Scotland: Shetland and Orkney Islands

NOW BOOKING

19 – 29 May 2020  FULL

20-30 September 2020

Contact Jóna:

Experience an exclusive discovery tour of these fascinating Scottish islands. This exceptional, informative and comprehensive, all-inclusive, 11 days, island hopping tour conducted by Maggie McLeod will give you a remarkable insight into these beautiful islands. You will discover their history, archaeology, bird and plant life along with their customs and traditions. There will also be plenty of opportunities to enjoy the wonderful landscapes and coastal vistas.

The Shetland Isles are located in the North Atlantic, as close to Norway as to Aberdeen. Shetland consists of a group of 100 islands with approximately 900 miles of coastline and a population of around 23,000. The Orkney Islands are located six miles north of the Scottish mainland. There are about 70 islands within the Orkney archipelago, 17 of which are inhabited.

Both Orkney and Shetland are unique and unlike any other part of Great Britain. They have managed to retain many of their original, unique customs and traditions resulting from their long and eventful history.  Fair Isle in Shetland gave its name to the unique, multi-coloured knitting designs on the islands famous woollen sweaters. It is claimed that these designs were copied from the clothing worn by shipwrecked Spanish sailors from the Armada. These men landed on the shore when their ship El Gran Grifon ran onto the rocks below the cliffs at Stronshellier in 1588.

We have an overnight cabin and dinner on route to Shetland then breakfast on board before we begin our adventures.

Shetland and Orkney had a pivotal role to play during wartime. At Scapa Flow a local wartime historian shares incredible stories of WWI and WWII during our visit and we will hear of the daring exploits of the Shetland bus. We will drive over the Churchill Barriers and marvel at the Italian Chapel beautifully crafted out of 2 Nissan huts by WWII prisoners.

On Shetland we visit Sumburgh Head where the North Sea meets the Atlantic. Jarlshof with over 4,000 years of settlement and discover the undisturbed time capsule of Old Scatness

We visit the Heart of Neolithic Orkey, Maes Howe, Ness of Brodgar, Ring of Brodgar, Stenness Standing Stones, Barnhouse Village and Skara Brae.

On our return to the mainland, we will visit and enjoy lunch at the Queen Mother’s favourite retreat, the Castle of Mey. This was her personal renovation project following the death of King George VI. The Castle is now used by Prince Charles.

Our last two nights will be spent in the Highlands at the luxury Kingsmills Hotel in Inverness. Using this as our base we will visit atmospheric Cawdor Castle best known for its Macbeth connections and with its stunning gardens to explore. Our final visits are to Clave Cairns and then Culloden, the poignant site of the last battle fought in mainland Britain in 1746. It has a very informative Visitor Centre.

Jona’s Tours are fully guided by an expert and offer a unique blend of exploration, education, adventure, enjoyment and congenial company. All meals included.

TOUR PRICE

£2980 per person

Single Supplement £485

TOUR PRICE INCLUDES:

Flights to Aberdeen and returning home from Inverness

Private airport transfers

Accommodation in 4 star hotels

Full board, breakfasts, lunches and dinners.

Private coach and driver.

Private guide, Maggie McLeod, for the whole tour.

Included in the tour price are all excursions, visits and entrance fees

• One night berth and dinner with Northlink Ferries from Aberdeen to Lerwick, Shetland.
Plus Ferries to: Kirkwall, Orkney, Island of Hoy, return ferry trip, Tingwall, Island of Rousay, St Margaret’s Hope, Gills Bay, Scotland

  • Clickimin Broch
  • Sumburgh Head RSPB
  • Light lunch at Sumburgh Hotel
  • Jarlshof
  • St Ninian’s Isle
  • Hoswick Visitor Centre
  • Old Scatness
  • Scalloway for a light lunch
  • Shetland Bus Museum
  • Eshaness
  • Beswick Community Centre Arts and Crafts
  • Lerwick Museum
  • Lunch at Hay’s Dock Cafe
  • Maes Howe and Ness of Brodgar burial tombs.
  • Ring of Brodgar
  • Stenness Standing Stones
  • Barnhouse Village
  • Skara Brae
  • Churchill Barriers
  • Italian Chapel
  • Tomb of the Eagles
  • Lunch at St Margaret Hop
  • Hoxa Tapestry Studio
  • Traditional Music Evening
  • Wartime talk on Scapa Flow
  • Dwarfie Stane
  • Scapa Flow War Museum with lunch
  • Midhowe stalled burial cairn and Midhowe Broch
  • Lunch at Taversoe Inn
  • Castle of Mey with lunch
  • Cawdor Castle and gardens
  • Culloden