We're always on the lookout for interesting cruise itineraries from Scotland, as we know our clients generally prefer to avoid the hassle of connecting flights to London and long journeys south via rail or road. A number of our most popular cruise lines offer voyages sailing from Scottish ports, so we've put together this selection of some of the most appealing itineraries...
1. Windstar Cruises - Scandinavian Tapestry
Windstar offer a few departures from Edinburgh during the summer, and the 2 July 2017 sailing on their flagship sailing yacht Wind Surf works particularly well, ending with an overnight stay in Stockholm which allows you to fly direct back to Edinburgh the following morning. This cruise takes you to some of the less frequently visited parts of the Baltic, including Skagen and the fascinating island of Visby, and also includes a wonderful Windstar Private Event, where you'll enjoy a canal cruise through Copenhagen and an exclusive evening at the National Museum.
2. Silversea - Journey to the Arctic
Silversea's intimate Silver Explorer, carrying just 200 guests, departs from Edinburgh on 12 June 2018 for an unforgettable voyage to the Svalbard archipelago, the best place on earth to witness polar bears in the wild. En route to this most northerly of destinations you'll explore the Shetlands and the Norwegian Fjords, including a day in the delightful city of Tromsø, before spending four days exploring Svalbard. At the end of your cruise you will fly from Longyearbyen down to Oslo, and we recommend extending your holiday with an overnight stay in the Norwegian capital before flying back to Edinburgh.
3. Azamara Club Cruises - Scotland to the Baltic
Azamara's 1 August 2017 Baltic sailing from Edinburgh is geared towards in-depth exploration, with overnight stays in both Copenhagen and Stockholm, and two nights in the magnificent city of St Petersburg. Carrying just under 700 guests, the Azamara Journey is a nice size - not too big, not too small - and the atmosphere on board is laid back and welcoming. A choice of two direct flights from Stockholm to Edinburgh at the end of the cruise also makes this an excellent choice for travellers based in Scotland.
4. Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines - Landscapes of Portugal & The Canaries
Most cruises from Scotland tend to head for the colder waters of Scandinavia and the Baltic, but Fred. Olsen's 14 October 2017 round-trip sailing from Edinburgh offers a rare opportunity to enjoy a winter sun cruise departing from a Scottish port. From Rosyth you'll head south via Porto to the islands of Madeira, Tenerife, La Palma and Lanzarote, before heading back to Scotland via the beguiling Portuguese capital, Lisbon, and the Spanish city of Vigo. This cruise offers excellent value for money, and is ideal for those who want to travel further afield without the hassle of flying.
5. Hebridean Island Cruises - Highlights of the Firth of Clyde
We could hardly talk about cruising from Scotland without mentioning one of our favourite little ships, the inimitable Hebridean Princess. This tiny vessel is based in Scotland all year round, carrying just 50 travellers in cosy and comfortable surroundings. Hebridean offer a number of short taster cruises in the spring and autumn months, including this 4-night round-trip from Greenock departing on 6 March 2017, which is a great opportunity to get a feel for what life is like on board without committing to one of the longer (and pricier) summer sailings.