|Sun 24-08-2025, 14:00Oban, Scotland
|Sat 30-08-2025, 10:00Oban, Scotland
Join the historic and beautiful Brixham sailing Trawler, Provident and explore the inner Hebrides in style as sail to the south of Mull and South West of Oban to the charming islands of Colonsay and Oronsay – joined only at low water. Journey back exploring the bays and beaches of Mull
People who want to sail but with plenty of opportunities to stretch their legs on land
No sailing experience required- the crew on Provident are happy to teach you as much about sailing large gaff rigged ships as you like!
See multiple Hebridean islands in one trip
Stunning scenery and abundant wildlife
Islands steeped in history
Plenty to explore!
The unofficial capital of the West Highlands, Oban’s transport links make travel planning nice and straightforward, and there are some glorious landscapes to travel through en route to join the ship. We’d recommend arriving early to explore the town, perhaps visiting McCaig’s Folly with its stunning views across the bay, or nip into the distillery for a bottle to share with your fellow sailors.
Once on board you’ll enjoy a familiarisation from the crew before setting sail.
The historic Island of Colonsay and its smaller island neighbour Oronsay are connected by a large causeway – accessible at low tide. Located south of their big sister, Mull. To the south you can see Isla and to the East Jura and the Scottish mainland. On a clear day you can see Donegal in Ireland! To the west is the Atlantic and beyond. The islands are home to around 130 friendly locals, though the population increases in the summer months with visitors. The islands are naturally beautiful and feature sandy beaches, stunning views and wide variety of wildlife – easy to see why they’re so popular!
Colonsay and Oronsay have a rich history. There is evidence of people on the islands dating back to around 7,000BC! Remnants of Bronze and Iron Age settlements can be found across the islands. Many place-names are traced back the the Vikings and some mediaeval architecture can be found too.
Historic highlights include a 15th Century chapel and graveyard, remains of the 14th Century Oronsay Priory, Dún Éibhinn, Scalasaig – an Iron Age monument, thought to be the ancestral home of Somerled, who defeated the fleet of Godred, King of Man in 1156. There is much, much more to explore too!
On the way back to Oban you’ll explore the West coast of Mull – the second largest island of the Inner Hebrides.
100 year old Provident is a Brixham Sailing Trawler and spent the majority of her working life fishing out of her home port of Brixham. Brixham has been an important fishing port for hundreds of years, and it continues to be so today.
Provident’s story is even older than she is – the Provident you see today is in fact a copy of an earlier trawler of the same name. The original Provident was stuck and sunk by a U Boat in 1915. Today’s Provident was one of the last sailing trawlers to be built (1924). By the mid 1920’s, the heyday of trawling under sail was quickly fading out in favour of more modern motor vessels. In contrast, 50 years prior (in the 1880’s) there were over 3,000 sailing trawlers registered around the UK.
After her life as a sailing trawler came to an end, Provident became a private yacht in America for some years. More recently she was a she returned to Brixham to work as a Sail Training vessel with Trinity Sailing Trust.
Mostly flat seas between the islands with some more exposed dashes or longer sails in open water to St Kilda and to the Outer Hebrides. Expect a real mixture of conditions, as things can change quickly, but the crew are incredibly knowledgeable and familiar with all the sheltered anchorages and hiding places around the islands. The itinerary is kept loose to make the most of the conditions at the time, and the focus is on enjoyment, rather than ticking off any particular destinations.
On a sailing voyage we never use the word itinerary, as skippers will always be aiming for the best and safest sailing routes for the forecast. They are as keen as you to include some of the highlights described above, but when it comes to sailing, you have to go with Mother Nature, not fight her. The description provided is based on what we think might be possible, based on past trips, or prior experience, but nothing is guaranteed on a sailing voyage. As such, the scheduled joining ports, routes, activities and/or destinations may be altered. Due to the complexities of weather systems, this may be at very short notice.
Whether you are an experienced sailor or a complete beginner, the professional crew will train you to be guest crew from the moment you arrive, with the intention that everybody works together to sail the ship. The common thread to all Classic Sailing holidays is ‘Hands on’ participation on ships that use ropes, blocks and tackles and ‘people power’ to set sail. Handling cargo adds an extra dimension – building teamwork and communication skills and leaving you with a great sense of achievement.
We cater for a wide range of ages and physical abilities and how much you are expected to do varies a bit between vessels. See the vessel tab above which explains all about the ‘sailing style’ and what to expect in terms of hands on participation. There is a lot of information about day to day life, the ships facilities and accommodation on the vessel pages.
For joining your vessel in Oban, the North Pier in the map shown below will be the best place to meet the crew. Your vessel will either be tied up alongside the wall, or out at anchor. Make sure you take a note of the ship’s number found in your confirmation in case of any problems on the day.
Oban: Gateway to the Highlands and Isles
Situated on the west coast of Scotland, Oban is a vibrant seaside town known as the “Gateway to the Highlands and Isles.” With its stunning landscapes, rich history, and renowned seafood, Oban offers a captivating blend of natural beauty and cultural heritage that attracts visitors from all over the world.
As you arrive in Oban, you’ll be greeted by the town’s iconic landmark, McCaig’s Tower, perched on a hilltop and offering panoramic views of the surrounding islands and mountains. Explore the charming streets lined with colourful buildings, browse the local shops for unique crafts and souvenirs, and indulge in the freshest seafood at one of the many excellent restaurants.
Oban is the perfect base for exploring the breathtaking Scottish Highlands. Take a scenic drive along the stunning coastal roads, visit the historic castles such as Dunollie Castle and Dunstaffnage Castle, or embark on a hiking adventure in Glen Coe, one of Scotland’s most dramatic and awe-inspiring glens.
Getting to Oban is convenient, with various transportation options available. From Scotland, you can travel by train on the West Highland Line, which offers a picturesque journey from Glasgow to Oban. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the stunning views of lochs, mountains, and charming villages along the way.
If you’re coming from southern England, you can reach Oban by car via the A82 and A85 roads. The drive takes you through breathtaking landscapes, including the enchanting Loch Lomond and the majestic Rannoch Moor.
For those preferring to fly, the nearest airports to Oban are Glasgow Airport and Edinburgh Airport. From there, you can rent a car or take a train to complete your journey to Oban.
By selecting sustainable travel options and actively participating in carbon offset initiatives, you can make a positive impact while journeying to your voyage, where an unforgettable adventure awaits you.
N.B. BOATS HAVE LIMITED STORAGE SPACE SO PLEASE LIMIT YOURSELF TO ONE SOFT BAG OR RUCKSACK (NOT SUITCASES)
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