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Hotel Barge Spirit of Scotland

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The Great Glen is at the heart of Scotland and has historically linked Inverness in the northeast with Fort William to its southwest. Traverse this spectacular region on board the elegant Spirit of Scotland. A purpose built hotel barge, she has extensive public areas inside and out, that are perfect from which to admire the breathtaking Highlands scenery in comfort as she cruises the Caledonian Canal and the lochs of the Great Glen.

Accommodating up to 12 passengers in six comfortable double and twin cabins with en-suite shower rooms and air-conditioning, as well as a crew of six, she also has a welcoming and traditional wood-panelled saloon and dining area with picture windows, where delicious Scottish cuisine is served, as well as a separate bar stocked with a fine range of Scotch malt whiskies. One of the more unusual features is the forward wheelhouse giving views of the water ahead.

Outside, there are separate areas where you can relax on a recliner during fine weather, or perhaps in the heated spa pool, as well as a covered dining terrace. The large sun deck is the ideal place to admire the dramatic backdrop as you cruise Loch Ness and Loch Oich and past historic landmarks including Eilean Donan and Urquhart castles.


26 June 2022 Departure

Cabins are available for this departure in June - prices from £4,798 per person (based on two people sharing a cabin). Price includes return flights from London, 2 nights' accommodation in Inverness, 6 nights' on board the Spirit of Scotland with all meals and drinks included as well as a daily programme of excursions. 

spirit of Scotland deck plan


Sample Cruise Itinerary


Day 1

Board the Spirit of Scotland for a six night sailing through the Great Glen, including all meals, drinks and excursions. Guests are met at our designated meeting point in Inverness and transferred by private chauffeured minibus to Spirit of Scotland. A champagne welcome by the Captain and crew and perhaps an early evening stroll before our first dinner on board.

Day 2

We begin our week this morning with a cruise through Moy Bridge, the last hand-operated bridge of its type on the waterway, before crossing Loch Lochy. As we approach our mooring at Laggan, a Highland Piper may be there to greet us with a stirring rendition of traditional Scottish music. After lunch on board, our tour today takes us to Dalwhinnie Distillery, built in 1897 and the highest distillery in Scotland. We are given a fascinating description of the maturing and ageing process of their whiskies, each with its distinctive characteristics, followed by a special tasting of several single malts. If time permits, we can also visit the ruins of Old Inverlochy Castle. Dinner on board.

Day 3

This morning we cruise across the very scenic Loch Oich, perhaps stopping en route for a spot of fishing or a gentle stroll, then onto our pretty mooring at Kytra. After lunch on board we take in some of the finest scenery Scotland has to offer as we drive to one of its best known and most photographed castles, Eilean Donan, which has featured in movies such as “Highlander” and James Bond’s “The World Is Not Enough” and overlooks three sea lochs. Dinner on board.

Day 4

After breakfast, we visit the private Highland Club, a spectacular exclusive set of residences and a former 19th century Benedictine Monastery. Here we are treated to a falconry and birds of prey demonstration*** on the banks of Loch Ness, and the majesty of the swooping birds against the backdrop of the sweeping Scottish Highlands is not easily forgotten. There is time to explore the pretty village of Fort Augustus before lunch on board, after which we cruise to Fort Augustus and down the “flight of locks” as the locals call it, to moor opposite the Benedictine Abbey at the entrance to Loch Ness. This evening we dine ashore at a local restaurant.

Day 5

This morning we enjoy a picturesque cruise across world-famous Loch Ness, with perhaps a chance of spotting “Nessie”, where en-route we pass Urquhart Castle, navigating closely beneath its spectacular 13th century ruins, before continuing our cruise to moor at the hamlet of Dochgarroch. After lunch we visit Cawdor Castle*, forever immortalised in Shakespeare’s “Scottish Play”, Macbeth. The picturesque gardens have been listed amongst the top 100 in the UK. The castle contains a superb collection of tapestries, pictures and furnishings and is still in use as a home for the Dowager Countess of Cawdor who resides there for several months of the year. If time allows, then we take a tour of Clava Cairns, a pre-historic clan chieftain burial site dating back to 2,000 B.C and setting for the Outlander TV series. Dinner on board.

Day 6

This morning, our final cruise takes us through Tomnahurich swing bridge to the locks at Muirtown, where there is the opportunity to take a bicycle ride or stroll to the sea lock with wonderful views over the Moray and Beauly Firths. After lunch we visit Culloden Moor, scene of the last major battle on British soil in 1746, where English Government troops faced the Highlanders of “Bonnie Prince Charlie”. If time allows, then we take a tour of Clava Cairns, a pre-historic clan chieftain burial site dating back to 2,000 B.C and setting for the Outlander TV series. Captain’s Farewell Dinner on board.

Day 7

After breakfast, disembark from the barge and transfer to the airport.

Hotel Barges can be booked by the cabin or chartered for exclusive use. Please contact us for up-to-date departure dates, itineraries and availability.

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