We at Love Scottish Islands are all for making your life easier and one of the questions that we are often asked is, “What are the best Scottish Islands to take my family to”? So, below is the second in a series of articles explaining what are, in our opinion, the best Scottish islands to take your family to. Enjoy!
#2 – Isle of Mull
The Isle of Mull is the second largest island of the Inner Hebrides It is close to the main port of Oban on the west coast of Scotland and is very accessible. The roads on Mull are single track in places, but they are of good quality. There are two main ways to get to the Isle of Mull. Both are using Caledonian Macbrayne Car Ferries. The first and busiest route is from Oban on the Scottish mainland to Craignure on the east of Mull. Also, there is a Caledonian Macbrayne Car Ferry from Lochaline in Morvern to Fishnish in the north-east of Mull. It is also possible to get to Mull from Iona on the Caledonian Macbrayne passenger Ferry.
The main village of Tobermory has a good variety of shops, hotels, and other accommodation as well as being the administrative centre for the island. Doctors are available at the Surgery on Rockfield Rd (01688 302013). There are three main bus routes on Mull. They are from Tobermory – Dervaig – Calgary, Craignure – Salen – Tobermory and also Craignure – Bunessan – Fionnphort. Taxi’s are available from About Mull Tours and Taxi Service, based in Bunessan and from Mull Taxi Service in Tobermory. There is a Tourist information Office in the Harbour Building Tigh Solais on the Harbour front.
Tobermory was also chosen by the BBC as the location for the children’s television programme Balamory. Most of the character’s houses are situated in Tobermory, except for Archie’s Castle and the Nursery. Ask at the Tourist Information Office for a map of where the houses are located. You can still see:
Miss Hoolie’s House
PC Plum’s House
Josie Jump’s House
Edie McReadie’s Garage
Pocket and Sweet Shop
Also, Mull is famous for it’s amazing wildlife. You may be able to see Otters, Sea Eagles, Golden Eagles and many others. There are specialist wildlife operators such as Mull Wildlife, Discover Mull, Wildabout Mull, Mull Wildlife Tours and Mull Magic.
Duart Castle is the ancestral home of the Clan Maclean and is well worth a visit. Duart Castle is within view of the neighbouring Castle’s of Duffstaffnage, Dunollie, Aros and Ardtornish, part of a chain of castles along the Sound of Mull to Mingary Castle. There is a designated Children’s tour within Duart Castle. Collect the first introductory card as you purchase your ticket and see if you can find and follow the trail around the Castle. Duart Castle is also part of ‘The Quest’ (see below for further information). Collect the form from the Tourist Information Centre and solve one of the clues inside the Castle. Outside you can ride on a Cannon or hire a kite or a game of boules. Several of the events are specifically for children and most can be enjoyed by families.
For more information check out the Duart Castle website
If you need something to keep the kids amused, try ‘The Quest’. This is a children’s adventure project created by the people of Mull. It consists of a series of ‘Treasure Hunt’ style challenges and involves Treasure Seekers finding hidden objects, identifying wildlife and completing various other interesting tasks. The Quest is ideal for an age range of 7-12 years, however, a few people, young at heart, may also wish to take up the challenge on a more informal basis.
Further information can be found by visiting the Isle of Mull page on www.lovescottishislands.com