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Oban is a town in the Scottish Highlands. It is the gateway to the isles, shopping and drinking capital of the north west, and home to the excellent whisky of that name. Ferries run from here to Mull, Coll, Tiree and the Outer Hebrides.

(There is also an Oban in New Zealand: a village on Stewart Island.)

Oban Harbour from McCaig's Folly
Sunset at Oban looking towards the islands of Kerrara and Mull


The Oban Tourist Office Argyll Square, 1631 563122, (Fax: +44 (0)1631 564273, [email protected])[2].


  • Alan Warner's [3]. (best known for Morvern Callar - a novel made into a film - and The Man Who Walked) novels tell the story of everyday Oban life, and how better to describe Oban than in the words of the bard himself.

Get in

By boat

  • Caledonian MacBrayne, [4]. The national ferry service. In summer 2006 timetable there are car ferries to Mull (daily 5-8 times per day, takes 45 minutes), Lismore (Mon - Sat 3-4 per day, 50 minutes), Coll and/or Tiree (5 per week, 3-4 hours), Colonsay (5 per week, 2.5 hours), Barra (daily, 5+ hours)and Lochboisdale on South Uist (4 per week, 5+ hours).

  • Dunstaffnage Marina, [5]. Marina, boatyard and pub a few miles north of the town.

By train

  • The West Highland Line, [6]. Most scenic way to get here from Glasgow.

By Bus

  • Scottish Citylink, [7]. Coaches from Glasgow, via Tyndrum or Inverary. 3 coaches per day in the Winter 2006 timetable - trip takes about 3 hours.

By Plane

  • Loch Lomond Seaplanes run a daily summer service from Glasgow, landing in Oban bay [8] £149 return.

Get around

  • Haka Expeditions, [9].On Spring Time. 6 days cruises trip between Oban Scotland to Spitsbergen.


  • McCaig’s Tower, [10]. John Stuart McCaig - "... an eccentric testator....". This tower looks over the Oban bay. It takes about 15 minutes to walk up the hill by one of several signposted routes on roads, or by steps. There are good views of Kerrera and Mull and looking up the Sound of Mull.
  • Dunollie Castle, [11]. Also known as Dunoille Castle. Ancient seat of the MacDougalls of Lorn. A small castle situated at the far end of the bay from the station - just walk in and up the hill.
  • Dunstaffnage Castle, [12]. A castle about three miles North of Oban (buses leave from outside the station). Open daily in summer 9.30 am to 5.30 pm, 9.30 am to 4.30 pm daily except Thusday and Friday in winter.


  • Oban Distillery [13]
  • Mull & Iona Island Tours - Available from Bowmans Tours [14], Caledonian MacBrayne, Turus Mara [15] or Gordon Grant Tours [16]
  • War & Peace Exhibition - Museum detailing Oban's role in world wars. Free Admission
  • Oban Rare Breeds Farm Park - Small farm featuring rare indigenous animals. £6. Has a petting farm for small children [17]
  • Puffin Diving [18] - Dive centre
  • Sea.fari Adventures [19] - High Speed Boat Rides
Fingal and Sula, Canadian river otters
  • Scottish Sealife Sanctuary [20] [21]- See Fingal and Sula the Canadian river otters, common and grey seals and many other sea creatures. Around six miles north of Oban.


  • Light of India - Indian cuisine.
  • Waterfront - seafood, No1 The Pier, Oban, PA34 4LW.
  • Lorne Stevenson Street PA34 5NA.
  • Oban Inn, Stafford St, Oban, PA34 5NJ.
  • The Barn, [22]. Cologin, Lerags By Oban, PA34 4SE. 2 miles out of Oban
  • Ee-usk, [23]. The red-roofed building on the North Pier. Specialises in seafood. Main courses (evening) from £11.95 to £59 for the Grand Platter (for two). Open 12-3pm and 6-10pm.

Buy fresh seafood from the kiosks on the Railway Pier and eat al fresco.


  • O’Donnells Irish Bar.
  • Oban Inn [24].
  • Lorne [25].
  • Cellar Bar.
  • Harbour Bar.
  • Auly's, [26].



  • Kerrera Tea Garden and Bunkhouse, [27]. Not in Oban, but 5 minutes by ferry down the peninsula. On the island sheltering Oban harbour, looking out to Mull.
  • Oban Backpackers, [28]. Private hostel, relaxed and fun.
  • Oban Youth Hostel, [29]. A SYHA hostel. 4, 6 and 8 bed dormitories housed in a large Victorian building, on the Esplanade. Great sea views. Within easy walking distance of the town centre.
  • Aros Ard [30] a guest house 15 minutes walk from the city centre with a strong focus on environmental sustainability and has won several awards. Beds between £25-28 ppn.

Mid range

  • Dun Na Mara Guesthouse, Benderloch, Oban, 01631 720233 (), [1]. beautiful Edwardian house by the sea with spectacular views to the Isle of Mull and informal gardens leading to our own beach, 8 miles North of Oban.
  • Oban Bay Hotel - [31] Corran Esplanade, Oban, PA34 5AE, 01631 562051. Rooms from £47 ppn
  • Queens Hotel Corran Esplanade, Oban, PA34 5AG, 01631 562505.
  • Columba Hotel, The Esplanade, Oban, PA34 5QD, 01631 562183. Rooms generally £50-80 per room. As it is on the North Pier, rooms on three sides have sea views, some rooms at the back can be noisey from the pubs below.


  • The Manor House Hotel [32] Gallanach Road, Oban, PA34 4LS, 01631 562087. Rooms £100+

Get out

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