We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The Tripadvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Orkney Archaeology Tours

Kirkwall, United Kingdom
More
About Orkney Archaeology Tours
We specialize in exclusive tours of Orkney, concentrating on the wonderful archaeology but also showing you as much as possible of our beautiful islands. We offer all-inclusive ‘Orkney Adventure’ 7-night small group holidays with a maximum of just eight people, together with private all-inclusive tours and day tours, conducted in our own comfortable executive touring vehicle. Our small group sizes mean we can visit sites off the beaten track and you benefit from the personal touch. We are the only tour company in Orkney to be run by archaeologists - all of our tours are personally led by either Dr Caz Mamwell BSc MA PhD FSA Scot or by Dr Dave Lawrence BSc MSc PhD FSA Scot, who have an in depth understanding of Orkney’s archaeology, cultural traditions and history. They are also accredited STGA Green Badge Orkney Tourist Guides, as well as knowing all the best places to see puffins and seals! Please visit our website for brochure and full details.
Read more
Travellers talk about

Orkney Archaeology Tours
Booking unavailable on Tripadvisor

Want other options you can book now?
349Reviews14Q&A
Traveller rating
  • 342
  • 5
  • 1
  • 1
  • 0
Traveller type
Time of year
Language
Selected filters
  • Filter
  • English
Popular mentions
Mitch West wrote a review Sep 2019
1 contribution
Our tour was with a small group, and included hotel, all meals, and guided visits to many archaeological sites from neolithic through medieval, along with more recent Orkney history. Van transport is provided to several sites per day. There is considerable walking on uneven ground. Good boots and waterproof are a must, but our group of 60-somethings had no trouble with the walking. We appreciated the knowledgable discussion of each site, absent much of the speculation and balderdash so often attached to ancient sites. If you want to see the archaeology of Orkney, or if you only vaguely know where it is, you will enjoy this trip. Hotel and meal accommodations were seamless and very good in all respects.
Read more
Date of experience: September 2019
Helpful
Share
acmes wrote a review Sep 2019
483 contributions82 helpful votes
Orkney isn't always easy to get to, but the visitor is rewarded by the sheer wealth of history available to see up close. Using Orkney Archaeology Tours is by far the best way to make the most of something that could be a once-in-a-lifetime event. Dr. Mamwell led my tour and I can't imagine that there's anything she doesn't know about the sights. You'll spend 45+ minutes at each site and get views, perspectives and access that other tours don't seem to offer (many of them are just a quick in-and-out). Although the tour primarily focuses on prehistoric monuments, every day also featured visits to Medieval, Viking, and Renaissance-period sites. My interest is mostly with the earlier monuments and I thought I wouldn't be engaged by the later material, but I was wrong. Right up to the WWII sites, Dr. Mamwell offered fascinating presentations. Beyond the information provided, the tour organizers take care of every thing--from accommodations, ferries, and meals. I only had to get myself to and from Kirkwall. The hotel, (Ayre in Kirkwall) is comfortable and clean and provides generous, well-cooked meals. The van is extremely comfortable and well-equipped. It is well-worth booking a year in advance, as I did. As others have noted, there is a fair amount of walking and uphill climbs. Some of the most unusual structures involve a climb down a ladder or through a narrow passageway. The guide is able to offer some flexibility, but as a destination, Orkney requires a certain level of mobility.
Read more
Date of experience: September 2019
Helpful
Share
Chris Spring. wrote a review Sep 2019
5 contributions3 helpful votes
This was an extremely well-organized and informative trip around Orkney taking in sites ranging in provenance from Neolithic to WWII. Caz Mamwell has an extensive knowledge of her adopted home where she has obviously found her genius loci and provided very detailed explanations of the monuments, history and current happenings about the islands. She even threw in some snippets of environmental interest ensuring a very holistic experience. She was very solicitous of participant comfort, perhaps a little too concerned considering that the group consisted of people well able to make their own decisions, but we all understood the demands made by the current H&S culture in which businesses operate. There was much chaffing and joshing amongst participants who are now keeping in touch so the trip was also instrumental in forging wider social links. Thank you Caz (and Dave) may your tours prosper.
Read more
Date of experience: September 2019
Helpful
Share
Jenny T wrote a review Sep 2019
Canberra, Australia7 contributions3 helpful votes
My week touring archaeological sites of Orkney with Dr Dave Lawrence was tremendous. Dr Lawrence was the perfect host: generous with imparting his obvious enormous knowledge of the sites we visited; thoughtful in ensuring all his guests' needs were met; and, indefatigable during long days where he drove, walked and talked at length. All aspects of this tour were excellent - the accommodation, the vehicle, the meals and, luckily, the most enjoyable of travelling companions. A big thank you to Orkney Archaeology Tours, especially Dave. Jen
Read more
Date of experience: August 2019
Helpful
Share
Neil R wrote a review Sep 2019
Melton Mowbray, United Kingdom3 contributions
This is an extremely professional and well-organised trip of Orkney archeology and history from the Neolithic to WWII. Tour leader Caz Mamwell is a pocket-sized encyclopedia with a dry sense of humour. She takes great care to manage everything to the last detail, including special diets and how to enter and exit the mini-bus safely. The Ayre hotel is modern and comfortable (and planning further improvements under its new owners) with harbour views. The hotel is a 10 minute walk from Kirkwall's main streets, including 'The Reel' which is a mecca for folk music. The food was plentiful and good quality (except if you are trying to diet) and the staff friendly and obliging. The transport is a modern mini-bus of 3 rows of 3 seats with aircon and a rack at the back for rucksacks and poles. There is some (short) walking and crawling to do if you want to see everything, so discuss any limitations that you have before you book. All but two on our trip were 'concessions' and my wife is recovering from knee replacement, so she skipped one of the crawls and was a bit slow on one steep climb, but Caz was extremely kind and helpful. My advice: Ask yourself if you are really interested in archaeology (it's not a 'cruise ship' tour) Book early (about 2 years ahead if you want to visit during the dig season) Read up some background on Orkney, the Neolithic, the Viking sagas, and Scapa Flow Read the tour brochure and instructions carefully and follow all of the advice I really find it difficult to think of any negatives (even the legendary weather was kind to us). We are amateur 'armchair archaeologists' who had never visited Orkney before, and we came away highly satisfied. Thank you Caz.
Read more
Date of experience: August 2019
Helpful
Share
Previous
Recommended experiences in and around Mainland
from US$474.95
More Info
from US$111.66
More Info
from US$615.59
More Info
from US$422.33
More Info