This Outer Hebridean cruise (10 nights) wanders through the Northern Outer Hebrides on the outer edge of the Atlantic Ocean. We visit the remote and stunning isles of Lewis and Harris which, despite being usually referred to as two separate islands, are in fact connected.

In this cruise we will discover Scottish island traditions, heritage and history such as standing stones, brochs, blackhouses and ancient churches.

We will marvel at soft white sandy beaches with their shallow, turquoise waters, that are so much in contrast with the steep and ragged sea cliffs, and mysterious, deep sea lochs.

The wildlife in these pristine and remote islands is rich and varied above and below the waves. We see basking sharks, minke whales, orcas, dolphins, otters, seals, red deer and both sea and golden eagles.

Highlights


• Visit Plockton

• Explore Loch Torridon

• Discover Harris & Lewis

Some of the places we may visit are: Tobermory: One of the most picturesque towns in the Western Isles. If you wish, we can make time to visit the local whisky distillery or discover Mull's majestic eagles. Canna, the Small Isles: We can set sail for the scenic anchorage at Canna and its neighbouring Sanday. There are seabirds galore on the island's high sea cliffs - puffins, shags, razorbills, black guillemots, Manx shearwaters - and breeding there, in the high crags, are sea eagles. There are two lovely beaches, three churches, a tiny ruined castle and a population of less than 20! A short climb up Compass Hill gives wonderful views of the Isle of Skye and our destination, the islands of the Outer Hebrides. Lochmaddy: Situated on North Uist, Lochmaddy is the island’s main village. The village was probably settled by the Norse and at one time was a base for seventeenth century pirates! Harris: We will anchor in East Loch Tarbert, an island-studded, wide sea loch. There is a possible anchorage off the scenic isle of Scalpay which joins Harris by a unique bridge. We can organise a visit to the spectacular white sandy beach of Luskentyre, voted one of the top five world’s best beaches. We can then continue on to the fifteenth-century Church of Rodel and finish with a dramatic drive along the famous south-east coast road, known as the Golden Road due to the high cost of its construction! Lewis: We will travel further North and anchor near Stornoway which is the famous capital of the archipelago of Lewis and Harris. From here we can visit the 5,000 year old, world-famous, Callanish Standing Stones. We can also visit an Iron age house dating back to c. 600 AD which was only recently discovered after a storm. There are also the traditional Arnol Blackhouse and the well preserved Carloway Broch to visit. Loch Torridon: This loch takes us deep into the breath-taking mountain scenery of North West Scotland. Plockton: A most picturesque Scottish Highland village with a natural harbour and wonderful views of Loch Carron. This picture postcard village was famously part of the Hamish Macbeth TV series. Loch Nevis via east coast of Skye: Another spectacular sea loch that runs inland from the Sound of Sleat. Surrounded by mountains, it is one of the remotest sea lochs in Scotland. On the way we can plan to visit Torabhaig whisky Distillery or Armadale castle and gardens on the east coast of Skye. Loch Drumbuie: Just south of Oronsay is secluded Loch Drumbuie, situated between the island and the mainland. A squeeze between high sided cliffs and we are in a perfectly sheltered anchorage.
Please note that your voyage is weather dependent. Weather doesn't just mean good or bad weather. There are many considerations such as tidal gates, wind direction and strength, the strength and direction of currents, overfalls, and fetch. Depending upon the weather and nature’s conditions, wildlife viewing varies. If you wish to visit a specific place or have a specific experience, such as visiting standing stones or whisky tasting, then please do let your skipper know and he will endeavour to meet your request.

Single Cabin

£2,500 GBP pp
Cabins are warm and comfortable with eight berths for our guests. In the aft part of the vessel, there is a twin cabin and a double cabin (with a 125 cm wide bed). These aft cabins share the bathroom with the two crew. All cabin linen and towels are supplied.

Twin Cabin

£2,750 GBP pp
Cabins are warm and comfortable with eight berths for our guests. In the aft part of the vessel, there is a twin cabin and a double cabin (with a 125 cm wide bed). These aft cabins share the bathroom with the two crew. All cabin linen and towels are supplied.

Single Cabin En-suite

£3,600 GBP pp
Cabins are warm and comfortable with eight berths for our guests. In the forward part of the vessel, there is a double en-suite, a twin en-suite and single en-suite. All en-suites and the shared bathroom have a washbasin, toilet, and shower. All cabin linen and towels are supplied.

Twin / Double Cabin En-suite

£3,600 GBP pp
Cabins are warm and comfortable with eight berths for our guests. In the forward part of the vessel, there is a double en-suite, a twin en-suite and single en-suite. All en-suites and the shared bathroom have a washbasin, toilet, and shower. All cabin linen and towels are supplied.

Twin Cabin En-suite

£3,700 GBP pp
Cabins are warm and comfortable, with eight berths in four cabins that are situated in the forward part of the vessel. The three double and one twin en-suite cabins, intimate and mellow, are fitted out in traditional varnished hardwood with soft antique light. Two of the cabins are especially spacious and luxurious with granite washbasins and polished brass taps! All the bunks are soft and comfortable and all cabin linen and towels are supplied.

Double Cabin adjacent En-suite

£3,900 GBP pp
Cabins are warm and comfortable, with eight berths in four cabins that are situated in the forward part of the vessel. The three double and one twin en-suite cabins, intimate and mellow, are fitted out in traditional varnished hardwood with soft antique light. Two of the cabins are especially spacious and luxurious with granite washbasins and polished brass taps! All the bunks are soft and comfortable and all cabin linen and towels are supplied.

Double Cabin En-suite

£4,150 GBP pp
Cabins are warm and comfortable, with eight berths in four cabins that are situated in the forward part of the vessel. The three double and one twin en-suite cabins, intimate and mellow, are fitted out in traditional varnished hardwood with soft antique light. Two of the cabins are especially spacious and luxurious with granite washbasins and polished brass taps! All the bunks are soft and comfortable and all cabin linen and towels are supplied.

Single Cabin

£2,550 GBP pp
Cabins are warm and comfortable with eight berths for our guests. In the aft part of the vessel, there is a twin cabin and a double cabin (with a 125 cm wide bed). These aft cabins share the bathroom with the two crew. All cabin linen and towels are supplied.

Twin Cabin

£2,800 GBP pp
Cabins are warm and comfortable with eight berths for our guests. In the aft part of the vessel, there is a twin cabin and a double cabin (with a 125 cm wide bed). These aft cabins share the bathroom with the two crew. All cabin linen and towels are supplied.

Single Cabin En-suite

£3,700 GBP pp
Cabins are warm and comfortable with eight berths for our guests. In the forward part of the vessel, there is a double en-suite, a twin en-suite and single en-suite. All en-suites and the shared bathroom have a washbasin, toilet, and shower. All cabin linen and towels are supplied.

Twin / Double Cabin En-suite

£3,700 GBP pp
Cabins are warm and comfortable with eight berths for our guests. In the forward part of the vessel, there is a double en-suite, a twin en-suite and single en-suite. All en-suites and the shared bathroom have a washbasin, toilet, and shower. All cabin linen and towels are supplied.

Vessel Type: Small Ship

Length: 72 feet / 21.9 meters

Passenger Capacity: 8

Built / refurbished: 1974 / 2020

The new mini cruise ship is a historic, converted cruising lifeboat that once roamed the Western Approaches and was involved in the storm of the ill-fated 1979 Fastnet Race. Gemini Explorer was built in 1974 in Bideford Shipyard as the City of Bristol (70-003), one of three, Clyde class, cruising lifeboats with an extended offshore range of 1700 miles. She is powered by two powerful Gardner diesel engines and she will achieve speeds of up to twelve knots. The Gemini Explorer entered service at the Clovelly Lifeboat Station on the North Devonshire coast and, after saving 44 lives, was finally retired in 1989.

Since then, after extensive re-fits and modifications (including a new galley, high bulwarks, viewing top deck, en-suite accommodation and a well lit saloon), she has been converted to a mini cruise ship and today sails as the Gemini Explorer. However, there are parts of the insides of the vessel that have been kept in their original state to give an exciting insight in to role she once played as a cruising lifeboat. 

As a mini cruise ship she has voyaged as far away as Greenland and, for the last 10 years, sailed as a charter vessel on the east coast of Scotland. In 2020 after a further refit and upgrade she will be sailing the beautiful islands and sea lochs of Scotland’s west coast as part of St Hilda Sea Adventures little fleet.

The deck saloon is where everyone dines and socialises and where everyone enjoys a convivial atmosphere that is encouraged by shipboard life aboard this ex-cruising lifeboat. 

Cabins are warm and comfortable with eight berths for our guests. In the forward part of the vessel there is a double en-suite, a twin en-suite and single en-suite. In the aft part of the vessel there is a cabin which has a one double bed and two single berths. We are happy to offer this cabin to two guests only, without supplement. This aft cabin shares the bathroom with the two crew.

All en-suites and the bathroom have a washbasin, toilet and shower. All cabin linen and towels are supplied.

There is an upper viewing deck complete with teak benches and perfect for spotting wildlife and relaxing. You also have some deck space to embark your own equipment such as kayaks and paddleboards. You will also be able to use the onboard two person sea kayak.






Cabin layout for Gemini Explorer

Vessel Type: ex-Norwegian Rescue Ship

Length: 75 feet / 22.9 meters

Passenger Capacity: 8

Built/refurbished: 1969/1994

Speideren – An ex-Norwegian Rescue Ship

Speideren, 75 feet long with a cruising range of 4,000 nautical mile, was built in Norway in 1969 as a Rescue Ship (one of 13 such vessels) for the NSSR - the Norwegian Society for Sea Rescue. Sturdily built with two powerful, reliable engines, a mighty hull, deep keel and strong superstructure, Speideren (which is Norwegian for “Scout”) worked the unpredictable waters of the North and Arctic Seas, rescuing and towing many a crippled vessel.

Following decommissioning, in 1994 a conversion was carried out to create a fast, luxurious cruising vessel for a private owner and very recently further improvements have been made which include a viewing deck, en-suite accommodation, and a well-lit deck saloon. Today Speideren makes an ideal small cruising ship for taking guests of all ages comfortably, swiftly and safely on adventures to the remote inlets and lochs of Scotland’s Wild Isles, travelling as far away as St Kilda in the Atlantic Ocean. 

En-suite Accommodation

The saloon is where everyone dines and socialises and where everyone enjoys a convivial atmosphere that is encouraged by shipboard life aboard this ex-Norwegian Recue Ship. Cabins are warm and comfortable, with eight berths in four cabins that are situated in the forward part of the vessel. The three double and one twin en-suite cabins, intimate and mellow, are fitted out in traditional varnished hardwood with soft antique light. Two of the cabins are especially spacious and luxurious with granite washbasins and polished brass taps! All the bunks are soft and comfortable and all cabin linen and towels are supplied. 

The decks are spacious with comfortable seating on the sheltered after deck for comfortable wildlife observing. You also have plenty of deck space in which to bring your own equipment such as kayaks and paddleboards. There is an on board tender in which the crew takes you safely ashore to visit the villages and remote parts of Wild Scotland.

Your Crew

Your professional skipper is passionate about boats, sailing, and the natural environment of the islands and sea lochs of the Inner and Outer Hebrides. He is more than happy to share his knowledge of the area to those on board while ensuring his shipmates have as much fun as possible. You will have your own on board chef who provides wonderful meals, locally-sourced and freshly prepared from the galley and a bosun/crewmember who will be there to provide assistance whenever you will need it.

Cabin layout for Speideren

Inclusions


• Voyage on board in selected cabin category
• All meals while on board
• Fruit on board
• Continental lager and house wine with pre-dinner aperitif and evening meal
• Organised whisky tours
• Cruises with wildlife guide
• BYO is welcome

Exclusions


• International and domestic flights
• Passport and visa costs where applicable
• Travel Insurance
• Beverages purchased on board
• Transfers

Gemini Explorer
British Isles Small Ship CruiseSmall Ship Cruise
11 Days from
£228 GBP per day

or call us on

NZ Freephone
0800 945 3327

AUS Freephone
1800 107 715

to help you make your reservation

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