It’s a dream for many people to see Puffins up close. The comical, stocky little birds with their colourful beaks and brightly coloured feet adorn postcards and calendars in homes and gift shops across the country. They are popular birds, but they aren’t easy to see and people often come to Scotland hoping to see them and leave disappointed. That’s why it’s important to do a little forward planning. The Isle of May boat trips, which leave from Anstruther in Fife, on the east coast of Scotland, are the perfect way to see puffins in Scotland, and not only see, but see up close.
Isle of May Boat Trips
Adults £26, Concession £23
Children (3-15) £13, Under 3 free
Bookings can be made by calling 07957 585200
Updated from February 2015
Having a teenager myself I know how impossible it is to get them to even lift their heads up from their phones and computers. What they need is to get out and get some fresh air and exercise. Easier said than done you might say. Well yes, I don’t recommend taking them anywhere without a phone signal (what a disaster that would be – queue Kevin and Perry style huffing and puffing), at least not for any longer than a couple of days. But if you are looking for things to do with kids in Scotland I have come up with some ideas. Through a lot of experimenting I have come up with the following list of things of activities you can try out with your little bundles of joys, and you never know, you might even get a glimpse of that smile you haven’t seen since they were 11.
Remember, any activity you do has to be cool! Even though they might surprise themselves and actually enjoy themselves, what they are really thinking is how cool would this photo be on Instagram, or how cool will my pals think I am when I tell them what I’ve been doing (also good bargaining tools – think how good the photos would be on your instagram son).
1. Canoeing or Kayaking
There are canoe hire shops almost anywhere near a stretch of water. 90% of Scots live within 10 miles of a canoeing site so it should be easy to find somewhere. Get them in a wetsuit or buoyancy jacket and out into the water, especially somewhere stunning (photos!). It’s surprisingly easy if it’s a nice calm day and they should be pleased they managed to do it successfully. This was a good one for us and now we do it quite regularly. Elie Watersports in Fife hire out canoes and wetsuits, or you can have a go on a banana boat or paddle boat, or have a lesson windsurfing or sailing. NaeLimits near Grandtully in Perthshire also has loads of activities water based and land based from the easy to the build up one’s courage type of activity like cliff jumping and canyoning(!) For kayaking you could try Splash Rafting, as well as kayaking they could try river bugging, canyoning, abseiling and loads of other activities. Kayaking £50 for a half day including all equipment and wetsuit.