The coach picked us up in Manchester and two hours later we were still in Greater Manchester due to all the other pickups it had to make. We had a lovely tour of Ashton, Oldham, Rochdale and Bury before our first stop at Rivington Services on the M61 motorway! From here it took a further nine and a half hours to get to Oban via a coach change at Tebay Services, and then on to Carlisle, Glasgow and Lomond Shores. The scenery was beautiful in the Lake District and once we had passed Glasgow, and although it did take a long time to get there the journey wasn't too bad.
Our hotel, the Alexandra, was in a great location on the sea front at Oban where it overlooked the island of Kerrera. The room was good and the food was pretty good all week. As a package tour there were trips out each day to different locations including a non-landing ferry trip to Mull, a tour of the hydroelectric plant at Craughan (the Hollow Mountain), a trip up through Rannoch Moor and Glen Coe and a visit to the disused slate works at Seil Island. There was also an afternoon Celidh concert in Oban town centre.
I didn't take my full set of camera gear as I didn't want it to dominate what was supposed to be a holiday and I thought it might be cumbersome on a package tour .In fact I only had a short 18-105mm zoom kit lens and a small 70-300mm zoom lens, but I managed to get some fair wildlife and scenery photos even with this. I'll be uploading them here shortly.
For now, here's a short list of the main things of interest:
- Black Guillemot
- Iceland Gull - lifer
- Hooded Crow - lifer
- Great Northern Diver
- Two dolphins (or porpoises)
- Roe Deer