Skara Brae Neolothic village

© About Argyll Walking Holidays

Mainland Orkney

Orkney Islands walking tour

Your chance to fully experience the Orkney Islands. Our walks take us to Birsay, Rousay, Yesnaby, Hoy and Deerness, and we will visit many historic and ancient monuments including Skara Brae, Maeshowe, Ring of Brodgar and Ness of Brodgar excavations.

Orkney is a place of big open skies, rounded hills, beautiful beaches and well kept farms. Only on Hoy does the landscape take on a wilder feel, with rolling hills and towering cliffs.

Orkney is also notoriously rich in archaeological remains. It is said that if you scratch the soil it bleeds archaeology. Above all, in visiting Orkney you get a feeling of continuity, the sense that for thousands of years people have worked the land and left their mark.

The low-lying Orkney Isles have been favoured by farmers for over 5000 years. Its fertile soil and an abundance of good sandstone first attracted Stone Age farmers from the south. They settled the land, cultivated it and established villages. They also worked together to build tombs, temples and other sacred sites.

The number and quality of ancient monuments that remain from this period, testify to Orkney’s pre-eminent position at the centre of Neolithic Britain. Later the Vikings came, first visiting in the summers to fatten their livestock and later, colonising the islands, occupying and reusing farmsteads that had stood for millennia. And today, farming continues. Beneath many of today’s modern farms are the remains of Viking farms and, beneath that, layers of occupation stretching even further back in time.

The flora and fauna on Orkney is a big attraction too and our tour offers lots of opportunities to see many different species of birds, seals and wildflowers.

We start the tour in Glasgow, travelling by train to Aberdeen where we catch the ferry to Orkney. The tour takes in Birsay, Rousay, Yesneby, Hoy and Deerness and we visit the many historic and ancient monuments on Orkney too: the Heart of Neolithic Orkney UNESCO World Heritage Sites: Skara Brae, the Ring of Brodgar, the Stones of Stennes and Maeshowe, plus Midhowe Broch and Chambered Cairn, the Dwarfie Stane, the Italian Chapel, St Magnus Cathedral and the Earl’s Palace.

Our base is Orkney’s capital and main town, Kirkwall.

Day-by day programme:

  • Saturday: Glasgow - Aberdeen - Kirkwall
  • Sunday: Brough of Birsay
  • Monday: Isle of Rousay
  • Tuesday: Skara Brae to Yesnaby, Stromness
  • Wednesday: The Heart of Neolithic Orkney
  • Thursday: Isle of Hoy
  • Friday: Deerness, Italian Chapel, Kirkwall
  • From £1525 per adult

    Departure days

    • Monday
    • Tuesday
    • Wednesday
    • Thursday
    • Friday
    • Saturday
    • Sunday

    May — September

    Contact details

    About Argyll Walking Holidays

    Letters Lodge South
    PA27 8BZ

    Tour information


    • Aberdeen
    • Glasgow


    8 Days


    • Boat
    • Minibus
    • Train
    • Walking


    • Bespoke
    • Private
    • Small Group (1-16)


    • English


    • Adventure
    • Archaeology
    • Geology
    • History
    • Island Hopping
    • Landscapes
    • Walking
    • Walking/Hiking
    • Wildlife

    Covid 19 Facilities

    • COVID-19 measures in place
    • COVID-19 refund and cancellation policy in place
    • COVID-19 risk assessment completed
    • COVID-19 staff training completed

    Tour prices

    From £1525 Per Adult

    Book now

    Prices are subject to change depending on season

    Tour Stops

    About Argyll Walking Holidays

    Tour company information

    About Argyll Walking Holidays

    About Argyll Walking Holidays offers guided walking holidays and hiking tours in beautiful but undiscovered parts of the Highlands and Islands of Scotland. We will take you to quiet, remote corners that can only be reached on foot, enabling you to enjoy the solitude of Scotland's secret places. With About Argyll you can discover more about the history and culture, nature and landscape of what is one of the world's most excitingly varied small countries. We offer both scheduled walking holidays and bespoke private guided hiking trips.

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