Scotland Slowly Cruise

11 Days from
$7,395 USD
Ship Trip
Highlights

Highlights

  • Appreciate Scotland's picturesque shorelines and fascinating maritime heritage
  • Wander among monuments at the heart of the Neolithic Ornkey UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Marvel at the largest collection of prehistoric megalithic structures in western Europe
  • Experience island life on Foula in the Shetlands
  • View the largest seabird colony in the United Kingdom at the cliffs of St. Kilda
Map

Map

Map for Scotland Slowly Cruise

Tour Overview

In the isles of Scotland, the past is present. Music, dancing, and stories. Rugged ruins. Ancient villages. Soaring seabirds. Visit mystical, coastal Scotland by ship!

Scotland, like good whisky, is best savoured slowly. Nature and culture thrive on the isles. Hear music and stories. Revel in wildlife. Absorb the scenery. Immerse yourself in history.

Explore in comfort aboard the Ocean Endeavour. Visit historic Glasgow, the Western Isles, Pentland Firth, Orkney, the Shetland islands, and Aberdeen. Learn from Scottish experts as we go.

Scotland is spectacular in springtime. June is breeding season for birds. Search for whales on a Zodiac outing. Meet the locals and get a glimpse of island life. Raise a dram at world-famous distilleries. Wander among Neolithic ruins. Explore sea caves and bird cliffs. Savour Scotland—slowly.

Departures & Cabins

DEPARTURES & CABINS

This cruise runs bi-annually, on every odd year.

What's Included

Tour Price Includes

  • Passage aboard the Ocean Endeavour
  • Applicable taxes and credit card fees
  • Complimentary expedition jacket
  • Contribution to Adventure Canada’s Discovery Fund
  • Special access permits, entry, and park fees
  • Expert expedition team
  • Guided activities
  • Sightseeing and community visits
  • All Zodiac excursions
  • Port fees
  • Pre-departure materials
  • Educational program
  • Interactive workshops
  • Evening entertainment
  • All shipboard meals

Tour Price Does Not Include

  • Commercial and charter flights
  • Program enhancements/optional excursions
  • Gratuities
  • Personal expenses
  • Mandatory medical evacuation insurance
  • Additional expenses in the event of delays or itinerary changes
  • Possible fuel surcharges and administrative fees
  • Pre- and post-trip hotel accommodation

Itinerary

This cruise runs bi-annually, on every odd year.

Day 1: Glasgow/Greenock, Scotland

After meeting in Glasgow we’ll depart via coach, and travel onward to Greenock. Greenock has a rich maritime history and was a major shipbuilding and import centre. Here, we'll board the Ocean Endeavour, our home for the next ten nights.

George Street with St George's Tron Church of Scotland in downtown Glasgow, Scotland.

Day 2: Islay

Explore the renowned Loch Finlaggan Historic Site, tucked away in the enchanting Islay, also known as the Queen of the Hebrides. Immerse yourself in the rich history and heritage of the region. Indulge in the stories of Scottish nobility at the ancient seat of the Lord of the Isles and Clan Donald in the Finlagglan Castle. Delve into its captivating past and marvel at the artefacts on display in the site's museum.

If you’re a Scotch lover (and who isn’t?), take the opportunity to enhance your journey with an optional excursion to the world-renowned whisky distilleries that the island is famous for.

Whisky barrels on Isle of Islay

Day 3: Iona And Staffa

Visit Iona, where St. Columba established his monastery—the burial place of kings. Admire the beautifully restored Iona Abbey complex, which preserves two outstanding crosses dating as far back as the eighth century.

Take a Zodiac cruise at the Isle of Staffa, famed for basaltic formations and numerous caves, the best-known being Fingal’s Cave.

See for yourself why it is originally known in Gaelic as “the melodious cave” and provided the inspiration for Mendelssohn’s overture, The Hebrides.

Basalt rock formation inside Fingal's Cave on the island of Staffa

Day 4: Skye

Whether you’re a hiker, photographer, or birder, you will love a visit to Skye.

Cruise the southwestern shore of this large island keeping a keen eye out for species like common sandpiper, oystercatcher, gannets, and razorbills. Delight in the opportunity to witness these remarkable creatures in their natural environment and add unique sightings to your birdwatching list.

Immerse yourself in the beauty of Skye's mountainous landscapes and choose the level of activity that suits you best for a walk, hike, or trek among the awe-inspiring Cuillin Hills, one of Britain's finest mountainscapes.

View of The Black Cuillins from Loch Coruisk, Isle of Skye, Scotland.

Day 5: 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.

Seabirds thrive on the island of Hirta, which is also home to feral sheep left by the departing islanders. Enormous cliffs offer dramatic ocean views for our hikers!

St. Kilda

Day 6: Stornoway, Lewis

Visit Stornoway on the Isle of Lewis, a Gaelic stronghold and the capital of the largest of the Hebrides. Browse charming shops to purchase the island’s famous tweed.

Meander through one of Britain’s most important Stone Age sites, Callanish’s standing stones, which are said to be giants who were punished by St. Kieran for refusing to convert to Christianity.

Experience the living history at Gearrannan Blackhouse Village, where you can learn about a typical crofting township of the last century. Explore the blackhouses and traditional activities, including the weaving of the famous Harris Tweed.

Discover Dun Carloway Broch, a uniquely Scottish site perched on a rocky mound. See this ancient structure, standing at an impressive nine metres tall.

Scotland Slowly Cruise

Days 7 - 8: Papa Stour and Foula

Explore the rugged coastline and spot flourishing marine and bird life among Papa Stour’s cliffs, caves, sea stacks, and blowholes on a Zodiac cruise.

Call in at sweet and petite Foula, twenty-three kilometres west of the Shetland Islands, home to just a few dozen folks, many of whom preserve traditional methods of agriculture and subsistence.

Keep an eye out for the Arctic terns, red-throated divers, and great skuas that may be found here.

Papa Stour © Larry Frank

Day 9: Fair Isle

Journey to charming Fair Isle, once a Viking hub and now an idyllic island colony of artists and shepherds.

Keep your binoculars handy to spot some of the 350 bird species that the island boasts, including puffins and great skuas in substantial numbers.

Take a tour of the local museum, dedicated to preserving the island's heritage.

Atlantic Puffins, Fair Isle, Shetland

Day 10: Kirkwall, Orkney

Wander through the stone walls of the Heart of Neolithic Orkney, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, where you’ll find the 4,000-year-old Ring of Brodgar.

Tour the Hall of Clestrain, childhood home of Arctic explorer John Rae. In Kirkwall, let yourself be captivated by the city’s sights, dominated by the massive St. Magnus Cathedral dating back to 1137.

Experience its lively pubs, vibrant music scene, fabulous shopping opportunities, and thriving artisan community.

Step back 5,000 years to the Neolithic village of Skara Brae. Considered one of the most important Neolithic ruins in Europe today, wander the well-preserved stone houses and learn what daily life was like here.

Orkney, Scotland - People visiting the stone remains of the Neolithic village of Skara Brae, on the Orkney coast.

Day 11: Aberdeen, Scotland

Complete your journey by disembarking in Aberdeen.

Many of the historic stone buildings here are made of locally quarried granite; high in mica, they can sparkle like silver. The city is also famed for its forty-five parks, gardens, and floral displays.

Say your farewells in this modern city that retains its old-world charm.

The Mercat Cross is located in the Center of Aberdeen

What to Expect

Our small ship Scotland Slowly cruise program allows you to experience the best of the natural world, while enjoying the comforts of our friendly floating hotel. The ship generally makes crossing between islands at night, so every morning you awake to new vistas and discoveries. Every day we offer a combination of interesting shore excursions and fun shipboard activities. You can choose which elements of the program you want to participate in.

This expedition cruise necessitates passengers to be in reasonably good health. Zodiac cruises and transfer times can be lengthy. You must be able to climb stairs between decks on the ship, as well as the external gangway stairs to transfer between the zodiac and ship.

Some of our shore landings will be ‘wet’, requiring waterproof boots. Once you have left the zodiac, you’ll find our shore excursions accommodate both those who wish to enjoy a gentle stroll and those who prefer more active hikes. The excursion may involve walking over uneven or sandy terrain in variable weather conditions. Our onboard specialists will join us on these shore excursions to provide interpretation and narration to these wonderful landscapes and experiences.

Each evening we will gather in the lounge to recount the day’s events and share memorable stories. Our onboard musician will provide some lively entertainment during happy hour and the expedition leader will outline the following day’s schedule. Our resource staff of naturalists, historians, and other guest speakers will give informative talks at various times throughout the voyage.

Meals in the ship’s dining room are a great opportunity to meet new friends and recount the day’s adventures. Special diets can be accommodated with advance notice. Safety is also a top priority with Eagle-Eye Tours – our team has extensive experience in the field, and all of our Voyages are run in conjunction with operators with the highest safety standards.

When the ship is underway, it is a wonderful time to join a naturalist on deck, take photos of the stunning scenery, or get caught up on some reading in the library.

Weather, ice, government regulations, and community requests may necessitate changes to the planned itineraries and/or the cancellation of certain shore excursions and enhancements. Published itineraries are examples only and we reserve the right to change or modify the itinerary and landing sites at any time prior or during an expedition. Changes will be communicated at your expedition orientation or during your onboard expedition briefings.

We know that everyone travels for different reasons. Over the years, however, we have found one common element among the guest who choose to travel with us – a thirst of knowledge and authentic experience. Knowing this drives us to ensure the highest quality learning experience on our trips, by taking time to carefully design each trip we offer.

Ship & Deck Plan

Ocean Endeavour

Ocean Endeavour

Sailing with a maximum of 198-passengers, Ocean Endeavour is the perfect vessel for expedition cruising. Outfitted with twenty Zodiacs, advanced navigation equipment, multiple lounges and a top deck observation room, she is purpose-built for passenger experiences in remote environments. The Ocean Endeavour boasts a 1B ice class, enabling her to freely explore throughout the Arctic summer.

Launched in 1982, she has had numerous upgrades, most recently in 2010 and 2014. At 137 meters (450ft) in length, Ocean Endeavour has plenty of interior and exterior space. Enjoy multiple decks offering comfortable lounge chairs, outdoor dining, a swimming pool, sauna and even a hot tub! The spacious interiors allow for multiple workshops and presentations to occur simultaneously. Community is at the heart of Adventure Canada’s expedition experience. We gather together to learn, enjoy a drink, sing a song or share a yarn – connecting with one and other. The three lounges aboard Ocean Endeavour are fantastic public spaces for seminars, events and dialogue.

The Ocean Endeavour’s private spaces are stylish and comfortable. All cabins have private washroom facilities, a phone for internal calls, radio, TV and air-conditioning.

Ocean Endeavour’s crew is experienced, and friendly. Her shallow draft and maneuverability allow her to access isolated fiords, bays and secluded communities. The stylish vessel is at home among the glorious settings we seek. Enjoy the class and comfort of a boutique hotel, while venturing to some of the world’s last great frontiers aboard the Ocean Endeavour!

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