Handa Island

Magnificent sea cliffs of Torridonian sandstone rise from the Atlantic on the north-west coast of Handa Island. The island comes alive each summer when nearly 100,000 seabirds gather to breed, including internationally important numbers of guillemot, razorbill and great skua. > 250 pairs of puffin breed here.

Volunteering

You can volunteer on Handa for one to ten weeks at a time. For more information, visit our volunteering section.

Oystercatcher © A D Johnson

Why visit?

  • Internationally important for seabirds
  • Amazing sight of a live seabird colony
  • Spectacular views
  • Fascinating history

Best time to visit?

  • Mid May to late July to see puffins
  • April to July for breeding seabirds

Visit for:

  • Uplands
  • Archaeology
  • Mammals
  • Scenery
  • Geology
  • Coasts
  • Wildflowers
  • Birdwatching

Directions

There is a pedestrian ferry service to Handa Island which runs on demand from Tarbet on the mainland during the visitor season (from April to September). Tarbet is signposted from the A894 about 3 miles north of Scourie and 3 miles south of Laxford Bridge.

Getting onto the reserve

When you arrive on Handa you will be met by a volunteer, who will give you a short introductory talk about the reserve and answer any questions you may have. See the "Ferry Info" tab for more information.

For non-ferry related enquiries, the Ranger can be contacted from April-August on 07920 468 572 or handaranger@swt.org.uk.

Getting round this reserve

Weather conditions can change quickly and the ferry crossing can be very wet, depending on wind and tide conditions. It's very important to be prepared and take warm, waterproof clothing, even in midsummer. The terrain on Handa is changeable and we recommend that you wear appropiate stout footwear.

2014 Handa visitor season: Monday 31 March to Saturday 30 August inclusive.

For all enquiries relating to the ferry, contact the operators, Roger (07780 967 800) or Paul (07775 625 890)

  • Running times: Mon to Sat 9 am – 17:00pm. Last ferry to island at 14:00. 
  • Ferry does not operate on Sundays, and at operators' discretion in bad weather. 
  • For reasons of passenger safety, comfort, and space, the ferry does not take dogs.
  • If travelling with a large group or from a long distance away, you are advised to contact the ferry operators in advance.

 

 

 

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