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Voyage Code: WI230616014
Arrive: Fri 16 June 2023 / Depart: Fri 16 June 2023 at 19:00
A true city of water, effortlessly cool Hamburg is an outward-looking city, with a unique flow of its own. Nestled snugly between the Baltic and North seas, Germany's second-biggest city is intersected by a frayed network of rivers and canals, spanned by hundreds of pretty bridges. The comparisons are obvious - but Hamburg's reputation as the 'Venice of the North' is a little wide of the mark. View less This quirky, heritage-filled city has a distinct character and open outlook all of its own, and continues to relish its role as Germany's gateway to the world. The water brought Hamburg its wealth, and vast redbrick warehouses stack up against the waterfront in the Speicherstadt district - now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. They linger from the era when the city was a Hanseatic League trading capital and the warehouses essentially formed a city unto themselves, with goods brought and exchanged from distant shores. Elsewhere, the Reeperbahn is a notorious and unabashed street of nocturnal mischief, with shifty neon-lit nightclubs, in amongst the city's famous red-light district. Hamburg has a much more wholesome side too, however, and is a powerhouse of museums, theatre and culture. It’s littered with over 100 music venues and the city played a crucial role in The Beatles’ early story. The spectacular Elbphilharmonie concert hall, with its wavy, surrealistic interior, is a work of art in and of itself. The city has been named a European Green Capital, and the vast Lake Alster adds to the airy, pleasant atmosphere, providing a spacious oasis of tranquillity. Planten un Blomen is another burst of zesty colour, where fountains fan out, and lilypads float on rhododendron-lined lakes.
Arrive: Sun 18 June 2023 at 08:00 / Depart: Sun 18 June 2023 at 18:00
Newcastle upon Tyne is a university city on the River Tyne in northeast England. With its twin city, Gateshead, it was a major shipbuilding and manufacturing hub during the Industrial Revolution and is now a centre of business, arts and sciences. Spanning the Tyne, modern Gateshead Millennium Bridge, noted for its unique tilting aperture, is a symbol of the 2 cities.
Arrive: Tue 20 June 2023 at 14:30 / Depart: Tue 20 June 2023 at 19:30
The Isle of May in Scotland is owned and managed by Scottish Natural Heritage as a National Nature Reserve and is an important breeding ground for approximately one-quarter of a million seabirds. In fact, over 40,000 puffin burrows have been counted as occupied. Not only kittiwakes, shags, eiders, and guillemots but also Razorbills, Arctic Terns, Sandwich Terns and Common Terns, Lesser Gulls, Herring Gulls and Great Black-backed Gulls nest here. View less The island is located roughly four nautical miles off the coast of mainland Scotland and is used by biologists for surveying migrating passerines and for ringing breeding seabirds to better study their movements and breeding success. While hosting an impressive array and quantity of seabirds, the island itself is small at only 1.8 kilometers (1.1 miles) long, and less than half a kilometer (one-third of a mile) wide.
Arrive: Wed 21 June 2023 at 10:30 / Depart: Wed 21 June 2023 at 20:00
Lying mid-way between Shetland and the Orkney islands, Fair Isle is a tiny jewel in the sea. Famous for birds, knitwear and historic shipwrecks, the island offers a warm and friendly welcome to visitors. With a population of only around 70 people this island is truly a beautiful setting and is one of Britain’s most successful communities. View the cloudy light turquoise water as it drifts out to sea beneath the breath-taking Sheep Rock, rising over 100 metres, which is almost an isle of its own.
Arrive: Thu 22 June 2023 at 13:30 / Depart: Thu 22 June 2023 at 23:00
Adrift between the Scottish and Norwegian coasts, the craggy Shetland Islands form the most northerly point of the British Isles. Sprawling across 100 islands, connected by sandy bridges and crisscrossing ferries, explore the highlights of this scenic archipelago outpost. With incredible Neolithic history, spanning 5,000 years of human heritage, these islands, which sit just shy of the Arctic Circle, are an isolated and immense treasure trove of history and thrilling scenery. Look out over dramatic coastline from atmospheric Iron Age towers.
Arrive: Sat 24 June 2023 at 06:30 / Depart: Sat 24 June 2023 at 13:30
Scattered just off the northern tip of Scotland, Kirkwall is the capital of the Orkney Islands - a scenic archipelago of fascinating, dual heritage. The Viking influence is deep, while a prehistoric past and World War history adds to the endless stories that these dramatic islands have to tell. Sparse and beautiful, let the sweeping seascapes of frothing waves, and dance of the northern lights, enchant you as you explore. Windswept beaches are inhabited by whooping swans, while grassy cliffs hide puffins amid their wavy embrace. View less Sea caves and crumbling castles - and the dramatic meeting of the North Sea and the Atlantic Ocean add to the romantic beauty of these lands, which may be physically close to the UK, but feel an entire world away. The sandstone St. Magnus Cathedral is the centrepiece of Orkney's main town - a place of winding lanes and atmospheric walks - and Britain's northernmost cathedral is a masterpiece that took 300 years to complete. Started in 1137, the beautiful cathedral is adorned with mesmerising stain-glass windows and has been evocatively named as the Light of the North. Look down over the ruined Bishop’s and Earl’s Palaces nearby from the tip of the cathedral's tower. Or, test out the islands' history-rich distilleries, which produce smokey single malts - said to be the best in the world. You can also venture out to Europe's best-preserved Stone Age Village, at the extraordinary World Heritage Site of Skara Brae, which offers an unparalleled vision into prehistoric life.
Arrive: Sat 24 June 2023 at 06:30 / Depart: Sat 24 June 2023 at 14:30
Gloriously remote, St. Kilda is an archipelago 50 miles off the Isle of Harris. Although the four islands are uninhabited by humans, thousands of seas birds call these craggy cliffs home, clinging to the sheer faces as if by magic. Not only is St. Kilda home to the UK’s largest colony of Atlantic Puffin (almost 1 million), but also the world largest colony Gannets nests on Boreray island and its sea stacks. View less The islands also home decedents of the world’s original Soay sheep as well as having a breed of eponymously named mice. The extremely rare St. Kilda wren unsurprisingly hails from St. Kilda, so birders should visit with notebook, binoculars and camera to hand. While endemic animal species is rife on the island, St. Kilda has not been peopled since 1930 after the last inhabitants voted that human life was unsustainable. However, permanent habitation had been possible in the Medieval Ages, and a vast National Trust for Scotland project to restore the dwellings is currently being undertaken. The islands even enjoyed a status as being an ideal holiday destination in the 19th century. Today, the only humans living on the islands are passionate history, science and conservation scholars. One of the caretakers even acts as shopkeeper and postmaster for any visitors who might like to send a postcard home from St. Kilda. It should be noted that St. Kilda is the UKs only (and just one of 39 in the world) dual World Heritage status from UNESCO in recognition of its Natural Heritage and cultural significance.
Arrive: Tue 27 June 2023 at 06:30 / Depart: Tue 27 June 2023 at 20:00
Seydisfjordur,, a beautiful 19th-century Norwegian village on the east coast of Iceland, is regarded by many as one of Iceland's most picturesque towns, not only due to its impressive environment, but also because nowhere in Iceland has a community of old wooden buildings been preserved so well as here. Poet Matthías Johannessen called Seydisfjordur a 'pearl enclosed in a shell'.
Arrive: Wed 28 June 2023 at 06:00 / Depart: Wed 28 June 2023 at 17:30
Slow the pace, and discover the refreshing approach to life that Djupivogur has made its trademark. You can leave your phone behind as you step out into this Icelandic town, which has won awards celebrating its leisurely outlook and stubborn rebellion against the frenetic pace of modern life. After all, who needs emails and notifications when you have some of the most humbling monochrome scenery and gashed fjords, waiting on your doorstep? Sitting on a peninsula to the south-east of Iceland, the glacial approach to life here wins many hearts. A place where hammers knock on metal in workshops, artists ladle paint onto canvases, and wild ponies roam across mountains, Djupivogur is an uninhibited artistic hub - full of makers and creatives. The most expansive project is the 34 egg sculptures that dot the coastline, created by the Icelandic artist, Sigurður Guðmundsson. Each egg represents a different native bird species. Fishing remains the primary industry, and you can savour the soft fruits of the labour in restaurants serving up smoked trout and fish soup within their cosy confines. Wander the surrounding landscapes, where snow-freckled mountains rise, and lazy seals lie on dark rock beaches, to feel Djupivogur's natural inspiration seeping under your skin. Alive with greens and golds in summer, further ventures reveal bright blue glaciers and the sprawling waterfalls of Vatnajökull National Park. The cliff-hugging puffins of Papey Island are a short boat ride away, while Bulandstindur Mountain's pyramid shape is a stand out even among these fairy-tale landscapes.
Arrive: Thu 29 June 2023 at 09:00 / Depart: Thu 29 June 2023 at 18:00
The name Vestmannaeyjar refers to both a town and an archipelago off the south coast of Iceland. The largest Vestmannaeyjar island is called Heimaey. It is the only inhabited island in the group and is home to over 4000 people. The eruption of the Eldfell Volcano put Vestmannaeyjar into the international lime light in 1973. The volcano’s eruption destroyed many buildings and forced an evacuation of the residents to mainland Iceland. The lava flow was stopped in its tracks by the application of billions of liters of cold sea water. View less Since the eruption, life on the small island outpost has returned to the natural ebb and flow of a small coastal fishing community on the edge of the chilly and wild North Atlantic.
Arrive: Fri 30 June 2023 at 07:00 / Depart: Fri 30 June 2023
The fire, frost and water symbolized by the red, white and blue of Iceland's flag are manifested by the ice and snow of its glaciers, the hot mud pools, geysers and glowing lava flows in the country's volcanic regions. The island's settlement dates back to 874 when a Norwegian named Ingolf Arnarson arrived at present-day Reykjavik. In 930, the settlers formed a legislature, the Alting, which was the beginning of the Commonwealth of Iceland. From the 10th to the 14th centuries, Iceland developed a literary form, the Icelandic Saga, which spread throughout the Nordic culture and into the English and German languages. It was used to spin stories of the gods, record historic events and glorify heroes. As Iceland's capital and main center of the country's population, the city of Reykjavik is a fascinating blend of the traditional and modernism. Just as Iceland is a unique country – rugged and remote, yet technically advanced and enjoying Nordic standards of affluence – Reykjavik is a highly unusual capital city. It dominates the life of Iceland in almost every way. More than half of the country's total population of 270,000 is living in and around the capital, and the economy of the entire nation depends on Reykjavik. Nearly 60 percent of Iceland's imports are received and distributed, and 40 percent of the country's exports are loaded for shipment via the port of Reykjavik. It is also the headquarters of what is probably the world's most advanced seafood industry, which counts for Iceland's number one export.
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