Guided Sailing & Hiking in the Small Isles
- Vessel: Steady
- Where: Oban, Scotland
- Duration: 10 days
- Embark: Oban, Scotland - 25 May 2024, 14:00
- Disembark: Oban, Scotland - 3 June 2024, 10:00
Discover the Small Isles by land and sea with a sailing and hiking holiday on adventure yacht Steady.
The West coast of Scotland is an adventure lovers paradise. From hiking stunning landscapes ashore to sailing between idyllic island anchorages, sailing yacht Steady is offering a ten day sailing and walking holiday in the Hebrides. Discover the breath-taking beauty of Skye and the Small Isles with a combination of guided hikes, independent island exploration and skippered sailing.
This voyage is perfect for the adventure traveller looking to combine two amazing experiences in unique locations. Sail to places only accessible by boat as you stay clear of the tourist hotspots and explore nature trails through mountains, spot wildlife over rolling hills and see the coastline with a whole new perspective.
- Island hopping
- Varying hikes from 10 to 20 km.
- Hiking on The Small Isles
- Wildlife watching
- Guides included
- Private Cabins
- Fully skippered
- Full board
- Sail area & highlights
- Life on board
- Sample menu
- Travel planning
- The boat
- What's included
- Boat schedule
YOUR SAILING AREA
The Small Isles, Scotland
Besides being sailors, skippers and owners, Jan-Willem and Marielle are also keen walkers. The hikes will be guided by them and there is also the opportunity to enjoy shorter walks on your own if you’d like. The hiking routes on the islands are well- known to us but the weather is god here and we do sometimes have to adjust our itinerary so please use the below itinerary as a guide only!
DAY 1 – OBAN
Your sailing and walking adventure starts in the Scottish port town of Oban. After getting acquainted with fellow guests and crew, set the sails to enjoy your first night on a quiet anchorage.
DAY 2 – TOBERMORY, ISLE OF MULL
We start the voyage gently so everyone can get used to each other and the boat. Sail along the sheltered Sound of Mull to the colourful town of Tobermory on the Isle of Mull. From Tobermory there are some lovely short hiking trails to warm us up and there are also some lovely pubs and shops to enjoy in the afternoon.
DAY 3 – SAILING TO THE ISLAND OF CANNA
Today we will set course for the Small Isles, a few hours under sail with see us reach the island of Canna, the most remote island in the archipelago. You cannot see Canna from the mainland as it is hidden behind the high mountains of Rum.
Canna is an island of great beauty and variety, with green meadows and forests, wild heathlands and dramatic cliffs on the north and west sides. There are two fascinating churches, an ancient cross, an inaccessible ‘castle’ atop a large rock and Canna House – the former home of folklorist and Gaelic scholar John Lorne Campbell. This is a great island to explore on foot. The walk along the coastline offers fantastic views of the Outer Hebrides, Rum and the Cuillin of Skye, and there are a few fine sandy beaches. The neighbouring island of Sanday is connected by a bridge and has some impressive cliffs, with two large rocky cliffs providing an ideal base for a colony of puffins Small Isles. .
DAY 4 – CANNA & PUFFINS
Our first long walk is on the island of Canna. A varied walk along cliffs and over hills highlighting the beautiful cliffs of Sanday where we will look for the puffins. With luck, we will also see the great skua here. We will have lunch in the middle of nature from our own packed picnic.
DAY 5 – SKYE, LOCH SCAVAIG & CORUSK
We take you to one of the Hebrides’ most beautiful anchorages. Nestled at the foot of Skye’s Cuillins lies Loch Scavaig. Surrounded by impressive pointed mountain peaks, you’ll see large numbers of grey and common seals at very close distance. Loch Scavaig is connected to the inland lake Loch Corusk and walking around the loch is breathtaking. The lake is fresh water so also great for taking a refreshing dip!
DAY 6 – RUM
We raise anchor and sail to the island of Rum. Rum is a national nature reserve and the largest island of the Small Isles. The island’s most famous residents are the golden eagles (reintroduced in the 1980s), red deer and the hardy Rum ponies. We anchor here in the natural bay overlooking the architectural Kinloch Castle. After lunch, there is an opportunity to go ashore by dinghy. There are a number of beautiful hiking trails on Rum Island allowing you to fully enjoy the breathtaking mountain and coastal scenery.
DAY 6 – HIKING RUM
We make a joint hike in which we will head into the hills. The route will take us past streams and waterfalls and once at the top, enjoy the beautiful scenery. Good chance of spotting red deer and the golden eagle.
DAY 7 – EIGG AND CLIMBING AN SGURR
Eigg is the second largest and most populous island of the beautiful Small Isles. Dominated by a remarkable vertical blockstone of An Sgurr, this impressive peak was originally a lava flow from the volcano on Rum some 58 million years ago. The lava followed an ancient riverbed and filled the valley. Over the following millions of years, the pitchstone lava, which is harder than the surrounding basalt, withstood erosion and remained standing while the surrounding rock was gradually worn away. Now the kilometre-long ridge stands proudly, with the summit at 393 metres. The climb to the top offers truly fantastic views of the other Small Isles and of Skye and Ardnamurchan. The route is fairly easy, but the last part is a steep climb and we have to rock climb (very easy) along the ridge.
DAY 8 – MUCK, A DROP IN THE OCEAN
Muck is the smallest island, measuring less than 4 km by 2 km. Muck is a beautiful island, from fertile fields to sandy beaches and a beautiful west coast, it has much to offer the walker. A visit to the tearoom for the delicious homemade pastries is a must! After the joint walk, we will sail to the beautifully secluded Loch Drumbuie in the afternoon were we will anchor overnight.
DAY 9 – KERRERA
In the morning we sail to the green paradise island of Kerrera, followed by a hike on the island. Compared to all the hustle and bustle of the nearby tourist centre of Oban, Kerrera is very Quiet and offers stunning views of the surrounding coastal areas. Cars are banned on the island except for a few locals, making it a walker’s paradise. In the evening, we enjoy the Captains dinner together before disembarking in Oban in the morning.
All voyages for Steady
Guest berths: 8 Rig: Staysail Ketch
Join husband and wife team, Jan-Willem and Mariëlle Kerkmeer aboard their 1993 Dutch ketch as they take guests on sailing holidays exploring the wonders of the Hebrides in Scotland.
Steady is true to her name with a sturdy steel hull and was originally built as a charter vessel giving a considered layout below decks. Fitted with all the mod-cons and keeping guests comfort at the forefront, she sleeps eight guests in four comfortable twin cabins sharing two bathrooms with a generous shower. Newly re-fitted for 2022, the galley and saloon area live at the heart of the boat with a peninsula galley and plenty of seating alongside the cosy multi-fuel stove.
On deck level there’s a spacious cockpit with a navigation station and more seating, perfect for breakfast and morning coffee as the sun rises. There’s plenty of room on deck too to take in the surrounding views and learn the ropes alongside Jan-Willem and Mariëlle who love sharing their passion for Scotland and sailing with their guests.
Onboard Steady, most guests like to lend a hand with the sailing of this eye-catching vessel, and Jan-Willem and Mariëlle are excellent guides if you do want to get involved. They cater for all abilities and ages, so if you’d rather sit back and relax with a book, then that’s fine too!
Steady’s voyages explore the islands of the Inner and Outer Hebrides and St Kilda; an area of unspoilt wilderness and breathtaking beauty in the Western Isles of Scotland. Her sailing adventures give you access to the most captivating and remote hidden secrets of this incredible and beautiful place. As you sail through this stunning marine landscape you will likely be lucky enough to experience close encounters with rare wildlife and have time to soak up the unique and fascinating history and culture of the Hebrides and St Kilda.
Watch this short video of Steady sailing around Oban.
Steady Deck Plan
Deck planMore about Steady
Life on board
Steady has been sailed in Scotland by Dutch husband and wife team Jan-Willem and Marielle for over 10 years. Their love for Scotland, sailing and the natural world are clear for guests to see and they are well versed in all the secret hot spots.
Steady is true to her name with her simple rig and winch system easy to navigate, providing a great base for guests to learn the ropes. Jan-Willem and Marielle can sail Steady comfortably on their own but they invite and encourage guests to take part in all aspects of sailing. From taking the helm, sorting and setting the sails, basic navigation and rope work, Jan-Willem and Marielle provide a safe and supported environment for guests.
A Typical Day
Set the sails after a hearty breakfast with the aim (depending on the weather of course!) to sail for 4-7 hours before finding a secluded anchorage away from the tourist hustle and bustle to settle down for the night. Lunch will either be served under sail or on anchor, made by Jan-Willem and Marielle in the spacious galley.
Spend a few hours exploring ashore in the afternoon before sharing a delicious freshly prepared meal aboard while sharing sea-faring tales and star-gazing on deck.
Sleeping and Relaxation
The main deck is well designed with plenty of open spaces and a cockpit for alfresco dining. The undercover deckhouse has 360degree windows so is great for morning coffee while watching the sunrise or some shelter if the Scottish weather takes a turn!
Below decks gives way for a beautifully appointed galley kitchen and generous, comfortable saloon which has been recently re-fitted to a really high standard. The fore leads along a small corridor where there are four well-considered twin bunk cabins with a toilet and separate shower for guests. The crew quarters are situated in the stern so have their own facilities.
Read more about what to expect from life on board Steady here.
As with all Steady’s sailing holidays, your ticket price includes breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks and hot drinks. Soft drinks and alcohol can be purchased on board. Single occupancy is available with a 50% surcharge. All cabins have bedding and towels provided. There is a suggested age limit on Steady’s trips so if you are over 75 years old and are interested in sailing with Steady, please give us a call in the office.
- All meals are included in the price (Breakfast, lunch, dinner and hot drinks) *plus one glass of wine with your evening meal.
- All bedding (pillow, sheets & duvet) and wash towel
- Full crew plus tuition
- Walking guides
- Marina and fuel fees
- All tender trips to and fro the boat
- Musto sailing waterproof suits whilst on the boat (standard sizing)
What’s not included
- Alcohol and soft drinks
- Any flights
- Transit hotels
- Travel to and from the boat on the day of joining/leaving
- Travel insurance
- Sailing Insurance (Please read our Sailing Insurance page for more information)
- Crew tips
- Personal expenses
Travel insurance notes
As this is an active adventure holiday, we advise that everyone has the appropriate personal accident travel insurance whilst onboard in addition to standard travel insurance which would cover you in the time between making your booking and departing for your adventure. These policies can sometimes be combined so please check with your travel insurance provider.
Please read more information on our Insurance guidelines page.
This voyage will not be more than 12miles offshore.
Are all meals included in the price?
Yes - meals are included in the price (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Hot Drinks)
Can you cater for dietary needs?
We can cater for vegetarian, vegan, gluten and dairy free diets.
What language is spoken on board?
Jan-Willem and Mariëlle are Dutch, however they are fluent in English & Mariëlle can speak German.
Do I need to tip the crew?
Tips are not mandatory but are welcomed by the crew!
What are the sleeping arrangements?
4x twin bunk bed cabins.
Are bedding and towels provided?
All bedding and shower towels are provided but please bring Swimming towels if you wish to swim in the sea!
Is there an age limit for Steady's guests?
Yes, her maximum age limit is a guide of 75 years for most voyages. Some of her expedition adventures vary so please check each voyage or give us a call in the office. Please check if you have any under 18's.
How many bathrooms/showers does she have?
Steady has a separate toilet and shower.
Is there WIFI aboard?
No, but you should reach 3/4G from the shore.
Are there Life Jackets provided?
Are there Waterproofs available?
Yes, Steady has sailing jackets for each guest in average sizing while sailing.
Do I need sailing experience?
No, absolutely not! Just a love for adventure.
Will I be seasick?
Everyone reacts differently but if you are unsure we recommend you take seasick tablets 24hours before you board.
From: Oban, Scotland
To: Oban, Scotland
To see where the ports are, along with your likely sailing area, please view the sail area & highlights.
Glasgow OR Edinburgh Airport both require taking a train onto Oban which takes approximately 2-3hours. Flights go direct from Stansted Airport for around £30 return. There are good links direct from the airport to the train and bus terminals for onward travel to Oban.
Oban station is only a 5-10 minute walk to North Pier. Trains run 6 times a day from Glasgow Queen Street Station. Visit First Scotrail for times and fares.
If you are travelling by coach to Oban you can visit the Citylink website for timetables or call 08705505050.
For long stay secure parking we recommend Stoddarts of Oban on 01631 564176 . We advise booking early as they can get busy! Another option is to take your chance in an un-metered residential area but Oban is a small town and the summer months can get busy. OR try yourparkingspace.com where you can park in the Tesco car park.