SCOTLAND SLOWLY Cruise
DATES & RATES
October 2 to October 12, 2019
From $4,670 to $12,830 USD
Single Supplement: No single supplement on a limited quantity of cabins in categories 3 to 7!
Once these cabins are sold, the single supplement fee is 1.5 times the berth cost.
DAY 1 ~ GLASGOW
The bustling metropolis of Glasgow is the economic engine of Scotland—and an architectural delight. You’ll find Italianate steeples, neo-Gothic towers, the Art Nouveau of Charles Rennie Mackintosh and the titanium, glass and steel of contemporary buildings.
We depart Glasgow via coach—and travel onward to Greenock, where we'll meet the Ocean Endeavour, our home for the next ten nights.
DAY 2 ~ ISLAY
The Queen of the Hebrides, Islay is the southernmost of the Inner Hebrides. This island lies only forty kilometres from the Irish coast. Islay is a haven for seabirds, thanks to the warming effects of the Gulf Stream.
Islay is world-famous for fine whisky, thanks to clear waters, fine peat, and barley. The capital of Islay is Bowmore, known for its distilleries and is home of the Bowmore Round Kirk.
DAY 3 ~ IONA & STAFFA
The isle of Staffa is famed for basaltic formations and numerous caves. The best known of these is Fingal’s Cave, a spectacular geological feature named for the Celtic hero. Originally known in Gaelic as “the melodious cave”, it provided the inspiration for Mendelssohn’s overture, The Hebrides.
St. Columba established his monastery at nearby Iona—the burial place of kings. The restored Iona Abbey complex preserves two outstanding eighth-century crosses and a splendid collection of sculpture.
DAY 4 ~ ISLE OF SKYE
This is a fabulous day for birders, photographers, and hikers. En route to the Isle of Skye, we sail by the cliffs at Lunga, where razorbills, guillemots, and puffins make their nests.
We will cruise the southwestern shore of Skye to visit Loch Coruisk, a freshwater loch accessed through Loch Scavaig. Here we find one of the finest mountainscapes in Britain, backed by the Cullin Mountains. We will hike the western shore and revel in the view.
DAY 5 ~ MINGULAY
Mingulay has been uninhabited by humans since 1912. Instead, puffins, guillemots, kittiwakes, shags, fulmars, razorbills, eagles, and peregrine falcons make their homes here.
A large natural arch, towering cliffs, and dramatic sea stacks are found at Mingulay. The island inspired the “Mingulay Boat Song”. Today it is managed by the National Trust.
DAY 6 ~ ST. KILDA
The archipelago known as St. Kilda was inhabited until 1930. Today, St. Kilda is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, protecting fascinating ruins as well as natural heritage features. Enormous cliffs offer dramatic ocean views for our hikers!
Seabirds thrive on the nearby island of Hirta—notably, puffins, fulmars, and the largest gannet colony in Britain (and the second-largest in the world). Hirta is also home to feral sheep left by the departing islanders.
DAY 7 ~ ISLE OF LEWIS
Lewis is the largest of the Hebridean Islands and a Gaelic stronghold. Harris Tweed has its headquarters on Lewis. Its product is hand woven exclusively in the Outer Hebrides by weavers working at home. We’ll visit Stornoway, the island’s capital.
On the west side of Lewis is Callanish, one of Britain’s most important Stone Age sites. Callanish’s standing stones are said to be giants who were punished by St. Kieran for refusing to convert to Christianity.
DAY 8 ~ KIRKWALL, ORKNEY
At the Heart of Neolithic Orkney, a UNESCO World Heritage site, we’ll find the 4,000-year-old Ring of Brodgar—the third-largest standing stone circle in the UK, predating Stonehenge.
Kirkwall is dominated by the massive Magnus Cathedral, dating from 1137. This is the final resting place of the famed Orcadian Arctic explorer, John Rae.
DAY 9 ~ PAPA STOUR & FOULA
Marine and bird life flourish at Papa Stour among cliffs, caves, sea stacks, and blowholes. There are numerous Neolithic burial sites, as well as Norse Ruins.
Twenty-three kilometres west of the Shetland Islands, Foula is the most remote inhabited island in the UK. Here, a few dozen folk make their homes, many preserving traditional methods of agriculture and subsistence. Arctic terns, red-throated loons, and great skuas may be found here.
DAY 10 ~ MOUSA
A fine birding island, uninhabited Mousa is home to a Special Protection Area (SPA) for breeding storm petrels. It is also the site of the best preserved broch in the world. These fortified structures are unique to Scotland. The Mousa broch dates to the Iron Age and is mentioned in two Norse sagas. Its original purpose is a matter of debate and speculation.
DAY 11 ~ ABERDEEN
The Ocean Endeavour arrives in Aberdeen in the morning. You may choose to extend your stay in Scotland, take part in one of our optional extensions, or make your way home from here.
END OF CRUISE
It’s all about the islands
The Shetlands, the Orkneys, and the Hebrides offer a glimpse of Scottish island life, where crofters and fisherfolk live close to the sea.
Travel in comfort aboard the Ocean Endeavour to Scotland’s farthest-flung islands
Make landings by Zodiac in places otherwise inaccessible to visitors
History and archaeology—everywhere!
History buffs will wander wide-eyed in Scotland. From Neolithic villages to medieval castles, Scotland is a living testament to a rich and layered history
Visit archeological ruins including standing stones, brochs, ancient complexes, and castles
English, Scots, Norse, Pictish, and Neolithic cultures all made their mark in Scotland
Astounding sea life
Scotland’s rocky coastlines attract millions of seabirds, including puffins—and the rich waters of the North Atlantic and North Sea are favoured by numerous species of whales.
Spring conditions are excellent for viewing seabirds and spotting marine mammals
Fine Scotch straight from the source
Small distilleries are famed the world over as some of Scotland’s most enduring attractions. Among the islands, where fresh water and characteristic peat and found in plenty, numerous Scotch distillers ply their unique trade. Visit distilleries dating to the 1700s, and sample their glorious fare!
Passage aboard the Ocean Endeavour
Applicable taxes and Credit card fees Complimentary Expedition jacket (Ocean Endeavour only)
Contribution to Adventure Canada's Discovery Fund
Special access permits, entry and park fees Team of expedition staff
Sightseeing and community visits All Zodiac excursions
Educational program Nikon Camera Trial Program
All shipboard meals
Commercial & charter flights
Program Enhancements/optional excursions
Mandatory medical evacuation insurance
Additional expenses in the event of delays or itinerary changes
Possible fuel surcharges
Pre- & post-trip hotel accommodation