Scottland, Flying Dutchman 8/7 guided
Inner Hebrides and Highlands, Isle of Mull and Caledonian Canal.
- 8 Days / 7 Nights
Arrival in Oban
Flight as organised by you to Edinburgh or Glasgow and from there you can travel onwards by train or bus to Oban. Your cabins on the Flying Dutchman are ready for check in at 5pm. Should you arrive earlier, your luggage can be stored on board until check-in time! You are also welcome to use our fee-based transfer service leaving central Edinburgh at 5.30pm or from Edinburgh airport at 6pm. Over a late dinner, you get to know your crew and tour guides.
After breakfast we set up the bikes and set off on our first cycle tour. This leads us southwards from Oban through hilly landscapes and along the shores of a small highland lake back to the sea. Here we cross a remote peninsula before embarking the ferry, which takes us to the island of Luing. The island is made up of slate and the mining of the grey glistening rocks played an important economic role in the past. The University of Edinburgh for instance, is largely constructed out of the slate off of this small island. At the Tobernochy dock, the Flying Dutchman awaits us for our journey over to a secluded bay where we will spend the night.
After a short crossing to Crinan, we get cycling again. First we cycle along the Crinan Canal, leading from Crinan to Lochgilphead, which spared smaller ships the long sail around the Kintyre peninsula. Afterwards we head south over the peninsula, most commonly known from a popular Paul McCartney song. After a scenic bike ride, we finally reach the deeply-cut, Loch Tarbert, where we spend the night.
Early in the morning we raise the anchor and embark on a voyage towards the isle of Jura. Before we start today’s bike tour, we are able to go on a guided tour of the famous distillery and gain first-hand knowledge of the processes involved in the production of great whiskey.
After the distillery tour we cycle northwards on the isle of Jura. The renowned author, George Orwell, spent the last three years of his life here and described it as the most unattainable place on earth. Enjoy the tranquility of the island, which is only occasionally disturbed by one of the about 5,000 deer that live there. Passing the so-called Paps of Jura we arrive at a small dock where the Flying Dutchman takes us to the island of Mull. On the way we pass the swirling waters of Corryvreckan, one of the largest natural whirlpools in the world - but do not fear, our experienced crew will guide us safely to a quiet bay on the island of Mull for the night.
Today’s cycle tour is dedicated entirely to Scotland's spectacular natural beauty. The route takes us through hilly terrain and along the island’s coastline. Behind every bend in the road another breathtaking view awaits. After the road divides, and the few cars that we have encountered along the way so far have turned off towards Iona, we share the road virtually only with sheep and shaggy highland cattle grazing peacefully in the bright green meadows. Along an ever-changing coastal road, we cycle past Loch Na’ Keal to Salen where the ship is waiting for us. On a short crossover our ship brings us to Tobermoy bay. In this pretty, little place, with its colorful facades, an evening visit to an original Scottish pub is high on the agenda. This includes trying national dishes such as fish’n’chips or haggis.
Today we have some ascent to battle with on our ride through the northern part of the Island of Mull. As a reward, a cozy tea room offers us a welcomed rest before we head to the brilliant white beach of Calgary Bay and its crystal clear water. It is considered one of the most beautiful beaches in Scotland and swimming enthusiasts should not pass up this opportunity to jump in for a refreshing swim. Ship ward bound we cycle through a lush valley until we meet the shoreline, shortly before Salen, offering breathtaking views as well as some interesting ships wrecks. Our ship awaits us again in Salen for a little crossing to Lochaline on the Morvern peninsula, where we throw the anchor for the night. Dinner on board.
After a small crossing through the Sound of Mull to Lochaline, a scenic cycle tour awaits us. After the first ascent, we reach an almost traffic-free road leading through the barren highlands. We follow hillsides, wild mountain streams and moorlands before we reach the Flying Dutchman, to ferry us back to Oban. Before dinner we have the opportunity to take a stroll through Oban. The Mc Caig's Tower, an incomplete replica of the Coliseum in Rome, is a worthwhile visit.
Moderately difficult tours due to each day being hilly. You cycle between 12 – 37 mi./20 – 60 km on quiet asphalt roads each day. Sometimes, you will be cycling on paths through fields. Main roads without separate bike paths are used only occasionally for small sections. This tour includes some longer and steeper ascents. Of course you are welcome to push your bike if these are too challenging. Strong headwinds may also be encountered.
Helmet use is mandatory on our tours. You are strongly encouraged to bring your own (well-fitted) helmet. A limited number of rental helmets are available (reservation necessary). A cycle trip may can be substituted for a sailing tour on any day. The daily programme depends on the weather and the captain’s orders.
- Program as mentioned in the itinerary
- 7 nights in double cabins with own shower/toilet
- 7x half board
- Guided cycling tours and sightseeing as described in itinerary
- Overview maps for the daily tours on board
- Bed linen and towels
- English speaking tour guide
Arrival / Parking / Departure
- Arrival by plane: Edinburgh or Glasgow
- Shared transfer Edinburgh Airport – Oban. 6pm, costs €30 per person
- Shared transfer Oban – Edinburgh Airport at 7am (flights from 12 can be taken), costs €30 each
Number of participants
- Minimum of 16 people
- Program and details are subject to change due to nautical and meteorological reasons (this is no reason for a free cancellation).
- Catering: The cook on board is a member of the crew and prepares the breakfast and one warm meal a day. Full board starts with dinner on the arrival day and ends with breakfast on the departure day. Lunch is during the cycle tour and not included in the price!
Bike & Barge Flying Dutchman
The Flying Dutchman takes you on a journey through the kaledonian canal. With the bike you experience the Highlands and see the individual nature of Scottland.