The Isle of Mull (or Island of Mull as some people call it) is an Inner Hebrides island which is easily accessible from several ferry crossings, including the port of Oban on the mainland. You could make a day trip to Mull but there are so many things to do on Mull that a longer stay is well worth it.
The Isle of Mull is the third largest island in Scotland and the second largest Inner Hebrides island. Despite being a fairly small island, Mull has an amazing coastline of about 300 miles which makes it great for watching marine wildlife.
Things to do on Mull
There are so many things to do on Mull, so here’s some suggestions to get you started.
Visit Tobermory, Scotland
Tobermory is the main town of this Inner Hebrides island. Even if you think you don’t know Tobermory, you will probably recognise its brightly-coloured buildings which line the town’s harbour.
Children growing up in the early 2000s will know Tobermory as the setting for the BBC’s Balamory television programme.
Tobermory has a lovely selection of independent shops including a book shop, chocolate shop, bakery, candle company, silversmith selling beautiful jewellery and gifts, pottery and art gallery. There is also a Co-op for stocking up on provisions and a fish and chip van on the harbour wall for a fish supper with a view. Your food and drink needs are well-catered for with some great pubs, restaurants and cafes. For that other holiday tradition, visit the Isle of Mull Ice Cream Parlour for some fantastic Mull-inspired flavours.
Comar arts organisation
If arts and culture are your thing, then take a look at the Comar website to see what’s on during your stay. The merger of the An Tobar arts centre and Mull Theatre in 2013, saw the creation of Comar whose name is Gaelic for ‘confluence’.
Comar is a multi-arts organisation that produces, presents and develops creative work. We support and connect artists and audiences across Mull, Iona and beyond and seek meaningful ways to inspire, inform and shape our communities through culture and creativity.
Every year Comar works with creative people commissioning and developing new work and runs about 100 events including:
- live music
- visual arts
For more info, see the Comar website.
Climb Ben More and bag a Munro
Ben More is the highest mountain on Mull and the only Munro at 966m (3169 ft). Apart from Skye, Mull’s Munro is the highest peak in the Inner Hebrides. On my first holiday to Mull, I never got to see the top of it due to the cloud cover! From the top or even part of the way up, there are magnificent views if there’s no cloud, of course.
Isle of Mull rally
The Mull Rally takes place in October and is unique in the UK as it’s the only event to use a specific Act of Parliament which permits the rally to take place on Mull’s public roads. Originally called The Tour of Mull Rally it was the idea of the late Brian Molyneux and first road rally took place in 1969. The 2016 event will be the 47th running of the rally and takes place on the weekend of 14-16 October 2016. For more info see the Isle of Mull rally website.
Mull Eagle Watch
After watching wildlife cameraman and presenter, Gordon Buchanan, in Eagle Island on the BBC (available on DVD if you haven’t seen it) we were convinced that we needed to visit the island of Mull. Even if you’re not interested in nature, I think you can’t fail to be impressed by the sight of a magnificent white-tailed eagle (also known as a sea eagle). The Forestry Commission run Mull Eagle Watch usually April – September. For more details visit the Mull Eagle Watch web page. This inner hebrides island is one of the best places to see a white-tailed sea eagle.
Mull and Iona Food Trail
The Mull and Iona Food Trail’s aim is to promote “locally sourced food, produced with respect for animal welfare and the environment, which tastes great and contributes to a sense of place.” See their website for a directory of producers and a map of the islands showing the location of trail members which include shops, producers, markets and eating places.
Isle of Mull Cheese – home of Isle of Mull Cheddar
I bloody love cheese and believe that virtually any dish is made better with the addition of cheese. When on holiday we make a point of tasting local cheese (along with local real ales). This is partly because we want to support local, independent businesses by shopping local and also because we just like cheese and beer. (Oh, and oat cakes. Ullapool Bakery make the best oatcakes in our opinion.)
We strive to keep our cheese as natural as possible, not even adding colouring (commonly used in cheese making). For that reason, the cheeses we make in winter, when the cows are being fed hay, are whiter in appearance than those made when fresh, green grass is more readily available. We want our cheese to be recognised for its individuality of flavour and taste – not by the brightness in colour!!
Isle of Mull Cheese welcome visitors and you could observe the cheese-making process or enjoy a Ploughman’s lunch in the Garden Barn which looks a wonderful setting for a lazy lunch.
If you can’t wait for your visit to try some Isle of Mull Cheese, you can order online direct from the farm. My favourite is the Hebridean Blue Cheese.
Want to rent a holiday cottage on the Isle of Mull, Scotland? Here are some suggestions:
- Corry Farm Cottages – a group of 4 cottages, including Sunset Cottage, near Salen with sea views over the Sound of Mull
- Daisy Brae – traditional detached croft house in the village of Salen
Isle of Mull hotels
Hotels range from small, family-run guest houses to luxury hotels with spas and include:
- Isle of Mull Hotel and Spa, Craignure (near ferry port)
- The Western Isles Hotel, Tobermory
- Park Lodge Hotel, Tobermory
- The Tobermory Hotel on Main Street, Tobermory
- Highland Cottage, Tobermory
Isle of Mull camping
There are several campsites on the Isle of Mull including:
- Sheilings Holidays which is in walking distance of the Craignure ferry port with its shop, pub, cafe and tourist information centre
- Tobermory Campsite just 1.5 miles from Tobermory
Mull to Iona
Iona is another beautiful Inner Hebrides island whether you are interested in the spiritual and religious aspects of this island or the stunning beaches. Iona can be reached by Calmac ferry from Fionnphort in the southwest corner of the island of Mull. Iona is small so there’s no need to take your car. For more details, see the Calmac website.
How to get to Isle of Mull – ferry
So now you know about some of the amazing things to do on Mull, you now need to know how to get there. Ferries to the Isle of Mull now come under the RET (road equivalent tariff) scheme which bases ferry fares on the cost of travelling the equivalent distance by road. This means ferry trips to Mull have been substantially reduced.
If you want to travel by ferry to the Isle of Mull, you have 3 ferry routes to choose from run by the iconic Calmac ferries:
Oban – Craignure, Mull
This is the most direct route to Mull and also the most expensive. It only takes a scenic 46 minutes and it’s worth sitting out on the top deck if the weather’s fine to enjoy the scenery and some wildlife-spotting. If you want to take your vehicle on the ferry, booking is recommended.
Lochaline, Morvern – Fishnish, Mull
This is a cheaper crossing but you it depends on where you’re coming from. You may find the extra driving time and petrol costs aren’t worth it. There’s no need to book in advance. You just buy your ticket at the port and then go on the next available sailing.
Kilchoan, Ardnamurchan – Tobermory, Mull
This is operated in the same way as the Lochaline service.
For more details, see the Calmac website.
Isle of Mull weather and tide tables
You can check the latest weather on the Isle of Mull on these websites:
You can check tide times on these websites:
Your essential kit for the Isle of Mull
- Ordnance Survey maps with free mobile download (available from Ordnance Survey or Amazon)
- Walk books – we like Pocket Mountain walk books and they have one for Mull and Iona but there are also other books available on Amazon
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