If you are visiting Pembrokeshire between April and August, you will be here at the same time as the Skomer Island Puffins! If you fancy seeing these all too cute and now famous birds, here’s everything you need to know about visiting the puffins on Skomer Island.
WHERE is Skomer Island?
Skomer Island is located in Jack Sound, less than a mile off the coast of Pembrokeshire. The island is less than 3km² and is one of the most important seabird sites in the UK. The puffin population is thriving here, and it’s one of the best places to see puffins anywhere, let alone Pembrokeshire!
When are there puffins on Skomer Island?
Puffins arrive on Skomer Island in April, and stay until August. They can take time to settle, and the best time to see large numbers of puffins is from mid-June to mid-July. They may be considered the island’s main attraction by many, but there’s even more to see! There’s the chance to see manx shearwaters, dolphins, porpoise, seals, razorbills and more incredible flora and fauna on Skomer.
HOW CAN I VISIT SKOMER Island?
If you’re staying on the St Davids Peninsula, there are two ways you can visit Skomer Island.
To land on Skomer, there’s only one place to be, and that’s Martin’s Haven, about an hour’s drive from St Davids. In the past, the boat has always run on a first-come, first-served basis, but it’s now possible to book online. After a 15-minute crossing on the Dale Princess, you can spend hours walking around the island and, of course, puffin spotting!
If you don’t fancy the drive and would like to see Pembrokeshire puffins from the sea, then you can take a boat trip from St Justinians, home to St Davids lifeboat station. Falcon Boats run trips to Skomer and are a fantastic option.
Is there anything I need to know about landing on Skomer?
Like anywhere that’s home to so much wildlife, there are some things to bear in mind when visiting Skomer Island. Here are a few, and make sure to have a read of the advice when booking your trip.
- As it’s home to puffins, rabbits and shearwater, there isn’t much of Skomer that hasn’t been burrowed. This means it’s very important to stick to the designated paths.
- Dress appropriately for whatever weather you’re likely to encounter, and wear good footwear for walking.
- Dogs are not allowed on Skomer.
- A certain level of fitness is required, as there are 87(!) steps that lead up from the jetty, and the ground is uneven.
- There aren’t any cafe facilities on the island (although you can buy water) so make sure to pack a picnic!