Sites to Visit
Take time to visit the Islay Natural History Trustís Visitor Centre in Port Charlotte. Firstly it will give you a feel for what wildlife Islay has to offer and provides interesting displays help you understand what to look for.
It also has loads of great hands-on activities for children, where parents donít have to worry about them touching because thatís what theyíre there for.
Donít leave it until the end of your holiday to go; a ticket is valid for a whole week so you can go back again and again, ideal for short attention spans!
Dune flowers and orchid; Grey seals singing on sand banks at the head of Loch Gruinart. Exploring creatures of the sandy shore or beachcombing along the long beach around the point.
Chough; Dune flowers; Otters present and chance encounters are possible all around the beaches at the point. Seals on sandbanks in Loch Gruinart and Nave Island off the point.
From observation hide close views of ducks & waders; Roe Deer; Brown Hare; Hen Harriers hunting. Woodland walk through bluebell woods, (fantastic in spring); nesting rooks; Elm trees. Large flocks of Barnacle and White-fronted Geese, (Oct.-Apr)
Chough feeding in dunes, sometimes up near the old ruined church; Beachcombing after Autumn storms; Corncrake on surrounding farmland all around Loch Gorm.
Woodland Walks - spring flowers; autumn leaves; spring & autumn fungi; minibeasts. Bridgend Merse for large flocks of roosting Barnacle Geese (Oct.- Apr.).
Seals - common and grey seals resting and bobbing about the harbour.
Rockpools (follow path from centre down to shore), check tide tables for low tide when conditions will be best.
Beachcombing; Sandy shore creatures at low tide.
Woodland Walks; Back road to Bridgend, good for Hen Harriers and occasional Golden Eagles hunting.
Sandy shore creatures.
Rockpools; Beachcombing; a good site for Otters at quiet times, morning and evening; Cairnmore Woodland walk.
Chough; Golden Eagle; Hen Harrier; Peat bogs. Circular Walk.
Islay Natural History Trust Visitor Centre
3. RSPB Loch Gruinart:
4. Kilchoman/ Machir Bay/ Loch Gorm area:
5. Portnahaven/Port Wemyss
6. Port Mor Centre, Port Charlotte:
7. Uiskentuie Strand:
10. Bowmore (shoreline west of Battery/Bowmore Distillery):
11. Kilnaughton/Port Ellen Bay:
12. RSPB The Oa:
Islay Wildlife 4 Kids