Do I need to book?
Booking in advance is highly recommended, especially during the peak holiday periods as demand is high and we have a maximum number of 12 seats on our boat.
How do I book?
The easiest way to book a trip in advance is to call us on 01381 600323. We will let you know the trip departure times for the dates you are interested in. For a confirmed booking we require a contact telephone number and a credit or debit card number to hold the seats. This is purely as a security – your card will not be debited until the day of departure however it does mean that the seats will be held for you and you will then be subject to our booking terms and conditions. Should you not wish to provide a credit or debit card number to hold your booking you can choose to pay in full for your trip at the time of booking.
Can I book online?
You can enquire about trip times and availability online using our Contact Us form. Please provide as much information as possible, including your telephone number and email address, along with your preferred trip date, the number of seats you require, both adult and children, the age of any children and any other special requirements that you may have. We will then reply with the information requested. If you decide you would like to make a confirmed booking, we require either a credit or debit card number to hold your seats which must be taken over the telephone as we do not have a secure payment service on our website.
Do I need to be at the centre earlier than the boat departs?
Please ensure you arrive at the centre at least 10 minutes prior to your departure time. This will allow the boat to depart on time.
Do you ever cancel trips?
Occasionally it is necessary to cancel trips. Your safety is our primary concern and if we feel weather conditions on the day are unsuitable we will cancel the sailing. Unfortunately local weather conditions can sometimes change rapidly and trips may have to be cancelled at short notice.
What happens if my trip is cancelled?
If EcoVentures cancels your trip for any reason, any payment you have made for your boat trip will be refunded in full, or if you prefer, we will try, where possible to accommodate you on the next available trip that suits.
What happens if I don’t turn up or cancel my trip after making a confirmed booking??
If you have made a confirmed booking and then fail to appear for the trip or cancel less than 48 hours prior to departure you will be charged in full for the seats you have booked. We understand that there are sometimes genuine reasons for being unable to honour a booking particularly if the booking is made well in advance. If you inform EcoVentures as soon as possible of any difficulties we will endeavour to resell your tickets for you however we cannot guarantee that this will be possible, especially at short notice.
Will I get seasick?
Generally people do not tend to get sick due to the fresh air, the greater stability of RIBs and the lower centre of gravity. However if you are at all concerned then you may wish to take motion sickness tablets.
What if I’m pregnant or have a back problem?
Unfortunately we cannot accommodate those who are pregnant or have back problems. Even on seemingly calm days, the weather can change suddenly or unpredictable wave motions occur. For that reason we don’t recommend the trips for anyone with either of these conditions.
When do you operate?
Scheduled sailings are available from the beginning of April until the end of October, weather permitting. Outside this period please contact us to check availability or to discuss the possibility of an out of season charter.
What should I wear?
Full waterproofs, goggles, headbands and lifejackets are provided on our trips but you are more than welcome to bring your own hat and gloves. (Please note gloves are not provided.) To ensure a comfortable trip we would recommend dressing warmly with a windproof layer, as even during summer travelling at speeds of 25 knots can prove to be somewhat cold. Trainers or other forms of non-slip footwear are recommended. No high heels!
Is the trip suitable for people with reduced mobility?
While we make every effort to accommodate a range of disabilities the style of seating on board the vessel is such that a degree of agility and balance is required. Please contact us directly and we will be happy to discuss your individual requirements in more detail.
Can I take a camera?
Passengers are free to take cameras aboard however they do so entirely at their own risk. We would recommend that if you are intending to take a camera that you protect it in a suitable waterproof pouch. A small disposable waterproof camera is probably the safest option.
When is the best time of year to see Dolphins?
The Bottlenose Dolphins are resident here and can be seen all year round.
Is there a better time of day to do a tour?
There is no better time of day to view the wildlife and our sightings rate is not influenced by tides. Unlike shore based watching we are not dependent upon the dolphins coming in to feed at a particular point, we are able to cover a large amount of ground on our trips and take in as many of the dolphins’ favourite spots as we can. You have the same chance of spotting animals on any of our trips – just choose the time that suits you best and keep your fingers crossed!
Can you guarantee sightings?
Although we are fortunate to see a variety of wildlife on most of our trips we can never guarantee sightings 100%. The birds and animals we encounter are entirely wild – they are not fed or trained. Sometimes we must be content with just a glimpse or the knowledge that these animals are not there simply for our pleasure but are free to go about as they please.
Is the trip suitable for children?
Yes, generally children enjoy the thrill of this type of trip and find the mix of wildlife watching and the boat ride itself a great combination. Younger children between the ages of 5 and 7 years must each be accompanied by an adult.
Can I take my dog?
No. This trip is not suitable for dogs, but we can recommend someone locally who can look after your dog while you are out on the trip.
Where can I stay?
Do you offer Gift Vouchers for trips?
We have Gift Vouchers available for Wildlife Watch trips or for Private Charters, both of which make an ideal gift for that special occasion. Vouchers come complete with booking information and a brochure, are valid for one year from date of issue and can be personalised and sent direct to the recipient if desired. Payment can be taken either by credit or debit card over the telephone or online via our Vouchers page.
Where can I park?
Free, unrestricted on street parking is available outside our booking office and throughout Cromarty.