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Edinburgh to Kennacraig Ferry

My wife and I will be visiting Edinburgh followed by a few days on Islay in June 2019. We are looking for the best way to get to the ferry in Kennacraig without having to rent a car. We have looked into taking a Scottish Citylink coach. Are they reliable? One option would have us leave Edinburgh at 7:00 AM, change in Glasgow, arriving in Kennacraig 12:27 PM for the 1:00 PM ferry.

Posted by
1838 posts

Without a car your options are flying from Glasgow to Islay, or taking the Citylink coach.

Scottish Citylink are the recognised long distance operator in Scotland. The buses are timed to meet up with the ferry across to Islay.

From Edinburgh to Glasgow you’d have the choice of train (quicker) or coach (easier).

Posted by
940 posts

Hi, ron,

There are no direct flights from Edinburgh to Islay. They go through LHR or LGW. However, the flights from Glasgow airport to Islay are relatively inexpensive. And less than an hour. So even given the time going through security at GLA, you'd still be faster flying. You'd be on the trot for eight hours by train, coach, and ferry, as opposed to about five hours by train, bus, and plane. Plus there's always the chance of the Citylink coach getting stuck at roadworks, or behind a slow moving lorry.

As you're traveling via public transportation, perhaps you could fly down, and return via ferry, coach, and train.

Do you have transportation once you arrive on Islay?

Best wishes,

Mike (Auchterless)

Posted by
2732 posts

Just to add that if you decide to spend any time on the Loch Fyne coast, either on your way or coming back, the Stonefield Castle Hotel is about a half hour from the Kennacraig ferry, just north of the fishing village of Tarbert.

Posted by
940 posts

Hello again, ron,

Just in case you do end up taking the ferry to Islay, here's a song that you can sing:

Westering home, and a song in the air
Light in the eye, and it's goodbye to care
Laughter o' love, and a welcoming there
Isle o' my heart, my own one

Tell me o' lands o' the Orient gay
Speak o' the riches and joys o' Cathay
Oh, but it's grand to be wakin' each day
To find yourself nearer to Islay

And it's westering home, and a song in the air
Light in the eye and it's goodbye to care
Laughter o' love and a welcoming there
Isle o' my heart, my own one

Where are the folk like the folk o' the west?
Canty and couthy and kindly, the best
There I would hie me and there I would rest
At hame wi' my ain folk in Islay

And it's westering home, and a song in the air
Light in the eye and it's goodbye to care
Laughter o' love and a welcoming there
Isle o' my heart, my own one

Written by Sir Hugh Roberton

It's a crackin' great song. See if you can get everyone on the ferry singing it.

Slainte!

Mike (Auchterless)