bars are really horrible, I struggled through a few. Lots of chocolate bars are gluten free but not Mackies so I could not have any. There are plenty of gf cakes in supermarkets and I would have so enjoyed some.

I hope my comments here are seen as constructive rather than critical, they are certainly are intended to be.

TEAM WILDERNESS RESPONSE:

Thanks so much for your detailed feedback. This is really helpful and we’ll pass it along to the team. I’m glad you had such a good time on the trip and hopefully we’ll see you back in the Highlands soon.
Your Guide
Mark was an excellent guide, informative, funand very efficient. Becky was clearly being tutored and did well.
The Bottom Line
The weather conditions meant that many alterations had to be made to the trip but we had a good time and got on the water every day. The guide was excellent.

Prices and Departures

46 people viewed this trip in the last week1 Booking in the last 72 hours

Book with confidence - we guaranteee our trips to run as soon as 2 people book.

2018 Trip Dates

Trip Date
Price
Availability
Trip Status
 
19th May - 24th May 2018
£895
4 place(s) left
23rd Jun - 28th Jun 2018
£895
5 place(s) left
11th Aug - 16th Aug 2018
£895
5 place(s) left

Trip Details

Sea kayaking in the Summer Isles is perhaps sea kayaking in Scotland at its finest, as we explore the many islands that dot this beautiful coastline.

The Summer Isles are some of the most scenic islands and our guided sea kayaking expedition is an inspiring journey through a stunning seascape.

Journeying by sea kayak we are able to experience this remarkable coastal environment up close – picking our way through the numerous channels and inlets between the islands. This area is known for its rich marine life with dolphins, porpoises, seals and even whales inhabiting these waters. In the sky there are many varieties of sea birds and golden eagles can sometimes be seen as well. We’ll be able to explore the islands on foot, allowing you to get to know them from land and sea. This is the perfect trip for someone with some previous kayaking experience looking to enjoy a longer expedition in one of the best areas in the world for sea kayaking.

Trip Itinerary

Day 1 – North to the Summer Isles

From Inverness, we travel north-west to the Summer Isles passing Ullapool and the beautiful Coigach and Assynt mountains. Late afternoon sees us launch the sea kayaks and enjoy a short paddle in sheltered waters to our first campsite, a small island located just offshore. Dolphins and whales are often spotted in these waters so we’ll keep our eyes open as we set up camp on the white sandy beach. (L, D)

Distance 2km, 1hr

Day 2 – Exploring Achiltibuie’s coastline and Badentarbat Bay

Heading south, we sweep around the coastline, passing small sea-cliffs on our way to Badentarbat Bay. After lunch on the grassy bay, we round a point then cross to Horse Island to camp. History records that Spanish treasure is hidden on this island. According to local legend, 100 years ago a shepherd fell into a hole on the island and when he returned home, he found a gold coin in his shoe. Along with friends he returned to the island but could not remember where he had fallen – so the gold remains to this day! (B, L, D)

Distance 12km, 6hrs

Day 3 – Circumnavigating the isle of Tanera Mor

A 2km crossing takes us to Tanera Mor. This is the largest of the Summer Isles and the only inhabited island. It used to be a major fishing port, where up to 200 vessels would jostle for room in the main bay, known as ‘the Anchorage’. These days only a café and a post office remain. We will paddle round the island and then find a quiet bay where we will camp for the next couple of nights. (B, L, D)

Distance 12km, 6hrs

Day 4 – Sea Kayaking the hidden shores of the Summer Isles

We leave our camp in the bay paddle north to Eilean Flada Mor and its outlying skerries, admiring the spectacular sandstone architecture of these islands. We pass a seal colony before, if the conditions are suitable, crossing to Eilean a Char then paddling down Tanera Beag’s western shore to a small bay on its southern tip. Here we pull the kayaks ashore and enjoy a leg-stretching walk on this uninhabited island. On the return to our camp, we pass a fragile sandstone arch which it is possible to paddle under at high tide. (B, L, D)

Distance 12km, 6hrs

Day 5 – North to Reiff and the Rubha Coigeach

We strike camp and paddle northwards, admiring the stunning views of the Assynt peaks to the east which cut into the skyline and dominate the panorama. Leaving the main cluster of islands, we follow the channel between the wildlife reserve of Isle Ristol and Eilean Mullagrach as we journey towards our northernmost point, a tiny landing spot at Faochag Bay. This is our camp for the night, a wild spot at the very tip of the peninsula with stunning views all around. (B, L, D)

Distance 14km, 7hrs

Day 6 – The climbers of Reiff and journey’s end

If conditions are suitable, we may venture out to the Rubha Coigeach to enjoy the views towards the Old Man of Stoer from the ocean. Turning back southwards, we enjoy a leisurely paddle back to our starting point. As we pass the sea-cliffs to the north of Reiff, we will pause to watch the rock-climbers scale the sandstone cracks and overhangs. They often pause and gaze back at us! Finally, we cruise into the natural harbour for the end of a memorable journey. There’s often time for a quick drink at the local bar before we return to Inverness. (B, L)

Distance 8km, 4hrs

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Prices and Departures

46 people viewed this trip in the last week1 Booking in the last 72 hours

Book with confidence - we guaranteee our trips to run as soon as 2 people book.

2018 Trip Dates

Trip Date
Price
Availability
Trip Status
 
19th May - 24th May 2018
£895
4 place(s) left
23rd Jun - 28th Jun 2018
£895
5 place(s) left
11th Aug - 16th Aug 2018
£895
5 place(s) left

Price from: £895

Next trip: 19th May

Duration: 5 night(s)

View prices & departures

Location: North West Highlands

Comfort: Wilderness Camping

Difficulty: 6

61 review(s)

Trip Photos

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Trip reviews

Customer Kudos

Julie Lane
03/09/2017

5

Ros Stokes
29/08/2017

4

Rated 4.66 out of 5 based on 61 review(s) of Sea Kayaking – The Summer Isles

5 star 50

4 star 7

3 star 2

2 star 0

1 star 0

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