Britain’s Islands & Highlands

Britain’s Islands & Highlands

From GBP £3,195


This expedition has been devised to celebrate the stunning scenery of the British Isles from the highlands of Scotland to the outlying islands off the English coast. Sailing from Oban, we have a day to explore the Nevis Range or alternatively to view the Jacobite Steam Train from Fort William, regarded as one of the great railway journeys of the world. We continue to Canna and then to lovely Loch Scavaig on the Isle of Skye before our last call in Scotland, Colonsay where we will spend a morning exploring on foot. Travelling south, we next call into the Isle of Man for a day of exploration including the opportunity to visit Castle Rushen, one of the best examples of a Medieval castle in Europe. In Wales we spend a day on the beautiful Pembrokeshire coast followed by remote Lundy Island and finally the charming Isles of Scilly before we sail into Plymouth. Each day there will be the opportunity to explore coastal paths, see the resident wildlife, enjoy the wonderful views on offer and appreciate the ancient and Medieval history of the region. Such a voyage is only possible aboard a small ship with the ability to reach these remote ports and, with the use of our Zodiacs, we will be able to explore in small groups, ensuring the solitude we find on these isles is not disturbed.

Trip Name
Britain’s Islands & Highlands
Vessel Type: Small Ship Length: 87 metres Passenger Capacity: 95 Built / refurbished: 1960 / 2013 / 2018 MS Serenissima is a charming vessel and one of her best known and loved features of this vessel is its unique style. During a major refit the then owners commissioned Swedish interior designers to create a Gustavian style interior. This bright Swedish 18th century influenced, country house style works particularly well on a vessel of this vintage, providing intimacy and classic nautical sensibility often lacking in larger vessels. The vessel is equipped with a fleet of Zodiac landing craft allowing us to visit remote places where normal tender arrangements are not possible. The European Captain, Officers, Expedition Staff, and crew offer a first class service and have been selected for their professionalism and caring attitudes. The atmosphere on board is warm and welcoming and dedicated to discovery and relaxation. AIR-CONDITIONING The ship is air conditioned throughout. Please note that only the Serenissima Suites have individually controlled air-conditioning. DAILY PROGRAMME A Daily Programme, detailing the following day’s arrangements as well as any specific information about the day’s activities is produced onboard and delivered to your cabin each evening during the turn down service. DINING, DRINKING AND DIETARY REQUIREMENTS The Venice Restaurant onboard serves international cuisine and accommodates all guests at a single open seating. Tables seat 4 to 10 diners. In addition, there is an outside dining area for when the weather and itinerary permit. Breakfast and lunch are both buffet style, dinner is waiter service only. Complimentary (red and white) house wine, beer and soft drinks are included with lunch and dinner. Bar drinks and other beverages with meals are not included; these may be purchased onboard and paid for at the end of your cruise. Complimentary tea and coffee are available between 07:00 hours and 23:00 hours at the tea and coffee station located in the Andrea lounge. Please advise of any special dietary requests in advance. DISABLED FACILITIES The ship can accommodate passengers with mobility restrictions and wheelchair dependent passengers in cabin 407, which has a wider door and no step into/out of the bathroom and shower area. There is a lift serving decks 3 to 6, but there is no stair lift. DOCTOR A medical doctor is available on board 24 hours a day. A fee is charged for any consultations and medication prescribed. Please ensure you carry adequate supplies of any regular medications you may require.  ELECTRICITY The electrical outlets in the cabins and public areas are 220V and take a two-round-pin plug (as in continental Europe). There is a 110/220V, 60Hz outlet for electric shavers in the bathroom. We recommend that you bring an international adaptor. GRATUITIES Gratuities to crew and whilst on excursions are included in the cost of your holiday. INTERNET The onboard library has a computer equipped for email/internet access and Wi-Fi access is available in public areas, although you will require your own laptop, tablet or smartphone, and charges apply – 100mb for €15 Euros, or 500mb for €25 Euros. Please note that connection is dependent on weather conditions and location. LANGUAGE All members of the crew speak English. MONEY The following payment methods are accepted for settlement of shipboard accounts: Cash (Euros or British Pounds), Credit Card (MasterCard, Visa, American Express), Debit Card (MasterCard and Visa). Please note that personal cheques and Travellers’ Cheques are not accepted. PUBLIC AREAS • Andrea Lounge (on Deck 5). The bar is open from 11.00 until 24.00. • Harald Jarl Lounge (on Deck 5). There is a small library here with books and games. There is also a computer for public use (charges apply for internet access) • Lido area (on Deck 5) with a Jacuzzi and fitness room with two running machines • Observation Deck (access from Deck 5 lido area) • Deck 5 and Deck 6 outside seating areas SNORKELLING Snorkelling equipment is kept onboard. Please note that there is no snorkelling from Zodiacs. All snorkelling stops will operate from a beach.  TELEVISION The ship is equipped with a satellite TV system which receives 15 channels. TV reception depends on the satellite dish and on occasion it may not be possible to receive a signal. There is one central video channel on which it is possible to listen to the lectures delivered in the Andrea Lounge. There is also a channel for the ship’s camera located in front of the ship. ZODIACS Some destinations may require the use of Zodiacs to go ashore. These are usually on expedition cruises though may sometimes be used on destination cruises. 


Day 1 - Day 1 - Oban, Scotland.
Embark the MS Serenissima this afternoon. A transfer will be available from Glasgow Central Station and Glasgow International Airport at a fixed time. Enjoy Welcome Drinks and Dinner on board as we sail along Loch Linnhe and anchor overnight at Fort William.
Day 2 - Day 2 - Fort William.
Awake this morning in Fort William, the biggest town in the Scottish highlands and a great base to explore the surrounding beautiful scenery of the Nevis Range. . On a full day tour, we will drive to one of the best known monuments in Scotland – “The Glenfinnan Viaduct”, enjoying stunning views of Ben Nevis on the way. Upon arrival at Glenfinnan, we will explore the Visitor Centre and watch the famous Jacobite Steam Train chug across this famous landmark. Return to Fort William for lunch at a local hotel after which we will visit Glencoe, one of Scotland's most spectacular places. Travel south along the shores of Loch Linnhe to the scenic majesty of Glencoe. The glen provides some of Scotland’s most dramatic scenery and it is, of course, the scene of the infamous 1692 massacre. Continue on our scenic drive via Pass of Brander, taking in the impressive scenery of the Scottish Highlands with mountains, sea lochs, castles and islands before returning up the West Coast to Fort William and return to the MS Serenissima. The more active may prefer to join a guided hike through scenic Glen Nevis and the Nevis Gorge to Steall Falls, which at 120 metres is the second highest waterfall in Scotland.
Day 3 - Day 3 - Canna & Loch Scavaig.
Strategically placed between the mountains of Rum and the Outer Hebrides, the island of Canna, and its adjoining neighbour Sanday, are bound together like some rare text that reveals over 60 million years of Hebridean geology and history. They have an amazingly rich archaeological landscape with remains dating to all periods of settled occupation in Scotland. The fertile soil and its diversity of habitats mean that the island has an incredibly rich plant life with 248 native flowering plants recorded. We will see Canna House, once the home of the previous owners, John and Margaret Fay Campbell, and wander across grassy basalt plateaus to the 600 foot cliffs on the north shore. Over lunch we sail to lovely Loch Scavaig on the island of Skye. Just beyond is the freshwater Loch Corruisk with its breathtakingly beautiful view over the Cuillins. This is great walking country and our expedition team will run a series of hikes for all interests. For those who prefer a less energetic morning our Zodiacs will explore the coast looking out for seals.
Day 4 - Day 4 - Colonsay.
Awake this morning off Colonsay. Lying between Mull and Islay, we will spend the morning on a choice of walks exploring this lovely island, with her craggy, heatherbacked hills, picturesque beaches and sparse woodland yet with an impressive array of plant and birdlife. Near Colonsay House, built in 1722 by Malcolm MacNeil and bought by Lord Strathcona in 1904, we will visit the attractively dilapidated wooded gardens, which protect the tiny, enigmatic 8th century St Oran’s Cross. Return to the MS Serenissima for lunch and relax on board this afternoon as we sail. Maybe join a lecture in the lounge or find a spot on deck.
Day 5 - Day 5 - Douglas, Isle of Man.
Arrive this morning on the Isle of Man. Settlements have been here since the Mesolithic Age and the island also claims to have the longest continuous parliament which was founded in 979 AD. This morning we will travel to Tynwald Hill, located in the little village of St John’s. This grass topped, tiered hill is made from the soil and stones from each of the island’s 17 parishes. We continue to the west coast town of Peel, a traditional Manx fishing port where we will see the ruins of the castle as well as having some time to explore independently. Returning to the ship for lunch there will be a choice of options in the afternoon. Maybe enjoy some time at leisure to explore Douglas, the walkers can join us on the coastal trail around Scarlett Head on the south of the island where alongside the beautiful views we can see limestone outcrops, volcanic rocks, Iron Age forts and even a World War II radar station. We will return to the ship via Castletown and the magnificent Castle Rushen, one of the best examples of a Medieval castle in Europe which was the former seat of the Kings and Lords of Mann. Alternatively take the electric mountain railway to the peak of Snaefell, the highest point on the island and where on a clear day we may be able to see the coastlines of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales.
Day 6 - Day 6 - Pembroke, Wales.
We spend the day on the beautiful Pembrokeshire coast. From our nearby berth we will visit the 12th century Pembroke Castle, the second largest castle in Wales and birthplace of Henry VII. Its vast walls, towers and keep were impregnable to cannon fire during the Civil War and so much of this impressive fortress remains intact today that it will be the focus of our tour. We will then enjoy a short drive to the ancient town of Tenby, a picturesque walled, Medieval town that has remained largely unchanged from when it was built 500 years ago. We will take time to stroll through this town’s delightful centre before returning to the ship for lunch. This afternoon the active may wish to stretch their legs on a scenic walk along a section of the Pembrokeshire coastal path past lighthouses, cottages and Mill Bay where Henry Tudor landed in 1485. Alternatively take the scenic drive to St Davids, Britain’s smallest city, and explore the magnificent 12th century cathedral and Bishop’s Palace.
Day 7 - Day 7 - Lundy Island, England.
We have scheduled a whole day on Lundy, a remote island in the Bristol Channel. Although small, just 3 miles long by half a mile wide, its isolation has made it a home for a range of wildlife whilst it is home to a clutch of listed buildings and monuments. The towering cliffs and rocky shoreline are a haven for migrating seabirds, whilst Sika deer, Red deer and Soay sheep can also be seen as we walk along its traffic-free lanes and paths. Spend the day being as active as you wish, maybe explore the wide bays and coves by way of hanging valleys, see ancient burial chambers, climb the lighthouse, have a drink or lunch at the tavern or buy the islands ‘puffin stamps’ at the shop.
Day 8 - Day 8 - Isles of Scilly.
Spend the morning on traffic free Tresco, walking its idyllic lanes from the beach to the famous subtropical Abbey Gardens. Defying the Atlantic weather, this miracle of a garden is home to more than 20,000 species of plants from over 80 countries. Enjoy time to wander at your own pace along the paths. Sail over lunch to St Agnes, the most south westerly community in the United Kingdom. Surrounded by rocks and reefs, this delightful tiny island offers marvellous coastal walks with over one third designated as “sites of special scientific interest”. The small island of Gugh lies across a narrow sandbar and here we find a single stone monolith called the ‘Old Man of Gugh’ which dates back to the Bronze Age.
Day 9 - Day 9 - Plymouth.
Disembark this morning. Transfers will be provided to Plymouth Station at a fixed time.
Day 10 - Please Note:
Itineraries are subject to change.

Trip Dates

StartEndPrice FromRoom Type
02-09-201910-09-2019GBP £3,195Standard Stateroom
02-09-201910-09-2019GBP £3,795Superior Stateroom
02-09-201910-09-2019GBP £3,995Deluxe Stateroom
02-09-201910-09-2019GBP £4,295Standard Single
02-09-201910-09-2019GBP £4,395Junior Suite
02-09-201910-09-2019GBP £4,895Owners Suite


    • Explore Fort William, the biggest town in the Scottish highlands and a great base to explore the surrounding beautiful scenery of the Nevis Range
    • Discover the island of Canna, and its adjoining neighbour Sanday. They have an amazingly rich archaeological landscape with remains dating to all periods of settled occupation in Scotland
    • Explore the lovely island of Colonsay, enjoy her craggy, heatherbacked hills, picturesque beaches and sparse woodland yet with an impressive array of plant and birdlife
    • On Pembrokeshire coast visit the 12th century Pembroke Castle, the second largest castle in Wales and birthplace of Henry VII