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Hebrides

Staffa National Nature Reserve

Volcanic rock columns are home to black guillemots, fulmars, puffins and the magical Fingal’s Cave
The entrance to Fingal’s Cave showing the basalt rock columns
Overview
  • See the famous hexagonal rock columns, formed millions of years ago by volcanic eruptions.

  • Follow in the footsteps of Queen Victoria, J M W Turner, Sir Walter Scott and William Wordsworth.

  • Listen to the astonishing acoustics of Fingal’s Cave, which inspired Mendelssohn to compose his Hebrides Overture.

  • Enjoy a puffin-spotting picnic on the top of the island in summer.

Today’s Opening Hours

Staffa
Open all year, daily
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Entry prices

Adult
Free
Family
Free
One adult family
Free
Concession
Free
See all entry prices

Membership

At all Trust places, admission is free for members.

Join from £50

About this place

Escape the everyday! This little island (½ mile long and ¼ mile wide) off the west coast of Scotland looks like it may be from a different planet. Its hexagonal columns were formed millions of years ago by volcanic eruptions and a vast blanket of lava that spread into the Atlantic Ocean. Years of waves crashing against these columns created the magnificent Fingal’s Cave.

Staffa was hardly known until 1772, when the botanist Joseph Banks highlighted the wild, natural beauty of the island. It soon became a must-see location. Famous visitors have included Queen Victoria, Lord Tennyson, Jules Verne, Robert Louis Stevenson and John Keats; all fell under the island’s spell.

Staffa came into the care of the National Trust for Scotland in 1986, a gift from John Elliott, Jr, of New York in honour of his wife Elly’s birthday.

Staffa was designated a National Nature Reserve in 2001.

We do what we do ...

For the love of Scotland

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