Bigger, better and even more delicious

They’re sought after by chefs around the world but until fairly recently Scotland’s only wild, native oyster fishery, hidden beneath the crystal clear waters of Loch Ryan, was a well-kept seafood secret.

Stranraer Oyster Festival has shone a spotlight on this delicious seafood delicacy, making Scottish native oysters accessible and easy to try and enjoy during this three-day foodie celebration.

The Festival returns for its third year from 13-15 September, and despite being relatively new to the food festival scene, it has quickly become established as one of Scotland’s most exciting foodie experiences.

The Festival marks the start of the native oyster season, which opens on 1st September, and the crew of oyster boat the Vital Spark will be on a two week race to gather the thousands of oysters needed for our chefs, competitors and visitors.

Native oysters used to be common around Scotland’s coast but they’ve been harvested to near extinction everywhere except Loch Ryan. Stranraer Oyster Festival celebrates not just the oysters, but the local produce and locally caught seafood of the delicious south west. Other tempting foodie treats in the Entertainment Marquee include a range of pies from the current winner of the World Champion Scotch Pie award and award-winning gin from local Crafty Distillery.

This year’s packed programme includes celebrity chef demonstrations by Tony Singh, the Scottish Oyster Shucking Championships, and an Oyster Eating Competition for those whose preference is enjoying them rather than preparing them! For our younger visitors, our children’s marquee has a non-stop programme of entertainment, things to make and things to learn.

So regardless of whether you’re an oyster aficionado or you prefer a more grounded eating experience, there will be plenty to whet your appetite at Stranraer Oyster Festival – and it’s the perfect way to prepare for Scotland’s Year of Coast and Waters celebrations taking place next year too!


Friday Evening

Stranraer Oyster Festival opens with a bang as the oysters are piped ashore in an opening ceremony that includes an ‘Ode to the Oysters’ plus live music, street food and fireworks.  Our twilight market is packed with tasty treats and gorgeous gifts to buy. Those with tickets can enjoy ‘An Audience with Tony Singh’, an exclusive opportunity to chat to Tony over canapes and prosecco. Our late bar means that our visitors can relax with family and friends until midnight.


The Festival programme is packed with chef demonstrations , the entertainment marquee hosts the fast and furious Scottish Shucking Championships, there’s an artisan market to explore, an oyster bar to try and Extreme Pond Dipping will introduce you to the creatures that live at the bottom of the sea loch! Those with tickets can dance the night away at The Big Oyster Bash.


The Oyster Eating Competition is your opportunity to take to the stage to see whether you’ll be crowned Festival Oyster Eating Champion 2019!  Or if you’re not quite sure about oysters just yet, oyster expert, Tristan Hughes Jones, will be leading a fascinating event, “All about Oysters” to gently introduce you to this fascinating seafood subject.  There’s also another packed day of chef demos, kids activities and live music before the Festival closes on Sunday evening. .

Stay a while!

Why not make a weekend of it with a stay at one of our many excellent local hotels, B&Bs, caravan or camping sites.? There are many options here   If you need any help with your accommodation please email us at

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Stranraer Oyster Festival runs from Friday 13th – Sunday 15th September 2019.

Weekend tickets (Fri-Sun) cost £5, daily tickets £3 and under 12s go free. Additional charges apply for selected events.

For tickets, special offers and programme information visit