United Kingdom · July 14 - 23 2024

Orkney's Explorer

A one way passage from Stornoway to Wick



Join us on a wonderful adventure, weaving our way Northwards from Stornoway through the Orkney isles to Wick. There are incredible stops at isolated communities such as Stromness and stretching sailing passages with lots of opportunity to understand the tides and weather considerations. The trip is led by Jim Dobie who has huge experience sailing these waters on board “Big Blue” which is a comfortable cruising yacht with plenty of space. There are flight options to Stornoway and we offer a free transfer from Wick to Glasgow after the trip. Jim Dobie is a hugely experienced Skipper and RYA Yachtmaster Examiner meaning you can use the trip to brush up on sailing skills, with plenty of time for one to one mentoring, or simply enjoy being part of the voyage. With a maximum of six crew aboard our comfortable yacht, you will have space to relax and plenty of opportunity to adapt the itinerary to the groups wishes.


Comfortable Yacht

Comfortable Yacht

a large , comfortable and practical cockpit she has an uncluttered layout with high quality teak finishes in the cockpit. The twin wheels allow a choice of comfortable helming positions and easy viewing when berthing. She’s comfortable and beautifully kitted out with 8 berths, so there’ll be plenty of space on board. She’s perfect for long trips. You’ll have your own berth.

Highly experienced Skipper

Highly experienced Skipper

Jim Dobie will be your Skipper for the duration of the trip. A hugely experienced Skipper and RYA Yachtmaster Examiner who has sailed almost every ocean of the world. Jim is a well-respected training skipper and examiner, known for his patience and ability to share his passion for ocean sailing with those around him.

Scenic, Adventurous Sailing

Scenic, Adventurous Sailing

A fabulous trip to the very North of Scotland, weaving through the Orkney islands - exact itinerary will depend on the experience of the crew, their wishes and the weather!


Jim Dobie

Jim Dobie

A hugely experienced Skipper and RYA Yachtmaster Examiner who has sailed almost every ocean of the world, leading expeditions to some of the remotest places including the Galapagos, Cook Islands, French Polynesia and Tasmania. Jim is experienced, not only on, but also under water, as a Scuba Diving Instructor delivering expeditions to the Great Barrier Reef, Oceania and Asia.Jim has a long history of successful race campaigns including  skipper for the 09-10 Clipper Round the World Yacht Race, competed in five Sydney to Hobart races, two Fastnet races, Round Britain and Ireland Race and many other offshore race events 





Day 1 - Arrival and embark at Stornoway

Our adventure starts at Stornoway, which is the main town of the Western Isles and the capital of Lewis and Harris in Scotland.

Join us from 1pm for a welcome on board our yacht "Big Blue". 

After settling in we will run a safety briefing and introduce you to the yacht and your fellow crew before heading for dinner.


Day 2 - Stornoway to Loch Laxford (50Nm)

After slipping lines after breakfast, we will head towards Loch Laxford - This loch is a Special Area of Conservation with a wide variety of marine habitats and species. It is mostly sheltered because of the reefs and islands but the outer region of the loch is very exposed. A perfect stop for our first night aboard.


Day 3 - Loch Laxford to Stromness - (75Nm)

This is great day’s sailiing with plenty of time to get accustomed to helming, trimming and especially passage making since the tides can run strongly in Hoy Sound, which makes timing especially important.

 Arriving, with the welcoming lights of Stromness, twinkling in the evening, you will feel the true magic and accomplishment of successful passage making.


Day 4 - Relaxing in Stromness

We start the day, taking time to enjoy the lovely hospitality of Stomness. With the steep Brinkies Brae to the west and the sea to the east, Stromness is a tumbling network of flagstone streets, lanes, piers and slipways. There’s a timeless feel to the town, and it’s wonderful to explore. You may visit the world renowned arts centre, or take a hike up to the Ness battery, whose gun emplacements were set during WW2 to protect the entrance to Scapa flow.


Day 5 - Stromness to Westray - (40nm)

Departing after breakfast, we will continue our sail North towards Westray


Day 6 - Westray to Fair Isle (45nm)

A highlight of the trip is surely the sail to Fair Isle, the most isolated inhabited location in the United Kingdom with just 45 inhabitants. This is a beautiful, remote place, famed for and abundance of birds and a rich history, right back to Neolithic times. We will stop over and take time to explore this magical island


Day 7 - Fair Isle to Kirkwall (50nm)


Day 9 Kirkwall to Wick (45nm)


Day 10 Depart from Wick

After a final breakfast on board, it will be time to say our goodbyes.

What's Included

What's Included

All food and drink (non-alcoholic) on board

Safety equipment including life-jackets.

All mooring and port entry fees for the boat.

• Hands on sailing, watch keeping, helming and opportunity to fully immerse in life on board.

Overnight accommodation onboard, your own bunk and bedding

• Waterproof Clothing available to hire

• Travel to and from Oban

• Meals Ashore

• Entrance fees to visitor centres or distilleries

• Sailing & Travel Insurance


Single Berth

Single Berth

Your own comfortable berth with plenty of storage space (shown is a double cabin, which will be split with a Lee cloth)

FROM246219 /pp $3,282.92 /pp

Double berth (two people sharing)

Double berth (two people sharing)

A spacious double cabin - perfect for couples or friends

FROM394246 /pp $5,256.62 /pp


You'll Be Staying Here

Big Blue

Big Blue

Big Blue is a Beneteau Oceanis 523. Spacious, comfortable and well equipped she is a powerful but easily handled yacht. 

In Big Blue we cover the ground quickly which leaves more time for exploring ashore or sailing further. `Big Blue` is very well equipped for offshore sailing and carries a paddle board and inflatable kayak for exploring the anchorages you will visit.

We have 4 sleeping cabins, one is for the Skipper and the others consist of 1 large double and 2 smaller double cabins. All three can be converted into twin cabins -  the bunks can be divided by lee cloths if preferred. 

 All cabins are en-suite. Bedding is provided. On board comfort is a priority - the layout offers privacy and there are heating outlets in all cabins.

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We design the trips for a wide range of experience which that means that even if you’ve not sailed, our experienced Skippers will ensure you have a fantastic time

The longer legs will suit “mile builders” who already have some sailing qualifications, and we can spend time supporting you with everything from helming to sail trimming or passage planning as you wish!

Before you join, we’ll ask you about your previous sailing experience and what you want to get out of the trip. That way, we’ll tailor the tour to your specific needs

The group size is kept very small on our trips which gives you a real ‘masterclass’ with our highly experienced Skippers However, that means each place is valuable and we need full groups

We ask for a 10% deposit to secure your berth, with the balance being due 6 weeks before departure

If you cancel your place over 8 weeks out, the deposit is fully refundable, between 6-8 weeks, we will retain the deposit.

If you cancel 6 weeks or less, the full price will be payable

We’ll share with you a kit-list which will be adapted to the trip you’re taking

All bed linen is provided as well as safety equipment.  You will need some decent deck shoes (or sailing boots), otherwise it’s layers of clothing adapted to the conditions you’re likely to encounter

Bring a camera – if you want to bring a drone, let us know beforehand and bear in mind drones tend not to be waterproof and are carried / used at your own risk!

We want everyone to get the most out of their time on board – so we’ll work around your wants

However, our trips are designed for you to take an active role – that means, for example, we’ll take turns in cooking (all the menus are planned already and step by step instructions given, so you don’t need to be a masterchef!)

You can get tips and instruction on all aspects of sailing from our Skippers and get as involved as you want, grinding, trimming, helming and learning – on the other hand, there’s also plenty of time to relax and just take in the beautiful Ocean scenery. It’s your trip!

Orkney's Explorer

United Kingdom · July 14 - 23 2024 · 9 nights

FROM$2,462.19 /pp $3,282.92 /pp