Coastal Scotland Expedition Cruise – Whiskies and Wildlife

Coastal Scotland Expedition Cruise – Whiskies and Wildlife

Coastal Scotland Expedition Cruise – Whiskies and Wildlife

Coastal Scotland Expedition Cruise – Whiskies and Wildlife

Travel information 7 days MS Spitsbergen
8 April 2023
Price from
2413 €
Breakfast, lunch and dinner included

Explore Scotland’s rugged coastline and set foot on its beautiful islands on an expedition cruise offering stunning scenery, wonderful wildlife and some classic malt whiskies. 

Scotland’s liquid gold 

Setting out from Glasgow, your adventure focuses on the aspects of Scotland’s west coast and islands are famous for: picturesque lochs and mountains, iconic wildlife, and superbly distinctive whiskies. Tour some of the country’s oldest distilleries on the Isles of Arran and Mull, and delve into the ‘whisky isle’ of Islay with its eight working distilleries that each create unique, peaty drams. In Oban, the ancient seat of the Clan Chiefs, you’ll find both a quirky distillery and some outstanding cuisine.  

Lovely lochs and majestic mountain scenery 

You’ll journey to dramatically beautiful lochs with fascinating histories attached to them, as well as some hidden gems few others get to visit. Sailing into Loch Linnhe, we’ll travel to Fort William, backed by stunning Highland panoramas and dubbed the ‘Outdoor Capital of Britain’. Visit nearby Glen Coe and immerse yourself in the beauty of Scotland’s unequalled mountain scenery. 

Wildlife awakening to spring 

As spring stirs, so does the wildlife. Throughout your expedition cruise, you’ll be looking out for seabirds, seals and even dolphins and whales. On Islay, scan the skies for some of the 200 species of birds found here, including buzzards, Hen Harriers, oystercatchers, terns, cormorants, gannets and mighty Golden Eagles. 

Coastal Scotland Expedition Cruise – Whiskies and Wildlife Coastal Scotland Expedition Cruise – Whiskies and Wildlife
  • Day 1
    Glasgow, Scotland

    Glasgow, Alongside, Full day

    Set sail from Scotland’s stylish city of culture and get to know your expedition ship and crew.  

    Glasgow is an elegant city filled with splendid architecture in the Victorian and Art Nouveau styles. If you have any time prior to embarkation you’ll discover its museums, galleries, and lively spots to eat, drink and shop.   

    When you’re done, your comfortable expedition ship MS Spitsbergen will be waiting for you. You’ll be greeted by your friendly Expedition Team and after attending a safety briefing and settling in, you’ll sit down to a welcome dinner to mark the start of the cruise.  

    Want to really explore Glasgow and Edinburgh? Then we recommend extending your stay by booking our optional Pre-Programme that includes an overnight in Edinburgh. You’ll be able to see the main sights of Glasgow as well as the beautiful Edinburgh Castle.  

    Day 1
    Glasgow, Scotland

    Glasgow, Alongside, Full day

  • Day 2
    A microcosm of Scotland

    A microcosm of Scotland

    See dramatic mountains and wild landscapes on beautiful Arran.

    Warmed by the North Atlantic Drift, the sheltered isle of Arran is a haven for wildlife. As you travel around the island, see if you can spot Scotland’s ‘Big Five’ wildlife draws: the Golden Eagle, red deer, red squirrel, otter and seal.  

    Fancy some walking? Try the popular Goat Fell hiking trail, and visit Brodick Castle to get a sense of the aristocratic life of yesteryear. Discover Neolithic treasures across Machrie Moor, and sample the distinctive malt whisky of the local distillery. 

    • Included Brodick Castle with Shuttle
    Day 2
    A microcosm of Scotland

    A microcosm of Scotland

  • Day 3
    Tobermory, Isle of Mull, Scotland

    Colourful fishing port

    Explore colourful Tobermory and discover its many modest delights.

    Tobermory is the main town on the Isle of Mull. As you get close to the waterfront, you'll be greeted by a row of distinctive brightly-coloured Georgian houses. Explore this small town, packed with cafés, restaurants and craft stores – it even has its own whisky distillery.   

    If conditions allow, we’ll go to Loch Sunart, a beautiful seawater loch that few others visit. As a Marine Protected Area, the clear waters shelter a rich ecosystem and are a stronghold for otters. It’s also a great place for spotting dolphins and porpoises. 

    • Included Tobermory Visit and Loch Sunart Landing & Small Boat Cruising
    Day 3
    Tobermory, Isle of Mull, Scotland

    Colourful fishing port

  • Day 4
    Fort William, Scotland 

    Scottish Highlands adventure town

    Visit Scotland’s outdoor adventure hub and take in the surrounding beauty.

    After sailing into Loch Linnhe we arrive at Fort William. The town is known as ‘Britain’s Outdoor Capital’ and is a magnet for hikers, bikers, climbers and skiers. As you’ll see, it’s set amidst some spectacular Highland scenery.  

    The town’s whisky distillery offers its take on the national tipple, and a scenic short walk awaits at Glen Nevis. You can also visit Glen Coe, a valley formed from volcanic activity, sculpted by glaciers and designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. 

    • Included High in the Nevis Range
    Day 4
    Fort William, Scotland 

    Scottish Highlands adventure town

  • Day 5
    Oban, Scotland

    Gateway to the Isles

    Set foot on Scotland’s west coast in this small and charming town. 

    The ‘Gateway to the Isles’, the little town of Oban reached its heyday when the railway arrived, adding to its life as a busy fishing port. Victorian buildings cluster round the port while ferries come and go, heading out to the distant Hebrides.   

    A 20-minute walk from town goes past beaches and through woodland to the castle Dunollie, ancient seat of the Clan Chiefs. Fancy a wee dram? The tiny Oban Distillery is one of the smallest and one of the oldest in Scotland.   

    • Included Oban Walking Tour
    Day 5
    Oban, Scotland

    Gateway to the Isles

  • Day 6
    Islay (Scotland)

    Scottish island life, distilled

    Idyllic Islay is an island paradise of wildlife, whisky and woollen garments.

    Islay (pronounced eye-la) isn’t called ‘Whisky Island’ for nothing. There are nine working distilleries here, and you’ll find their peaty single malts sold around the world. One of the larger isles, there’s 130 miles of coastline, and numerous quiet sandy beaches. 

    Islay is also an island of wildlife, with over 200 species of birds including Golden Eagles, oystercatchers, gannets and Hen Harriers. What’s more, the mystical past is present here, with ancient monoliths, Celtic crosses and a stone circle all visible.   

    • Included Islay Coastal Walk 
    Day 6
    Islay (Scotland)

    Scottish island life, distilled

  • Day 7
    Glasgow, Scotland

    Return to Glasgow

    Finish off where you started – but why not stay a bit longer?  

    Our island-hopping expedition ends where we started out, in Glasgow. We know you’ll have had some wonderful experiences on your expedition, but why not linger a while and see some of the things you may have missed before you set sail.  

    If you want to fully explore Glasgow and Edinburgh, we recommend extending your stay by booking our optional Post-Programme. With an overnight in Edinburgh, you’ll be able to see the main sights of Glasgow as well as the majestic Edinburgh Castle. 

    Day 7
    Glasgow, Scotland

    Return to Glasgow



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Current offers on this cruise:

  • Solo Traveller Offer

    Solo travellers who prefer their own space while still travelling with others, have the opportunity to save on select voyages departing in 2023. For a limited time, pay no single supplement if you book one of the below expedition cruises.
    This offer applies to a selection of departures that you can find on each voyage page.
    See Special Offer

What's included

Included in your voyage

Expedition Cruise  

  • Expedition cruise in a cabin of your choice 
  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner including beverages (house beer and wine, sodas, and mineral water) in restaurant Aune  
  • Complimentary tea and coffee 
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi on board. Be aware that we sail in remote areas with very limited connection. Streaming is not supported. 
  • Complimentary reusable water bottle to use at water refill stations on board 
  • English-speaking Expedition Team who organise and accompany activities on board and ashore 
  • Range of included activities 

Onboard Activities 

  • Experts on the Expedition Team deliver in-depth lectures on a variety of topics 
  • Use of the ship’s Science Center which has an extensive library and advanced biological and geological microscopes 
  • Citizen Science programme allows guests to assist with live scientific research 
  • Professional onboard photographer gives top tips and tricks for the best landscape and wildlife photos 
  • Use of the ship’s hot tubs, panoramic sauna and indoor gym 
  • Informal gatherings with the crew such as daily recaps and preparation for the day to come 

Landing Activities 

  • Escorted landings with small expedition boats  
  • Loan of boots, trekking poles, and all equipment for activities 
  • Complimentary wind and water-resistant expedition jacket 
  • Expedition Photographers help with your camera settings 

Not included in your voyage

  • International flights  
  • Travel insurance 
  • Luggage handling 
  • Optional shore excursions with our local partners 
  • Optional small-group activities with our Expedition Team   


  • All planned activities are subject to weather and ice conditions 
  • Excursions and activities are subject to change  
  • Please make sure you meet all entry and boarding requirements 
  • No gratuities expected 
MS Spitsbergen
Longyearbyen, Svalbard - MS Spitsbergen
Photo: Genna Roland
A group of people posing for the camera
Photo: Stefan Dall / Hurtigruten
Your ship

MS Spitsbergen

Year built 2009
Year of refurbishment 2016
Shipyard Estaleiro Navais de Viana do Castelo (POR)
Passenger capacity 180
Beds 243
Car capacity 0
Gross tonnage 7,344
Length 100.54m
Beam 18m
Speed 14.5 knots
MS Spitsbergen

MS Spitsbergen is named after the crown jewel of Arctic Norway – the Svalbard archipelago and its biggest island, Spitsbergen. Hurtigruten has a long history of travelling to Spitsbergen, beginning in 1896 with the `Sports Route´.

Read more about MS Spitsbergen

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