A Puffin Peers From It's Burrow This Image Was Captured By Ian Roberts During A Natureslens Photography Holiday

Exploring the Picture-Perfect World of the Puffins of Skomer Island

Article written by David Miles illustrated with images contributed by Pui Hang Miles.

Nestled in the Welsh waters, the breathtaking Skomer Island is a haven like no other. The island is composed of steep cliffs, & lush green grassland & is home to several native inhabitants. Amongst the impressive array of wildlife, the Puffins of Skomer Island are the most well-known; the island is world-renowned for its large population of Atlantic Puffins. These irresistibly charming birds are known for their distinct patterning & endearing expressions.

A Puffin Stretches It's Wings, Illuminated From Behind By The Rising Sun This Image Was Captured By Ian Roberts During The Natureslens Welsh Puffins Of Skomer Island Photography Holiday

If you've been searching for an opportunity to photograph these delightful birds in their natural habitat, then Skomer Island is the place for you. From the panoramic vistas to the abundant birdlife, this picturesque location has something for everyone. Whether you're an avid wildlife photographer or want to explore this unique island's unspoiled beauty, visiting the Skomer Island Puffins will surely provide a memorable experience.

An Introduction to Skomer Island


A paradise of wildlife & unspoiled natural beauty, Skomer Island is a picture-perfect haven for capturing images of puffins & other seabirds.

One Of The Puffins Returns To It's Burrow With A Beak Full Of Sand Eels This Image Was Captured By Ian Roberts During The Natureslens Welsh Puffins Of Skomer Island Photography Holiday

Skomer Island, located off the coast of , is a dreamscape for nature lovers & wildlife photographers alike. This picturesque, rugged island is home to an array of fascinating flora & fauna, with a thriving & diverse population of seabirds, including the Storm Petrel, Guillemot & . But when it comes to awe-inspiring birds on Skomer Island, the highlight is undoubtedly the colonies of Atlantic puffins which make Skomer Island home for the summer months.

A Puffin Flies In, Illuminated From Behind By The Evening Sun This Image Was Captured By Ian Roberts During The Natureslens Welsh Puffins Of Skomer Island Photography Holiday

The colourful Skomer Island puffins are the stars of this Welsh island paradise & draw visitors worldwide each year. During the summer months, these charismatic birds can be seen in their thousands, dotting the island with their unmistakable brightly-coloured beaks & eye patches.

A Pair Of Puffins Bathed In Soft Light This Image Was Captured By Ian Roberts During The Natureslens Welsh Puffins Of Skomer Island Photography Holiday

For birdwatchers & wildlife photographers alike, exploring the breathtaking landscape of Skomer Island & watching the puffins in their natural habitat is an unforgettable experience. From their nesting grounds on the rocky clifftops to gliding gracefully over the crystal-clear waters, it's easy to see why these captivating creatures have become the emblem of Skomer Island.

A Puffin Illuminated By The Evening Sun This Image Was Captured By Ian Roberts During The Natureslens Welsh Puffins Of Skomer Island Photography Holiday

Puffin Photography on Skomer

Picture-perfect photographs of puffins in their natural habitat abound on Skomer Island, the scenic Welsh island off the coast of Pembrokeshire.


A Puffin Returns To The Island, Illuminated From Behind By The Evening Sun This Image Was Captured By Ian Roberts During The Natureslens Welsh Puffins Of Skomer Island Photography Holiday

Puffin photography is one of the most popular activities for visitors to Skomer Island. Every summer, the island hosts thousands of these iconic birds, who return from the sea around May to nest on the cliffs above the island's secluded coves. The area known as The Wick is particularly suitable for photographing the puffins on Skomer, where their nests can be found within a few feet of the paths.

One Of The Atlantic Puffins Illuminated By The Evening Sun This Image Was Captured By Ian Roberts During The Natureslens Welsh Puffins Of Skomer Island Photography Holiday

To get the best images, photographers should attempt to capture the distinctive character of the puffins of Skomer Island, which closely resemble a group of tuxedoed gentlemen all sporting a striking white facial stripe. You may even get lucky enough to spot a puffling – the young offspring of a puffin – or two!

One Of The Puffins Rests With A Beak Full Of Sand Eels This Image Was Captured By Ian Roberts During The Natureslens Welsh Puffins Of Skomer Island Photography Holiday

Skomer also offers fantastic other wildlife, such as rabbits, guillemots, razorbills & seals, so there are plenty of photo opportunities to capture the island's stunning beauty while visiting Skomer.

The Best Time to Visit Skomer Island


April marks the beginning of the puffin season on Skomer Island when the birds arrive on the island, build their burrows & re-pair. Here, it's common to spot them strutting around, enjoying the brief sunshine of the Welsh summer. This is also when they engage in interesting breeding behaviours, such as a special courtship ritual where puffins will face each other & bob their heads up & down.

One Of The Puffins Against The Sea Illuminated By The Setting Sun This Image Was Captured By Ian Roberts During The Natureslens Welsh Puffins Of Skomer Island Photography Holiday

The island's population increases exponentially in June as the new puffling chicks explore the surrounding rocks & waters. It's best to come as close to this time as possible, as this is often when the puffin's activity is at its highest.

One Of The Island's Puffins With It's Wings Illuminated From Behind This Image Was Captured By Ian Roberts During The Natureslens Welsh Puffins Of Skomer Island Photography Holiday

As the season progresses into July, the pufflings are ready to fledge the nest & the adults will be catching fish to store up for the winter. With puffin chicks leaving the burrows on the island & parents fishing in the waters, this brief period offers a unique time to capture images of the island's inhabitants.

Overnight Accommodation on Skomer Island


For visitors who want an overnight stay on Skomer Island, the converted farm buildings in the centre of the island offer a comfortable base to return to, where you can relax & relish your puffin-filled memories.

The lodge offers clean amenities, bedrooms & a comfortable lounge to make your stay as pleasant as possible.

Final Thoughts on Visiting the Puffins on Skomer Island


Skomer Island is a paradise, famed for its resident puffins & breathtaking views. Those seeking photographic opportunities with the iconic seabirds can get up close & personal with the charming creatures, allowing for some truly spectacular photos. With its stunning scenery & plentiful wildlife, time spent on Skomer Island is unforgettable.

A Puffin Stretches It's Wings, Illuminated From Behind By The Light Of The Rising Sun This Image Was Captured By Ian Roberts During The Natureslens Welsh Puffins Of Skomer Island Photography Holiday

Exploring the picture-perfect world of the puffins of Skomer Island in is an experience that should not be missed. Whether you want to learn about puffins, take some stunning photos, or relax in the beautiful surroundings, this magical place has something for everyone. With its breathtaking views & plentiful birdlife, a visit to Skomer Island will be one of the highlights of your holiday.

Which Photo Tours Does NaturesLens Schedule for Photographing the Skomer Island Puffins?


NaturesLens offers a range of photography holidays to photograph the Puffins of Skomer Island designed to allow photographers of all levels to capture the character of these characteristic birds. These trips generally are conducted in May, June & July when the Puffins are most active.

Our photography holidays allow photographers to capture stunning images of the Puffins of Skomer Island as they interact with each other, take flight & waddle around the clifftops. During some of our trips, photographers will also have the opportunity to photograph various species of other wildlife, including Storm Petrels, Guillemots & Razorbills.

At NaturesLens, we aim to provide photographers with an unforgettable experience that will leave them with beautiful, memorable images. Our trips are led by experienced wildlife photographers who are passionate about wildlife photography & are dedicated to helping photographers capture the best images possible.

About the images used in this article


All the images displayed above were taken by Ian Roberts, who has kindly allowed us to use them. Ian leads several of the tours for NaturesLens , with the Skomer trips for being among those he guides for us.

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