The islands surrounding Mull are full of interest; huge numbers of seabirds, fascinating history, important geology and unspoilt scenery. See Bookings page for details on boat trips to Staffa & Treshnish.



Staffa is an uninhabited island lying to the west of Mull, 6 miles north of Iona. The Nature Conservancy described it as a "spectacular example of columnar jointing in Tertiary plateau lava flow." It is a site of special scientific interest.

Puffin on Staffa

The columns were formed with a single, massive flow of lava and it cooled and solidified in a very gradual controlled manner. The columns are an almost uniform hexagonal shape, giving the spectacular look. Staffa, the name, comes from the Viking/Norse word for vertical stave.

Fingals Cave on Staffa



A unique structure, there is no other sea cave formed completely in hexagonally jointed basalt. It is 227 feet long. One of the worlds wonders, the impact the cave has on entering it is likely to be remembered for life. The popularity of Mendelssohn's "Hebridean Overture" (Fingal's Cave) provides a stirring reminder of this wonder. The origin of the name "Fingal's Cave" is wrapped in myth.


Fingal was possibly an Irish giant who migrated to Scotland. Soon he became revered in Scotland and boosted by heroic verse and song his name was a natural choice to give to this dramatic and awe-inspiring cavern.

Fingal's Cave, Staffa
Fingal's Cave, Staffa
Staffa rocks


Treshnish Isles


The Treshnish Isles are formed from 8 main islands of varying sizes of which Lunga is the largest and main bird sanctuary.

The islands axis run NE to SW for approximately 11km. The closest part to the Isle of Mull mainland is from North Island, a distance of 3km west.

Harp Rock on Lunga

These islands are unusual to the eye and are mainly famous for the large colonies of breeding seabirds in summer. In Autumn they are the breeding ground of Atlantic Gray seals, which give birth to their white pups along their shores.

Razorbills On Lunga

The area has been designated as a site of special scientific interest and is a Special Protection Area under he E.C. Directive on the Conservation of Wild Birds. With assistance of a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund they are looked after by the Hebridean Trust.


There are no rats, cats or mink on the Treshnish Isles so they provide ideal breeding grounds for large concentrations of seabirds. On Lunga there are dense aggregations of fulmar, shag, kittwaks and breeding storm petrels, puffins, gullimots, razorbills and barnacle geese. The corncrake can be heard in summer.




The spectacularly shaped isles are formed from basaltic lavas that flowed from the volcano on Mull. The Treshnish, with Staffa, are all that remains today of these once massive plateau lavas. After this, glaciation gouged out most of the lavas leaving small bits which include the Treshnish Isles.

Guillemots and chicks on Lunga

Sea level changes have left the islands with a spectacular feature of fossil beaches separated by sheer cliffs with sea caves above the current sea level. In particular, the island now known as the "Dutchman's Cap", the brim of the cap is the lava flow, and the top of the cap has been a beach or shallow reef.

Shag On Lunga

There is a great deal of evidence of human occupation on some of the islands up to the 19th century.

On Lunga there is an abandoned village, sheilings on the Dutchman's Cap, on Fladda an early Christian chapel and a medieval castle on North Island. The names of the islands reflect their importance to the Vikings who ruled the Hebrides.

The Treshnish Isles have been sufficiently isolated to avoid development and the introduction of foreign species.


Old legends, an ancient castle, an abandoned village and the non stop call of seabirds give the islands an atmosphere of their own.

Gordon Grant marine of Iona operates a summer ferry service on M.V. Ullin or M.V. Ossian to Lunga and Staffa from approximately 7th May until 1st August on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, leaving Fionnphort at 10.00 and returning 15.30. All weather permitting.

OS Grid reference: 280 420 (Lunga).





Off the south western tip of the Ross of Mull, 5 minutes drive from Seaview lies the island of Erraid. For an hour or two either side of low water it is linked to the Ross by a broad expanse of sand. The views from Erraid to Iona and surrounding rocks are breathtaking.

Robert Louis Stevenson was brought up on Erraid. His father was the engineer who quarried the islands grey granite for use in constructing Skerryvore and Dubh Artach lighthouses. Visitors can see the disused quarry and granite blocks and the magnificent stone cottages of the lighthouse keepers.

Hanging Rock on Erraid

Climb to the observatory, which was the only means of communication between Dubh Artach Lighthouise (10 miles away) and mainland Erraid. From here the views are stunning panorama of the surrounding area.

In Stevenson's Kidnapped the hero, eighteen year old David Balfour, is shipwrecked and marooned on Erraid. If you would like to explore Erraid we can provide you with the necessary information to get there and provide a guided walk of the island.