Handa Island

Island and Nature Reserve in Sutherland

CC BY-SA 3.0 / Creando

For an unforgettable day trip, the island of Handa is hard to beat. The island is internationally renowned for its nesting seabird colonies and magnificent sea cliffs. Each May, June and July the cliffs come alive when a big proportion of the UK’s razorbills and guillemots gather to breed alongside thousands of kittiwakes and fulmars and hundreds of puffins. Great skuas and arctic skuas also gather on the island in great numbers. Visitors to this lovely island may also be rewarded with sightings of whales and dolphins offshore, as well as grey seals and otters on the shoreline. The paths on Handa can be steep and rough in places, so sturdy footwear is essential, as are warm and waterproof clothes as the weather can change quickly. The passenger ferry goes from Tarbet pier and the ticket price includes a donation to the Scottish Wildlife Trust which manages the island as a reserve together with Scourie Estates.

The Handa Island appears in our Complete Guide to Visiting Sutherland!

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Visiting Handa Island


Admission charge for ferry crossing

Ferry runs from April – September, Monday

to Saturday – last departure to Handa at

1400 hours.

Duration: 20 minutes

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