Grand Tour of the Outer Hebrides
Departing by Coach
Duration 5 Days
Available October 2019

Our Grand Tour of the Outer Hebrides takes in all the beauty and diversity of this very special environment with eleven different islands 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.

Our odyssey begins as we travel via Glencoe, Fort William, Invergarry and Kyle of Lochalsh and across the Isle of Skye to the ferry port at Uig. From here we take the early evening sailing to Lochmaddy in North Uist; continuing via the causeways that link the islands to Benbecula, our base for the first two nights. From here we visit the islands of Eriskay; Vatersay with its fantastic sandy beaches, and Barra, including visits to Cockleshell Beach, used as the island’s airport.

A captivating journey follows as we travel by ferry from Berneray to Leverburgh and continue north through the magnificent mountain scenery of Harris to the Western Isles’ ‘capital’ Stornoway. From our base here at the comfortable Cabarfeidh Hotel we explore the rolling moorland of Lewis, with visits to the remarkable Standing Stones of Callanish, the tranquil little Norse Mill at Shawbost and the distinctive Black Houses at Gearannan. Our return route takes us by ferry from Stornoway to Ullapool.

Grand Tour of the Outer Hebrides Tour Highlights:

  • Visits to North Uist, South Uist, Benbecula, Barra, Vatersay, Harris, Lewis, Eriskay & Stornoway
  • Blindingly white sandy beaches on South Uist and Vatersay
  • The unique airport at Cockleshell Beach
  • 5000 year old standing stones
  • The tranquil location of the Norse Mill at Shawbost
  • Four scenic ferry crossings

Price Includes

  • Return coach travel from Dundee (subject to numbers), Perth, Kinross, Dunfermline, Edinburgh or Glasgow
  • 4 nights’ accommodation with dinner, bed and breakfast – 2 nights’ staying at the Dark Island Hotel on Benbecula and 2 nights’ staying at the Cabarfeidh Hotel, Stornoway
  • Island hop over North Uist, South Uist, Benbecula, Barra, Vatersay, Harris, Lewis & Eriskay
  • Visits to the Standing Stones of Callanish, Kisimul Castle, Cockleshell Beach and Vatersay – the film location for the ‘Whisky Galore’ – the Gearannan Black Houses, Shawbost Norse Mill and St Clement’s Church
  • Comfortable coaching throughout with ferry transfers
  • Services of a professional tour manager

13 October supplement – £30pp. Single room supplement, if rooms available – £120. Offer is subject to availability.

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Grand Tour of the Outer Hebrides Itinerary

Day 1

We depart from our designated pick-up points and head north, stopping en-route for refreshments (not included), travelling via Glencoe, Fort William, Invergarry and Kyle of Lochalsh and across the Isle of Skye to the ferry port at Uig. From here we take the early evening sailing to Lochmaddy in North Uist; cross to Benbecula, the ‘stepping stone’ between the Uists, and continue to our accommodation at the Isle of Benbecula House Hotel. Dinner will be provided on board the ferry.

Meals include: Dinner

Hotel: Dark Island Hotel, Benbecula

Day 2

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 to 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.

Late afternoon we make the reverse journey back to Benbecula and our hotel, where dinner is served in the evening.

Meals include: Breakfast, Dinner

Hotel: Dark Island Hotel, Benbecula

Day 3

After an early breakfast we check out of the hotel and take the early 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 accommodation at the Cabarfeidh Hotel.

Meals include: Breakfast, Dinner

Hotel: Cabarfeidh Hotel, Stornoway

Day 4

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 Gearrannan, 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

Day 5

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 is served on board. We then continue our homeward journey, arriving back at our original pick-up points during the evening.

Meals include: Breakfast


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