Isle of May

The Isle of May lies in the Firth of Forth, approximately 5miles off the North East Coast of Fife. The island has a long history of pilgrimage and human settlement with archaeological evidence of burial urns from the Bronze Age. Today the island is a designated National Nature Reserve managed by Scottish Natural Heritage with a visitors’ centre and bird observatory. Boat trips to the island can be taken from 1st of April through to the end of September from Anstruther Harbour. As well as a rich display of birdlife including rarely seen Puffins, Guillemots, Cormorants, Razorbills, Shags and Terns, Grey seals, dolphins and even porpoises and whales  can be encountered if you’re lucky on the day. 

Scotland's Natural Nature Reserves - Isle of May


Anchored on the edge of the Firth of Forth, the Isle of May is a magical mix of sea birds, seals and smugglers. In early summer the cliffs are heaving with nesting sea birds in a noisy spectacle you can witness from the cliff top path. The island is also home to the unmistakeable puffin, a comical looking bird that dazzles visitors with its brightly coloured bill.

The Isle of May Bird Observatory

The Isle of May Bird Observatory is Scotland’s oldest bird observatory, founded in 1934 The observatory is administered by a charitable trust (The Isle of May Bird Observatory and Field Station Trust) and manned by volunteer observers between March and November. The Observatory was founded by a group of young Scottish ornithologists and has continued to depend on the enthusiasm of amateurs who come to the island, usually for a week at a time, to maintain observations.


Anstruther Pleasure Cruises

The May Princess sails from Anstruther to the beautiful Isle of May almost every day from 1st April to 30th September. Licensed by the Maritime Coastguard Agency to carry 100 passengers, she has been operating on this run for the last fifteen years. The trip on the boat lasts from around 4.5 to 5 hours in total, which includes 2.5 to 3 hours ashore on the Island, and if the weather allows a slow circumference of the Island by the boat to allow visitors to enjoy the spectacular scenery and wonderful wildlife from the sea. On board enjoy the commentary and assistance during the trip from our experienced Skipper and crew, who will try and make your day out a most memorable one. The boat also has a small snack bar and toilets.

Now Open - En-suite Sea-view Rooms, Cookery Courses, Special Occasions


Call us now to book:

+44 (0)1333 451661

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