Hebrides Sailing Explorer to Jura, Colonsay & Islay
- Vessel: Zuza
- Where: Oban, Scotland
- Duration: 7 days
- Embark: North Pier, Oban - 5 May 2023, 14:00
- Disembark: North Pier, Oban - 11 May 2023, 10:00
Sorry we’re full!
This voyage is fully crewed. Check out our voyage finder to see what else we have available.
Sorry you’ve missed the boat!
This voyage has now sailed. Check out our voyage finder to see what else we have available.
Sail with comfy yacht Zuza to discover the Hebridean islands of Jura, Colonsay and Islay passing through the Gulf of Corryvreckan.
Join comfy expedition yacht Zuza in the bustling harbour town of Oban for a sailing holiday adventure in Scotland. Set the sails and head South to discover the fascinating islands of Jura, Colonsay and Islay and even stop off at some of Scotlands most prestigious distilleries.
From ancient fort ruins, abundant wildlife watching, wild sea swimming and atmospheric landscapes, you’ll quickly see why our guests return year on year. This voyage is perfect for those wanting to explore further into the Hebrides to reach islands that can only be accessed by boat. The friendly crew can show you the ropes if you want to get involved or you can simply sit back in the comfort of Zuza’s undercover wheelhouse and take in the majestic beauty of this stunning part of the world.
- Skippered sailing
- Private ensuite cabins
- All-inclusive meals
- Wildlife watching
- Great for beginners
- Sail area & highlights
- Life on board
- Travel planning
- The boat
- What's included
- Boat schedule
Your Sailing Area
The Hebrides, Scotland
The land formations of the Hebrides features some of the oldest rock in the world and is made up of hundreds of islands, inhabited and uninhabited. There really is no better way to see this part of the world than from the water. One of our most popular sailing holiday destinations, the coasts and islands that make up the West Coast of Scotland offer so much variation for ours boats and guests, you will quickly see why our guests return year on year. Think panoramic landscapes where ancient woodlands roll into secret coves with swathes of inhabited islands for walking trails ashore.
Exactly which islands you explore during your sailing holiday with Zuza will entirely depend on the wind and tides. Once you have boarded, your skipper will have the latest weather forecast and will have a better idea of what you can expect from your holiday. Zuza’s crew and skipper have been sailing in the Hebrides for a number of years so they are all well-versed in the sailing areas and know all the best spots off the beaten track.
Jura, Colonsay & Islay
Jura was once the hideout for George Orwell as he wrote 1984 and it’s easy to see how he was inspired by the paradise of untouched nature and natural beauty that the island has to offer. The name Jura comes from the Norway and it means “Deer Island” and this still applies today with an estimated 5,500 deer and only around 180 inhabitants.!
Sitting between Jura and Colonsay lies the infamous whirlpool of Scarba (the third largest in the world!) lying in the Gulf of Corryvreckan. Don’t worry though, Zuza will steer well clear and instead you can watch this natural wonder on foot from the cliff on the coast of Jura.
The island of Colonsay has a varied landscape with some beautiful sandy beaches. The highest elevation is Carnan Eoin, 143 meters above sea level and Kiloran Bay is the most famous of many sandy beaches and crystal clear waters. From otters to seals to wild goats and a plethora of wild plants; Colonsay is rich in wild and unspoilt nature. A variety of destroyed ruins and fortresses lie scattered across the island perfect for some exploring.
Islay is probably best known for its many independent whisky breweries and if guests would like, it may be possible to explore these ashore. With many secluded anchorages, Islay provides ultimate tranquility.
Wonderful Wildlife in Scotland
Wildlife watching in the West Coast of Scotland is rewarded with a plethora of animals both on land and in the water.
Sightings of seabirds such as Black Guillemots can be seen in their hundreds and white-tailed eagles soar along the West Coast of Scotland. Sailing on Zuza is often rewarded with widespread sightings of birds of prey like Buzzards, Kestrels, Sparrowhawks and Peregrines and, if you’re lucky, you’ll spot the diminutive Merlin. Scotland is also home to Fulmars, Hooded Crows, and snowstorms of Gannets diving for food on the open sea.
There are frequent encounters with Common, Bottlenose & Whitebeak dolphins onboard these trips, and Risso & White-sided dolphins are also occasionally sighted. Basking sharks have been scarce the last few years but are still seen and seem to be returning – and we know the hot spots! There are plenty of whales in this part of the world too. Our most common encounters are with Minke – Humpbacks are a less frequent visitor, while the real star of the show is the resident pod of Orca if you’re lucky enough to see them gliding through the water. So keep your eyes peeled and have your binoculars at the ready!
All voyages for Zuza
Guest berths: 8 Rig: Bermudan Cutter
Built in 1998, Zuza has had an interesting life on the water. After being launched in South Africa, the British Royal Geographical Society chose Zuza to be an offshore base for an international marine research project off the east coast of Africa, where her features and reliability helped to facilitate groundbreaking marine research.
This expedition yacht has a double hull and Bermudan Cutter rig, which makes her very smooth and steady on the water, and is perfect for those that want to learn more about sailing or to just sit back and enjoy the ride in the comfort of the warm and dry wheelhouse.
Zuza has an experienced crew and spends her season sailing around the inner and outer Hebrides in Scotland. With trips to St Kilda, Mull, Jura, Barra, The Small Isles and Skye, Zuza can sail to locations that are not accessible by the larger cruise boats in this area which make her perfect for sailing holidays in Scotland. Her quiet approach also stands her in good stead as to not scare off wildlife, which means she can get as close as is fair to the plethora of marine and wildlife that calls Scotland home.
She has a modern cutter rig and operates her sails with an easy and safe winch system. So if exploring hard to reach Scottish islands and wildlife watching in comfort is the sort of experience you are seeking, then Zuza is the boat for you!
This vessel accommodates eight guests with versatile living room both on and below deck. Unusually for a vessel of this size, she has two lovely private double ensuite cabins, which are often popular with guests travelling as couples. There are also another two private twin-berth cabins with bunk-bed style accommodation that share a bathroom. Alternatively, an executive double cabin with ensuite and dressing room can be made by combining the twin cabins.
Zuza’s versatile accommodation makes her a great fit for all party sizes whether you are smaller group, couple, solo traveller or are looking for a private charter. She has a comfortable saloon that is perfect for getting to know each other; trading sea-faring stories and enjoying some of the delicious food prepared by the chef. The saloon is adjacent to the well-equipped galley that serves as the chef’s workstation, and there are lots of windows throughout to make the most of long summer evenings and wildlife watching with a glass of chilled wine.
Deck planMore about Zuza
Life on board
Exploring Scotland and the Hebrides with expedition vessel Zuza is perfect for couples and solo travellers looking to discover this hard to reach destination from the water. With so many islands to explore, travelling by boat certainly takes guests to places far away from the tourist hotspots.
Sailing with Zuza requires no previous sailing experience so you can sit back and enjoy the views, however, if you wish, the crew are more than happy to show you the ropes and even give you the helm! She has a sloop rig with modern winches so is a great boat to learn the ropes on.
Sleeping, eating and relaxation
Along with the skipper and first mate, there is also an onboard chef ready to cook you locally sourced and freshly prepared meals. Breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks are all included in your ticket price and the crew will definitely indulge you after a day of sailing in the fresh sea air!
Zuza was originally built as an expedition vessel so her space below decks is well considered. She has two twin cabins (that can be turned into a XL double ensuite by request) and two double ensuite cabins. A generous saloon sits next to a compact galley while the navigation station and helm sit at deck level in a covered wheelhouse with 360degree windows – perfect for wildlife watching in comfort!
Wherever you sail with Zuza, be sure that the views will be breathtaking and the wildlife in abundance, so have your eyes peeled and your binoculars at the ready for a wonderful trip. With all inclusive food, private cabins and comfy social spaces, this is a sailing holiday adventure in the Hebrides not to be missed!
As with all Zuza’s sailing holidays, your ticket price includes breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks and soft drinks. All cabins are available for single occupancy at a 50% surcharge. All cabins have bedding and towels provided.
- All-inclusive (breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, soft/hot drinks)Sorry, this boat can’t cater for Vegans or gluten-free diets.
- All bedding (pillow, sheets & duvet) and wash towel
- Full crew plus tuition
- Marina and fuel fees
- All tender trips to and from the boat
- Offshore sailing jackets for use in emergencies. These are not permitted to be taken off the boat
What’s not included
- 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.
Is there an age limit?
8+ years but 8-18yrs please check with the office as it can vary from voyage to voyage.
Can you cater for dietary needs?
Vegetarians only. Sorry - no fussy eaters! It's a small galley.
Can I charge my phone and camera?
Yes we have charging outlets onboard - although mobile signal can be intermittent
What should a pack?
A mix of warm and light clothes with a good pair of walking boots for exploring. See our kit list in your joining pack information.
Do I need to tip the crew?
Tips are not mandatory but are welcomed by the crew!
What language is spoken on board?
Will I get bitten by midges?
The summer in Scotland brings midges which mostly are not a problem for guests as we anchor offshore far enough away for them not to bother us. We recommend you bring SMIDGE repellant just in case.
Are bedding and towels provided?
Yes - but please bring an extra swimming towel if you wish to go in the water.
Will I be sea sick?
Everyone reacts differently on a boat. Zuza has a double hull so is very steady and smooth to sail - which helps with the motion of the boat. We recommend if you are at all worried to take some medication 24 hours before departure.
What are the sleeping arrangements?
Zuza has 2 double ensuite bed cabins and 2 twin bunk cabins. The two twin bunk cabins can be turned into an extra large double ensuite cabin too.
How many toilets/showers does she have?
An ensuite with each double cabin and a shared bathroom for the twin cabins.
Are all meals included?
Yes, all meals are included in the price unless you go ashore.(Breakfast, lunch, dinner, soft/hot drinks) Alcohol is not included.
Are life jackets provided?
Are there waterproofs available?
Yes, Zuza does have some aboard, but please bring your own if you can.
From: North Pier, Oban
To: North Pier, Oban
To see where the ports are, along with your likely sailing area, please view the sail area & highlights.
There is ample parking in Oban if you arrive by car. Secure parking can be found at MacQueen Bros, or you could try the Tesco carpark and pay for 24 hour parking on arrival using the Your Parking Space app.
Oban station is a 5-10 minute walk from North Pier. Trains run 6 times a day to Glasgow Queen Street Station where there are good travel links to the rest of the UK.
Glasgow and Edinburgh Airport both require taking a train from Oban which takes approximately 2-3hours. Flights go direct to Stansted Airport.
STAY IN OBAN:
There are plenty of places to stay in Oban. Try Witchwood House, The Scot or Perle Hotels Oban.