Paddling gives you the best seat in the house for viewing coastal wildlife and stunning vistas, and Oban is a kayaker’s heaven.
Home to the Argyll Sea Kayak Trail, voted as one of the 10 Best Reasons to Visit Scotland, Oban boasts a group of easily accessible launch sites at key points along a route that links Helensburgh in the south-east with Oban in the north-west
At 150 km long in eight sections, the trail boasts some cracking spots, and, while we might be a bit biased, we think the Oban leg has some of the best. From the legendary Corryvrecken whirlpool to Cuan Sound to the Isle of Eadale, the Argyll Kayak Trail will reward you with thrilling spots, as well as calm areas. You can spot otters, porpoise, dolphins, sea eagles, herons, ducks geese and many more of the west’s fantastic wildlife.
Whether you are an intermediate or an old hat, the Oban leg, one of the longest at 28 km, starts at Ganavan Beach, follows the coastline west to Sgeir an Eitich, then turns south to pass between Maiden Island and Little Ganavan.
You'll see Dunollie Castle come into view as you enter Oban Bay. The bay is busy with ferries and fishing boats, so take care to give them a wide berth! You'll head to Kerrera Sound, past Heather Island- either side of the sound is fine to paddle, depending on conditions. You'll then follow the coast past Minard Point and the mouth of beautiful Loch Feochan. Take a rest in Barnacarry Bay on the opposite side of the mouth before making your way around the coastline to the islands. Head to the tip of Rubha Garbh Airde, a continue down the Isle of Seil (watch out for rough conditions!) then turn into Easdale Sound- you will see Ellenbeich. There is a natural rock slipway in the far corner. Have a vehicle waiting, and stop in for refreshment while you're there.
For more information and maps, visit paddleargyll.org.uk
Oban is a perfect place to start your sea kayaking career with plenty of excellent, highly qualified companies keen to give you a safe, enjoyable and fun introduction. Several businesses offer a complete sea kayak outfitting, rental, hire service for those experienced kayakers who fly in from all over the World. They can offer lots of advice and local knowledge to help make the visit a superb experience.