Sail

The vast majority of visitors to Islay come by ferry and Caledonian MacBrayne’s new state-of-the-art vessel, the MV Finlaggan, has made the journey faster and more comfortable. Book online at www.calmac.co.uk or by calling +44 (0)8000 66 5000. Booking is essential during holiday periods.

The ferries leave from Kennacraig on the Mull of Kintyre and arrive at either Port Askaig, in the north of Islay, or Port Ellen in the south. The hotel is located just over ten miles from either port.

Kennacraig is 105 miles or 2 hours drive from Glasgow and about 500 miles from London. Flying saves you a lot of time but you miss out on a drive through some of the most spectacular scenery in Scotland, taking in the pristine waters of Loch Lomond, Loch Long and Loch Fyne as well as the bleak beauty of the Rest and be Thankful pass through the Arrochar hills.

A good place to break your trip is at the Loch Fyne Oyster Bar, which is about half-way between Glasgow and Kennacraig.

There is nothing at the ferry port, so if you are ahead of schedule and want a cup of tea or to do some shopping, you should stop at Tarbert, a small fishing port about five miles before Kennacraig.

If using a SatNav device for the journey from Glasgow, insert, “via Inveraray” to ensure you get the correct route.

For detailed travel advice: ask@lochsidehotel.co.uk

Fly

There are up to three flights a day from Glasgow to Islay, operated by Loganair on behalf of FlyBe. See www.flybe.com or telephone +44 (0) 13 922 685 13.

The flights are in small turboprop planes which take up to 36 passengers. On a clear day there are fabulous views of the Mull of Kintyre and the Isle of Arran.

Coming from Northern Ireland?

The easiest option could be a pick-up by Islay’s super-fast sea taxi operated by Islay Sea Safari They can get you here from Antrim in under an hour.