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Wilderness Walking – The Orkney Isles

  • Discover wild walks, ancient landscapes and spectacularly weathered sea cliffs on the walking holiday of a lifetime
  • Experience the rich natural and cultural heritage of the Orkneys in the company of our knowledgeable guides
  • Enjoy Orcadian hospitality and fresh local produce at our stylish accommodation in a historic guest house

Green Graded Walking Holidays

Our Green grade walking trips involve straight forward hiking, following generally good trails with no major ascents.

These walks are pretty leisurely and will last for around 5 hours each day. The terrain underfoot will usually be on paths or hill trails, which may still be muddy or rough in places. The daily walks are mainly glen and coastal hikes, with some ascents of low level hills, up to around 1,500 feet / 450m high. So to help you decide if you are fit enough for this trip, ask yourself:

Can you comfortably hike for 6 miles (10km), including some ascent, with rough ground in places? Have you done this recently?

Our accommodation on Orkney is in a recently upgraded 4-star small hotel. Located on the outskirts of Kirkwall, near the world-famous Highland Park whisky distillery, the hotel overlooks Scapa Flow with its beautiful sandy beach.

The hotel has just 10 rooms, each of which is individually furbished with antiques and local artwork. The rooms are all ensuite and provide spacious, comfortable accommodation.

The hotel’s restaurant is popular with locals and has a strong focus on local Orkney produce. Naturally, any special dietary requirements can be catered for and the restaurant is fully licensed offering a selection of Orkney malts and ales. Not to mention the extensive 200 malts-strong whisky list!!

SINGLE SUPPLEMENT

There is no single person supplement charged to solo travellers however, you will be required to share a room with another person of the same sex. If you require a single room please request this at the time of booking and we will check availability for you. A single room supplement of £245 is charged if a single room is available – please see booking form terms and conditions.

You will be met by your Wilderness Scotland Guide at the fixed seating area in the centre of Inverness Railway Station at 09:30am on Day 1 of your trip. We then transfer north and take the ferry across the Peatland Firth to Orkney. Please note that under new legislation, you must bring photo ID (passport, driving licence) with you to board the ferries. For full details on how to get to Inverness, please see our website: Travel to Scotland.

 

Please note that on the September departure there will be an earlier meeting time of 09:00 am for operational reasons.

Customer Kudos

Every client receives a feedback survey when they return from their guided, self guided or tailor made holiday with us.

Once completed the review is published on our website just as soon as our database updates. The little touches and details are important to us and where issues are raised we make positive changes to our trips to improve your experience.

That's why we read each of our client's reviews and although we don't respond to all of them, if it's glowing feedback then we get the satisfaction of helping to make your holidays truly memorable.

5 star 55

4 star 8

3 star 0

2 star 0

1 star 0

by Marcia Green 07/11/2015

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Trip Comments
Accommodation and Food
Your Guide
our guide could not have been better - helpful, great knowledge, patient and always
most pleasant
The Bottom Line
I have done several guided tours worldwide, but trip was outstanding

by Hedwig Murphy 07/09/2015

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Stevie Christie and then Rachael Gavin answered all my questions quickly and were very helpful.
Trip Comments
Orkney is a unique and fascinating anthropological and historical place and this trip blended visiting these sites with the fun of a great hike.
Accommodation and Food
Hotel and personnel were lovely and we were provided with interesting and delicious lunches for our hikes each day - more than enough to eat!
Your Guide
Malcolm O'Reilly did a great job of balancing interests of individuals in the group. He adjusted the hikes to suit the group while retaining visits to truly wonderful vistas.
The Bottom Line
Fascinating history, beautiful countryside, stunning vistas and a fun hike. I would love to do it again!

by Caitlin Miron 05/09/2015

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Trip Comments
Everything was so well organized! It was really relaxing to be able to hand off all of the major decisions about the trip itinerary, meals etc to our guide and just enjoy the trip.
Accommodation and Food
Your Guide
Kirsty was awesome! We never ran late for anything but she never made us feel rushed or on a tight schedule. Her enthusiasm and knowledge about the flora and fauna we encountered turned a great trip into an amazing one. At the request of members of our group, she also arranged additional outings (distillery tour, music, dinners) for us.
The Bottom Line
This was a wonderful experience. Can't wait for my next trip with Wilderness Scotland!

TEAM WILDERNESS RESPONSE:

Thank you for your comments, we look forward to welcoming you back to Scotland for you next adventure.

by Rae Jacobson 04/09/2015

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
As an overseas traveller, I received all the information before leaving home with. Later details were to the point and helpful.
I also felt i could contact your office if I needed.
Trip Comments
Walking almost at sea level in misty moorland, rippling stream; sea birds, mostly fulmars ,soaring around sea cliffs. Learning a little about Orcadian history, and prehistory....visiting an active archeological dig. Sensing the pride and passion of the islanders.Ferry rides were a bonus.
Accommodation and Food
Both accommodation and food was way beyond what i expected from a wilderness trip.(perhaps I should have read the brochure more carefully. Here in Australia my wilderness experience s have been mostly from a tent,taking our own food. ) I did enjoy very much being able to rest in comfort, and have my meals prepared for me. The hotel was a real haven.
Your Guide
Malcolm for me was a very personable guide who shared his knowledge with us very appropriately, taking us to a variety of places to walk and explore...eating out was also part of this. He was able to relate well with all of our disparate group.
I felt in safe hands and had fun.
The Bottom Line
For an exploration of the Orkney Islands , with only a few days to touch its history and how it is now for the local people,this trip is very suitable.
My overall experience of Wilderness Scotland? First class.

by John Wallace 31/08/2015

3Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Not enough info before the trip. We didn't know where we were staying, in what hotel, or how we were getting there (we correctly guessed by minibus, but no-one said).

TEAM WILDERNESS RESPONSE:
Thank you so much for your feedback. I’m sorry that you felt that there was not enough info given before the trip. When you booked the trip you were sent your booking conformation documents – these contain all the information you need to join the trip but we will review it to see if we can make it clearer. If you do have any other questions about the trip then we are just at the other end of the phone and happy to answer any questions you might have. It sounds like you had a great trip overall so hopefully we can welcome you to the Highlands again soon!
Trip Comments
Accommodation and Food
Your Guide
Our guide Malcolm, was very considered and knowledgeable, and brought the trip alive for us with his great knowledge of local fauna and flora.
The Bottom Line
A well organised and very enjoyable trip, accompanied by surprisingly good weather.

by Caroline Taylor 31/08/2015

5Pre-Trip Service

4Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

4Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Trip Comments
Accommodation and Food
Your Guide
The Bottom Line
A good trip - interesting historical aspects as well as good walking and very good weather! I may well be back - I must be ne f your most regular clients.

by Fiona Smith 18/08/2015

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
As discussed a simpler secure payment method like PayPal would make it a lot easier for overseas travellers to pay. Especially if they need to pay separately. It is ridiculous for banks in Australia to navigate bank transfers took up considerable time and unable to ensure correct coverage of fees. Sending multiple emails with credos card details is archaic and doesn't seem secure to me.

TEAM WILDERNESS RESPONSE:

We are working towards our online payment system being able to accept all payments that we need to process your booking. This would eliminate any additional emails, calls or arrangements with banks.
Trip Comments
Tim our guide was excellent, he addressed the wide range of interests in the group well. Really enjoyed the experience. The hotel was great they even managed to immediately address a change in menu request.
Accommodation and Food
You really don't need much in the way of snacks if staying at that hotel as they provided great lunches with plenty of extras. I didn't need to bring all the extras your guide information suggested.
Your Guide
Tim was great wide knowledge range and provided to the wide range of interests in the group terrific!
The Bottom Line
Had a great time. Really good trip thanks

by Lynda Porszt-Miron 17/08/2015

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
All of the information I received was clear and detailed. This allowed me to prepare and pack appropriately. The detailed gear list was very helpful, especially as I was unsure of what walking conditions would be like in the Orkneys.
Trip Comments
Every day kept on becoming "the best day"! It was a wonderful mix of walking, beautiful scenery, history and culture. Gannet shoes and the accordion and fiddle evening were just two of the many unexpected highlights.
Accommodation and Food
Hotel food and accommodations exceeded expectations. I appreciated the variety in the daily lunches. Our room was perfect...first thing every morning and last thing every evening, I sat by the window enjoying the view over the town to the water.
Your Guide
Kirsty is more than excellent! She consistently managed every aspect of the trip professionally. Her sense of humour and her commitment to providing a high quality walking experience was much appreciated.
The Bottom Line
I enjoyed the trip immensely. Thank you, Wilderness Scotland and Kirsty, for providing such a high quality experience!

by Carol Johnston 04/08/2015

5Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

5Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Trip Comments
Accommodation and Food
Great hotel. Really enjoyed the stay.
Your Guide
Tim is very knowledgable and personable. Enjoyed traveling with him.
The Bottom Line
It is a great trip.

by Andrew Pollard 03/08/2015

4Pre-Trip Service

5Trip Comments

4Accommodation and Food

5Your Guide

5The Bottom Line

Pre-Trip Service
Didn't need to contact the office much as the instructions on the website were clear and the e-mails timely in letting us know what was going on. When I did phone with a query it was handled efficiently - and friendly.
Trip Comments
Hard to pick from so many great experiences -walking out to the Old Man of Hoy and the on-going excavations at the Ness of Brodgar - but every day was special.
Accommodation and Food
Accomodation was very comfortable- just what was needed after a busy day. The food was good - I enjoyed all the meals.
Your Guide
Tim was exceptionally good. His knowledge of the islands, their history and wildlife - was impressive and I can't imagine a more comprehensive tour - including a night out at one of the Kirkwall Summer Concerts. Nothing was too much trouble.
The Bottom Line
I can't imagine a better way to visit the Orkneys.

Prices and Departures

59 people viewed this trip in the last week2 Bookings in the last 72 hours

Trip Date
Price
Availability
Trip Status
 
14th May - 20th May 2016
£1,295
2 place(s) left
25th Jun - 1st Jul 2016
£1,295
Trip Full
9th Jul - 15th Jul 2016
£1,295
3 place(s) left
30th Jul - 5th Aug 2016
£1,295
Trip Full
20th Aug - 26th Aug 2016
£1,295
Trip Full
24th Sep - 30th Sep 2016
£1,295
Places available

Trip Details

Walking in the Orkney Isles is a wonderful way to discover these islands.

Join us on a stunning and unforgettable journey to the Orkney Isles, a little-visited archipelago of some 70 small islands and skerries due north of the Scottish mainland.

This mysterious place of long days and colourful night skies is home to a wealth of sea life and sea birds, not forgetting the remarkable flora of the islands.

The unique situation and environment of the Isles have combined to create a fascinating cultural and historical tapestry of stone circles, countless invasions and occupations, isolation and extremity, all of which have left their mark through the ages.

In the company of your highly knowledgeable guide you will walk in the wildest places of Orkney, with history all around, before returning to enjoy memorable cuisine and the finest accommodation in the Isles.

Trip Itinerary

Day 1 – Arrival in Orkney Islands

Meeting in Inverness, our journey to the Orkney Islands follows the north-east coast of the Highlands and onwards over the Pentland Firth. Our accommodation is situated near the major archaeological sites which secure the intrigue of these islands.

Day 2 – Rousay and the Mid Howe Broch

We drive to the Eynhallow Sound and take a local ferry to the island of Rousay. We enjoy two short walks here – the Westness Walk to the Mid Howe broch and a superb moorland walk around Faraclett Head.

Distance 8km, 4 hrs.

Day 3 – The Gloup and Mull Head

The walk starts at The Gloup, a partially collapsed sea cave from where we head north along the coast to Mull Head. Before returning to Kirkwall we visit the Italian Chapel, two Nissen huts converted into a place of worship by prisoners of war.

Distance 9km, 4 hrs.

Day 4 – The Old Man of Hoy. Scapa Flow and Rackwick Bay
A short drive along the edge of Scapa Flow takes us to Houton where we catch the ferry to the island of Hoy. Here we walk to the famous Old Man of Hoy and some of Britain’s highest seacliffs before returning to Rackwick Bay.

Distance 10km, 5hrs.

Day 5 – Coastal Walk and visit the Ring of Brodgar

We follow a coastal path from Stromness to The Ness before heading west for the Sand of Warebeth. Afterwards we may visit the Ring of Brodgar, Stones of Stenness and Maes Howe.

Distance 12km, 5hrs.

Day 6 – Brough Head to Marwick Head, Skara Brae

From Brough Head, a superb walk follows the coast south to Marwick Head – one of the largest seabird colonies in the Northern Isles. Afterwards we visit the Stone Age village of Skara Brae, discovered in 1850 after a storm cleared away the sand dunes that were covering it.

Distance 12km, 5 hrs.

Day 7 – Return to Inverness

Following breakfast, we will return Southwards to the mainland and Inverness, via the rugged coastal scenery of the Northern tip of Scotland.

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Prices and Departures

59 people viewed this trip in the last week2 Bookings in the last 72 hours

Trip Date
Price
Availability
Trip Status
 
14th May - 20th May 2016
£1,295
2 place(s) left
25th Jun - 1st Jul 2016
£1,295
Trip Full
9th Jul - 15th Jul 2016
£1,295
3 place(s) left
30th Jul - 5th Aug 2016
£1,295
Trip Full
20th Aug - 26th Aug 2016
£1,295
Trip Full
24th Sep - 30th Sep 2016
£1,295
Places available

Price from: £1,295

Next trip: 14th May

Duration: 6 night(s)

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Location: Orkney and Shetland Isles

Comfort: Classic

Difficulty: 2

64 review(s)

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Trip reviews

Customer Kudos
I have done several guided tours worldwide, but trip was outstanding

Marcia Green
07/11/2015

5

Fascinating history, beautiful countryside, stunning vistas and a fun hike. I would love to do it again!

Hedwig Murphy
07/09/2015

5

Rated 4.8 out of 5 based on 64 review(s) of Wilderness Walking – The Orkney Isles

5 star 55

4 star 8

3 star 0

2 star 0

1 star 0

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