The Isle of Mull is located off the coast of Scotland, one of the Inner Hebrides. It is pretty close; it only took 45 minutes by ferry to get there from the town of Oban and many islands were visible the whole time.
When we decided to visit the Isle of Mull, the primary purpose was to visit the Castle. Graham’s heritage is Scottish and he belongs to the MacLean of Duart clan. The castle, located on the Isle of Mull, is one of the few renovated and inhabited castles in Scotland.
There are some stories to tell about the castle visit, which I will save for another blog.
When I started looking for a place to stay I discovered that the Isle of Mull is the most bio-diverse area for its size in Europe. I knew we might be able to see seals and whales and otters and lots and lots of various birds. So we signed up for a 6 hour nature tour with a guide. It was not quite what I had expected…somehow I envisioned riding in his jeep along a coastal road and we would stop and he would point out a colony of seals, just as we saw in northern California years ago. Silly me. Once again I learned that expectations and reality can be two different things. What we experienced would have been ideal for some of our friends who are avid birders.
The guy was driving his 12-passenger van up a single-track road and noticed that back over his right shoulder, about a mile away, was an eagle sitting on a tree. He parked the van, we clambered out, and for the next 45 minutes or so we looked through binoculars and his high powered scope he had on a tripod at this eagle.
As you can see, Sam was not into staring at the birds for a long time and we all generally realized the best part of the outing, for us, was that we were seeing parts of the island that few visitors do.
We noticed these wrecked boats along the shore.
Much of the island has a one-track road, which means most is one lane…for two way traffic! But about every 100 feet or so there is a “passing place” where one party pulls to the side and the other can travel on.
One night for dinner we drove to the northeast side of the island to the town of Tobermory. This town is a UNESCO Heritage Site because of its history and architectural significance. We had hoped to get into a restaurant with a great reputation for fresh seafood and were told by the front desk at our hotel was not needed, only to find that the restaurant was completely booked. We did eat an enjoyable seafood meal however, just down the seawall.