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Scotland Yacht Charter Guide

May 27, 2016


Scotland is a country which forms part of the United Kingdom.

Scotland is surrounded by sea on 3 sides, to the West and to the North by the Atlantic Ocean and to the East by the North Sea. Despite its small size, Scotland host many treasures which are crammed into its compact territory in the Great Britain. There is always something to suit all taste in the country. The country is dotted with an amazing range of landscapes, from the gentle rolling hills of Dumfries and the famous Galloway to the breaking peaks of the Cairngorms, and from the rugged coastlines of the north east to the sub-tropical gardens of Wester Ross. Scotland is a renowned yacht charter destination in the Great Britain, and its beaches to the East attract most of its visitors and yacht charterers alike.



Yacht chartering in Scotland is based on a simple reason, it is a breathtaking and exhilarating experience. The main yacht charter season in Scotland runs from April to October, when the country is not frozen solid. The most settled weather is usually in May and June. The region is dotted with some dramatic scenery, gorgeous anchorages, islands with castles, lochs and Celtic Fairy tales will keep you intrigued through your yacht charter vacation in the area. The mystical history of Scotland is just about as exciting as the sailing in Firth of Clyde. In the Hebrides you will find towering Highland mountain scenes and pristine villages around protected harbors. The cruising in this area can be challenging due to large tides, currents and occasional Atlantic Ocean storms. It is, however, possible to find inside passages to most of the more interesting areas. Oban is also worth a visit, and is an ideal starting point to discover the Isle of Skye, Mull, Eigg and Rhum. Scotch whiskey lovers will have heard these names before.



The West Coast of Scotland

This famed sailing ground is undoubtedly one of the most stunning charter destinations in the world and the west coast offers unique sailing opportunities. Beautifully wild, oozing with both Celtic and Nordic history, many of the islands have been largely untouched and remain uninhabited; providing some of the most secluded anchorages and moorings in the world. A nice place to visit at the west coast is the Isle of Gigha. Gigha is a small island off the west coast of Kintyre in Scotland. The island forms part of Argyll and Bute and has a population of about 150 people. The climate is mild with higher than average sunshine hours and the soils are fertile. Gigha has been inhabited continuously since prehistoric times, and there are several standing stones on the island. There are many other archaeological sites, including cairns, standing stones, duns and an Ogham stone near to Kilchattan, which has not been deciphered.




The landscape of Gigha is very beautiful and unspoilt with many bays, small hills, a few lochs, a good variety of wildlife and the island offers lovely views to Islay and the mainland of Kintyre. The nine hole golf course is located just outside the main village. The Gigha Hotel, the only hotel on the island, provides good accommodation and has a restaurant and bar. This makes for a fascinating location for the wildlife enthusiast, with numerous common seal and Atlantic seal colonies just offshore or miles out to sea on seemingly deserted islands. There are many species of cetacean including minke whales, common dolphins, rissos dolphins, white beaked dolphins and perhaps the most playful and regularly seen of them all, the huge bottlenose dolphin.
There are also basking sharks and rare sightings of sunfish, leatherback turtle and larger whales such as sperm and humpback. The West of Scotland is also the stronghold of the otter – perhaps Britain’s most enigmatic water creature – and on a wildlife watching tour you can pretty well guarantee to see one. The otter lives up to its billing. They are very cuddly looking when they have been onshore for a few minutes and their fur has dried out. In the water they appear sleek and the famous book about otters, Ring of Bright Water, is brought to mind when the otter leaves a ringed ripple on the water’s surface as it dives to search the seabed for food.

The East Coast of Scotland

Easily reached and a brilliant sail up from the East Coast of England, take in the stunning scenery of the East Coast of Scotland from Berwick-upon-Tweed right the way up to Peterhead, and on to Inverness and the Calendonian Canal”. There are plenty of opportunities to discover the delights of the East Coast of Scotland in any one of her numerous inlets or harbour towns, including sailing into Granton which gives you easy access to Edinburgh! Sailing the East Coast of Scotland is also an incredible experience if you intend to brave the Caledonian Canal and discover whether or not the Loch Ness monster really does exist. Wild and stunning scenery will not disappoint in this area of Scotland.

The Orkney Islands

Located off the north east coast of Scotland, the Orkneys offer a true Scottish experience. The Orkneys are an archipelago of 70 islands off the North East Coast of Scotland offering legendary hospitality, unparalleled beauty and some of the most scenic sailing in the whole of the British Isles. This is one destination not to be missed!

Other Surrounding islands

Cara Island lies just offshore to the south, the smaller Craro island lies to the west and Gigalum to the south east. A sandy spit connects Gigha to Eilean Garbh in the north-west. To the north are the rocks called An Dubh Sgeir (a common name meaning “black rock”) and Gamhna Giogha. The Sound of Gigha separates Gigha and its attendant isles from mainland Kintyre.
To the west and north-west respectively, are the two large islands of Islay and Jura. South west are Rathlin Island and the north of Ireland, which can be seen from Gigha on clear days. Between Jura and Gigha are the rocks of Na Cuiltean and Skervuile Lighthouse. Between Gigha and Port Ellen on Islay is the Isle of Texa. Eilean Mòr, and the Isle of Danna are little further up the Argyll coast to the north.

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