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Bus Travel Portree/Skye to Tobermory/Mull

Ottawa Canada
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Bus Travel Portree/Skye to Tobermory/Mull

I'm planning to spend 2 nights on Skye and 2 nights on Mull and wondered how long it takes to travel between 2? Will also need to travel from Tobermory to Manchester in 1 day and wondered if suggestions on best way?

London, UK
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1. Re: Bus Travel Portree/Skye to Tobermory/Mull

If you travel by bus it takes over 9 hours from Skye to Mull. Not all this is travelling time but stopping time.

If you take 8am bus from Portree to Fort William you get there at 11am Then bus leaves Fort William at 13.25 to Kilchoan, arrives 16:00. Get ferry from here at 16:45 and arrive in Tobermory at 17:25.

Tobermory to Manchester is quite complicated. You can do the total journey in about 9.5 hours if the final leg is to fly from Glasgow to Manchester or in about 11 hours by train on final leg. If you clarify then I can give better indication of options. Do you have preference?

For the above I have assumed a mid-week timetable in August. Times will vary throughout year and day of the week. Do you have a date of travel?

Ottawa Canada
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2. Re: Bus Travel Portree/Skye to Tobermory/Mull

Thanks bortiuk - takes longer than I would have thought and I can see may need to adjust plans. Re going from Portree to Oban/Mull - thought taking a bus at Mallaig was a quicker option? I'm also thinking maybe staying at Oban and taking day trip to Mull might be a better option. Will travel in early September, setting out from Glasgow on Monday and needing to be in Manchester for Friday night. Wondered how long and what best way to get from Glasgow to Manchester was (other than flying)?

London, UK
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3. Re: Bus Travel Portree/Skye to Tobermory/Mull

You can go by coach or train.

Train is faster (one change enroute, normally in Preston Lancs). Takes between 3h 15min to 3h 45min. Trains leave at least once per hour.

Coach is direct but takes about 5hs. Coaches once every two hours.

For info, flight is about 1h 10 min but have to add check in, transport to and from airports form city centres.

Conwy.North Wales
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4. Re: Bus Travel Portree/Skye to Tobermory/Mull

www.scotrail.co.uk-- for train information

www.citylink.co.uk-- for coach travel from Skye-- Glasgow

www.stagecoachbus.com-- operates an extensive network throughout the Highlands.

www.calmac.co.uk -- for ferries

All worth a try to find the best way of travel for you.

Ottawa Canada
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5. Re: Bus Travel Portree/Skye to Tobermory/Mull

Thanks to both of you - very helpful and upon digging a little deeper in my Lonely Planet guide think best option is to stay in Oban for 2 nights. I notice there is an 8 hour day tour of Iona and Mull from Oban for Thursday which would make the trip from Oban to Manchester on Friday less of a marathon. I had planned to get Highland Explorer pass and may still go that route although it looks like will only use it 3 of 4 days allowed - with day tours in Skye and Mull/Oban. I understand bus travel is considerably cheaper than rail travel (without a pass) so may opt for the bus to Manchester.

London, UK
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6. Re: Bus Travel Portree/Skye to Tobermory/Mull

Generally bus travel is cheaper than rail travel but I've checked around. National Express are quoting GBP23.50 single on coach (which seems expensive for the coach). But Virgin Trains (Same company as Virgin Atlantic Airlines) are offering special fares which seem very reasonable. Their cheapest is ��11.50 (I based this on 2nd or 9th Sep, the fares beyond that don't seem to be loaded on the ticketing system yet). And it is a direct service so you don't need to change. You'd depart Glasgow at 17:40 and get into Manchester at 21:14. Other times exist but are GBP14:50. You have to book minimum of 14 days in advance (I'd do it asap). http://www.virgintrains.co.uk

London, UK
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7. Re: Bus Travel Portree/Skye to Tobermory/Mull

In above message £11.50 is GBP11.50

London, UK
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8. Re: Bus Travel Portree/Skye to Tobermory/Mull

There are some other useful planning websites but they can be a bit fiddly to use. The benefit is that they calculate confusing routes using combinations of trains, planes, coaches and ferries. So ferry timetables on Calmac are utilised which should help you.

For whole of UK:

www.transportdirect.info This is relatively new and promoted by govt. I think it is good for most things. Select a train or coach are useful. Also door-to-door and city-to-city. Their timetables currently only run up to end of August 2005) so would need to check back later for Sept.

For Scotland:

www.travelinescotland.com Use the Journey Planner service. It works but the results can be difficult to read (hieroglyphics).

Also for trains:

www.trainline.co.uk Ticket booking service but may not send tickets overseas (not certain).

Use a combination of these. As it is computer generated it is fast but you may still want a human interface.

Ottawa Canada
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9. Re: Bus Travel Portree/Skye to Tobermory/Mull

Thanks for this very helpful info, bortiuk, particularly the Virgin train lines - didn't know about this option. I'm beginning to think perhaps a Britrail pass may be the way to go as plan on spending a day in Belfast during time in Ireland (have heard the train trip from Dublin is very beautiful) and four days in Scotland via Ireland (maybe using ferry) at end of trip - possibly travelling to Inverness (and my travelling companion will spend a week in Wales as well while I am in France). We are arriving and leaving from Glasgow

Switzerland
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10. Re: Bus Travel Portree/Skye to Tobermory/Mull

We caught the 7:35 bus from Portree to the ferry and arrived in Mallaig 9:30. The train to Oban leaves at 10:35 with one change in Crianlarich and arrives in Oban at 15:39. The train trip is spectacularly beautiful and well worth the extra pounds. If you have to get from Tobermory to Manchester in 1 day, you are probably better off staying in Oban and touring Mull either on your own (which I did) or taking one of the various day tours on offer (usually including Iona and/or Staffa. Information can be found at www.bowmanstours.co.uk.

As for Manchester, the bus is probably the best bet, in terms of time, price and convenienc/changes. We took the 7:45 Citylink to Glasgow with no problems and from there it is easy to continue on to Manchester. If you go to www.travelinescotland.com, you can find plan your journey and find detailed information.

Have a great time.