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This seven-night voyage through the very heart of the Scottish Highlands introduces the interested traveller to the intricate and endlessly fascinating inland waters of the Caledonian Canal, the glistening waters of Loch Linnhe, the Sound of Mull, the Sound of Sleat and finally, Kyle Rhea. Purpose-built to cruise the historic locks of the Caledonian Canal following a multi-million-pound rebuild, Lord of the Highlands is the latest addition to Hebridean Island Cruises’ fleet of beautiful and intimate ships. Continuing the Hebridean tradition of providing the highest quality holidays afloat, the convivial company of just 40 fellow guests creates a relaxed house party atmosphere. Cruising through the Caledonian Canal, the Highlands and islands of Scotland’s west coast, Lord of the Highlands takes guests on a voyage of discovery through the most beautiful scenery in the world.
This afternoon we board Lord of the Highlands in Inverness, settle into your cabin, and explore the ship’s facilities. This evening we remain berthed in the city.
This morning we visit Culloden, the infamous battlefield where Bonnie Prince Charlie’s Jacobite forces were defeated in 1746 and observe the ancient standing stones of Clava Cairns. This afternoon we set sail to the Caledonian Canal, built between 1803 and 1822 to connect the Great Glen’s four lochs. Entering Loch Ness, we pass the romantic ruins of Urquhart Castle, before ascending the impressive flight of locks that run through the heart of Fort Augustus, a scenic and historic village, ahead of the welcome gala reception and dinner.
Today we continue along the canal through Loch Oich, ascending to 106 feet at Laggan Locks after gliding serenely along the tree-lined section known as Laggan Avenue. Onwards through picturesque Loch Lochy, before descending Neptune’s Staircase, a set of eight interconnected locks dropping 64 feet into the sea lock at Corpach. After lunch, we take the West Highland Railway over the renowned viaduct to beautiful Glenfinnan, surrounded by mountains. Our overnight mooring is in Corpach.
We sail to Loch Linnhe, passing mysterious lochs and islands until we reach Oban, the seafood capital of the Highlands. Take a guided walk up to McCaig’s Tower; inspired by the Roman Colosseum, it affords spectacular views of the Hebrides. We berth in Oban overnight.
This morning, we sail to Craignure on Mull for a visit to the Isle of Iona, the last resting place of some 50 Scottish Kings and where St. Columba introduced Christianity to Scotland. Later, we sail to the island capital of Tobermory where brightly painted houses line the waterfront which were originally built by the British Fisheries Company to house its workers. We remain alongside overnight.
After a morning tour of Tobermory Distillery, we sail north to the Small Isle of Eigg, catching glimpses of the islands of the Inner Hebrides along the way. This community owned island is a nature reserve and allows us to go in search of marine animals and birdlife, including Atlantic seals, minke whales, dolphins, porpoises and a variety of seabirds. This evening we arrive at Inverie on Loch Nevis, where you can enjoy a drink at the most remote pub on mainland Britain, The Old Forge.
An early morning sail across the Sound of Sleat leads us to Armadale on the Isle of Skye where we trace the legacy of the Clan Donald at the Museum of The Isles. Our final port of call is Kyle of Lochalsh from where we visit the iconic Eilean Donan Castle, ahead of the farewell reception and dinner.
After breakfast, we disembark and bid farewell to our captain and crew.