What's on

There is lots to do on the island, so please revisit these listings as new events are added.

ongoing to october

Persabus Pottery: Pottery Painting Experiences at Persabus Pottery. Come and explore your creativity with one of our 'pottery painting takeaways' or why not book a painting session in our new Creative Studio. The pottery is open Tuesday to Friday 12 noon to 4pm and Saturday 12 noon to 3pm. https://www.persabus.co.uk/pottery/pottery-painting-experiences Tel: 01496 840243.

Swimming - Mactaggart Leisure Centre, Bowmore: Please check their website for the full swimming programme MacTaggart Leisure Centre | Leisure Centre and Swimming Pool Bowmore Islay or call 01496 810767 to find out the times of public swims.

RSPB Weekly Guided walks: Every Tuesday at 10am at the Oa Reserve. Join us on a guided walk looking for golden eagles and choughs and enjoy spectacular views from the American Monument.  Meet at Upper Killeyan Car Park (email the.oa@rspb.org.uk or phone 01496 300118 for more details). Every Thursday at 10am meet at Loch Gruinart Reserve. Come with us as we try to catch a glimpse of the elusive hen harrier and listen for the call of the corncrake. Meet at the RSPB visitor centre, Gruinart. (email loch.gruinart@rspb.org.uk or phone 01496 850505 for more details).

Live Music every Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday: Hear local musicians live at the Port Charlotte Hotel every Wednesday and Sunday night (8pm start) and at the Islay Hotel, Port Ellen every Thursday and Saturday night.

An Gleann Cottage Produce: An Gleann Tablet shop reopened for the season on Thursday April 7. This on-site shop sells tablet (a little like fudge if you’ve not tasted) as well as gift bags, tablet mice, range of preserves and comb honey. 

Open daily, including Sundays, from 10am to 5pm. We operate a self-service system with cash payment to our 'honesty box'. If you prefer to pay remotely or you'd like to pre-order for collection have a wee look at our website where you can see our full range of stock. Email, message or give us a call to order and arrange collection. See the An Gleann website.

Weekday afternoons: Islay Natural History Trust, Port Charlotte: Until May 27 the Islay Nature Centre, next to the Youth Hostel in Port Charlotte, will be open between 1pm and 4pm. From May 30 to September 30 it will be open weekdays 10am–4pm. Admission FREE but donations encouraged. Come and see sea creatures in the tanks and learn more about Islay’s flora and fauna.

Family activity sessions July to August (Thursday afternoons) Nature Walks (June to September, Sunday and Thursday afternoons). The centre is fully wheelchair-accessible.

Weekdays – The Museum of Islay Life: The museum in Port Charlotte is open from Monday to Friday 10.30am to 4.30pm. Come on in and see thousands of years of Islay history.


Art workshop, RSPB Loch Gruinart, May 18, 2pm-5pm: Love the amazing Islay scenery? Inspired by the incredible wildlife of this beautiful island? Create your own Islay souvenir and learn some new skills by joining us and local artist Dietmar Finger for an art workshop at Loch Gruinart nature reserve.

Dietmar will guide you through your own sketch at a location around the reserve or in our Visitor Centre, depending on the weather. £30 per person with tuition, refreshments and all materials included. Booking is essential. Limited 4 people per session. Under 16s must be accompanied by an adult. To book and for further information please contact us on 01496 850505 or loch.gruinart@rspb.org.uk.  Download a poster here.

Monday May 23 at 10am, Wednesday May 25 at 2pm: Richard Mansbridge is conducting ‘tours’ of Kilchoman Military Cemetery during this year’s War Graves Week. Duration about 45 mins. Meet by the Old Church at Kilchoman. Please note: there’s about 300m of a sheep field to cross to access the cemetery. NO DOGS allowed.

May 27-June 4 - Feis Ile (Islay Whisky Festival): See the festival website for full programme The Official Website of Fèis Ìle - The Islay Festival (feisile.co.uk). Each distillery has its own day for events, special bottlings etc on particular dates throughout the festival and there are other events organised (some ticketed) throughout the festival. The main events/distillery days are below:

Friday May 27 - Community event at Port Ellen Playing fields

Saturday May 28 - Isle of Jura Fell Race: For those hardy enough – 7 summits, 2,370m of climbing, 28km and only 200 places! Come and cheer them on -  10.30am start. More details available and how to enter on their own website.

Saturday May 28 – Lagavulin Distillery Day

Saturday May 28 – Islay Whisky Academy (IWA) Celtic Tree Lore Tasting 12pm-2pm

Sunday May 29 - Bruichladdich Distillery Day

Monday May 30 - Caol Ila Day and Isle of Islay Gin

Tuesday May 31 - Laphroaig Day and Islay Ales


Wednesday June 1 - Bowmore Day and Ardnahoe Day

Thursday June 2 - Kilchoman, Portnahaven: Islay Whisky Academy (IWA) open day 10am-7pm. Entry to the open day is free. You'll need to book paid-for tickets at these events at the following links:

The Language of Scotch: 10am-11am
Ceòl agus Craic with Neill Murphy: 11am-12pm
Esoteric States: The Alchemy of Distilling: 12pm-1pm
Celtic Cousins Tasting with Cerys Knighton and Ned Gahan: 1pm-2pm
The Enchanting Scotland Show with John McCheyne, Neill Murphy, and Heather Brydon:  2pm-4pm 

Friday June 3 - Bunnahabhain Distillery Day/Jura Distillery Day/Lussa Gin (Jura)/Deer Island Rum (Jura)

Saturday June 4 - Ardbeg Day


Saturday August 6 - Ardbeg Islay Half Marathon: The Ardbeg Islay Half Marathon started in 1986 and involves a 13 mile, 192 yard run from the village of Bowmore on the Isle of Islay out to Islay Airport and back in a circular route. The run takes place amongst some of the most beautiful scenery that you will ever see! Visit the website for more details Islay Half Marathon

Thursday August 11Islay Agricultural show at Bridgend Show-field: The Islay, Jura and Colonsay Agricultural Show held its very first meeting on the last day of July in 1838. The object of the Association was to curate the advancement of agriculture generally and in particular within the islands of Islay, Jura and Colonsay. This was to be achieved by means of shows, demonstrations, lectures, subscriptions for research work, with the awarding of prizes and premiums or otherwise as the Association may decide from time to time.


Lagavulin Jazz Festival: This event is still to be confirmed – Please check their website for more information and programme when available.