Exploring the Isles of the West – 9 night guided cruise

Availability Sat 20th to Mon 29th May 0 places (Cruise completed)

Scarp village

Marc Calhoun is a writer and traveller, he has been cruising with Northern Lights for many years, his knowledge and enthusiasm for the people and history of the Hebrides is extraordinary. This exciting itinerary is the result of conversations with Marc encouraging him to devise a wish list of some favourite islands we could incorporate into a cruise. For more about Marc, and his travels to the Scottish islands, see his two books, Exploring the Isles of the West – Firth of Clyde to the Small Isles, and Exploring the Isles of the West – Skye and Tiree to the Outer Isles. Also see his website at

Marc will offer his advice and knowledgeMingulay by Alison Guthrie on the various islands. Depending on the island, he will lead guests on a short walk near the landing place, followed by a longer, and more strenuous walk further afield. (Note that some walks may involve crossing trackless, rough, steep, and boggy terrain, and may not be suitable for all guests.) As usual with all our cruises, if you wish to explore on your own you’re more than welcome to do so. For further information we’ve also included some bibliographical references from Marc’s ‘Exploring the Isles of the West’, books 1 and 2. All Photographs are by Marc Calhoun or otherwise indicated.

Destination: guests join motor vessel Hjalmar Bjorge around 1600 on Saturday 20 May in Oban. Our departure shortly thereafter will see us on anchor for our first evening meal aboard.

The itinerary is dependent on weather but we hope to follow this itinerary:

May 20: To Tobermory
May 21: To Mingulay
May 22: To Vatersay via Barra Head, Pabbay, or Sandray
May 23: To Monachs
May 24: To Loch Roag – Pabay Mor/Little Bernera
May 25: To Scarp, hopefully via the Flannans
May 26: To Shiants via Pabbay or Boreray
May 27 To Small Isles
May 28: To Ardtornish
May 29: To Oban

Approaching Berneray (Barra Head Light)In general our route will take us out to the Barra Isles, and then north to Loch Roag (west side of Lewis) via the Monach Isles. If conditions permit we will attempt to reach the Flannan Isles before heading back south for possible stops at Scarp, Pabbay, or Boreray in the Sound of Harris. After that there may be time to visit the Shiants and the Small Isles before commencing our return to Oban on the morning of the 29th May.


header-monachs 1 - richard crossen


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