New Skye seaplane set for take off

A new seaplane flight service is to start in Skye this spring.

Aimed at the tourist market, Skye Seaplanes will take passengers on  aerial tours of the island and surrounding areas, departing from the airstrip at Ashaig.

Loch Lomond Seaplanes — who operate a similar tour and charter service in west central Scotland — are the company behind the venture. The firm have long expressed an interest in operating in Skye, although the new service will not include flights between the island and the central belt.

The company say their  amphibious Cessna 208 10-seat aircraft will “provide incredible scenic tours of the world-class scenery that makes up the topography of the Isle of Skye and the north west highlands and islands”.

Services start this April and flights are available weekdays and weekends until the beginning of October.

Prices range from £109 to £154 per person depending on the length and distance of the trip. Passengers can typically expect the tours, which include a landing stop on water, to take between 35 and 50 minutes and cover between 80 and 110 miles.

FlySkye, the group campaigning for the return of a regular flight service to and from Skye, welcomed the initiative.

Restaurateur Shirley Spear said: “This new service came along as a bit of a surprise to the campaign but, nevertheless, it is the type of extra activity for tourists that we hope to see happening once the airstrip is fully restored and back in full, commercial action. We wish Skye Seaplanes all the very best of luck for the coming season, using the airstrip in its current condition.”