Enjoy some of the finest walking in the Hebrides plus the opportunity to experience one of the finest day trips in the world - a visit to the amazing islands of St. Kilda.
Sat 30th April - Fri 6th May
Sat 25th June - Fri 1st July
Sat 16th - Fri 22nd July
Sat 6th - Fri 12th August
Price: £920. Single supplement £120.
Plus £200 for optional St. Kilda day trip.
A unique chance to explore some of the best walks on both Harris and Lewis, plus a day trip to the World Heritage Site of St. Kilda.
This is a relaxed holiday with a mixture of longer and shorter days. We will not be rushing - the islands are much too beautiful for that! There will be plenty of time to watch the wildlife, take in the views and - if the mood takes us - to sample some of the excellent coffee shops on the island.
An outline itinerary for the holiday is given below. However, this will be kept flexible, as the weather may dictate changes - especially to the timing of the boat trip to St. Kilda. Note that if the weather makes the St. Kilda trip impossible, this will be replaced by an alternative day walk on Harris and Lewis.
DAY 1 - ARRIVE IN STORNOWAY
The ferry from Ullapool will arrive at approximately 8.30pm. You will be met from the ferry terminal, if wished, and taken to the comfortable guest house where we will be based for the holiday.
Those arriving on the evening ferry from Uig in Skye will arrive in Tarbert, Harris at 7.40pm. If you choose this option you will need to drive or take the bus to Stornoway, which takes about an hour.
DAY 2 - HUISINISH & CRAVADALE
A spectacular start, with this wonderful and varied low level hike - one of the best in Scotland. Starting at the beautiful machair of Huisinish, we will visit the stunning beach of Traigh Mheillin, which provides unparalleled views out to the nearby island of Scarp. From here we will explore the beautiful Glen Cravadale, before returning back to our start either (if the weather is kind) over the small but imposing Huisneabhal Mor or (if it isn't) along an ancient hill track to Amhuinnsuidhe Castle.
DAY 3 - NESS
On the second full day of the holiday we will be off (weather permitting!) on a sensational day trip by boat to the remote island archipelago of St. Kilda. These famous islands are Britain's only dual World Heritage Site, nominated for both their outstanding cultural and archaeological remains and their sensational sea bird colonies.
A visit to St. Kilda really is an awe-inspiring and unforgettable experience. Thousands of gannets soar above you as the boat approaches the sensational rocky spires of its three main islands - Boreray, Soay and Hiort.
Once ashore, the ruins of the old township on Hiort are an astonishing sight, and the wildlife and archaeology make for a truly fascinating day trip.
If you prefer not to take the boat trip to St. Kilda you are free to have a day off or explore the islands under your own steam.
DAY 4 - NESS
Today we travel to the northern most tip of the Hebrides, to the township of Ness and the dramatic Butt of Lewis lighthouse. We will visit the old fishing harbour at Port of Ness, admire the machair flowers at Suainebost, and take a walk along the coast to see the ruins of a wonderful cliff top chapel at Filiscleitir. All the time we will be surrounded by wildlife. This is a hotspot for corncrakes, and their characteristic croaks can often be heard amongst the township's croft fields. Look out too for the very rare Great Yellow Bumblebee on the machair, young golden eagles exploring the great expanse of peatlands, and the dramatic Bonxies - the pirate birds who can scare the wits out of other birds.....and unsuspecting walkers!
DAY 5 - TOLSTA
Packing an astonishing amount into a small area, this walk takes us to remote moorland lochs, then along an airy cliff top walk, complete with sea stacks and rock arches, before visiting two of Lewis’s finest beaches.
DAY 6 - REINIGEADAIL & THE POSTMAN'S ROUTE
On or our final day we will do this tremendous circular walk on excellent paths, visiting the last village in the UK to get its own tarmac road! This will be a bit longer than other days, but the dramatic scenery along the way is well worth the effort.
DAY 7 - DEPART
Holiday Fact File
Grade: Easy / Moderate. These holidays go at a gentle pace, with plenty of time to stop, take pictures, soak up the atmosphere and watch the wildlife. However, they are still walking holidays, so you will need to be able to cope with a reasonable amount of hiking each day. As a guide, you should be able to manage small uphill sections, be comfortable walking for 4 - 5 hours and 6 - 7 miles or so each day, and be confident walking away from paths - for example over rough, grassy hillsides. We try to keep to easy ground as much as possible on these walks, but there will be some areas where the going can be a little rough and quite wet underfoot, so good hiking boots are essential. We don't tackle any hills on these walks but there are usually some modest uphill sections each day.
Start: Stornoway, Isle of Lewis
Cost: £920.00 - includes guest house accommodation plus breakfast, packed lunch and evening meals. Single supplement: £120.
We also offer a low cost self catering accommodation in shared dormitories in a comfortable Stornoway hostel. This option costs £650 per person.
Plus £200 if you wish to come on the optional St. Kilda day trip (see below for details).
Accommodation: We will be staying in comfortable guest houses in or near Stornoway, the bustling little capital of the Outer Hebrides. All rooms will have ensuite or private bathrooms.
What's Included: 6 nights accommodation, 5 days walking. All meals, including full Scottish or continental breakfasts, packed lunches and evening meals.
All transport during the holiday, boat trip to St . Kilda (if this option is selected), and the services of a experienced guide.
What's Not Included: Transport to / from holiday departure point at Stornoway. Entrance to any visitor attractions. Travel insurance.
St. Kilda: If you wish to go on the St. Kilda day trip you must commit to this when you book your holiday. The boat operators can only take a maximum of 12 people per trip so it is important to book early if you want to secure your place.
There is an additional charge of £200 per person for the St. Kilda trip and we require a deposit of £100 per person at the time of booking. This is in addition to the standard £100 holiday deposit.
Please note that the St. Kilda deposit is non-refundable if you subsequently decide you do not wish to go ahead with the day trip and the boat operators cannot resell your place. If the trip is cancelled due to bad weather, however, your deposit will be refunded
Images copyright Gaelic Arts, Flickr Creative Commons Licence