HIGHLANDS & ISLANDS OF SCOTLAND – 11 Days
From Kyle of Lochalsh to Inverness
Rum, Skye, Iona and Mull; the handsome lochs of the Scottish Highlands; Thomas Telford’s 200 year-old Caledonian Canal – these are just a handful of the scenic wonders that will grace our cruise aboard the Lord of the Glens as we navigate a stunning natural landscape crowned with ancient monuments and stately castles.
From the Kyle of Lochalsh in the west to Inverness in the east, our itinerary will investigate the mysteries of neolithic Scotland, research the rudiments of Celtic Christianity and unravel the truth behind the Highland Clearances.
With that most majestic of mountain ranges, the dark Cuillins of Skye, beckoning us in the distance, the Lord of the Glens will set sail through the Sound of Sleat and Loch Nevis to Inverie, one of mainland Britain’s most far-flung outposts, otherwise accessible only after a two day hike as there is no road access to the area.
One of the highlights of the Hebridean island of Rum, just south of Skye, is Kinloch Castle, the crenellated and turreted dream – some might say folly – of George Bullough, a late 19th century industrialist. Although the castle’s menagerie of alligators and tropical turtles are long gone, Bullough’s fantasy remains the most intact Edwardian country house in Britain.
After leaving behind the “Forbidden Isle” we will sail around Ardnamurchan Lighthouse, the most westerly point of mainland Britain, before entering the Sound of Mull, where the quaint fishing port of Tobermory delights with its brightly painted houses. The tiny island of Iona now awaits discovery: venerated across Christendom, it was on Iona that St Columba founded his monastery in 563, and it is here that Scotland’s early kings lie buried.
Corpach marks the start of our navigation of the Caledonian Canal, an engineering marvel that connects Lochs Lochy, Oich and Ness as it slices through the Great Glen of the Highlands. In the shadow of Ben Nevis “Neptune’s Staircase” – a ladder of eight locks – will raise the Lord of the Glens 64 feet as we make our way towards Banavie.
Much of Scotland’s history is cloaked in turbulent, often brutal, intrigue. In 1692 Glencoe witnessed one of the bloodiest episodes in the region’s troubled past: the massacre of the Clan MacDonald by their long-time enemies, the Campbells. Some 50 years later Culloden Moor was the scene of the last major battle fought on British soil, when Bonnie Prince Charlie’s cold, hungry Highlanders were crushed by the Duke of Cumberland.
Not far from Culloden, just above the River Nairn, lies Clava Cairns, an exceptionally well-preserved – and beautiful – series of pre-historic burial chambers and carved stones.
JULY 10 - 20, 2010
JUNE 30 – JULY 10, 2011
JULY 17 – 27, 2011
Isle of Iona
With its memories of St Columba and its illustrious abbey, the tiny island of Iona is one of Britain’s most sacred sites.
- Culloden Moor, Clava Cairns
- Isle of Mull
- Lochs Ness, Oich and Lochy
- Isle of Skye