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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    10,499

    Invergordon, Kirkwall, Stornoway and Oban

    Our MSC Lirica is stopping at each of these ports - can you tell me which ones are alongside and which ones are tender ports.

    We are usually Shore excursions DIYers and wonder if the public transport system is comprehensive enough or should we hire a car for the day.

    Invergordon - we would like to head to Dunrobin castle but I understand the train schedule to get there in the morning is not very friendly but getting back in the afternoon is fine.

    Kirkwall - we would like to visit the Skara Brae, Maeshowe (sic) and Ring of Brodgar

    Stornoway (Isle of Lewis) - Besides the Ring of Callinish I am not sure what else unique is there to see - looks like its a place to admire the beaches and rugged scenery - I was thinking of hiring a car and driving via Callinish to the Lighthouse on the Butt of Lewis - which is north. The north appears to be the flatter region of the island whereas the southern end towards Harris appears to be more mountainous and rugged and more interesting?? - would one recommend heading towards Eilean Glas lighthouse. Am I correct in saying beaches to the north and mountains to the south in general terms.

    Oban - we only have 5 hours here so not sure if Glencoe is a runner as a DIY - anything interesting around town. This may be very unfair to Oban but would have preferred a call to pretty Tobermory.

    Finally South Queensferry I think is a tender port that I assume is a bus ride into Edinburgh - we have been to Edinburgh several times before and been to the Royal Mile, Castle, Galleries and the Royal Yacht Brittannia. If we go into Edinburgh - we may consider climbing Arthur's seat! Anything outside Edinburgh in the South Queensferry area that's worth checking out. Is SQ near the Forth bridges?

    Appreciate any or all the help you can give folks!


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    359
    Invergordon - you can get train times and fares from sites such as redspottedhankie.co.uk - if you are over 55 you can also get very good deals includiung first class train travel from Scotrail. If a bus journey is necessary at either end then add on Railbus when buying your ticket(s).
    Stornaway - you'll need to check this but most Scottish islands have frequent buses, including evenings and Sundays. These will whizz you round and, no doubt, the driver might be happy to enhance your journey with information. Any English OAP bus pass is not accepted in Scotland (as opposed to the reverse) but the islands need tourist money.. Yes the southern end is more mountaineous and their are some fabulous beaches on the west side, especially Harris. Northern end of Lewis is quite bleak. Probably also be windy - but hopefully not wet!
    I don't remember many beaches at the top end of Lewis.
    South Queensbury - you should be able to easily reach Perth, for instance, by train or bus - again check redspottedhanky.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    43
    South Queensferry - yes this is a tender port, it is where the bridges are, you will likely be anchored beside the rail bridge. bus ride into edinburgh or head north into Fife


  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    43
    Or Taxi to Linlithgow see the Palace, birthplace of Mary Queen of Scots, onwards to the Falkirk Wheel perhaps or Stirling. Loads to do within easy reach of S. Queensferry.

    If you are wanting to go to Tobermory could you not jump on the ferry? Haven't seen the schedules so don't know if it is feasible.

    What date are you looking at - sounds interesting itinerary

    Quote QUOTE: View Post
    South Queensferry - yes this is a tender port, it is where the bridges are, you will likely be anchored beside the rail bridge. bus ride into edinburgh or head north into Fife


    MT MO

    Arcadia, Golden Princess, Disney Wonder, Mariner OTS, Grand Princess, Aurora, Celebrity Eclipse, Azura

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    11,182
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    56
    Tom,
    INVERGORDON is along side freequent busses to Inverness,pick up another couple of cruisers and then private hire is fairly cheap to Dunrobin.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    5,751
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    1
    Oban will probably be a tender port. Tobermorey is too far to visit on a 5 hour stay. Oban is a lovely fishing town with the most amazing fish restaurants, eg Eesk, the waterfront restaurant and the seafood temple. on the pier there is a van that sells seafood and a kiosk that sells the most wonderful seafood sandwich Oh and crabs and lobsters that are so fresh they are still alive.lol as you like walking up steep hills you could visit McCaigs folly in Oban. the views from there are wonderful. give Oban a wee chance Tom, I love it there.

    SQ is beside the forth road and rail bridges. you should be able to see it from the ship. why not take the train[approx 45mins] or bus [approx 1 hour but longer if motorway busy], from Edinburgh into Glasgow. your wife would love the shopping but we have some beautiful buildings and we are also one of the only cities to have two Cathedrals [RC and CofS]. all our museums are free except for the science museum, the new transport museum and the oldest house in Glasgow.

    don't want to work, just want to cruise.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    10,499
    Quote QUOTE: View Post
    Or Taxi to Linlithgow see the Palace, birthplace of Mary Queen of Scots, onwards to the Falkirk Wheel perhaps or Stirling. Loads to do within easy reach of S. Queensferry.

    If you are wanting to go to Tobermory could you not jump on the ferry? Haven't seen the schedules so don't know if it is feasible.

    What date are you looking at - sounds interesting itinerary
    This is the itinerary



    Destination
    Day Date Port Arrival Departure
    1 Tue Aug 07 Hamburg .... 21:00
    2 Wed Aug 08 Helgoland 07:00 11:00
    3 Thu Aug 09 South Queensferry 10:00 18:00
    4 Fri Aug 10 Invergordon 09:00 19:00
    5 Sat Aug 11 Stornoway 08:00 17:00
    6 Sun Aug 12 Kirkwall 08:00 16:00
    7 Mon Aug 13 Oban 09:00 14:00
    8 Tue Aug 14 Dublin 09:00 18:00
    9 Wed Aug 15 Cork 08:00




    Cruise -Northern europeNetherlands,Germany,United Kingdom,IrelandPrice starting from€499.00*Brochure Price€1,679.00*Ship: MSC LIRICA

    Departing From: Hamburg

    Ports of Call: Hamburg, Helgoland, South Queensferry, Invergordon, Stornoway, Kirkwall, Oban, Dublin, Cork

    Boarding Dates: 07/08/2012


  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    7
    We have also booked for this cruise! Last year we visited Invergordon with another cruise line and we loved it! We visited Dunrobin and Falls of Shin. For this year we are looking for a group of 4 to share a van to go to Eilean Donan Castle. This is the itinerary: Eilean Donan Castle and the Clan Macrae, Shore Excursion...
    Apart of that we only know Amsterdam, the rest are unknown to us. By the way we are two adults and two children.


  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    11,182
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    56
    Quote QUOTE: View Post
    Oban will probably be a tender port. Tobermorey is too far to visit on a 5 hour stay. Oban is a lovely fishing town with the most amazing fish restaurants, eg Eesk, the waterfront restaurant and the seafood temple. on the pier there is a van that sells seafood and a kiosk that sells the most wonderful seafood sandwich Oh and crabs and lobsters that are so fresh they are still alive.lol as you like walking up steep hills you could visit McCaigs folly in Oban. the views from there are wonderful. give Oban a wee chance Tom, I love it there.

    SQ is beside the forth road and rail bridges. you should be able to see it from the ship. why not take the train[approx 45mins] or bus [approx 1 hour but longer if motorway busy], from Edinburgh into Glasgow. your wife would love the shopping but we have some beautiful buildings and we are also one of the only cities to have two Cathedrals [RC and CofS]. all our museums are free except for the science museum, the new transport museum and the oldest house in Glasgow.
    No need for public transport from S.Q ferry,there was an enterprising private coach company running a 15 min non stop service from the head of the quay right in to the centre of edinburgh for £10 return journey took approx 30mins.
    wait til the ship calls in at greenock and when you see whats on offer you wont bother to go up the Glesca.


  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    10,499
    Quote QUOTE: View Post
    We have also booked for this cruise! Last year we visited Invergordon with another cruise line and we loved it! We visited Dunrobin and Falls of Shin. For this year we are looking for a group of 4 to share a van to go to Eilean Donan Castle. This is the itinerary: Eilean Donan Castle and the Clan Macrae, Shore Excursion...
    Apart of that we only know Amsterdam, the rest are unknown to us. By the way we are two adults and two children.
    Hi there! We are 2 adults and a 10 month old. We intend to go to Dunrobin as I like falcons. Can you tell me what's at the Falls of shin exactly - I can't see exactly what the attraction is. We are hiring a car from Ken's garage on the dock.

    I have been researching the other ports and Orkeny's will be a problem as it will be a Sunday and all the car hire places are shut. One option is the T10 bus but it does not do exactly what I want to do.

    We have been to Edinburgh twice before so I think we will to the Falkirk wheel - it looks like a fantastic feat of engineering - I think after all the historic stone circles, cairns, castles etc something modern will be refreshing. We don't intend to spend ages ashore because of the baby.

    I am looking forward to Hegoland - nothing there I think but am looking forward to the four hour stop.

    Are you doing the 11 night Hamburg to Hamburg trip or are you getting off in Cork? IF so have you plans for Cork - would you like me to chech hotels etc for you if you are staying any length of time?

    PM me to discuss - would be good to meet other forum members! Maybe we could organise a cruise dot get together meet

    Other downside is that most ports are tenders.


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