Venture to the far-flung Orkney Islands on a 5-day tour from Edinburgh with 3-star accommodation included, and visit top Highland towns and attractions, too! With a friendly guide, travel through the Highlands, visiting Loch Ness and Glencoe, and pass John o’Groats on route to the stunning Orkney Island archipelago. With Kirkwall (Orkney’s capital) as your base, discover the area’s historical highlights such as Lamb Holm Italian Chapel and the Standing Stones of Stenness. On route back to Edinburgh, call in at the 15th-century ruins of Ardvreck Castle and Culloden Moor, an important Jacobite battlefield. Overnight stays in Inverness and Ullapool are included, plus two nights in Kirkwall.
ItineraryDay 1: Edinburgh - InvernessStop At: Buachaille Etive Mor, Ballachulish, Glencoe, Scottish Highlands, ScotlandBe moved by the sheer beauty and tragic tales of one of Scotland’s most famous landscapes.Duration: 20 minutesStop At: Fort Augustus, Fort Augustus, Loch Ness, Scottish Highlands, ScotlandSituated on the most southern tip of Loch Ness on the Great Glen Way, this historic and scenic hamlet is a popular tourist destination.Duration: 20 minutesNo meals included on this day.Accommodation included: Overnight in Inverness.Day 2: Inverness - John O' Groats - OrkneyStop At: Dunrobin Castle and Gardens, Golspie, Caithness and Sutherland, Scottish Highlands, ScotlandShort photo stop - please note the path leading to the front of the castle is quite steep, not suitable for everyone.Duration: 10 minutesStop At: John O' Groats, Airor, Knoydart Peninsula, Lochaber, Scottish Highlands, ScotlandThis Highland village combines dramatic, unspoilt scenery and fascinating wildlife.Just 11 miles from Dunnet Head, the mostly northerly point of mainland Britain, the small coastal village of John o’ Groats is the starting point for many embarking on the famous 'End to End' journey to Land's End in England, some 876 miles away.Duration: 20 minutesNo meals included on this day.Accommodation included: Overnight in Kirkwall.Day 3: Full day touring around OrkneysStop At: Skara Brae, Stromness, Mainland, Orkney Islands, ScotlandLong before Stonehenge or even the Egyptian pyramids were built, Skara Brae was a thriving village. Step back 5,000 years in time to explore the best-preserved Neolithic settlement in Western Europe.Duration: 1 hourStop At: Ring of Brodgar, Stromness, Mainland, Orkney Islands, ScotlandOne of the finest stone circles in the world.Dating back from 2,500 to 2,000 BC, the stone ring was built in a true circle, 104 metres wide and originally contained sixty megaliths; today only twenty-seven of these stones remain.Duration: 30 minutesNo meals included on this day.Accommodation included: Overnight in Kirkwall.Day 4: Kirkwall - St Margaret's Hope - UllapoolStop At: Standing Stones of Stenness, Stenness, Mainland, Orkney Islands, ScotlandStep back in time over 5000 years at what may be the earliest henge monument in the British Isles. The enormous Stones of Stenness are all that remains of a great stone circle on an ancient ceremonial site.Duration: 20 minutesStop At: Maeshowe, Stenness, Mainland, Orkney Islands, ScotlandThe monumental chambered tomb of Maeshowe is simply the finest Neolithic building in NW Europe. Built around 5,000 years ago, it is a masterpiece of Neolithic design and stonework construction, not least for its use of massive individual stones.Viking crusaders broke into the cairn in the 12th century and carved graffiti runes on the walls of the main chamber. Maeshowe is part of the Heart of Neolithic Orkney World Heritage Site, along with Skara Brae, the Ring of Brodgar and the Stones of Stenness.Duration: 1 hourStop At: The Italian Chapel, St. Mary's, Mainland, Orkney Islands, ScotlandVisit the Italian Chapel, a beautiful Roman Catholic chapel in Lamb Holm which was constructed by Italians during the Second World War.Duration: 40 minutesNo meals included on this day.Accommodation included: Overnight in Ullapool.Day 5: Ullapool - EdinburghStop At: Culloden Battlefield, Culloden Moor, Scottish Highlands, ScotlandVisit the powerfully moving site of the final Jacobite Rising – the last and most harrowing pitched battle to be fought on British soil.Duration: 45 minutesStop At: Corrieshalloch Gorge, Ullapool, Scottish Highlands, ScotlandThis plunging box canyon, through which the River Droma rushes, is one of the natural wonders of the Scottish Highlands. Follow the pleasant woodland trails, cross the Victorian suspension bridge over the tree-lined gorge, and look down on the torrent of water crashing 45m over the Falls of Measach.Duration: 40 minutesNo meals included on this day.No accommodation included on this day.