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On wheels or on water – five ways to enjoy Oban & Lorn!

On wheels or on water – five ways to enjoy Oban & Lorn!
Whether you like pedal power, paddle power or brake horsepower you need to discover the Argyll region of Oban & Lorn. With miles of glorious coastline, idyllic islands galore and fabulous scenery, it’s the perfect place to explore by bike, boat or both! Take a boat trip, sail, kayak, cycle or motorbike - here are five ways to enjoy Oban & Lorn on wheels or on water.

Boat tours
One of the best ways to experience the coastline of Oban & Lorn is to take a boat trip. There are several companies offering marine wildlife trips in the area. With years of experience, they can take you to the best spots to view wildlife, as well as visit secluded coves, beaches and islands. Sealife Adventures operates wildlife watching boat trips from Seil Island near Oban. Seafari Adventures, based in Easdale, has a fleet of powerful RIBs. Its Corryvreckan Wildlife Trip is a brilliant way to experience the famous whirlpool. Coastal Connection offers wildlife trips from Oban and there’s now a fast RIB trip from the Scottish Sealife Sanctuary at Barcaldine. Oban-based Basking Shark Scotland offers basking shark trips and snorkel safaris. And don’t forget there are wonderful sea views from the ferries that operate from Oban harbour too. Or how about exploring the area on a fully crewed, privately chartered cruise with Hebrides Cruises?

Set sail
Oban & Lorn offers some of the most scenic sailing waters in the world, taking in many miles of varied coastline. Islands, mountains, lochs and castles all provide a spectacular backdrop. The area is blessed with great marine facilities too. Craobh Marina, located on the northern shore of the Craignish peninsula just south of Oban, is an ideal base. You’ll find Ardfern Yacht Centre at the head of Loch Craignish. Another great option is Dunstaffnage Marina. Just three miles from Oban, it overlooks Dunstaffnage Castle at the entrance to Loch Etive. Oban Marina on the picturesque Isle of Kerrera is another popular choice for sailors. The Oban Sailing Club has more information about sailing in the area. Sail Scotland also provides useful information about local cruising grounds.

Paddle power
Kayaking is an unbeatable way to experience the beauty of Oban & Lorn and to get up close and personal with its wonderful marine wildlife. There’s something for all levels of paddler around Oban, from sheltered lochs to the famous Gulf of Corryvreckan. Paddle to deserted islands, explore sea caves and discover beautiful beaches. The Argyll Sea Kayak Trail links Oban to Helensburgh with launch spots, parking and lots of 'paddle friendly' tourism businesses along the way. You’ll find plenty of companies in the area offering sea kayaking coaching and guiding, including Sea Kayak Scotland, Sea Freedom Kayak and National Kayak School. If you fancy getting some new kayaking kit, Sea Kayak Oban is one of Scotland’s biggest sea kayaking shops. You can also rent kit here and book courses. You can take your kayak on CalMac ferries free of charge.

Pedal power
There’s fantastic cycling on offer in Oban & Lorn. Head for the hills on a mountain bike or enjoy some world-class road biking. You can ride from Oban to Connel or Oban to Taynuilt through beautiful quiet glens. The Sustrans Caledonia Way, which runs for 237 miles from Campbeltown to Inverness, passes through Oban; the section from Oban to Fort William is stunning. The area’s many islands, including Lismore and Kerrera, are all perfect for cycling and the ferries take cycles for free. For a lovely day’s cycling, catch the ferry from Oban to Lismore, cycle up the island and catch the ferry back to Appin and then cycle back to Oban. If you don’t have your own bike, then why not hire one? There are cycle shops in Oban and even some on the islands, for example Luing Bike Hire. Cycles are also free on CalMac ferries.

Brake horsepower
Scotland ranks among the top motorcycle touring destinations in the world, and Oban & Lorn is a brilliant area for motorbiking. It has everything: great roads, amazing scenery and a rich history to explore. Check out MotoScotland for some suggested motorbiking routes. The company also caters for off-road motorbiking expeditions.

Find out more about things to see and do in Oban & Lorn.

Header photo: Mark Beaumont on his Wild About Argyll adventure cycling the Caledonia Way past Castle Stalker.
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