The story of the Celts will be brought to life by the National Trust for Scotland’s autumn cruise, departing September 10.

The Colours of the Celts cruise explores ports with Celtic connections, including the Isle of Man, Ireland and Scotland’s West Coast over 12 days aboard the luxurious Pearl II, with the charity that conserves and promotes Scotland’s heritage.

Leaving from Greenock, the itinerary takes guests to Douglas on the Isle of Man, where they will discover the island’s rich natural beauty, before heading to Ireland, where the Pearl II makes several stops including at beautiful Bantry Bay which is said to be Ireland’s first inhabited place.

Following in the wake of ancient travellers, the cruise then heads back east towards Scotland, stopping at St Kilda, the National Trust for Scotland’s astounding world heritage site, before heading up the West Coast, visiting Mull, Rum and Knoydart on the way.

There will also be a special stop at the Trust’s beautiful Inverewe Garden where passengers will enjoy some Highland hospitality and visit the recently renovated Inverewe House which brings the story of this ‘garden on the edge’ to life for visitors.

The cruise returns to Greenock on September 22.

Events manager Elaine McDaid said: “During this Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology we have put together a very special itinerary that explores the ancient history of the Celts and celebrates their story as they headed east from Ireland.

“As you would expect with a National Trust for Scotland cruise, we’ll have some of Scotland’s top experts in archaeology, nature and art on board to share their incredible insights into this fascinating area and its rich history.

“And with our wonderful programme of music and entertainment, this all adds up to being a very special experience.”

Travel writer Robin McKelvie sailed with the Trust last year. He said: “Over the years I have cruised Scottish waters on a number of ships, but from the first moment I boarded the Pearl II I discovered that a voyage with the National Trust for Scotland would be utterly and gloriously unique. During my time on board, I would be treated to world-class entertainment and top-notch Scottish produce, hear from the most experienced guides and lecturers, and become part of the Trust’s ‘cultural cruising’ family.”

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