It was like a scene out of a horror movie. But that might just be a matter of time. The best place to see Puffins in Scotland. We continued the hike up the hill where we eventually reached the top. They have a wingspan of roughly 47cm-63cm and can reach about 20cm in height. Being the wildlife fan I am, I almost suffered a heart attack. Martin is a fantastic host and you are guaranteed to see Sea Eagles close up. You have entered an incorrect email address! Années de Pèlerinage is a travel blog that focuses on luxury hotels and unforgettable cultural experiences. Didn’t have any clue about it either before my visit. It’s probably better to book our tour not too much in advance. Should I cancel my trip to Egypt? We went at the end of May and at one point while eating our sandwiches were surrounded by at least 20 Puffins no more than a meter away. Oban was the cutest little fishing town. Travel. Puffin Watching on Papey Island Just off the shore of East Iceland is another enormous puffin colony that can be reached by boat. I wouldn’t have minded seeing the “normal” side of Scotland either. Aug 6, 2014 - Explore Daniel Bickhart's board "Scottish Animals - Puffins", followed by 599 people on Pinterest. There are few places left on earth, where you can experience unspoiled nature and abundant wildlife. In winter, the beak has a dull grey colour, … At the time of the RSPB’s last census, 2,000 puffin pairs were recorded in the Inner Hebrides. These birds breed on land from April to August, which is why I was able to see them in their prime during my visit in July. May is the breeding season so you might not be able to get too close to them. Muckle Flugga, at the northern tip of the UK is in the distance.. I did … We were in Scotland for the British Open, so we didn’t want to stray too far from Angus, where the Open was being held. Getting to Lunga is a bit more complicated. And another one when I cursed myself for not bringing a proper telephoto lens. If you are super lucky, you will be able to see whales, dolphins, porpoise, basking sharks or White Tailed Eagles on your trip. I have some fabulous pictures of Scottish skies and they are sure not all blue! 105 helpful votes. If this sounds too complicated, Staffa tours will book this all as one package for you and give you easy to follow instructions! It really is a magical place and I can’t recommend it enough. Yet I decided to explore the island a bit more. Coincidence? © Henk Bogaard/Getty It has been suggested that we adore puffins, or ‘sea parrots’ as they are traditionally known in northern Scotland, because their rotund features and comical gait on land remind us of human babies. Take a walk further along the cliff path and you will be rewarded with literally thousands of Guillemots and Razorbills nesting. More travel inspiration: 20 amazing things to do in Scotland. There are numerous burrows where the puffins nest, and later in the season you can watch the hatched pufflings (baby puffins) poke their head out for a look. We just wanted to be closer to the city and didn’t want to venture onto ferries with cars and such. Luckily the sun was shining oh so prettily, bathing the island in a luminescent green. Puffins on the Isle of Lunga. On a calm day, it is possible to spot dolphins and even humpback and minke whales en route to the island. It was such a cool sight and the sound of that many birds is forever ingrained in my mind. You cannot imagine the noise they made. ___________ I was able to get as close as 1 meter or less. Pom Mom. I'm off to Shetland in a couple of weeks with my main goal being, puffin-spotting. Check out my YouTube Video of our experience! Puffins in Scotland are only there from Mid-May to July (August at the latest). London, United... Level Contributor . Hoping to see as many Puffins as you did! The exposed rock on the island I showed you earlier is called Dun Cruit and home to over 6,000 guillemots. For my full Scotland itinerary check out Epic Scotland Roadtrip Part 1 & Epic Scotland Road Trip Part 2 The day is long, but so fun. It was such a sublime moment. As we are slow walkers and we like to wander around which one to choose. of Puffins, standing over their freshly dug burrows. Apparently it’s quite common because humans scare off the predators so they feel safe when a tour drops in. The next stop is Staffa for more birds, hiking, and most importantly, Fingal’s Cave! On the way back, we had some time in Tobermory before the bus came to take us back to the ferry. Wild orchids, primroses, sea pinks, and yellow flags – it really felt like paradise. These industrious guys are just beyond cute, don’t you think? Lunga on the Treshnish Isles in Scotland is one of those rare places. Write CSS OR LESS and hit save. With that many birds flitting about, I was otherwise preoccupied, as you can imagine. Aside from the puffins, we have red deer, roe deer, pine martin, beavers, eagles, buzzard, kites, ospreys, seals, otters, basking sharks, dolphins, red squirrel, lynx, scottish wildcat, adder, stoats, and of course the infamous scottish midge! Wow, this looks amazing! Island of Staffa is good for puffins. The chick remai… He told me that roughly 4,500 Puffins are now breeding on Lunga – one of the biggest colonies on earth (I could not verify these numbers, but there were certainly a LOT of Puffins). Then and there I noticed the many beautiful flowers covering the islands. They are the cutest little birds and SO curious. Time your arrival at low tide so you can cross the concrete causeway. Not interested in our food at all just wandering around us. CTRL + SPACE for auto-complete. Puffin Island is the ninth largest island off the coast of Wales and marks the northeastern end of the Menai Strait. haha! But I also took my time enjoying the moment. Some tours leave from Oban on the mainland, but these usually involve taking the Ferry to Craignure and then a coach ride to a port on Mull. An amazing volcanic island, so surreal it looks like alien shaped it thousands of years ago. It was also walking distance to Oban Distillery which is a must-do! By then the MacLeans were in charge on the Treshnish Isles. I will admit that Scotland isn’t readily associated with wildlife experiences. Your legs burn. 34,663 posts. As I take my leave from the beautiful island, I pass by a stack of crumbled ruins. Nijo Castle The chicks will already have hatched and the puffins flown away. Puffins, Seals, Guillemots, Razorbills – there was barely a single empty nesting spot among the high cliffs of the tiny islands. They bear their offspring underground but live on the water when not raising babies. Lunga is verdant for outstanding wildlife experiences. However, further away is Flatey Island which is also home to nesting puffins in the summer. One of the best spots to see them is on Staffa, a small uninhabited island off the west coast of Scotland. We sure had our laughs but obviously respected their privacy. They make the transfer with the ferry and bus so easy by booking everything for you. Pin now – Best Place to see Puffins in Scotland. This is where I found myself a little rock to rest. Papey is a low-lying island, just two kilometres squared, that since 1948 has been deserted of full-time residents. Read more about Sharvedda B&B During the breeding season, displays of bill-knocking and ritualised walking will result in mating pairs producing one egg, which is laid at the end of the burrow. ;-). Yet, there is more to the country of Alba than rolling green hills, high cliffs, whiskey and quite a bit of rain. Puffins live in burrows in the short grass at the top of cliffs and feed on fish, such as sandeels, which they catch at sea by diving beneath the surface and using their wings to swim in pursuit. Isle of Staffa Two small, uninhabited islands -named Akurey and Lundey or the ‘Puffin Islands - are home to a large puffin colony. Not that i’d complain. A rather close relative is the Guillemot. Got any question? I highly recommend mentally preparing yourself for physical activity and bring your hiking boots! We got super lucky with the weather. We stayed in THIS AirBnB. The humorous birds spend the rest of the year at sea. Now I stand corrected and am already planning my return, lol :), Yes; this is now on my bucketlist called “Places to visit on short notice if weather is good” :-) The Puffin Cove in Caithness, Scotland, also known as Puffin Island, is just off the north coast between Melvich and Reay at the border between the historical counties of Caithness and Sutherland. Although there are Puffins on both the islands of Staffa and Lunga, the main attraction on Staffa is Fingal’s Cave. I just had to see it! © 2017 - ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Adventure of A Pilot Wife. They will come right up to you! Aug 17, 2014 - A Puffin admiring the view. | Webmasters WordPress Nanny, Visiting the Florida Gators on a Myakka Airboat Ride, Anna Maria Island: A Unique Bachelorette Party Destination, 10 Reasons the French Polynesia Should Be on Your Bucket List, We Bought a 1978 VW Bus! hehe). Approaching the nests they made loud noises, almost sounding like an angry pig. This is one of the reasons Lunga is now a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest. (And then drove it across the Country. Reykjavík. Everywhere. I'm staying in Lerwick and will be car-less but prepared to walk a lot and I've been checking bus schedules. Puffins are always to be found close to or on the sea. Rains and storms are common. Puffins, small winged seabirds that come ashore to breed @shutterstock Following are the spots which enjoy 100% sighting rates in summer. Also for anyone visiting Mull for a while I would like to give a shout out to Mull Charters. Let’s take a look at some of Scotland’s most popular island puffin-spotting locations. Somewhere between 250,000 and 300,000 puffins nest on the islands of St Kilda, which is around a quarter of the total number for the UK. When I was researching activities to do in Scotland, I came across a tour to the Treshnish Isles to see the Puffins in one of the largest breeding grounds in the world. Most of their life they spent out on the sea. Winter weather wouldn’t allow a visit in the rough seas anyhow. And while you’re on your travels you’ll see highland cattle – not wild but beautiful! To get to the top of the islands and to see everything you probably want to see, it is a brisk hike. They are not afraid of humans and you can get fairly close. For most of the year puffins are out at sea, returning to land to breed. Visiting the Isle of May in the Firth of Forth to find Puffins, was one of the highlights of my scottish adventures. There are two main tour operators: Staffa Tours and Turus Mara. The main island that puffins nest on in the bay is called Lundey, or Puffin Island. Hi The island is accessible by a 2-hour boat trip that goes through the Bristol Channel. You can also go out of Ardnamurchan, Fionnphort, Mulle, Iona and others. There can be up to 3000 puffins on the island in addition to other seabirds such as razorbills, guillemots and fulmars. It has an area of 69 acres (0.28 km 2). Not this particular morning, though.  Keep an eye on the weather and be flexible with the day you go if you can! It’s the ferry port, so it makes it a great home base. Follow me along on social media: A analysis of the current situation in Egypt and how that translates to your travel plans. Look to the sky. What odd, but beautiful creatures. But the island of Lunga is, much as the other Treshnish Isles, home to quite a lot rare plants as well. There are few places left on earth, where you can experience unspoiled nature and abundant wildlife. I “only” saw porpoise, but then again I was more than lucky with the weather, so I shall not complain. Atlantic puffin landing on Farne Islands. I am thinking of going the beginning of October and was wondering if there would still be an abundance of wildlife? Be prepared to wake up early and come home late, though. Get out and live life and see these amazing animals! So, this was my little blog about visiting the Puffin colony on Lunga. Amongst the rocks, I also saw a couple of Razorbills. And as for the rain, people are waterproof!! The puffins nest near the bottom on the grassy area, and there are often around 200 birds in this location. 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