Caves, Clans & Castles

Step back in time with this captivating six-night cruise allowing you to not only enjoy breath-taking scenery, but also take in some of the architectural, geological and historical gems the River Clyde has to offer. The area’s long and often turbulent past, brings together a rich tapestry of medieval castles and grand mansions, some of which are still family homes today. From our berth in Greenock, Spirit of Fortitude sails along the Firth of Clyde past the ancient Viking battle scene of Largs before visiting secret religious and historical caves. We visit ancient ruins of castles, world famous film locations and modern day stately homes, all whilst enjoying the very best of hospitality, comfort and luxury. Find Shakespearean treasures, Bronze Age artefacts and tales of bloody history at every turn, all whilst surrounded by the very best scenery that Scotland has to offer. Passing places, anchorages and ports Greenock From its humble beginnings as a fishing village in the 15th Century, Greenock and its access to the River Clyde made it an important location for servicing the busy city of Glasgow until the 1800s and then became the shipbuilding capital of the world. Set on steep slopes, it has magnificent views across the firth of Clyde to the mountains beyond. Arran Full of beautiful coastlines, rolling hills, woodlands and mountainous terrain, this most southerly Scottish Isle is just 19 miles long by 10 miles wide but offers some stunning seascape vistas at every turn. Easily described as a miniature Scotland due to the variety of terrain, as you traverse the island you will feel that you are miles away from the hustle of everyday life. It is home to a modern but popular distillery and the Isle produces its own soaps and lotions with a visitor centre where you can see how it is done. Full of local artisans, we source much of our menu from here. The island is also home to the Kings Caves – a series of waterfront caves carved out of the sandstone and thought to be where Robert the Bruce had his famous encounter with the spider. Skelmorlie Castle With parts of the building dating back to the 15th century, it is a phenomenal building with more than 20 bedrooms, 10 bathrooms, nine kitchens and 14 acres of gardens. Originally it belonged to the Earls of Eglinton, who were responsible for leading the Montgomery clan in support of Mary Queen of Scots in battle. Not far from the castle is a 100-foot-high artificial mound, which is said to have been the site of ancient Sun and serpent worship. Great Cumbrae Around the 7th century, legend tells that St Mirin returned to Cumbrae from Ireland and following the example of St Patrick, rid the island of snakes. To this day the island remains snake free! The Cathedral of the Isles in Millport, is Britain’s smallest Cathedral and dates from 1851 and is thought to be built on the spot where St Mirin used to preach to
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Greenock
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The Kyles of Bute

11th October 2017 Special Rates Available! Call Now: 01577 861121 19th October 2017 Last Few Spaces Available! Call Now: 01577 861121 30th October 2017 FULLY BOOKED Experience the famous and majestic Kyles of Bute, a firm favourite of those who regularly sail in the West of Scotland, sure to leave a lasting impression with its spectacular scenery as well as being steeped in history. Then enjoy the romantic waters of Loch Fyne, Scotland’s longest sea loch, adorned with Castles and hill towers, home to Loch Fyne oysters enjoyed in the world’s top restaurants around the globe, as well as Scotland’s first planned town and home to the Duke of Argyll the royal burgh of Inveraray with its spectacular Inveraray Castle! From our berth in Greenock, Spirit of Fortitude sets sail on a three-night cruise past Holy Loch, named for the sacred, yet sunken cargo from a ship carrying soil from the Holy Land destined for the foundations of Glasgow cathedral. Passing Dunoon then onto the Isle of Bute where we head north through the fabulous Kyles of Bute, past Tighnabruaich before heading into Loch Fyne, Scotland’s longest sea loch. We visit Portavadie; a place of great contrast. Portavadie is a must visit with its multi award winning spa experience. This is followed by a short trip across the loch to the fishing village of Tarbert where its ruined castle, once occupied by Robert the Bruce, stands guard over the harbour entrance. Arran is the largest of the Clyde islands and we visit the north west of the island at Lochranza, a lovely tranquil setting for a very popular distillery. Opened in 1995, the Isle of Arran Distillery boasts a welcoming Visitor Centre and a number of excellent whiskies. There is also the visitor attraction of Arran Aromatics famous for its luxury Scottish made toiletries. Passing places, anchorages and ports Greenock From its humble beginnings as a fishing village in the 15th Century, Greenock and its access to the River Clyde made it an important location for servicing the busy city of Glasgow until the 1800s and then became the shipbuilding capital of the world. Set on steep slopes, it has magnificent views across the firth of Clyde to the mountains beyond. Holy Loch Historically home to the American Naval base, set in a fault line and named for its sunken soil cargo once destined for Glasgow Cathedral. Isle of Bute- Rothesay A quaint Victorian seaside resort, full of its original architecture, packed with character. It even boasts original Victorian toilets on the pier that are the only facilities in Scotland to be given their own visitor leaflets! Decorated in the most splendid tiles with opulent colour schemes, highlighting the no expense spared when it came to the Victorians. Along the esplanade lies the unique cast iron and glass, circular structure of the Discovery Centre and further along is Rothesay Castle - which was a favourite home of early Scottish kings and still sports dungeons that can be toured. The Island is
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Greenock

The Old Masters

On this Old Masters cruise, the golfers on board have an opportunity to play golf at up to six of the world’s most famous golf links, including three of the nine courses in The Open Championship rotation, Turnberry, Royal Troon and Royal Portrush, where The Open Championship was played for the only time outside of Scotland or England. You will also be able to enjoy rounds at up to three other classics, Machrihanish, Machrihanish Dunes and the Machrie on Islay with its claim to fame of hosting its own ‘Open Championship’ of 1901 with the highest prize of any Open competition at that time of £100. These courses have stood the test of time, and are consistently ranked in the top 100 in the world year after year. It is sure to be a golfers dream to take on the challenge of The Old Masters. The Royal Scottish Shipping Line's easy access to these otherwise hard-to-reach links means you can play this impressive range of courses without the hassles of packing, unpacking and changing hotels, and retire in the evening after a daunting yet exhilarating round of golf with a wee dram or two in our stunning Whisky Viewing Room as our luxury super yacht acts as your chariot to the next stunning course. Golf and touring passengers alike are bound for a memorable journey, for this is sure to appeal to not just golfers, with visits to stunning destinations like the Giants Causeway in Antrim. Regardless of how much golf your perfect vacation includes, we have daily tours available that delight and enrich your senses. Whether you play world-renowned courses, or go exploring ancient villages with our experienced guides, shopping on your own or watching the best in the world compete, you will savour each day. Along this cruise we are happy to arrange a distillery visit for those who wish! Passing places, anchorages and ports Royal Troon With two spectacular courses, Royal Troon is a must for any golf enthusiast. Lying at the end of a gorgeous stretch of Ayrshire coastline, golf has been played here long before the club was founded in 1878. Awarded Royal status in its centennial year of 1978, it has hosted the Open Championship 8 times and will host it again this year. The Old Course is thought to be one of the greatest in Scotland and with a mixture of the wind and terrain - it is a challenging one. Take time to reminisce in the history of players past who have found glory here and take your chances on the famous "Postage Stamp" hole surely your best chance for a hole in one on a Championship course! The alternate course - The Portland Course was originally designed by William Fernie who won the Open in 1883 before being redesigned in the 1920's by Dr Alister MacKensie. Slightly more forgiving than The Old Course, the Portland Course takes you through sheltered holes on a slightly shorter course. Turnberry Possibly the most scenic
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Greenock

The Spirit of Scotland

Sun, sea, golf and whisky - all from the opulent decks of The Spirit of Fortitude. What more could any golfing enthusiast ask for? Ten days of award winning courses, world class distilleries, impressive historical wonders and some of the most alluring coastlines and sights you could ever wish to see. Test your nerve on world famous links courses and follow in the footsteps of golfing legends. Pit your skill against nature on some of the most beautiful yet treacherous courses in the world. Couple this with tasting sessions and tours of local but global whisky distilleries and immerse yourself in the water of life. At every turn, nature will inspire you with golden eagles, otters, seals, whales and more. Truly, this voyage of discovery encapsulates Scotland and will enchant you forever. Passing places, anchorages and ports Greenock From its humble beginnings as a fishing village in the 15th Century, Greenock and its access to the River Clyde made it an important location for servicing the busy city of Glasgow until the 1800s and then became the shipbuilding capital of the world. Set on steep slopes, it has magnificent views across the firth of Clyde to the mountains beyond. Royal Troon With two spectacular courses, Royal Troon is a must for any golf enthusiast. Lying at the end of a gorgeous stretch of Ayrshire coastline, golf has been played here long before the club was founded in 1878. Awarded Royal status in its centennial year of 1978 it has hosted The Open Championship 8 times and will host it again this year. The Old Course is thought to be one of the greatest in Scotland and with a mixture of the wind and terrain - it is a challenging one. Take time to reminisce in the history of players past who have found glory here and take your chances on the famous "Postage Stamp" hole surely your best chance for a hole in one on a Championship course! The alternate course - The Portland Course was originally designed by William Fernie who won The Open in 1883 before being redesigned in the 1920's by Dr Alister MacKensie. Slightly more forgiving than The Old Course, the Portland Course takes you through sheltered holes on a slightly shorter course. Arran Full of beautiful coastlines, rolling hills, woodlands and mountainous terrain, this most southerly Scottish Isle is just19 miles long by 10 miles wide but offers some stunning seascape vistas at every turn. Easily described as a miniature Scotland due to the variety of terrain, as you traverse the island you will feel that you are a million miles away from the hustle of everyday life. It is home to a modern but popular distillery and produces its own soaps and lotions with a visitor centre where you can see how it is done. Full of local artisans, we source much of our menu from here. The island is also home to the Kings Caves – a series of waterfront caves carved out
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Greenock