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The area of the West Coast we are dealing with is surprisingly well-connected to the rest of the UK, and beyond. Trains from the south arrive in Oban, Fort William, Mallaig and Arisaig. There are ferries from the mainland to Mull, Lismore, Coll, Gigha, Islay, Jura, Kerrera, Tiree, Colonsay, Rum, Muck, Eigg and Canna (as well as to the Outer Hebrides), between Islay and Jura, across the Sound of Mull between Fishnish and Lochaline and between Tobermory and Drimnin, across Loch Sunart between Tobermory and Kilchoan, and even a small one across Loch Linnhe to Fort William as well as the Corran Ferry. You can fly by seaplane from Loch Lomond, and there are scheduled flights from Oban airport to some of the islands, and from Glasgow to Islay. And then there are the buses chugging around the wonderful countryside.
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The wonderful Waverley steaming past Castle Stalker
As ever, the future of the Waverley is under threat so please donate if you can, to the Paddle Steamer Preservation Society. After all she is the last sea-going paddle steamer in the world, and it is a delight to take a cruise on her. She took her first passengers in 1947. You will often see her in this area although she does cruise around all the British Isles, she stands out a mile because of her elegant shape and broad beam, and she has a very characteristic sound from the triple expansion steam engine (now oil rather than coal-fired).
To have someone work out an itinerary for you, go to the Traveline Scotland website. Excellent. You can also phone them on 0871 200 2233.
If you really get stuck, then Coastal Connection based in Oban will get you there in one of their RIBs, more economical if there are up to 12 you as it costs £250 for two hours.