Callanish Stones at Sunset
Callanish Stones at Sunset

Grand Tour of the Outer Hebrides (6 Days)

6 days From £895

23 July 2019

Our extended tour of the Hebrides has proved extremely popular, offering as it does a unique opportunity to travel the length and breadth of the Western Isles. Our Grand tour takes in all the beauty and diversity of this very special environment with nine or ten different islands (depending on departure) and four ferry trips included. Two comfortable hotels ensure that this holiday is as relaxing as possible while at the same time offering great variety and the sense of a true journey of discovery which will live long in the memory.

What's included?

  •  Accommodation
  •  Services of a professional tour manager
  •  Comfortable coach travel throughout
  •  Meals - as per the itinerary
  •  Ferry crossings
Book Now £955 Deposit: £100 Single supplement: £150

Tour highlights:

  • The unique airport at Cockleshell Beach
  • 5000 year old standing stones
  • The tranquil location of the Norse Mill at Shawbost
  • Four scenic ferry crossings
  • A view of the mist-covered Cuillins as you drive across Skye

Tour details

Dates 23 July 2019 - 28 July 2019
Duration 6 days
Cost £955 Deposit: £100 Single supplement: £150 Balance due by 30 April 2019
Activity Level Moderate
Tour code BWGTO19H

Departure Points

Location Depart Return
Perth 0745 1600
Kinross 0810 1630
Dunfermline 0830 1645
Edinburgh 0900 1715
Glasgow 1045 1830

Subject to minimum numbers, the following pick-up will be served by feeder coach and passengers will join/leave in Perth:

Dundee (Depart) 0715 (Return) 1630

Please note while we are unable to pick up in Inverness on Day 1 we can drop off there on the last day (1200 approx).

Please note all timings are approximate and may be changed. They will be confirmed when the joining instructions are sent out, approximately 10 days prior to departure.

Book Now or call 01334 657155 if you have any questions

23 July 2019: Itinerary

We depart from our designated pick-up points, stopping en-route for refreshments (not included) and travel via Glen Coe, Fort William and Glenfinnan to Mallaig. From here we take the 17.30 ferry to Lochboisdale in South Uist, with dinner served on board. Look out for the Small Isles of Rum and Canna to port and the Cuillin Hills on the Isle of Skye to starboard. On arrival we continue over causeways (keeping a careful eye out for otters) to Benbecula, the ‘stepping stone’ between the Uists, where we arrive in the late evening at our base for the next two nights.

Meals include: Dinner

Hotel: Isle of Benbecula House Hotel

After our full Scottish breakfast we will depart for Barra, travelling via the little island of Eriskay, just three miles long and two miles wide, with a great sandy beach known as Prince Charlie’s Bay – Bonnie Prince Charlie having landed here in July 1745. From Eriskay we make the short ferry crossing to Barra and have a tour of the island, including a visit by boat to Kisimul Castle, the only surviving medieval castle in the Western Isles and the seat of the Clan MacNeil. The castle features a great hall, kitchen, chapel, dungeon and 60-foot tower, together with a shop. We will also visit Cockleshell Beach, the unique runway whose use is governed by the tides. On approaching the airport keep an eye out to the left for the much loved former home of Sir Compton Mackenzie, the author of ‘Whisky Galore’, which is forever associated with the island. In fact, it was on the neighbouring island of Vatersay, which we will visit by means of the causeway linking the two islands, that the classic film adaptation was made. In the course of our tour today we also hope to see some of the hundreds of species of wild flowers that grow on the island, particularly on the machair, the fertile, grassy pastures that lie between the moorland and the sea.

We return via the Eriskay ferry to our hotel, where dinner is served in the evening.

Meals include: Breakfast, Dinner

Hotel: Isle of Benbecula House Hotel

After breakfast we check out of the hotel and take the mid-morning ferry from Berneray to Leverburgh at the southern end of Harris and visit St Clement’s Church at Rodel, built on top of an earlier structure in the 16th century by Alasdair Crotach, 8th chief of the Macleods of Harris and Dun Bheagan. The church tombs are among the most spectacular in Scotland. There are outstanding views as we travel along the coast, including the island of Taransay of ‘Castaway’ fame, and the wonderful beaches at Horgabost, Borve and Scarasta. We will pause for refreshments (not included) in Tarbert, before continuing through the mountainous countryside of Harris which eventually gives way to the rolling moorland of Lewis. We continue to the island capital of Stornoway and our comfortable hotel.

Meals include: Breakfast, Dinner

Hotel: Cabarfeidh Hotel, Stornoway

This morning after breakfast we will travel to the west coast of Lewis for a visit to the 5,000 year old Standing Stones of Callanish. Undoubtedly the most remarkable antiquity in the Western Isles, this collection of almost 50 stones forms a well-marked megalithic avenue, comprising 19 monoliths, ending in a circle of 13 stones, with a great cairn at the centre. Entry to the Visitor Centre is included.

From here we move on to the Black Houses at Gearannan, typical of the crofting settlements which until relatively recently were found throughout the Western Isles.

The final visit on our circular tour is the Norse Mill at Shawbost, where barley grain was ground into meal by Viking settlers. A short walk past a small lochan leads to two beautifully restored little thatched buildings with a fine view to the ocean beyond. Dinner will be served back at our hotel in the evening.

Meals include: Breakfast, Dinner

Hotel: Cabarfeidh Hotel, Stornoway

This morning, following breakfast, we shall visit the Lews Castle and Museum where we can meet the famous Lewis Chessmen and view the Outer Hebrides as never before in a wrap-around audio-visual presentation.

This afternoon we will visit St Columba’s Ui Church at Point, just outside Stornoway, one of the most important archaeological sites on the Isle of Lewis. It was the main church during the medieval period and is a burial place for the Macleod chiefs and the Mackenzies who controlled the island in later years.

We then drive up to the most northerly tip of the island, home to generations of sturdy seafarers. At the Port of Ness we will see the harbour that has seen the local seaman off on many a mission and at the Butt of Lewis we will view the unique Stevenson lighthouse that stands sentinel here, surrounded by the swell of the restless ocean.

Dinner is served in the evening.

Meals include: Breakfast, Dinner

Hotel: Cabarfeidh Hotel, Stornoway

This morning we check out of the hotel and take the early morning Caledonian MacBrayne ferry from Stornoway to Ullapool which takes approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes (breakfast will be served on board). We then continue our homeward journey, arriving back at our original pick-up points in the afternoon.

Meals include: Breakfast

23 July 2019: Additional Info

23 July 2019: Accommodation

Ideally placed in the Uists for bird watching, photography, wildlife, walking and cycling. In true island tradition, relax and enjoy a dram. You can enjoy an intimate drink or social gathering at your own pace. 

The hotel has an on-site bar and restaurant. All rooms have private facilities. 

This property is 9 minutes walk from the beach. Set within in its own attractive gardens, this modern 4-star hotel is ideally located on the outskirts of Stornoway, just across the road from the golf course leading onto historic Lews Castle grounds.

Rightly known as 'Stornoway's finest hotel', the Cabarfeidh (pronounced cab-ar-fay) provides a relaxing base for both business and leisure travellers. It is also bookable for functions or meals in the Solas Restaurant.

There’s a diverse range of shops, serving local and tourist needs. Visitor attractions include an excellent museum of local history, the Lewis Loom Centre where you can learn about the history of Harris Tweed and the delightful grounds of Lews Castle.

23 July 2019: Enquiries

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