Colonsay is served by a CalMac Ferries Ltd. ferry service from the port of Oban seven times a week in summer, three times a week in winter. The journey takes two and a quarter hours, passing between the mainland and the islands of Kererra and Mull and then sailing south and west past the islands of Seil, Luing, Scarba and Jura. A scheduled air service operates twice daily, Tuesdays and Thursdays, from Connel (by Oban) including a link via Islay. This service is operated by Hebridean Air Services.
With an abundance of varied habitats, Colonsay has an enormous range of bird life making it a firm favourite with naturalists and environmentalists. The Corncrake, one of Britain’s rarest birds, is probably the islands most famous avian resident and is part of the reason for the RSPB’s permanent presence, but the list of resident and visiting birds include many more rarities. The dramatic cliffs of the western coast are home to enormous colonies of seabirds, notably fulmars, guillemots, razorbills, kittiwakes, shags and all types of gull. The beaches and rocky inlets support colonies of ringed plover, terns, oystercatchers and eiders amongst others.
The central part of the island, especially the Kiloran valley, with over 500 species including Sea Samphire and Marsh Helleborine and the very rare Orchis, Spiranthes Romanzoffiana, has, possibly, the greatest variety of flora in the Hebrides. The woodland garden at Colonsay House is also considered to be one of the finest rhododendron gardens in Scotland. Such botanical resources provide a rich and inspirational larder for any gin maker.