Enjoy the freshest seafood in the country on our unique self-drive tour of the west coast
Sampling shellfish in stunning locations
Enjoy langoustine and lobster - plus super views - at your Loch Linnhe hotel
Join a local fisherman on his working boat as he gathers his creels, then enjoy a seafood feast cooked from the harvest on the shore
The tour also includes a visit to a west coast Oyster Farm
Designed specifically for lovers of the freshest seafood and shellfish, this holiday includes three unique and authentic experiences on a week-long, self-drive tour of the scenic west coast of Scotland. Enjoy a seafood cookery demonstration, then taste the results afterwards. Discover how oysters are cultivated on a visit to an oyster farm on the edge of a sea loch, where you will be shown how to “shuck” the oysters, as well as sampling a few fresh from the sea. Finally, take a boat trip with a creel fisherman as he hauls in langoustines and brown crabs, then savour the day’s catch with a memorable lunch on the shorefront. Accommodation is in three carefully-chosen small hotels, all in fabulous locations by the water’s edge, and all boasting great reputations for their food.
Day One - Kyles of Bute
You start with a short ferry ride from just to the west of Glasgow or with a scenic drive past Loch Lomond and over Glen Kinglas, past one of the classic views of Scotland.
Enjoying spectacular views of the Isle of Bute, your hotel is an imposing Victorian establishment dominating the rocky shore. Look out for the exquisite mosaic floor in the entrance – laid by Italian prisoners of war. During your stay you will learn all about the local lady who dives for the scallops, the seasoned stalker who sources the venison and the rugged fisherman who lands the langoustine – you may even get a chance to meet them. For more casual dining, the popular Shinty Bar offers simpler snacks and is crammed with memorabilia, aptly enough, from the local shinty team – if you’re lucky you might even catch a game during your stay!
After a morning exploring or relaxing, this afternoon you will join the chef behind the scenes in the hotel kitchen for a close-up cookery demonstration focusing on the wonderful local shellfish. What's more, you get to eat what you produce!
Day Three: Loch Linnhe
Today's route takes you along the Argyll coast with a chance to make an early lunch stop at the famous Loch Fyne Oyster Bar before reaching your second hotel, just north of Oban.
Originally the home of Loch Linnhe's Pier Master, this historic restaurant, with its adjacent modern residence, really is a special place to contemplate the dramatic beauty of the west coast. Mouthwatering langoustines and lobster are kept fresh off the end of the pier before being served to you in the cosy conviviality of one of Argyll's finest restaurants. As you contemplate the sunset over the distant Morvern hills, you may be lucky enough to glimpse otters and seals.
Day Four - exploring the Argyll coast
Today you will visit a local oyster farm and find out at first hand all about this remarkable food, once the fayre of the common people, now perceived as a luxury. Learn the art of oyster-shucking, and sample the freshest oysters you have ever experienced.
There will be plenty of time today also to explore nearby Glencoe, or visit the unique Slate Islands, perhaps taking lunch in Oban - which proclaims itself as the seafood capital of Scotland. Alternatively leave the car and take the passenger ferry to the isle of Lismore, to walk and relax.
Day Five - Wester Ross
Your next destination is in one of the most scenically beautiful and secluded locations in the whole of Scotland, around 3 hours drive north from your first base, in the wild and rugged area of Wester Ross.
This small, family-run Inn makes a picture-perfect base for exploring the dramatic west coast with its abundance of lochs, forests, mountains and rivers. The grandeur of the surrounding mountains forms a stunning backdrop to your hotel that nestles in the crescent-shaped village high street. Converted from a row of white-washed fishing cottages, the hotel overlooks an idyllic loch which reflects a tiny island covered in Scots Pines. Two snug lounges both feature glorious views over the peaceful loch and offer visitors the chance to idle away an afternoon watching the occasional boat come and go, and maybe enjoy a wee dram from the honesty bar in the corner. If you're lucky you could even be treated to one of the west coast’s spectacular sunsets.
The charming restaurant, adorned with driftwood sculptures, is a fitting setting for the imaginative dishes that are served each evening. Chef makes extensive use of the local produce to create an ever changing menu of fresh fish, shellfish, and top quality meat and game. The picturesque village was originally built in 1810 to house and train sailors for the Napoleonic wars, but following Waterloo, the place was left to its own devices. Once, quite literally, the end of the road north, the village retains that other-worldly ‘Brigadoon’ feel, and offers an overwhelming atmosphere of peace and tranquillity.
This morning you drive north towards Gairloch for a truly unique experience, perhaps the highlight of the trip. You will join a local fisherman on his working boat as he gathers his creels then back on dry land you'll enjoy a seafood lunch from some of the harvest, cooked for you by the loch shore. A fitting end to your exploration of this country's seafood treasures.
Day Seven: Return Home
Your route will take you first to Inverness then south through the Highlands.
Watch a slide-show of pictures from the holiday here.
The blue dots on the map show the three centres for this self-drive tour: Kyles of Bute, Loch Linnhe on the west coast just north of Oban and the Torridon area in the north west Highlands.
£655 per person for departures in March, £665 for April & October and £715 per person for May to September based on 2 people sharing a room for 6 nights on a bed & breakfast basis.
Prices include an afternoon cookery demonstration at the first hotel, a private visit to an oyster farm, and shellfish safari with seafood lunch experience. You are welcome to bring your own wine to accompany the seafood lunch, which normally comprises langoustines or crab; if caught, lobster may be served for a small extra charge.
This holiday can easily be extended with extra nights at any of the featured hotels. Ask us for a quotation.
All our touring holidays include a map of Scotland with recommended routes from your specified starting point, suggestions on places to see and visit depending on your personal interests and our expertise to help you get the most from your holiday.
All itineraries and room types are presented subject to availability at specific hotels.
The McKinlay Kidd Guarantee
All our holiday prices include a service charge of £8 per person per night towards the costs we incur in researching, planning and designing your holiday. We guarantee to refund this service charge if you believe that arranging your holiday through McKinlay Kidd has not met your expectations for value.
All we ask is that you write to us within 7 days of your return and explain your reason for claiming the refund. This will ensure that we can improve the experience for all our future guests.
From mid March to October. The holiday as described can begin any day from Sunday to Thursday.
To check the latest availability for this holiday complete the form below or call us on 0844 873 6110 from the UK, or toll-free from USA & Canada 1 866 922 8538 and +44 844 873 6110 for all other countries.
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Well thought out itinerary and straightforward to book and modify.