Scotland: Highlights of Orkney and Shetland
Sail away to lands steeped in history, wildlife and stunning scenery, far from the jostling crowds to the haunting beauty of the Orkney and Shetland Isles. Many people have landed there before you - some as early as 3000 BC. Most famous of all were the Vikings, but they were not alone and all around you will find historical treasures. Both islands, but particularly Shetland, in summer have virtually no darkness and the beauty of this ‘Simmer Dim’, as it is called locally, has to be seen to be realised. Both Orkney and Shetland have their own identity, Orkney being very green and fertile while Shetland has a more rugged cliff and sea loch scenery. Both however share a colourful history of Picts, Norsemen, ancient antiquities, buried treasure and seafaring legends, bound up with an independent spirit that makes them quite different from the rest of Scotland.
We sail with Serco Northlink Ferries and their modern, purpose-built vessels, from Aberdeen overnight to Lerwick. We then have two full days to tour Shetland. After rejoining the ship for an evening sailing to Kirkwall, we have a further two full days touring Orkney, before our short crossing back to the mainland.
Upgrade to an outside cabin (supplement £55pp) and enjoy sea views from the comfort of your cabin.
NC500: Please note that this itinerary features part of the North Coast 500, the highly scenic coastal route around the north of Scotland which begins and ends in Inverness.
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What to Expect
- Spectacular sea cliffs at Eshaness
- Multitudes of seabirds at Sumburgh Head (May-July)
- The multi-period settlement of Jarlshof
- Neolithic Orkney – a UNESCO World Heritage Centre
- The Churchill Barriers and Italian Chapel, poignant reminders of more recent history