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Ring of Bright Water celebrates its 50th anniversary

Jan 01, 2019

The well-loved film, ‘Ring of Bright Water’, celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2019, which coincides with the 50thanniversary of Gavin Maxwell’s death; the author of the book and named protagonist in the film. 


Maxwell’s autobiographical tale about his pet otter was brought to life in Argyll and the Isles, including around Oban & Lorn, including Graham Merrill (Bill Travers) taking in his new surroundings on Seil Island, across the famous “Bridge over the Atlantic.” 



Fans of the classic can visit some of the locations it was shot around the area, and the places that Gavin Maxwell held special. And keep your eye out for a cheeky wee otter! 

The Oban Railway Pier stood in for the fishing port where Graham Merrill buys fish for Mij the Otter. While you are there, get yourself some fish at the local fishmongers or at one of the eateries serving dishes pier to plate.

And be sure to check out these dining, ferries, activities and accommodation on offer: 

Where to eat-

Waterfront Fishouse Restaurant

The Pier Cafe

Eeusk Fish Restaurant 

Baab Meze & Grill

Brew & Co 


How to go-

Caledonian MacBrayne Ferries 



Where to stay-

Perle Oban Hotel 

How to hit the water-

Basking Shark Scotland



You may recognise Merrill’s local village as the real life Seil Island and the charming Village of Ellenabeich, just a 30-minute drive south of Oban. Drive over the famous Clachan Bridge, or the Bridge over the Atlantic and walk in his footsteps and enjoy the beautiful sweeping views.


Some of the scenes in which Graham Merrill and Mary MacKenzie row to an island looking for the missing Mij were filmed from Easdale looking across to the isle of Insh. You can take a five minute ferry ride from Seil to this quirky island with no cars but plenty of views.

Get away from the hustle and bustle with a scenic country cottage in the area or get out on the water yourself in the spirit of the film:

How to hit the water-

Seafari Adventures


Where to stay-

Loch Seil Cottages

Oban Seil Croft Cottages

Oban Seil Farm Steadings

The Firth of Lorne is where they hunt for the basking shark- look for the Isle of Lismore lighthouse that makes an appearance in the film. You can get the ferry from Oban to Lismore and while you are there, visit: 

Lismore Gaelic Heritage Centre


Category: Tourism

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