Cliffs off the Coast, Kirkwall, Scotland
ADVENTURE IN ORKNEY

Cruisereise til Kirkwall Cruise Port, Orkney Island, Scotland

As far as vacation destinations go, Scotland’s Orkney Islands tend to fly under the radar — but this wild archipelago is filled with beautiful architecture, ancient sights and a rich heritage that blends Norse and Scottish culture. If you’re planning a cruise from Kirkwall, Scotland, Orkney’s capital, arrive a day or two before your ship sails. This will give you plenty of time to explore the town’s quiet, charming alleyways and the surrounding wild natural beauty. Kirkwall began as an ancient Norse residence more than a thousand years ago, and you’ll find that history still alive and visible today. Stroll along the bustling docks and enjoy lovely views of the bay, then ramble along the town’s wynds, or narrow streets, to find great pubs and cafés. If you want a true taste of Kirkwall’s colorful past, visit St. Magnus Cathedral at the heart of town. Founded by a Viking in the twelfth century, it’s known as the “Light in the North.”
Nasjonalt språk English, Scots
Valuta som godtas Pound Sterling (GBP)

Things To Do in Kirkwall

St Magnus Cathedral, Kirkwall, Scotland

EXPLORE MAGNIFICENT ST. MAGNUS

St Magnus Cathedral, Kirkwall, Scotland

St Magnus Cathedral, Kirkwall, Scotland

EXPLORE MAGNIFICENT ST. MAGNUS

Founded in 1137 by the Viking Earl Rognvald, St. Magnus Cathedral is one of Kirkwall’s most iconic marvels. Once you arrive, you can download an app for a unique audio-visual guide as you explore the grounds, or reserve a tour in advance. Keep an eye out for carvings and stonemasons’ marks throughout the church — some date as far back as 400 AD.

Yesnaby Cliffs Coast Line Kirkwall, Scotland

STACKED NATURAL BEAUTY

Yesnaby Cliffs Coast Line Kirkwall, Scotland

Yesnaby Cliffs Coast Line Kirkwall, Scotland

STACKED NATURAL BEAUTY

Less than a 30-minute drive from Kirkwall you’ll find the Yesnaby Cliffs, a set of impressive sea stacks lashed by the mighty Atlantic. One of the area’s most iconic sights is Yesnaby Castle, a sea stack with a natural arc that has formed over millennia. Head just a bit north of the car park and you’ll reach another famous attraction — an Iron Age structure called the Broch of Borwick.

Blended Whiskey Spirits on Distillery Tour, Kirkwall, Scotland
Blended Whiskey Spirits on Distillery Tour, Kirkwall, Scotland

DISTILLERY DISCOVERIES

Kirkwall is home to several acclaimed distilleries, including the Orkney Distillery — famous for its handcrafted gin — and the Highland Park and Scapa whisky distilleries. Most offer guided tours and interactive tastings so you can sniff, sip and savor the brands’ top-rated expressions while getting to know the history and distillation process behind each.

Grilled Scottish Salmon with Soy Sauce, Kirkwall, Scotland
Grilled Scottish Salmon with Soy Sauce, Kirkwall, Scotland

Local Cuisine

The local cuisine here is all about hearty, flavorful food that hits the spot. Orkney lamb and beef are prized around the world, but so are the islands’ savory, nutty cheddar and fresh-caught salmon and shellfish. If you have a sweet tooth, try some handmade Orkney fudge — you can pick from vanilla, chocolate, hazelnut and stem ginger.

Scottish Souvenir Dolls, Kirkwall, Scotland
Scottish Souvenir Dolls, Kirkwall, Scotland

Shopping

If you’re craving a little retail therapy, you’ll find all kinds of charming boutiques around St. Magnus Cathedral. From cozy bookstores nestled between quaint cafés to shops selling fine jewelry crafted by local artisans and apparel designed and made in the Orkney Islands — whatever you’re looking for, you’re sure to find it here.

Innsidetips
Innsidetips
1 Harbor Street along the waterfront is the best place to get your bearings when you arrive — plus, it makes for a great photo spot.
2 For information on Kirkwall’s history and top-rated sights, head to the tourist information center on Broad Street.
3 If you have the time, consider a daytrip to the Skara Brae Neolithic village or the Ring of Brodgar — both are less than a half-hour drive from Kirkwall.

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