We try to provide the services shown below daily throughout the main season. However these may have to be varied because of tide, weather and numbers.
Departures from St. Mary's at 10.00, 10.15, 11.15, 12.15 and 2.00.
Returns from Tresco at 2.15, 3.45 and 4.45.
Departures from St. Mary's at 10.15, 11.45 and 2.00.
Returns from St. Agnes at 2.15, 4.00 and 4.45.
Departures from St. Mary's at
8.45am, 10.15, 12.30pm (for Scillonian arrivals) and 2.00.
Returns from St. Martins at 2.30, 3.45 and 4.45.
Bryher (& Samson)
Departures from St. Mary's at 10.15 and 2.00.
Returns from Bryher at 2.30 and 4.45.
Island Hopping (Two Island Trip)
Whilst the most relaxing way to enjoy the Islands is to spend a day on each one, several multi island combinations are possible. These include Tresco and Bryher, Samson and Bryher, and Tresco and Samson. Availability of these trips will vary so please come and ask on St. Mary's Quay when on the Islands.
The times shown above are to illustrate the service that we provide and should not be taken as a timetable, as return times in particular, will vary. You will always be told the return times on the outward journey.
Wildlife & Sightseeing Trips
We aim to run two or three wildlife & sightseeing trips each day, but their operation is largely determined by tide and weather conditions. A selection of the trips we offer are outlined below. They generally depart at 10.15am with a smaller selection at 2.00pm. After the trip you can usually visit one of the off islands at no extra charge or return immediately to St. Mary's.
A one and a half hour cruise around this idyllic group of a dozen uninhabited islands nestling in the Eastern corner of Scilly, is our most popular circular trip. The Eastern Isles are one of the best places for viewing the Atlantic Grey Seals as well as offering a wonderful variety of seabirds. This trip lands at St. Martins.
Bishop and Western Rocks
This is our longest trip and takes about two hours. You will visit Annet, the bird sancturary to look for Puffins (from April until lat July) and then cruise on through the Western Rocks, visiting shipwreck sites and viewing the seals. The climax to the trip is the visit to the Bishop Rock Lighthouse, the most South Westerly point in Britain. Take the opportunity to do this trip early in your holiday as adverse weather can stop us doing it for many days at a time. This trip is done in the mornings and lands at St. Agnes.
Annet is a bird sancturary, closed for landing throughout the year because of the large number of breeding seabirds. The main attractions of Annet are the Puffins, but you can also expect to see a wide variety of other seabirds. The trip lasts about one and a quarter hours and can be combined with a visit to St. Agnes. The trip is done in the afternoons and in the mornings when conditions are not good enough for the Bishop Rock trip and will only be done until late July.
The Norrard Rocks
The Norrard Rocks are a group of rugged rocks and islands, located to the North and West of Samson and Bryher. They include Mincarlo, Scilly Rock and Maiden Bower, to name but a few. This one and a half hour trip is an excellent opportunity to see both seals and seabirds (including Puffins until late July) in one relatively short trip. Lands at Tresco or Bryher.
Round Island Lighthouse
This one and a half hour trip takes in Round Island with it's lighthouse, Tean, St. Helens and all the other little rocks and islands that are located in the area between Tresco and St. Martins. This is an area that is rich in history. You will also visit Men-A-Vaur, an imposing rock that is home to many seabirds. Puffins are often seen here up until late July. Lands at Tresco, Bryher or St. Martins (the islands landed on depend on weather and tides).
Around St. Mary's
This is an easy way to see the coast of St. Mary's! In any case, you get a completely different perspective from the sea. As you go around you will see all of the points of interest. If the tide permits you will go in and out of the various bays. The trip takes about one and a quarter hours and lands at St. Agnes or Tresco (depending on which way round you go).
This is not to be missed by anyone with an interest in birds. On this two hour trip you will visit many of the rocks and islands where the various seabirds nest and roost, looking for as many different types of sea and shore birds as possible. A comprehensive commentary is given by wildlife expert Will Wagstaff. The trip is run once a week, usually on Sundays as near to high tide as possible. When run in the morning you can land on Tresco or Bryher afterwards.
A Cruise in the Past
Sit back on the boat and enjoy looking at and hearing about many of the sites of historical and archaeological interest which give an insight into Scilly's fascinating past. An expert commentary is given by Katharine Sawyer. The route will vary so as to make best use of the tide and weather conditions. We try to run this trip once a week, so watch the blackboards on St. Mary's for details.
Through the warmer months we operate a variety of evening trips. These include Shearwater Specials, Supper boats to St. Agnes and trips to follow the gig races.
St. Agnes Evening Service
From May until mid-September, this operates most nights when the weather is fit. Departure is usually at 6pm and while giving you plenty of time for a stroll on St. Agnes, the highlight of the evening is usually a visit to the "Turks Head" pub for a meal or a drink.
We try to run this twice a week from early May until late August., usually on Monday and Thursday evenings. The trip will take you to Annet, the bird sanctuary to view the breeding seabirds (including puffins until mid-July) and then on to look for the elusive Manx Shearwaters. By day these birds are usually far out at sea but in the evenings they collect together on the water off Annet and to witness this evening assembly of the Manx Shearwaters is a truly memorable experience. An expert commentary is given on these trips by renowned ornithologist Will Wagstaff. Departure is usually at 8pm but will be a little earlier early and late in the season.
The six oared pilot gigs were originally built to race to put pilots aboard sailing ships approaching the islands. Today some of these same boats have been restored and race alongside more recently built replicas. A gig race is a wonderfully colourful sight and is a good evenings' sport for participants and spectators alike. Races are rowed over a variety of courses and the times of boats going out to watch them will be advertised on the boards on the quay. The ladies race on Wednesday evenings and the men on Friday evenings. Some races finish on the off islands and on these occasions watching the race can usually be combined with a visit to the island hostelries before returning to St. Mary's.
Other special evening trips may appear from time to time. These may include a trip to the uninhabited island of Samson for a picnic supper, or a trip to watch a theatre club performance or a band playing on one of the off islands. Watch the boards on the quay.
We can always cater for groups, both on our regular services or by providing a special boat if the regular services do not fit in with your requirements. It does help us to know a group's plans at least a day ahead so that we can fit it in with our planning. If your group is doing more than one trip we can "run a tab" for you and you just settle up with us before you leave. We will normally give large groups a discount of 10% off our published fares.
If you are planning to visit the islands with a group and want more information in advance, give us a ring on +44 (0) 1720 423999.
Alternatively, just get in touch with us when you arrive and subject to weather and tides we will do what we can to fulfil your requirements.
Shark & Reef Fishing
For the more serious angler, 5 hour Shark and Reef and fishing trips are available on the Sapphire. Again these take place in the evenings during the main season on a Monday & Thursday from late May - late September departing at 5pm.
All fishing equipment is provided.
For groups of anglers. special trips or full days out can be arranged. Ring Joe on 07776 204631
For the Mackerel/Pollack trips, just watch the "Surprise" board on the quay and just turn up. For the other fishing trips it is best to speak to Paul or Joe on the quay or call them on the numbers above.
These are trips out away from the islands and for the serious bird watcher they provide the possibility of seeing several rare species as well as the more common birds that are found offshore. There is also a good chance of seeing a number of cetaceans. Again these trips are usually carried out in the evenings with a 5pm departure with occasional daytime trips being organised.
These trips are carried out by Joe Pender on the "Sapphire" and are often run in conjunction with the shark fishing trips as the "chumming" that brings the sharks in also attracts the birds.
Details will be found on the boards on the quay or the skippers can be contacted directly:
Joe Pender on 07776 204631
Click here for more details www.scillypelagics.com
Through the winter months (November to March) most of the boats are laid up so the Association doesn't operate.
However, during early November, over Christmas and New Year, from mid-February and throughout March, one or more of the boats will be operating independently, providing a limited scheduled service which will enable visitors to see the islands.
For more details, or specific enquiries, please contact us.