So how many Islands could you bag in seven days? This package offers nine islands in seven days covering as many as 15 games of golf for those who have the stamina... it does take stamina. Certain assumptions have to be made before considering this option in full;
• Like any travel arrangements weather conditions can hamper sailing times.
• Taking a car is advisable, you can choose not too though this will undoubtedly place considerable pressure on your attempt to see as many islands within the time you have, read our car review.
• Book tee times in advance and remember to cancel them if you can't make it.
Starting off on the 55 minute CalMac sailing from Ardrossan to Arran and playing on or all of the courses on offer.
Depart Arran from the north aboard the short CalMac sailing from Lochranza to Claonaig. A short scenic drive to the ferry termnal at Tayinloan with mountains of the Isle of Arran in your rear view mirrors then crossing to Gigha to play this glorious nine holer.
Leave Gigha on the 20 minute CalMac crossing to Tayinloan where a 40 minute drive along the west coast to your destination at Kennacraig ferry terminal where you board the two hour sailing for Port Ellen, Isle of Islay. The links course at Islay is an 18 hole beauty and easily counters the relaxed two hour sailing to play it, whilst on Islay you may want to consider sailing to Colonsay, usually there is a sailing every Wednesday.
If you chose not to visit Colonsay and say goodbye to Islay you take the return journey back to Kennacraig and drive to the Isle of Seil which looks like it could be part of mainland Scotland but it's definitely an island! If you haven't acquired sea legs by now you'll be happy to hear that it doesn't require boarding on a ferry as your destiation is reached by crossing the short Atlantic Bridge.
The drive away from Seil over the Atlantic Bridge delivers pictuesque views of this archipelago with small boats and leisure craft dotted around it's waters. If you have the time then the 30 minute drive to Oban where you catch the CalMac ferry to Craignure, Isle of Mull or stay at one of Oban's many accommodation providers.
Mull has two golf courses, one at Craignure and the other at Tobermory both of which are nine holes. If however you want to play the Isle of Iona then you need to factor in a lengthy drive to Fionnphort where a short CalMac ferry crossing will take you over, as cars are generally not allowed on Iona you will have to park at the pier and alight on foot with your clubs. To the casual observer this might seem a course worth avoiding given how many miles you will have covered in this time, but that would be a mistake. Iona's 18 hole links course if free to play (be sure to pick up a scorecard at the islands post office) with outstanding views of white sandy beaches and the white horses from the Atlantic ocean with a spirit level straight horizon.
Back on Mull, if you choose to venture further north to play Tobermory you will drive through the town that has been made famous by the BBC's childrens programme, though it should really be made famous by it's golf course which deliver's uninterupted view's to Loch Sunart and beyond. The relatively flat course at Cragnure is within easy reach of the ferry terminal for the return journey to Oban.
After an overnight stay in Oban, there is an early start for the only daily sailing to Tiree... just to emphasise, that's the only daily sailing to Tiree so don't miss the boat! If you don't make the boat then you'll have missed out on yet another gem of an island. The flat nine hole Vaul course has boxing ring style greens with white rope surrounding them to keep off any stray sheep who double as lawn mowers, those sheep have a great life! A word of caution, close the gate at the club ... seriously, read the sign and you'll understand!
The return leg with home in sight but not without visiting Eriska the final course to fit play, situated in the leafy grounds of the luxurious Eriska Hotel is a rewarding nine hole course to finish on.