Summer in the Isles (Hebridean Sky)

Summer in the Isles (Hebridean Sky)

From GBP £3,995

Description

Here is a perfect getaway for those who enjoy visiting islands, small ship cruising and the chance to explore on foot. Join the MS Hebridean Sky in Dover and visit some of the most idyllic islands including Alderney, Sark, Tresco and St Martin’s with their crystal clear waters and fine white sandy beaches that would not disgrace a Caribbean island. We also visit Bryher and Lundy which are rarely visited gems and almost never included on cruise schedules.

During our eight night island hopping voyage, we will explore on foot amazing little contained worlds as well as the stunning sub-tropical Abbey Gardens on Tresco. Such an itinerary would be difficult to arrange independently and the MS Hebridean Sky is the perfect small ship for such a venture. A maximum of 100 passengers allows us to explore places otherwise inaccessible to larger ships and with our nimble Zodiac craft, we can land on out of the way coves and be footloose in a way that would be totally impractical for larger groups of passengers.

Trip Name
Summer in the Isles (Hebridean Sky)
Days
9
Overview
Vessel Type: Expedition Length: 90.6 metres Passenger Capacity: 118 Built / Refurbished: 1992 / 2016 The MS Hebridean Sky is one of our three flag ships and sister vessel to the MS Island Sky and MS Caledonian Sky. All three vessels were built in the same ship yard in Italy at similar times and share the same excellent attributes that make them three of the finest small ships in the world. Formerly known as the Sea Explorer, the vessel underwent a multi-million pound refurbishment in Sweden in Spring 2016 before being re-launched as the MS Hebridean Sky. Your Suite. On board there are 59 exceptionally spacious and well-designed suites. All feature a sitting area and fourteen suites have private balconies. The feeling of luxury is enhanced by the wood panelling and brass which predominates throughout the vessel conveying the atmosphere of a private yacht. The passenger accommodation is arranged over five decks and all suites have outside views with suites on the Scott and Shackleton Decks featuring private balconies. Each suite affords considerable comfort with en-suite bathroom featuring vanity unit with sink and walk-in rainfall shower, large wardrobes, dressing table with large mirror and stool and excellent storage. There is a minifridge, flat screen television and a telephone in each suite. Refillable water bottles, towelling dressing gowns and slippers are also provided for your comfort. Additional facilities include a programmable electronic safe, hairdryer, assorted Molton Brown toiletries and individually controlled air-conditioning and heating. Soft hues and blended tones enhance the traditional maritime style making the passenger accommodation an inviting and relaxing place to be. The beds in each suite can be configured as twins or double with the exception of suite 601 and 602 which feature fixed double beds. The impressive Hebridean Suite, located on the Shackleton Deck consists of a separate bathroom and sitting room with extra large balcony stretching the length of the suite. Additional benefits of booking this marvellous suite include complimentary mini-bar stocked with your preferences and complimentary laundry. Your Space. The spacious and finely decorated public rooms on board the MS Hebridean Sky include a large lounge on the Byrd Deck featuring a selection of seating options from individual armchairs and sofas to side cushioned benches. Daily briefings given by the Cruise Director and talks from Guest Speakers and expedition staff take place in The Lounge which is fitted with the highest standard of presentation equipment including multiple screens. In addition to the Lounge, there is also The Club, located on the Mawson Deck which features the main bar where the onboard pianist plays periodically throughout the day. The Club also offers a 24-hour tea and coffee station. Towards the aft of the ship on the Mawson Deck is The Library which is well stocked with reference books pertaining to the destinations the vessel is visiting and a selection of essential reads. A collection of games and devices to access the internet via the ship’s satellite can also be found in the library. Access to the ship’s satellite Wi-Fi via your own device is complimentary on board (signal strength varies depending on location and demand). The Dining Room which can seat all guests at one sitting is located on the Amundsen Deck and is a bright and charming setting to enjoy the delicious meals on board. Outside there is a rear Lido Deck located on the Scott Deck where meals are served in warm weather under shade. Whilst heaters and blankets make dining al fresco comfortable in cooler climates. Further to this, on the top Shackleton Deck there is an observation area which offers a fantastic platform for spotting wildlife complete with deck furniture, ideal for relaxing with a book or catching up with fellow travellers. You will also find a clinic and Doctor on board and a lift that serves all decks. Additionally there is a small hairdressers with appointments made on request. Your Dining. It is quite a task to create a dining experience as that found on board our Sky vessels when you are cruising in far-flung corners of the globe, indeed it takes a team of highly talented chefs to deliver fresh, varied dishes no matter where you are at sea. Fortunately, our catering teams are well adapted to the world of small ship cruising where no two days are the same and the menus are often scheduled and tailored around the days’ excursions. With only one sitting and a maximum of just over 100 passengers, the cuisine on board is of a consistent superior quality that befits such vessels. Where possible and when it meets their high standards, our accomplished chefs will obtain local produce in markets. Such purchases enhance the well-stocked larders and enable the chefs on board to exhibit their culinary skills and bring a local touch to the varied menus, emphasising the international expertise of the chefs on board. Afternoon tea and pre-dinner canapés take place every day in either the comfort of the Lounge or out on the Lido Deck when the weather is favourable. Tea and coffee are also available 24 hours a day. Special diets can be catered for with sufficient notice. In keeping with the informal atmosphere on board, when dining you are able to choose your seating arrangements at your leisure. Whether that be joining a table of four to six other passengers outside on the Lido Deck in the evening’s sunshine or whether you prefer to enjoy meals in the à la carte restaurant. For those travelling alone, our onboard friendly restaurant staff will take care to ensure you are seated with other like-minded travellers. In the main elegant dining room, breakfast is served buffet-style, with certain items cooked to order on request. Lunch and dinner are à la carte with an excellent choice of dishes, with the menu reflecting the daily catch or local delicacies. To enhance your dining experience even further a selection of wines are included with both meals and there is also a comprehensive wine list with a wide selection of new and old world wines from which to choose. The onboard catering and restaurant staff are experienced at sea and enthuse a passion for superb service. Whether it be ensuring you have an outdoor blanket as you enjoy the crisp sea breeze on the Lido Deck or sharing their knowledge of the characteristics of the days’ wine selections, you will experience a service on board like no other. You may also enjoy sumptuous barbeques on deck whilst at times, the chef will make your dish to order at special pasta or stir fry stations. For Your Comfort. The MS Hebridean Sky is equipped with the latest safety, navigation and communications equipment along with roll stabilizers to minimize the ship’s motion. During your voyage we hope to offer the opportunity to visit the Captain and Officers on the Bridge to check the vessels progress by charts and learn more about your journey. There is also a dedicated channel on your television in your suite showing the routing of the vessel along with technical information and estimated times of arrival and departure from port. On board you will also find a clinic and Doctor and a lift that serves all decks. Smoking on board is restricted to a specific area on deck. Life Onboard. If large resort-style vessels accommodating many thousands of passengers are your ideal, then our ships are not for you as you will not find endless entertainment, round the clock buffets and the people management which is so much a part of today’s big ship on board style. However, if like us you prefer a more peaceful life at sea you will find our flagships the perfect vessels. When choosing your next voyage the choice of vessels is astounding. You can select a ship carrying in excess of 4000 passengers with impersonal service or join us aboard the MS Caledonian Sky, MS Island Sky or MS Hebridean Sky where peace, high quality service and attention to detail are the order of the day. We promise there will be no organised entertainment, fancy dress, deck games or any of the usual big ship experiences. Instead, the atmosphere is warm and convivial and more akin to a private yacht or country hotel in which you can learn more about the wonders of nature, culture and ancient civilisations in the company of like-minded people. A little music in the lounge or bar after dinner, Guest Speakers and informative port briefings from our Expedition Leader or Cruise Director and of course good food with wine included at lunch and dinner, all contribute to make any voyage aboard these wonderful vessels a memorable and joyful experience. After a day ashore you will return to the comfort and peace of an exceedingly comfortable ship. The daily programme on board is in the capable hands of our Cruise Director or Expedition Leader and staff who coordinate with the Captain and Officers to make the most of each day. Briefings and talks will be provided throughout the voyage together with a ‘Daily Programme’ that is distributed every evening to your suite outlining the next day’s activities. Dress on board is casual and relaxed and there will be no ‘black tie’ evenings.

Itinerary



Day 1 - Day 1 Dover, England.
Embark the MS Hebridean Sky this afternoon in Dover. Transfers will be provided from Dover Priory Railway Station at a fixed time. Enjoy welcome dinner and drinks. Sail this evening.
Day 2 - Day 2 Guernsey.
Enjoy a relaxing morning at sea as we make our way to Guernsey. Arrive during lunch and this afternoon there will be the option of a walking tour of St Peter Port including a visit to Castle Cornet, a 12th century battlement which guards the entrance to St Peter Port harbour. Alternatively, join a panoramic drive during which we will see the beautiful coastline and beaches and visit the Little Chapel, built in 1914 as a miniature version of the famous basilica at Lourdes and covered in fragments of shattered china.
Day 3 - Day 3 Alderney & Sark.
On Alderney, visit the island’s only town, St Anne, which has all the old-world charm of a Normandy village with tiny squares and pastel shaded cottages and shops. Maybe join a short walk to see the German fortifications or a longer walk with our naturalists heading to the cliffs. At Sark we will use our Zodiacs to land on this peaceful trafficfree island. Horse-drawn carriages take us along the narrow lanes alive with the songs of chaffinches, skylarks and mistle thrush as we see the narrow isthmus which joins Little Sark and Big Sark and the enchanting gardens at La Seigneurie. The more active may wish to hire a bicycle and explore independently.
Day 4 - Day 4 Jersey.
Go ashore by Zodiac from our anchorage in Jersey. We will enjoy a morning drive to the east coast of the island viewing the magnificent landscapes before arriving at Mont Orgueil, the impressive fortification that has witnessed island life through the Middle Ages, French Wars and German Occupation. Continue to Samares Manor Gardens. Built in 1920 by Sir James Knott these gardens include special areas for culinary and cosmetic plants as well as a “physic” garden of traditional medicinal plants along with a rose and lavender garden. We also visit the Orchid Gardens, where orchid varieties are cultivated in a specialized greenhouse beautifully appointed with flowing streams and little rock gardens. Return to the ship for lunch and spend an afternoon exploring St Helier independently.
Day 5 - Day 5 Tresco & Bryher, 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, maybe visit the Valhalla collection of ship figureheads from ships wrecked on the islands or relax in the cafe. This afternoon we will tender ashore to Bryher, the smallest of the inhabited Isles of Scilly. Take the chance to wander along the tracks that cross the island amongst hedgerows and fields bursting with wildflowers. The active may wish to climb Watch Hill, where in the past islanders would keep watch for ships in distress or alternatively take a stroll to one of the beautiful beaches.
Day 6 - Day 6 St Agnes & St Martin's.
This morning we will visit St Agnes, the most south-westerly community in the UK. Surrounded by rocks and reefs this delightful tiny island offers marvellous coastal walks. 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. After lunch tender ashore to the northernmost island of the group, St Martin’s, a small island community of just 120 residents. Enjoy time to explore independently, climb one of the viewpoints for vistas over the islands and the offshore seal colonies or maybe join one of our expedition team on a guided walk.
Day 7 - Day 7 Lundy.
We have scheduled a morning on Lundy, a remote and absolutely delightful island in the Bristol Channel. Although small, just three miles long by half a mile wide, its isolation has made it a home for a range of wildlife and a clutch of listed buildings and monuments. Walk along its traffic free lanes and paths, explore the wide bays and coves by way of hanging valleys, have a drink at the inn or buy the islands ‘puffin stamps’ at the island’s shop.
Day 8 - Day 8 Dartmouth.
Sail this morning along the River Dart to our anchorage off the town of Dartmouth. If time permits, we hope to explore ashore before lunch on board. On a choice of excursions this afternoon you may decide to visit ‘Greenway’, the wonderful historic house and garden that was once home to Agatha Christie. Visit the gardens, including the Camellia Garden, a wonderful place to sit and ponder on the history of the house and the notable residents and visitors that have included Sir Walter Raleigh and Sir Francis Drake. Alternatively visit the 1920s country retreat of the D’Oyly Carte family at Coleton Fishacre. Lose yourself in the RHS accredited garden by the sea as we wander the paths through glades and past tranquil ponds. Meanwhile the house interior is imbued with 1920s elegance and Art Deco features.
Day 9 - Day 9 Plymouth.
Disembark this morning after breakfast. Transfers will be provided to Plymouth Train Station at a fixed time.
Day 10 - Please Note:
Itineraries are subject to change.

Trip Dates

StartEndPrice FromRoom Type
31-08-202008-09-2020GBP £3,995Amundsen Deck Standard Suite
31-08-202008-09-2020GBP £5,495Shackleton Deck Owner's Balcony Suite
31-08-202008-09-2020GBP £5,595Amundsen Deck Standard Sole
31-08-202008-09-2020GBP £5,995Byrd Deck Superior Sole
31-08-202008-09-2020GBP £6,395Shackleton Deck Hebridean Suite
31-08-202008-09-2020GBP £4,295Byrd Deck Superior Suite
31-08-202008-09-2020GBP £4,595Mawson Deck Premium Suite
31-08-202008-09-2020GBP £4,895Mawson Deck Corner Suite
31-08-202008-09-2020GBP £5,195Scott Deck Deluxe Balcony Suite

Inclusions

    • The United Kingdom is surrounded by a number of island groups offering wonderful scenery, wildlife and small communities and our voyage will include time in two of these groups: the Channel Islands and the Isles of Scilly.
    • Our small ship, the MS Hebridean Sky, is able to anchor and use local boats or the ship’s Zodiacs to land at the small harbours which serve the islands and, with just 100 passengers we will not overrun the islands but instead will be absorbed into the towns and island life. Our time will be spent walking the nature trails, spotting marine wildlife and experiencing life in these remote communities.

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