The British Isles & Ireland 13 Days aboard Sea Spirit
This fascinating expedition-style voyage will take you from Portsmouth in the south of England to Edinburgh in Scotland, discovering some of the most wildlife-rich and historically important areas of the British Isles and Ireland along the way. Places visited include Tresco in the isles of Scilly, the County Waterford & the Saltee Islands in the Republic of Ireland, Llandudno in Wales, the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland, the Orkney Islands and the Shetland Islands, and much more. Fans of botany, birding, history and photography will delight in this scenic and unforgettable journey aboard a luxury expedition vessel.
Namibia Birding and Photography GuideAn accomplished and experienced Namibia birding and photographic guide, Toni holds a Namibia Academy for Tourism and Hospitality Level 3 qualification (the highest level attainable in Namibia) and is widely renowned for her extensive knowledge of the cultures, ornithology, flora, astronomy and wildlife of the country. Read more >
Wildlife Guide & PhotographerAndy is a 6th generation Falkland Islander, with a passion for wildlife, plants and photography. Raised in the Falkland Islands, Andy developed a close affinity with the Islands natural environment at a young age. School holidays where spent in the ‘camp’ or countryside with friends and family. For more than 10 years, Andy had the privilege of spending a time on Sea Lion Island, visiting his mother who managed one of the Islands premier tourist destinations. Read more >
Photographer and founder of the Travel Photographer Of The Year awardsA fascination with natural light and a passion with nature, landscape and travel underpin Chris Coe's photography. His images often have a striking simplicity and graphic quality. More recent work has introduced a subtlety with experimentation with both movement and light.Read more >
Falklands Expert & GuideBorn in Chartres in the West Falklands, Jenny grew up on the family farm where her love for animals was nurtured by the25,000 sheep, horses and cows that lived alongside her. Forever a nature, conservation and wildlife enthusiast Jenny has travelled extensively throughout the Falkland Islands, visiting each and every wildlife island at least once, and even travelling around some by yacht. Read more >
Special Guest LecturerExclusive to this voyage, Doug Allan, a multi award winning polar photographer and cameraman, will be your special guest lecturer. Doug has been on over 20 expeditions to Svalbard to film its wildlife, and knows the wonders of this area more than most. Read more >
- Sail aboard a luxury expedition vessel to discover the best of the British Isles and Ireland
- Visit England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales in one trip
- Visit historically important, geographically fascinating and wildlife-rich areas including the Shetland Islands, Orkney Islands, Hebrides, the Giant’s Causeway, Snowdonia National Park and the Saltee Islands
- Exciting landings and excursions
- Leadership and insights from an expert expedition team
- Included photography program
- Kayaking option available
- One night's accommodation at an airport hotel near Heathrow pre-voyage
- Group transfers to and from ship
- Full board accommodation on ship with all meals and hot drinks
- Welcome and farewell cocktails
- All scheduled landings and excursions
- Programme of lectures by expert guides
- Expedition softshell
- Loan of rubber boots
- All port fees
Special Offer Details
Book by June 30th and receive a 10% discount off the published rates for standard cabins or 15% off premium cabins!. Offer applicable when booked before 1st July 2021
Applies to new bookings, subject to availability. Offer may be withdrawn at any time. Terms & conditions apply.
ITINERARY12 Nights 13 Days
- Days 1 - 2 | Heathrow & Portsmouth, England
- Day 3 | Tresco, Scilly Isles
- Days 4 - 5 | Republic of Ireland
- Day 6 | Llandudno, Wales
- Day 7 | Northern Ireland
- Day 8 | Inner Hebrides, Scotland
- Day 9 | Outer Hebrides
- Day 10 | Kirkwall, Orkney Islands
- Day 11 | Shetland Islands
- Day 12 | Bass Rock & Isle of May, Scotland
- Day 13 | Port of Leith, Edinburgh
Heathrow & Portsmouth, England
Your journey will begin with an included overnight stay at the Hilton Garden Inn, near Heathrow Airport’s Terminal 2. The following morning, a relaxing motorcoach transfer will take you to the English port city of Portsmouth where you will board the deluxe Sea Spirit expedition ship in the afternoon. After settling in to your beautiful suite you can join the crew on deck to watch the city fade behind as you begin your adventure.
Tresco, Scilly Isles
Your first stop will bring you to the small group of islands off the coast of Cornwall called the Isles of Sicily, where we will visit the delightful sand-fringed island of Tresco. Here we will visit the Benedictine abbey to see the exquisite Tresco Abbey Garden as well as the Valhalla Museum to see its collection of colourful figureheads salvaged from the islands’ shipwrecks. There will also be time to soak up the relaxed atmosphere and visit the lovely cafes and local shops of this historic area that is also home to Bronze age burial sites and romantic 17th century castle ruins.
Republic of Ireland
We will now make our way to the Republic of Ireland for two days of exploration around some of the lesser-known but equally beautiful areas of this welcoming and exceptionally scenic country. Our first stop will take us to Dunmore East in the county of Waterford where we will take a drive through the countryside to visit the House of Waterford Crystal to take a guided tour of the factory and see the world’s biggest collection of Waterford Crystal wares. You may also be able to visit the nearby magnificent 18th-century Georgian estate of Mount Congreve to see its beautiful walled botanic gardens.
We will then make our way to the Saltee Islands on Ireland’s east coast. Here we hope to visit Great Saltee, the largest of the islands, to see Ireland’s most famous bird sanctuary. A treat for the birding enthusiasts among us, you can expect sightings of an impressive array of birds including Manx Shearwaters, Puffins, Gulls and Gannets amongst many others.
Leaving the island of Ireland behind for now, we now make our way back to the British mainland to visit Wales. Our plan here is to arrive at Llandudno, a vibrant seaside town that is the perfect place from which to begin our overland tour of Snowdonia National Park. This exceptionally scenic journey will see you travelling through some of Britain’s most dramatic landscapes, with flowering meadows, striking mountains, woodlands, waterfalls and lakes creating the ultimate backdrop. You can also keep an eye out for the wildlife that is often found here including water voles, wild ponies, otters and unique birdlife. We also hope to take a visit to the traditionally welsh town of Betws-y-Coed in the Gwydyr Forest, as well as enjoying a visit to Conwy Castle, considered by UNESCO as "one of the finest examples of late 13th century and early 14th century military architecture in Europe" .
Today we make our way back to the island of Ireland, to visit Northern Ireland this time and the unforgettable UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Giant’s Causeway. This morning we will dock at the vibrant seaside town of Portrush and take the short journey overland to see this geological masterpiece that is steeped in mythology (the locals will tell you it was created by the giant Finn McCool as a way to get to Scotland to fight a Scottish giant!). As we take a walk around the huge hexagonal basalt columns that are stacked high looming out of the sea and learn all about their being, you can also be on a lookout for the various seabirds that are often seen here including guillemots, razorbills, petrels, fulmars, cormorants, shags and much more.
In the afternoon we will enjoy some relaxation time and some more birdwatching on Rathlin Island, the only inhabited offshore island of Northern Ireland.
Inner Hebrides, Scotland
Today we will find ourselves off the west coast of Scotland as we begin our exploration of the Hebrides archipelago, with our first stop planned to be the fascinating uninhabited island of Staffa in the Inner Hebrides. Weather permitting, we will hope to take a Zodiac cruise to the famous Fingal’s Cave to see more extraordinary hexagonal basalt pillars and look out for the nesting sites of various seabirds.
Later we will hope to visit the small island of Iona to visit the beautiful Iona Abbey which was founded in 563 AD and is one of the most sacred and historic places in all of Scotland, as well as being one of the oldest Christian religious centres in Western Europe. There will be time for a stroll around the area and you may wish to visit the graveyard where it is said that Macbeth is buried and enjoy some time along the tranquil white sandy beaches.
Day 8 will take us to the rugged islands of the Outer Hebrides where we will visit St Kilda, the most isolated of this archipelago which is also known as the Western Isles. On this striking uninhabited island we will see some of the British Isles’ most dramatic scenery and discover the old stone buildings and storehouses that tell the tales of the hardy island inhabitants of yesteryears. A walk around the area will reward in sightings of thousands of seabirds, unique flowering plants and sheep.
Kirkwall, Orkney Islands
We now arrive at the Orkney Islands where we will enjoy an overland tour of Mainland, the largest island in the group. We will make land at the historic port of Kirkwall and visit unique sites which showcase the cultural heritage of the island that has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Stops may include the ancient Ring of Brodgar, the impressive 5000 year old village of Skara Brae and the Saint Magnus Cathedral which was built by the Vikings in the 12th century. There will also be time to enjoy the charms of Kirkwall village itself.
Today we will visit Fair Isle, an isolated and rugged spot in the beautiful Shetland Islands, where picturesque lighthouses, historic crofts and abundant birdlife will be sure to delight. Here you can enjoy some time in one of Europe’s best places to watch seabirds, especially puffins, at close range and you will also have the chance to see and purchase hand-knitted Fair Isle woollen goods which have made the island famous.
Bass Rock & Isle of May, Scotland
Our last full day on board, as we sail towards Edinburgh, will take us to the uninhabited volcanic rock island of Bass Rock where we will hope to experience one of the most impressive birding sights of the whole trip. The island plays host to the world’s largest colony of northern gannets in the breeding season and this expedition has been perfectly timed to coincide with this spectacle that brings over 150,000 of these magnificent birds. Witnessing this truly remarkable wildlife wonder will be the perfect way to round off our fantastic British Isles and Ireland expedition.
We will also hope for time to visit the nature reserve on the Isle of May, where we can expect to see huge colonies of seabirds, Harbor and Grey seals, as well as impressive historic architectural sites.
Port of Leith, Edinburgh
Your voyage concludes in Edinburgh and after breakfast and disembarkation a transfer will be provided either to the airport or to a downtown location should you wish to extend your stay here.
What Our Customers
Superlatives abound – a truly amazing experience...awesome. Thanks to all for making it such a memorable experience.
We have just returned from our Spitsbergen trip with Wildfoot and had to tell you what an amazing time we had! We saw 6 polar bears including a mother with 2 cubs as well as whales, walruses and lots of birds. The ship (Expedition) was really comfortable and the guides were so helpful and friendly. Thank you so much for making it all so easy.
I came to Wildfoot because a friend had booked with you when you were Antarctica Bound and they were right. Everything went perfectly, even when our flight was cancelled, you made sure we still made it to the ship with time to spare. L’Austral is a beautiful ship with first class service and food and the guides looked after us well. Very happy to recommend Wildfoot and L’Austral...
We had always wanted to see the Arctic and travelling all the way from Australia needed lots of information. After getting nowhere, we came across Wildfoot and found people who knew what they were talking about! Sara and John were so helpful and made the process easy, suggesting Iceland Greenland and Spitsbergen. This was perfect for us – amazing scenery and lots of wildlife, especially the polar bears in Spitsbergen. Thanks for everything. Ps, the ship was great too!
Just wanted to say thank you for suggesting a trip to Franz Josef Land as something different for the Arctic. We had a super trip and really enjoyed the Sea Spirit. Galapagos next!
Standing on the North Pole has been an ambition of mine since childhood and now I have done it! Thank you for making the process so easy - seeing polar bears and whales too was a real bonus.
The Sea Spirit expedition was excellent and the team organising it all were extremely good. 10 out of 10. Everything went very smoothly. The Iceland extension worked perfectly, all the organisation, connections etc. were excellent
The cruise was beyond my expectations. Got to see everything the captain wanted, even a polar bear mother with three cubs. Coal Miners Cabins were smashing. I did loads of birding and exploring over three days. All the people were great from the expedition leaders down to the passengers. So glad to have achieved my ambition of some 50 years standing and got amongst the ice of the Arctic, walked amongst it’s islands and witnessed the antics of its wonderful wildlife. What’s next??? I’ll need to speak with Sara again.
Thanks so much for enabling me to get to places I had always wanted to see from a very young age. “Ace” as my boys used to say!
Just wanted to send a quick note to say thank you very much for all your help in arranging our recent trip to Svalbard. Everything ran smoothly and the trip was a great success. Unfortunately I had to flew back a few days early and missed out on Isfjord Radio, which the rest of the team said was a brilliant place with amazing food, still the Basecamp Hotel and Nordenskiold Lodge were pretty amazing places, so I’m not complaining!
Writing back to tell you that the trip to the Arctic was all that it promised and more. It was a great wild-life sightseeing opportunity and the staff were really good.I had an excellent trip and have thousands of photos to go through.
I had an absolutely fabulous time won the Sergey Vavilov, it is an excellent ship. Sara was indeed right in her recommendation that they would be the most likely to push north into the ice to find the polar bears. We even circumnavigated Spitsbergen which was awesome and not o n the itinerary.It is such a wonderful way to take a trip when you are on your own – so if any of your potential single clients are unsure, definitely recommend it – I didn’t feel alone from the moment I stepped on board. I will be at the Birdfair next weekend and so will catch up with whoever is there – regarding this trip, and potentially my next!
Great cruise, staff and expedition team. Had a great trip.
Great cruise, staff and expedition team. Had a great trip.
We had a wonderful time, even though we didn't do all the places we were supposed to but we all felt were we went instead couldn't beaten. Saw animals I wanted to see. Bit worried what the food was like as some of the ships cooking leaves something to be desired, but food was very good. We thought all the guides were brilliant and informative, friendly and knowledgeable It was far better than we expected and even my husband thoroughly enjoyed it!
I wanted to let you know that I had a wonderful cruise in the Russian Far East. The landscape and destination were inspiring, we had some excellent wildlife sightings (sea otter, grey whale, Steller's sea eagle, snowy owl and Arctic fox were all firsts for me), and the Heritage team were superb. Rough seas forced a few changes to the itinerary but we also had some fabulous weather. All in all, a thrilling travel experience.Thanks once again for all your efforts
I thought you might like to know that this was an excellent holiday. Our guide, Brad, was absolutely wonderful, his enthusiasm and knowledge made the holiday even better. All in all the whole trip was excellent and we saw lots of bears, 24 on the first day. Fewer on the second and third days but still plenty, as well as arctic foxes,silver foxes and snowy owls. Even on the last day near the town we saw a bear on rocks by the beach.
What a great trip! Wildfoot built a great trip for us and every aspect was spot on. Our Iguazu guide was fun, interesting and helpful and all the transfers were timely and comfortable. The Antarctica Trip was superb - WIldfoot had given us the best advice and helped us choose the right ship and tour for what we wanted - A truly memorable Experience Thank You Wildfoot
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