Family Days Out on Islay

A group of people jumping on the sand

Islay is the perfect destination to tuck in and enjoy some family time

Enjoy making those special memories together.

From the great outdoors, there are many fabulous places to enjoy exploring as you unwind, to those cosy hidden gems, tucked into corners across the island to discover. There is lots to entertain the whole family.

Enjoy as I guide you through places to visit, and special things to see and do with your clan.

Islay offers something for everyone, so get ready to immerse yourself and your family in the fantastic adventures of island life.

Beaches and Coastline Adventures

Girl on sandy beach at sunset

Who doesn’t love a good beach day?

Surrounded by coastline, beach adventures are never far away. So indulging in some Islay beach time is definitely on the cards. With a young family there are so many exciting beach treasures to find. So, even if the weather isn’t hot and sunny, there are many beautiful shells, pebbles, and sea glass treasures to collect and enjoy. With smooth flat skimming stones, who can’t resist a little stone skimming competition? Collect pebbles to paint and decorate. Beach creativity comes in the form of sand castles and sculptures, or have a go at building your own ‘cairn’. Delve into the rock pools, and there will be lots of crabs hidden beneath the seaweed, brightly coloured anemones, as small fish dart to and fro.

Girl collecting seaweed on a beach

With so many adventures waiting to be had, enjoy exploring the craggy rocks of Saligo, to the beautiful sandy expanse of Machir Bay. We have some fantastic guides to Islay’s beaches here.

If you are passing through the village of Port Charlotte be sure to pop into Islay’s Natural Natural History Centre. Dedicated to the geology and wildlife of Islay there’s so much information, and plenty of activities for families to enjoy, with events both in the centre and across the island too.

There’s the award winning Boat tours of the island with Islay Sea Adventures. Offering spectacular wildlife adventures, fishing trips, and a chance to explore the island from the sea. You can read more here.

Woodland adventures and walks

Girl sitting on a rock in the woods.

On wild and windy days, the beautiful woodlands of Dunlossit or Bridgend offer the perfect shelter. Great for dog walking, cycling and exploring. Enjoy the tranquil shores of Loch Ballygrant, watching the swans gliding gracefully across the water. Lily Loch puts on a beautiful floral display in the late summer as the lilies flower. The perfect picnic spot, there’s even a bench at the ready for you to sit at whilst you tuck into your sandwiches. Be sure to take your book along, or a sketch pad, and while away the hours.

Dog with a stick in river

I’ve popped more information on Islay’s woodland walks here.

Indoor activities

When you’re in the village of Bowmore, the MacTaggart Leisure Centre is a great place to visit. With lots of kids activities on the go, from giant inflatable fun sessions, to snorkelling and swimming lessons. It is an absolute winner with children of all ages. There are also general swimming sessions available too. With a sauna and gym, it really does offer something for everyone.

You can find out more information on The MacTaggart Leisure Centre here.

The Pottery at Persabus is a great place to visit for an afternoon of creativity. Enjoy creative art activities for all the family, with ‘paint your own pottery’ sessions most afternoons. Or pick up a takeaway kit, head to the hills, and capture those special holiday memories onto ceramics. There’s a studio shop, with ceramics on sale, each range, inspired by the colours, landscapes and seascapes of Islay. Each with unique and original designs. You can find out more information about the pottery here

People sat at a bench painting pottery

Things to See and Do

Of course the list of family activities on the island goes on and I couldn’t possibly mention everything here, but if you head over to our Things to See and Do page you will find many more suggestions to help you make the most of your family time on Islay.

People painting baubles

For information on local events, ceilidhs, traditional music and dance, guided walks and workshops throughout the seasons, do check out our calendar of local events here, we regularly update it with all the latest information.

Islay Accommodation

Finally if you haven’t sorted your accommodation, what could be better than staying on a family run farm? Persabus has been farmed by the Fletcher family, one of the island’s oldest families, for over a hundred years. We have a few accommodation options available to suit all your needs, and a very warm welcome awaits. So do head over to our accommodation section and check out what we can offer you and your family.

We look forward to seeing you all soon!

A man driving a vintage tractor