Kyleakin, Kylerhea, Kyle of Lochalsh and all things Otter

At approximately 15 minutes from Oystercatchers Kyleakin is home to the Bright Water Visitor Centre where you can learn about the local and natural history of Kyleakin and Eilean Ban, the island in the middle of the Skye Bridge, where Gavin Maxwell, author of “Ring of Bright Water” spent his last years. Run by volunteers, the Visitor centre is small, but informative and provides a range of gifts. You can also visit Gavin Maxwell’s house on Eilean Ban either by boat or as you cross the bridge. Go to the Eilean Bàn Trust website for more details

This area is renowned for its otters, so you might be lucky and catch a glimpse of one. If not, you could do worse than take the road to Kylerhea and approximately 20 minutes from Oystercatchers you will find a signed turning to the Kylerhea Otter Haven. There is a hide about ¾ of a mile from the car park, where you can watch for otters, seals, birdlife and sometimes whales. Bring your own binoculars!

You could then go down to Kylerhea itself and take the small (Summer only) ferry across to the mainland, turning right if you want to go to Sandaig Bay (the “Camusfearna” of Gavin Maxwell’s otter books), or turning left to take a picturesque route back to the main road, before returning via Kyle of Lochalsh. Here you can find a variety of small shops, cafes and restaurants or catch the train for a stunning trip to Inverness, or take a glass bottomed boat trip round the local coastal area. Seaprobe Atlantis is Scotland’s only semi-submersible glass bottom boat and was voted ‘Best Wildlife Watching Experience in the UK’ Daily Telegraph 2010. It is then only a 10 minute run back to Oystercatchers.

Otters are also occasionally seen near Oystercatchers. I have watched them from the bottom of the garden and they are often seen by boat off Ardnish. They seem to like Christmas as we have seen them on the road at the top of the garden and watched one for over 45 minutes on Christmas Day 2019 from the garden. Click on Christmas Otter to see a short unedited video, and this is a link to a video our next door neighbours took: Otters Video »