BBC HomeExplore the BBC
This page has been archived and is no longer updated. Find out more about page archiving.

17 September 2014
Accessibility help
Nature's Calendar

BBC Homepage

BBC 2 Logo

Contact Us


Islands | Isle of Coll

Isle of Coll map

BBC Copyright

The Isle of Coll is a stunning wild retreat blessed with a wealth of flora and fauna. Its summer carpet of wild flowers is simply awesome. Also look out for Basking Sharks, sea birds and migrants like the rare Corncrake with its distinctive rasping call.

Islands Index (Image: Fulmar c/o Tony Oliver)

Return to Islands

Visit three of the British Isles' top locations for watching wildlife from Lundy to Walney Island.

Island activities (Orchid image c/o Tony Oliver)

Island activities

  • Check out island nature watching opportunities from birds and Basking Sharps to flowers and fauna.

Isle of Coll - Visitor Guide


Isle of Coll, Inner Hebrides, Scotland.

Postcode PA78

Tourist information - 08707 200 610 and 08707 200 630


RSPB reserve - 01879 230301


Ferry information - Caledonian MacBrayne - 08705 650000

e-mailTourist information -
Ordnance Survey:OS grid reference NM167563.
Key attractions:Machair and wild flowers. Basking sharks. RSPB reserve - birds.
Essential kit:

Outdoor walking shoes. Flower identification book. Binoculars for watching Basking Sharks and birds. Camera.


Binocular hire available at RSPB reserve.

Nature watching:

The best time to see the Corncrakes is the early summer when the meadow grass is slightly shorter.


RSPB reserve - guided walks available.


Machair - carpets of over 300 wild flowers.


Disabled access: Varies depending on the area of the island visited. Several natural sites with varying terrain.


RSPB reserve - a natural site with unimproved paths and trails so access may not be suitable for all. Contact the reserve prior to your visit to discuss your needs.


There is limited accommodation on the Isle of Coll including hotel, self catering, bed and breakfast, caravan and camping facilities.


Information centre at RSPB reserve.

Getting there:

The ferry sales regularly from Oban and takes about three hours.


Most people travel to Coll on a Caledonian MacBrayne ferry.
During the summer there are daily sailings from Oban. In winter there are three sailings every week.

New for the summer of 2006 are ferry sailings to and from Coll to Barra, once per week on a Thursday. There is even a Calmac Hopscotch supplement for those wishing to combine Coll/Tiree with an outer isles experience.


The main village is Arinagour, located just 1 km from the CalMac ferry terminal.


RSPB reserve - located six miles west of Arinagour on the B8070. Car parking at reserve.

Opening times:

Year round.


RSPB reserve and Totronald Stables Visitor Centre - open at all times.


Free but there are specific charges for activities and boat and ferry trips.


RSPB reserve - free.

Activities (Image: Swan)

Hands on Nature

More nature locations.


Nature's Top 40 logo

Nature's Top 40

Top nature spectacles.

Competition (Image: Swallow(


Your photos of nature.

Breathing Spaces (Image: Logo)

Breathing Places

Make a difference...


About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy