Osprey Cruises 2016!

It may be October, but we are already planning ahead for next season, and have decided on the dates for the 2016 Osprey Cruises!

Osprey and wildlife cruises are an absolutely brilliant way of seeing Rutland Water and appreciating its scenery and wildlife interest. Even when Ospreys are not visible, there is so much more to look at and learn about. Last season, we ran 18 cruises, working in partnership with the Rutland Belle, and at least one Osprey was seen on each cruise (sometimes there were up to six all at once!). Frequently, the birds flew incredibly close to the boat, and we witnessed Ospreys diving and catching fish numerous times. It is not surprising that these cruises are very popular!

Osprey with fish, photo by Bob Moore

Osprey with fish, taken on a cruise in July 2015. Photo by Bob Moore.


We run both afternoon and dawn cruises, from May to August each year. Sailing at that time of year maximises our chances of seeing Ospreys, as they will be out more frequently, catching enough fish to feed their growing chicks. The peak in Osprey fishing activity is early in the morning, or in the early evening, hence why we choose to sail at these times. Afternoon cruises begin with an introductory talk by a member of the Osprey team at the Anglian Water Birdwatching Centre, accompanied by hot drinks and biscuits, then we drive to Whitwell Harbour and board the Rutland Belle for a cruise that lasts an hour and a half. Dawn cruises begin at 6am, when the Rutland Belle leaves promptly from Whitwell. On our return, there is a fabulous cooked breakfast waiting for us at the Anglian Water Birdwatching Centre!

As the cruises are popular and get fully booked very fast, it is recommended that you book well in advance. You can book your tickets anytime from now onwards! Click here to see the list of dates, and links to book tickets. You can also buy vouchers that are not date specific – these make brilliant Christmas and birthday presents, and they can be made out specially in someone’s name. Click here for more information about vouchers.

For more detailed information about Osprey Cruises, click here!


Osprey with fish, photo by John Wright

Normanton Church, photo by Paul Stammers

Normanton Church from the Rutland Belle, photo by Paul Stammers

The Rutland Belle

The Rutland Belle