Boat Tours

Exploring the waves of loch, sea and canal.

Choosing the best boat tour for you!

Whether you're a Nessie hunter, a wildlife enthusiast, or just in love with the open water, there is a range of boat tours in Inverness and Loch Ness that promise something magical for everyone.

On this page we will explore the different tours available for Loch Ness, the Moray firth and the Caledonian canal, we will tell you who provides what service, how to book and all the top tips for you to help with your planning.

Leisurely Boat Cruises

Lets begin our boat tour discovery with looking at relaxing leisurely cruises, if you prefer to sail the waves looking at the stunning scenery and surrounding landscapes, on the look out for wildlife and of course our illusive Nessie these are the cruises for you!

Vibes life us

Leisurely boat cruises on Loch Ness

Depending on where you are staying or travelling to and from there are a number of options for boat tours in Loch Ness.

Starting at Inverness you have Loch Ness By Jacobite, they run regular boats daily through out the year from their base at Dochgarroch and the Clansman hotel. From Dochgarroch you can sail along the Caledonian Canal all the way to Urquhart castle. There are various option available with Jacobite

If you are staying at the other end of Loch Ness at Fort Augustus, you can sail with Cruise Loch Ness. They sail daily and all through the year on their comfortable vessel where you can sit back, relax and enjoy the wonders of Loch Ness that surround you.

Photo of Cruise Loch Ness

If you are in the area of Drumnadrochit and want to cruise from there you have a couple of options.

Loch Ness Cruises take the Nessie Hunter out hourly and daily during the months of April to October, during their cruise you will sail to and learn all about the deepest part of Loch Ness and be close to the wonderful Urquhart castle.

In the same area you can board a deep scan cruise on the vessel Deepscan with the Loch Ness Centre. An intimate experience that takes up to 12 guests on a journey through the past 40 years of scientific research into the mysteries of Loch Ness.

Loch Ness Cruise Boat

Leisurely wildlife cruise on the Moray Firth

Loch Ness isn't the only place you can enjoy a leisurely cruise and some fantastic local wildlife spotting.

Sailing from Inverness Harbour you can jump aboard the Dolphin Spirit and head out under the impressive Kessock bridge and sail the waves spotting sea birds, seals, otters and sometimes even the local pod of bottle nosed dolphins come and say hello! 

If you are after something a little more adrenaline fuelled than the leisurely cruises there are some other options available!

Photo of large boat

Speed boat cruises on Loch Ness and the Moray Firth.

Hold on tight and get ready to enjoy the speed on a thrill seeking experience of a rib speed boat ride on the waves. Nessie is fast and sometimes it needs a bit more power to keep up with her! 

You have a choice of rib tours on Loch Ness, Beastie Boats have a 60 minute adrenaline pumping ride from Foyers, which is situated south of Loch Ness. You can also get a speed cruise from Cruise Loch Ness for 60 or 90 minutes starting from Fort Augustus. 

If you'd prefer the sea to the Loch and want to be in with a chance of sharing the waves with local wildlife and potentially the local pod of dolphins, then a trip aboard the Mischief with Dolphin Spirit is the choice for you!

Cruise Loch Ness

Top Tips for Your Boat Tour Adventure

Book in Advance: These tours are popular! To ensure you get the time slot best for your trip booking early to avoid disappointment.

Book Direct: To make sure you get the best deal, to avoid fees and to support the local businesses directly.

Dress for the Weather: Scottish weather can be unpredictable at the best of times but mix that with an adventure on water and it can get interesting. Bring layers and waterproof gear. Any specialist equipment for the tours will be provided.

Camera is a Must: You’ll want to capture the breath taking views and, who knows, maybe even Nessie!

Listen to Your Guide: They’re a treasure trove of local stories and facts. Plus, they will know all the best spots for wildlife sightings.

Stay Safe: Make sure to follow all safety instructions, especially on high-speed tours.

Ready to set sail? Join us in Inverness and Loch Ness for an unforgettable experience. Whether it's the allure of Nessie, the thrill of a speedboat, or the joy of dolphin watching, the local boat tours offer a unique way to experience the beauty of our waters. We may not be able to guarantee Nessie but we do guarantee memories that will last a lifetime!

Discover our waters

Boat cruises aren't the only fun to be had on our waters! Find out more about the fun activities for all the family in and on the waves.

The Loch Ness Monster

Do you want to learn all the facts about our local mystical legend? Find out more before cruising the waves on a boat tour.

Boating Holidays

Is a boat tour on Loch Ness not quite enough for your love of water? Did you know about the options for a boating holiday on Loch Ness?