Please note that whilst we are happy to give general advice regarding travelling to Orkney, we regret that we are not a travel agent and so are unable to make travel arrangements on your behalf.
We hope you find the following information useful, and it is correct to the best of our knowledge but you should refer to the companies concerned for up-to-date information and to make your booking.
Arrival by air:
The easiest way to get to Orkney is to fly. There are direct flights to Kirkwall from all Scottish airports. Until the 31st August 2017 these will be operated by Loganair on behalf of Flybe (however there are no direct flights to Kirkwall from outside Scotland). Flybe also have codeshare agreements with some other airlines e.g. British Airways and connections with other airports.
After the 1st of September 2017 the flights will be operated by Loganair on their own, but there will still be codeshare agreements in place with British Airways.
You may take a flight with any other airline to any Scottish airport then book onwards with Flybe/Loganair to Orkney. However if something goes wrong (e.g. delayed flight etc.) and you miss the connection, your inbound airline has no responsibility for you, so you should make sure your travel insurance will cover you for this.
There are also very good rail links to the main Scottish cities from points south, and you may take a train followed by an onward flight to Orkney. The Edinburgh airport/train combination is a particularly easy option since there is a good airport bus services from right outside Edinburgh Waverley train station. Aberdeen also has good train connections and frequent flights to Orkney, and there is an airport bus from the main city bus station.
Arrival by ferry:
Orkney is served by three ferry companies, however please note that some the ferry options do not have good public transport connections and may necessitate arriving at the ferry port by car.
Serco Northlink Ferries sail from Aberdeen and Shetland to Kirkwall, and offer daily sailings from Scrabster (near Thurso) to Stromness in Orkney. If you are intending to travel by public transport the best rail connections are to Aberdeen but arrives very late at night in Kirkwall and is overnight going south.
Please note that the ferry from Aberdeen is NOT a daily service to Orkney (there is a daily service to Shetland but the ferry does not always stop in Orkney). The ferry arrives in Kirkwall at 2300hrs on the way north, and departs at 2345hrs on the way south, arriving in Aberdeen at 0700hrs. There are north boats on Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday & Sunday and south boats on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
John o’ Groats Ferries (foot passengers only) in the main season there is a bus/ferry connection from Inverness via coach to John O’ Groats, foot ferry to Burwick, then via coach to Kirkwall to just round the corner from the hotel. This is sold as a return ticket package with online booking http://www.jogferry.co.uk/Express-bus.aspx