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Scottish Sealife Sanctuary

Find Scotland Tours that feature the Scottish Sea Life Sanctuary

Address: Barcaldine, Oban, Argyll PA37 1SE  Tel: 01631 720386
Operated by: Independent
Opening Hours: Opens 10am all year round. Closing times vary depending on the season. 
Closed 25th & 26th December.
Admission: Adult (15+) £13.40
Child (3 - 14) £11 
Concession (60+) £12.20
Family £45

PLEASE NOTE: You can save ~30% on all of these prices by booking online at

Parking: Yes, Free car park.
Languages: English
Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible, but the car park is a rough surface so wheelchair users may need to be dropped off near the entrance before parking.
Toilets: Yes
Shop: Yes
Cafe/Restaurant: Yes


PLEASE NOTE: The sanctuary closed in October 2018 and is unlikely to be re-opening,

Located about 10 miles north of Oban, the Scottish Sea Life Sanctuary is a family attraction that will fill an hour or so of your time. Depending on the time of your visit, you can watch the otters, seals and various fish being fed. The animals are fed at set times so you can go by the timetable below:

11:00 - Otter Feeding
12:00 - Seal feeding
Afternoon Demonstrations and talks at the Shark tank or Giant  Octopus tank.
15:00 - Otter Feeding
16:00 - Seal Feeding

 The otters are probably the most entertaining at meal times as they are really quite excitable and surprisingly good at intercepting their food as it is thrown to them. Below is a clip of the otters, Lewis and Isla, getting a bit impatient about the slow room service at feeding time.


The important purpose of the Sanctuary is to nurse abandoned seal pups so that they may be returned to the wild as soon as possible. There are particular months when the centre is busiest with seal pups and these, as you would expect, coincide with the breeding seasons of the seals. In Scotland, there are two varieties of seal; the Common seal which is the cuter one with the more rounded head, and the Grey seal which has a longer snout. Common seals breed in Summer and Grey Seals breed in early Winter. Consequently, the best times to see seal pups at the Sanctuary are June to August and late September to December.

If the big sad eyes of the seal pups start to tug at your heart strings, you can arrange to adopt one of them and thereby help out with its rehabilitation and return to the wild. There are also 2 resident Common seals that you can meet at the sanctuary so you will also be sure to see some seals even if they aren't quite as cute as the rescued pups. 

In addition to the Seals and Otters, there is a large variety of fish and crustaceans on display in the Aquarium. We found this section to be the most interesting as there are some really unusual and ugly fish to be seen as well as more familiar species that you normally only see on the counter at the fishmonger. An unusual feature of the aquarium is a large circular tank that holds a shoal of Mackerel that continuously swim round the tank like a racetrack.


PLEASE NOTE: You can save around £4 on the admission price if you book your tickets online before arriving at the Sea Life Sanctuary. You may also be able to get a 50% discount voucher if you can get a copy of the "Explore Oban" advertising leaflet that is widely available in retsaurants / hotels and tourist information places around Oban.


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