Vatersay | Chaotic Scot

About

The most southerly inhabited island in the Outer Hebrides is small in size but grand in beauty. Explore the back-to-back beaches at Vatersay Bay and West Bay, keeping an eye out for seals, otters and basking sharks. Or discover the island's historic sites with their breathtaking views. Head to one of the regular local ceilidhs throughout the summer to enjoy the island's rich musical heritage.

Famous For

  • Music is a large part of life on Vatersay, from ceilidhs in the home and village hall to the infamous Vatersay Boys performing songs about their beloved island home.

  • The island has an abundance of wildlife, including otters, seals, herons, puffins and more. The neighbouring uninhabited islands of Sandray, Pabbay and Mingulay are home to some of the largest colonies of seabirds, including razorbill, gannet, guillemot, and puffin.

  • Vatersay and nearby Eriskay are the only places in Scotland you will find the Bonnie Prince Charlie Flower (Calystegia soldanella), brought over by the young Jacobite from France when he fled after the Battle of Culloden.

Ask an Islander

  • Dun a' Chaolais, to the north of Vatersay, has remains of an Iron Age broch, as well as beautiful views overlooking the Sound of Vatersay.

  • The waters between Vatersay and Mingulay are seasonal home to a herd of basking sharks. These large sharks are particularly visible in July and August but can be seen throughout the summer months.

Accommodation

Check out the following accommodation listings to book your stay.

Visit Scotland accommodation guide

More Information

You can find some additional information about Vatersay at the links below

Visit Outer Hebrides

COVID-19

Please check the latest rules on travelling to and around the Scottish islands on the Scottish Government website, including guidance on testing before you travel. Please note that advice may vary depending on the specific island you are visiting.

Getting here

Covid-19

Please check the latest rules on travelling to and around the Scottish islands on the Scottish Government website, including guidance on testing before you travel. Please note that advice may vary depending on the specific island you are visiting.


Vatersay is connected to the neighbouring island of Barra via a short causeway.

CalMac Ferries operates daily sailings between Barra and Oban on the mainland, and Loganair operates daily scheduled flights between Barra and Glasgow.

Get Your Passport

You can find lots more information about things to see and do on the island, see some amazing island photography and collect your island stamp by downloading our app.

Download the app

App in phone

Download the Scottish Island Passport app to collect your island stamps! The app also provides lots more information on each island including recommendations from locals about things to see and do, info on how to get around, more stunning photos and useful offline maps.

  • Unlock Stamps - Collect them all! Stamp your passport when you visit each island - with an individual stamp designed to represent a unique aspect of island heritage.
  • Experiences - Discover the best experiences each island has to offer – from local boat trips to exciting traditional festivals, there is something for everyone.
  • Maps - Navigate the islands with useful offline maps, handy for areas where internet connectivity is weak.
  • Travel Jounals - Create an in-location travel journal with pictures from your island adventures, to look back on your trip.
  • Favourites - keep track of your most loved islands with the favourites feature. Available to access from your account on both the app and web.