NEW About the tour: Orkney Explorer

Expect archaeological treasures and dramatic scenery on this fascinating tour to the unique Orkneys – an ancient cluster of 70 islands brimming with history and dramatic coastlines that lie off the north-west coast of Scotland. The largest of the islands is Mainland, or Pomona, and we stay in the island's 'capital', Kirkwall. Our local guide will help you to discover ancient civilisations, archaeological delights and bountiful wildlife as we explore monuments, settlements and tombs. With time also spent in Fort William, Inverness and the bustling capital city of Edinburgh, this spectacular tour is one to tick off your bucket list!

Tour Includes

  • 7 nights hotel with Scottish breakfast
  • 7 evening meals
  • Local joining points
  • Porterage at the hotel

8 days from $3123 pp

Departure Dates

Once you have booked your tour either online, or by telephone ( 1300 811 500 ), you have the flexibility of how you pay off the remainder of your balance. You can:

  • Use our balance payment facility online to make and track your card payments. You can pay as much as you want up until your final due date or pay it all, the choice is yours.
  • Send payments via online banking.
  • Send payments via cheque.
  • Call us and make a card payment, either a small amount or as lump sum until your final due date.

Our contact and online banking payment details will be on your confirmation invoice to remind you of your choices.

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Tour Itinerary

Certain excursions are included in the price of your holiday. If you choose not to go on an included excursion, for whatever reason, no refunds will be made.
Yes, you will receive one with your Travel Documents, which are sent 7-10 days before departure.
We believe that our holidays may not be suitable for children under 8 years old however, we will consider individual requests on application. Customers aged 18 and under at the time of travel must be accompanied by an adult, parent or guardian aged over 18 years old.
You can check weather averages here.

    For your convenience, you may choose to start this tour in the UK or at the first city in Europe.

    • Included meals: Dinner

    With an early start this morning, we embark on an incredible Highland drive through mountainous Glencoe. Have your camera ready as the scenery here is simply breathtaking.

    We then enjoy a brief stop in Fort William, located at the foot of Ben Nevis – Britain's tallest mountain.

    We continue our journey along the length of Loch Ness. The loch contains more freshwater than all the lakes in England and Wales combined! It's not likely you will spot the infamous 'Nessie', but you're guaranteed to see beautiful views across the loch.

    At the head of the loch is Inverness, the Highland capital, where we enjoy another brief stop to explore.

    We continue northwards, arriving late this evening for an overnight stay in the Highlands.

    • Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner
    Urquhart Castle
    Loch Ness

    Included Highlights

    • Inverness
    • Fort William
    • Loch Ness
    • Glencoe

    An early start sees us heading to Scrabster on the very north coast of Scotland, where we board the ferry and cross the Pentland Firth, arriving in Stomness on Orkney 90 minutes later.

    The day concludes with a tour along the shoreline of Scapa Flow – famous as the naval refuge during both world wars.

    We stay for three nights in the capital of Kirkwall, with its 12th century St. Magnus Cathedral.

    • Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner
    Orkney Islands
    Orkney Islands

    Included Highlights

    • Orkney Islands
    • Kirkwall

    Our local guide joins the coach for a memorable day out. As the day unfolds, the islands' Neolithic ancestry is evident as many ancient monuments, stone circles, settlements and tombs are visited – a testament to its UNESCO World Heritage status.

    We enjoy a scenic circular tour of the island visiting most of the main sites, including 5000-year old Skara Brae (older than the pyramids in Egypt!), Churchill Barriers, Ring of Brodgar, Stennes Standing Stones and Italian Chapel. Along the way, listen to the tales of Viking intruders and wartime exploits, and immerse yourself in Orkneys' rich maritime heritage.

    • Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner
    Skara Brae
    Guided Tour of the Orkney Isles

    Included Highlights

    • Guided Tour of the Orkney Isles

    Enjoy a day at leisure to explore. Kirkwall is the largest town of Orkney and remains Viking at heart.

    • Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

    We take the ferry back to the mainland this morning and begin our journey south.

    We travel through spectacular Highland scenery and onto the heartlands, where we stay for one night in the Inverness-shire region on the outskirt of the Cairngorms National Park.

    • Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner
    Highland Scenery
    Highland scenery

    Included Highlights

    • Highland Scenery

    We head to Edinburgh where you will have some free time to explore. Overlooking the Old Town is the famous castle, with its commanding view of the city and surrounding countryside, including the Firth of Forth. 

    During its history, the city has become neatly divided in two, the Old Town of pre-18th century times, huddled under Castle Rock, and the New Town, with its fine Georgian architecture.  See the Royal Mile, the Palace of Holyrood, St. Giles’ Cathedral and Sir Walter Scott Monument.

    We continue to our overnight hotel in central/south Scotland.

    • Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

    Included Highlights

    • Edinburgh

    If you are leaving the tour in Europe, you will say farewell to the group after breakfast this morning. If you joined the tour in the UK, today you will return and continue to your original joining point.

    • Included meals: Breakfast

    NEW Orkney Explorer 8 days from $3,123pp

    Book online OR call our friendly travel advisers on:
    1300 811 500


    If you prefer, then you can join the tour at the hotel. To do this, we will require a copy of your passport for identification purposes and you must advise us at the time of booking.

    No reduction will be given if you should choose to do this.

    All hotel rooms benefit from private bathroom facilities.
    Some hotels have tea and coffee making facilities. Please check the tour pages for more information or call our Customer Service Department on 1300 811 500.
    Most hotels have a lift, please call our Customer Service Department on 1300 811 500 for more information.
    Some hotels have ground floor rooms. Please email for information on individual hotels or call our Customer Service Department on 1300 811 500.
    Your hotels will supply towels in your room.

    We are unable to guarantee that the hotel will be able to meet your dietary requirements. We find that the majority of European countries do not generally cater for vegetarians and that the meal supplied may well be what everyone else is having minus the meat.

    We will of course endeavour to arrange for a vegetarian meal at the hotel. We do however suggest that you advise us of your dietary requests at the time of booking and recommend that you speak to the receptionist on arrival with regard to your request.

    You will stay for three nights at the 3-star Kirkwall Hotel on the Orkneys. Perfectly situated in the town centre on the picturesque harbour front, this family owned hotel assures guests a true island welcome and good food in the harbour-side restaurant. Overnight stays will be in 3-star hotels.

    Travel Options

    Departure times given for each region are approximate. Please check your travel documents to confirm the actual timings.

    Front row seats can be reserved for $35pp (up to 6 days' duration), $55pp (7 & 8 days' duration) and $60pp (9 days' duration and over) on all European tours. This offer is only available for bookings of two or four persons on the front row and is subject to availability. In addition to this, seats on the second row can be reserved for $18pp (up to 6 days duration), $35pp (7 & 8 days duration) and $42pp (9, 10 and days duration) $50pp (12 days and over). Guaranteed front/second row seats cannot be reserved on transfer journeys to/from the interchange. Children under 15 years cannot occupy a front row seat due to French Law. Central view seats are free.

    Please note: On some coaches the legroom on front seats may be slightly less than that available on other seats due to the presence of a modesty board in front.

    If your tour is cancelled for any reason and front/second row seats are not available on your new tour, you will be refunded the supplement. No other compensation will be payable.

    Alternatively, we can take seating requests on your booking. However, requests are not guaranteed. All seat numbers are confirmed on travel documents approximately 7-10 days prior to departure.

    We guarantee that all passengers on the same booking will be seated together on the main tour coach. Seats on the transfer coaches to and from the interchange are not allocated.
    Hot and cold drinks are served on your main tour coach. Prices are approximately $1.80 or €1.25 Euro per drink. Prices will be confirmed by your driver.

    Transfer coaches are routed approximately 2-3 weeks before departure. The route taken depends on where passengers are booked to travel from on any particular date as to which route is taken. If you require further detailed information regarding the route to the port you can contact our Customer Service Department on 1300 811 500 two weeks before you are due to travel. With regard to the route taken by the main tour coach, this is determined by the driver.

    With regard to the route taken by the main tour coach, this is determined by the driver.

    All main tour coaches have on-board toilets. Transfer vehicles to and from the interchange may not have on-board toilets. When non-British coaches are used on transfers and tours, an on-board toilet may not be available. However, comfort stops will be made during long journeys.
    All coaches feature air-conditioning.
    All our coaches and transfer vehicles operate a 'no smoking on board policy'. The use of electronic cigarettes is strictly forbidden.
    In the interest of fellow guests, do not take hot food or ice cream on board.
    Alcohol can only be taken on board our vehicles at the discretion of your driver.
    Depending on the location of your pickup point, you may be picked up by coach (not necessarily the on you are touring on), minibus, taxi, National Express or Megabus service. If joining in the UK, you may then be taken to another centralised pickup location or service station. We operate a passenger interchange at Stop 24 Services, where you will meet the tour coach you are holidaying on and then continue on with your outbound journey. Similarly, on the way home, you may also change transfer vehicles at another location, to take you to your final drop off point.
    Your allowance is one medium sized suitcase per person, which should weigh no more than 20kg when full. We may refuse to carry larger or heavier cases. Hand luggage should be stored in the overhead racks aboard the coach. Nothing should be stored under your seat.

    When it comes to getting you to your destination, McLachlan European Holidays make it easy, with a selection of travel options for you to choose from.

    Luxuria - Charging sockets

    Luxuria Features

    • Deluxe armchair-style seats with leather exterior, central arm rests with cup holders and retractable calf rests give you a more comfortable journey.
    • Every seat has its own, fully interactive, touch screen T.V. offering a wide choice of entertainment so you can control what you want to watch and when.
    • There’s also a selection of double and single seats, including four seats face-to-face with tables. And with a total of 5 single seats available, these are ideal for passengers travelling independently.
    • Plug sockets and USB points at each seat mean you can keep your devices fully charged throughout your journey.
    • Onboard toilet.

    Luxuria Seating Plan

    Luxuria Seating Plan