Historic Orkney Tour

Theres a magic to the archipelago of the Orkney Islands that grips you by the heart and doesn’t let go. From miles of sandy beaches and towering red sandstone cliffs to prehistoric villages full of intrigue and sacred standing stones - these islands provide an experience to not only to be seen, but to be felt. Come with us and discover an incredible and varied history far bigger than the islands themselves.

 

The history here is tangible, from the legacy of the vikings to the remarkably preserved Neolithic monuments… humans have inhabited this mysterious archipelago for over 5000 years and these incredible islands have one of the highest concentrations of ancient sites in Europe. So much so that there is a saying in Orkney that if you stick a spade in the ground, you’ll probably unearth an archaeological site.

4 Day Orkney Tour

"These islands provide an experience not only to be seen, but to be felt." 

Let the Adventure Begin...

3 days £960 per person, 4 days £1200 per person

 8th May - 10th May 3 Day version, 8th May - 11th May 4 Day version, 11th Aug - 13th Aug (3 Day) 

Our goal is to bring history, folk lore and like-minded people together to create a magical vacation that will last a lifetime. Our epic journey encompasses all  the all the iconic sites on Orkney as well as some other incredible historic sites on the way. Visit the ancient mystery that is the Ring of Brodgar and discover the mysteries of the Neolithic settlement of Skara Brae. Wander the historic lochs, glens, towns and chapels with a small group of like minded people and absorb the energy of this magnificent archipelago. Our tours are a perfect mix of story telling, history, experiences and sight seeing. 

Tour Highlights

Here are just a taste of what to expect on this tour, plus lots of surprises and secret spots along the way! 

  • Explore the amazing burial cairns and stone circles at Clava Cairns 

  • Small group experience - our tours are limited to 8 guests so you get the most authentic experience

  • Spend some time exploring Pictish stones and settlements at Tarbat Discovery Centre

  • Be transported back in time with retellings of folklores and legends

  • Catch the ferry to Orkney over the Pentland firth, the straight that separates Scotlands North coast and the Orkney Islands. 

  • Feel the power of standing stones, stone circles, burial cairns and mystical rock art

  • Visit the amazing archaeology of these islands - including Neolithic settlement of Skara Brae and the ancient Ring of Brodgar

  • Listen in awe to the beauty of a traditional Gaelic singer

Day One

We start our journey off in a magnificent manner as we visit the burial cairns with their stone circles at Clava today. The Clava cairn is a type of Bronze Age circular chamber tomb cairn, named after the group of three cairns at Balnuaran of Clava. We will explore the history here before heading to the Black Isle to visit several lesser known sacred places in this area to discover ancient traditions. On our way North, we will visit the Tarbat Discovery Centre in Tain, full of artefacts from the Pictish settlement in the area and visit the amazing carved Pictish stones of the area. We call in to some other interesting sites, such as Whalligoe Steps and the Hill O’Many Stane before finishing our journey north for the day. The day ends with a group welcome dinner. 

Day Two

We catch the early ferry to Orkney, then spend the day visiting the amazing archaeology of these islands. The Tomb of the Eagles, Maes Howe and the amazing stone circles on the Ness of Brodgar – the standing stones of Steness and the huge Ring of Brodgar.

Day Three

On our second day on Orkney, we visit the Neolithic village of Skara Brae to get an idea of how people lived on these islands 5000 years ago. We then travel further forward in time to visit the imposing St Magnus Cathedral, founded in 1137 by the Viking, Earl Rognvald, in honour of his uncle St Magnus who was martyred in Orkney. Further forward still, we visit the Italian Chapel – a plain, Nissan hut on the outside, but a fabulously ornate place of worship on the inside, created by the Italian prisoners of war, held on the Island of Lamb Holm during the second world war.

 

Leaving Orkney behind, we begin our journey south, stopping en-route to pick up a takeaway dinner at La Mirage in Helmsdale – famous for serving the best fish and chips in Scotland! We take you back to Inverness, arriving around 22.30/23.00. Or alternatively you can opt to spend the night in Tain and travel to Inverness in the morning. Cost of extra night £90 including dinner.

Day Four

The final day. We drive south through the Cairngorms National Park for some more stunning scenery, before arriving on the East Coast at Stonehaven, where we visit Dunottar Castle, standing defiantly on a crag above the unforgiving North Sea. We learn of it’s history, before visiting a nearby
‘recumbant’ stone circle, with its ‘altar’ stone – very different from anything else we have seen so far. We continue our journey southwards, crossing the Firth of Tay into the Kingdom of Fife, where we call in to St Andrews – site of pilgrimages throughout the centuries as the resting place of the relics of St Andrew, one of Jesus’s disciples and Scotlands’ patron saint. Finally, we visit some little known ancient caves where people have lived and worshipped their Gods, both pagan and Christian, since Neolithic times, leaving some amazing rock art behind them,before crossing the Firth of Forth to Edinburgh, where we spend our last night together.

What's Included

  • Accomodation

  • All meals (B,L,D) 

  • Entry fees to all sites listed

  • Comfortable transport whilst on tour

  • Two knowledgable, local guides 

  • All experiences whilst on tour 

The price listed above is based on a twin share in a twin or double room. If you require a single room, this can be arranged with at an extra cost. Please contact us for further details. Please note that this itinerary is intended as a rough guide and is subject to change at the tour guides discretion. We will do our best to adhere to this itinerary but your trip may be altered where necessary due to inclement weather, site closures, traffic and any other unforeseen circumstances that may endanger the safety of the group. The quoted price is inclusive of accomodation, meals, entrance to historic sites and all cultural experiences however drinks, snacks and flights to Scotland are not included in this price. Your tour guide reserves the right to ask you to leave the trip should your conduct in any way endanger the safety of yourself, your fellow tourists or your guide. Please read our terms and conditions in full as by booking with us, you are bound by these. 

©2020 by Travels Through Time