Travel Links + things you must book ahead!



Northlink Ferries (Scrabster to Stromness car ferry) also sails to Aberdeen and Shetland   

Pentland Ferries  (Gill’s Bay to St Margaret’s Hope car ferry)

Orkney Islands Ferries (inter isles services)

JOG – Summer foot ferry  from John O’Groats to South Ronaldsay with bus link to Kirkwall  and Inverness


Air Travel

Loganair   links Kirkwall to major Scottish cities and Shetland
Please note that from late 2017, Loganair will operate separately from Flybe who still offer a limited service to and from Kirkwall.

Loganair ( and inter isles air services) Inter isles flights link Kirkwall with the smaller, outer isles and include the famous Westray-Papay Westray route, claimed by many to be the shortest scheduled flight in the world.

Kirkwall Airport


Local Travel

StageCoach local bus services

Craigies Taxis

Cycle Orkney (cycle hire)

Private Tours and Bus Services on outer islands

There are many tour providers. We recommend that you consult the listings at   and


If planning to hire a car in Orkney, we strongly recommend that you arrange this a long time in advance. There are several local companies, but they are unable to meet the demand for hired vehicles during the summer and especially when there are festivals happening.  Always search and contact the local companies direct, preferably by telephone. Using the big online car hire comparison sites does not work very well for Orkney and they can be quite misleading as to what is and is not available.



For useful walking information in Scotland:”>


People are often surprised at how busy Orkney can get in the Summer – it is after all a World heritage Site.  Fortunately, you won’t get too crowded even at the busiest times and it is easy to get away from people completely. However, there are a couple of bottlenecks to be aware of which may require forward planning.

Maeshowe  Chambered Cairn

One of the most important monuments in Orkney and a must for those of you coming to look at the islands’ archaeology.

To visit Maeshowe in the busier Summer months, BOOKING AHEAD is almost essential. This is because the tours only run once an hour with a strict limit on numbers. The good side is that it means it is never too crowded, but it can be frustrating if you just turn up hoping to get in – you probably won’t. Our advice is to book days or preferably weeks ahead if you only have limited time here.

Booking is easy if you use the link to Historic Scotland here:


Highland Park Distillery

The tours are fascinating and it is right on our doorstep. BUT it is popular and it is best to book ahead if you can.

The Visitor centre telephone number is (0)1856 874619

Alternatively, their website should tell you everything you need to know:


Beautiful Bed and breakfast accommodation in Orkney. This Kirkwall mansion also offers a stylish, period venue for small and medium events.