Islay is an island and can only be reached by sea or by air. Car ferries from the Kintyre Peninsula to Islay go several times a day. There is also a ferry service from Oban at the west coast of Scotland.
A wee bit faster is the plane flying from Glasgow directly to the island.
The neighbouring islands of Jura and Colonsay can also be reached by ferry.
In addition, there is a passenger ferry that connects Campbelltown, Ballycastle (Ireland) and Islay in the summer.
If you are arriving during the season, please make sure to book as early as possible as the ferries and planes are busy.
The car ferry to Islay leaves from Kennacraig on Kintyre, landing 2 hours later at Port Ellen or Port Askaig. Vehicle reservations is strongly recommended.
Kennacraig - Islay; Winter timetable; Valid from 24 October 2022 - 30 March 2023
Kennacraig - Islay; Summer timetable; Valid from 31 March 2023 - 22 October 2023.
Please check the service status of this route before you travel
Kennacraig is on the west coast of the Kintyre peninsula, just south of Tarbert. You can drive by car from Glasgow which takes you roughly 2.5 hours. The drive takes you past Loch Lomond, and down the coast of Loch Fyne.
There is a public bus to Kennacraig from Glasgow, which takes 3.5 hours.
Glasgow - Kennacraig
Journey Planner / Tickets
There is a public bus service that runs to all towns on the island.
Rental cars are available at Islay Airport or in the immediate vicinity. Advance booking is strongly recommended.