Cruise
Polar Pioneer
Aurora Expeditions
Polar Pioneer, Wild Scotland ex Oban to Aberdeen
Cruise Line: Aurora Expeditions
Selected Sailing Date: 22 Jun 2019
Available Sailing Dates

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Prices displayed are retail per person, twin share, to the Australian Travel Trade. Consumers please contact your local cruise agent to request this Cruise Abroad package. At time of booking please check current cruise fare and any inclusions. Prices are indicative only, subject to currency fluctuations and may change at any time without notice.

Itinerary
Cruise Itinerary
Itinerary may vary by sailing date and itineraries may be changed at the cruise lines discretion. Please check itinerary details at time of booking and before booking other travel services such as airline tickets.
Cruise Description

10 Night Cruise sailing from Oban to Aberdeen aboard Polar Pioneer.

From the Hebrides in the west, to inhospitable windswept specks of land like St Kilda and Foula, and to the Orkney and Shetland islands in the north, we’ll explore the intriguing diversity of Scotland’s wild islands. We plan to take in Neolithic sites scarcely changed in 5,000 years, and ponder the mystery of huge monoliths that marked seasonal change. We visit picturesque villages, haunted castles that once were stronghold of the Scottish clans; birders will delight in Europe’s largest sea bird colonies and the Orkney Islands will please whiskey amateurs with a wee dram of Scotland’s finest!

Day 1
Our staff welcome you aboard Polar Pioneer in Oban.

Days 2-3
Overnight we travel to Iona, birthplace of Christianity in Britain and burial ground of early Scottish kings. At Staffa, we visit Fingal’s Cave, set amidst spectacular basalt columns, and learn why it inspired Mendelssohn’s Hebrides Overture. At the Cuillin Hills, spiritual heart of Skye, we follow a lonely track to Rubh’an Dunain, an ancient passage grave with a nearby Iron Age fort and stone-lined canal, possibly built by Vikings. Canna offers golden and sea eagles, and basking sharks, dolphins, grey seals and puffins.

Days 4-6
Conditions permitting, we land on Hirta, in remote St Kilda, home to Europe’s most important seabird colony and Britain’s highest sea stacks. We learn of the incredible islanders, who survived here for nearly 5000 years. On Lewis we visit the Callanish Stones, sombre slabs placed upright nearly 3,000 years ago to mark burial sites. A Zodiac cruise takes us to Bostadh’s reconstructed Iron Age house. We aim to visit Sula Sgeir and North Rona, tiny islands inhabited by breeding seals and seabirds.

Days 7-8
Closer to Norway than Scotland, the Shetland Isles played a strategic role in Viking conquests. We visit the capitol, Lerwick, and explore the complex Stone, Bronze and Iron Age settlement of Jarlshof, and on Mousa, the world’s best-preserved Iron Age structure known as a broch. Foula’s five dramatic peaks dwarf its crofting hamlets. Papa Stour’s coastline offers Zodiac exploration of dramatic caves.

Days 9-10
Blessed with red, fertile soil, the Orkney archipelago has welcomed people since ancient times. From Kirkwall, we visit 5,000-year old archaeological wonders like Skara Brae, excavated less than 100 years ago. We view relics of Viking occupation and World War II curiosities, includIng the exquisite Italian Chapel, built from scrap by Italian POWs. We sail past the giant sea stack ‘Old Man of Hoy’. On Papa Westray we see the Knap of Howar, the oldest standing dwelling in Europe before continuing on Fair Isle, a birdwatchers’ paradise, where the few inhabitants still live in traditional crofts and welcome us to admire and buy their exquisite knitwear.

Day 11
In Aberdeen, we disembark and bid farewell to Polar Pioneer staff and crew.

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