Oban to Iona
The west coast of Scotland simply has it all. From rich culture and history, enchanting castles, dramatic coastline scenery, beautiful lochs and waters, striking islands, towering mountains to the finest seafood restaurants in Scotland. Known as the ‘Gateway to the Isles’, Oban is the perfect starting point to explore the Outer and Inner Hebrides. Whether you travel from Oban to Iona or start in Mull to Iona, there are plenty of links to help you get from A to B.
The isle of Iona is a spectacular destination filled with white sandy beaches, brilliant walking routes, and home to iconic wildlife, and a magnificent golf course with aweing views. Whether you decide to make Iona a day trip adventure from Oban, or a pitstop on your Mull holiday getaway, the Oban Bay Hotel or Isle of Mull Hotel & Spa would be the perfect base for your west coast adventure.
Make your day trip to Iona a holiday and start in Oban. Explore the vast beauty of Oban’s charming seaside setting, then spend a few days in Mull where you can enjoy wholesome walks along the beach and coast, go castle spotting and wildlife watching before heading to Iona.
Oban To Iona Day Trip
Iona is a magnificent isle boasting a must-see sea cave of basalt columns and panoramic views of the Inner Hebrides. Before travelling to explore this tranquil isle, you should be aware vehicles are not permitted on the island. If you need to take your car to the island, you must apply for a permit at this link.
First Leg: Oban to Craignure on the Isle of Mull
Oban’s port is home to several commercial, fishing, fish-farm and leisure vessels and is one of the main hubs for Caledonian MacBrayne ferries that provide links to the islands of Mull, Lismore, Colonsay, Coll, Tiree and Barra. In order to reach Iona, you need to reach Mull first through Caledonian MacBrayne ferry routes.
The route from Oban harbour to Craignure takes around 50 minutes with two ferries servicing this journey: the MV Isle of Mull which is a larger ferry with fantastic onboard facilities to keep you occupied, and the smaller MV Coruisk. It is recommended that you book online for vehicle reservations and foot passengers, especially in summer months. Remember to purchase your ticket beforehand from Caledonian’s main homepage.
Second Leg: Craignure to Fionnphort on the Isle of Mull
Then, from Craignure to Fionnphort, you can either drive or get the bus south west to Fionnphort. Please remember that Mull is a surprisingly big island, so give yourself enough travel time or pitstop time to admire the serenity and sights around you.
When driving, follow the A849 to Fionnphort which is just over an hour’s drive from Craignure. This route is mainly a single track or double track road, with plenty of passing places where you can pull in and allow oncoming traffic to pass by. When you arrive at your next destination, cars can park in the free parking area which can be found at the left of the pier, signposted ‘pay and display’.
If you were a foot passenger from Oban, we’d recommend either phoning a local taxi to collect you from the ferry point at Craignure or hopping on the bus. With several bus services linked to Craignure (96/496), visitors and tourists alike can disembark the ferry and hop straight on the buses to the left of the ferry and head to Fionnphort. Bus timetables can be found at West Coast Motors.
Final Leg: Fionnphort on the Isle of Mull to Iona
Once you have reached your destination in Fionnphort, the Iona ferry awaits. With a mile long crossing, there are frequent Caledonian MacBrayne ferries departing Fionnphort. In the height of summer, ferries depart every 30 minutes and the crossing is only 10 minutes. For more information on the Mull to Iona ferry timetable, visit Caledonian MacBrayne ferry website for summer and winter schedules. Tickets do not need to be purchased in advance due to the frequency of ferries, and can be bought at the ticket office or on board.
When you arrive at the sound of Iona, feel free to wander and roam the isle or if you need transport to your holiday home or Iona’s own golf course, Iona Taxi company is on hand to take you to your final destination. With breathtaking turquoise waters and sandy beaches stretching along the island, Iona is the perfect place to unwind and enjoy nature at its finest. Iona is also one of oldest religious centres in Western Europe and home to the beautiful Abbey that draws tourists from all around the world. Follow the West Coast Tours guide and make the most of your Iona adventure.