There are hotels, bed and breakfasts, self catering cottages and campsites in Kirkwall and the West Mainland who can ensure you sleep comfortably each night. Of course you can plan your own itinerary, or search generally for accommodation in the West Mainland or Kirkwall. The Visit Scotland St Magnus Way information page has listings of accommodation on or near the St Magnus Way Route.
The following are merely suggestions, we receive no commission from any provider for this information and provide it without comment on the merits of the different options. There are plenty of online sources of information you use to augment what is provided here.
Option 1 - a single base
If you ask, many bed and breakfasts in the West Mainland will happily drop you off in the morning and pick you up in the evening in order to get your business for the whole week. Alternatively if you are a group with two cars you can leave a car at the end of that day’s pilgrimage to enable you to travel back to a single point of accommodation and there are lots of self catering options for this.
Option 2 - Support packages for St Magnus Way Walkers
The following local businesses offer support packages for walkers of the St Magnus Way.
- Shorelands, Orkney offer walkers and cyclists a stress-free trip so that their pilgrimage can be enjoyed to its full potential. Whether you are doing a day or five days on the trail, they will make sure that all your needs are catered for. See their website at https://www.shorelandsorkney.com/st-magnus-way-packages
- Margaret Wishart of Foinhaven, Orphir can offer BnB or self catering and is willing to transport walkers to the start and pick up at end of their walks, and also to transport luggage. A packed lunch can also be provided if wanted. Her contact details are:
01856 811249 or 07746 555197
Option 3 - moving on
Here is a suggested itinerary for a week's pilgrimage, moving on each night. Obviously the weather can wreak havoc with your careful plans but fortunately the busier times of year are also the least likely to be disrupted (though there are no guarantees!).
day one - Egilsay
There is no accomodation in Egilsay but the ferry takes you to Rousay where there is a choice of accommodation. Alternatively, get the ferry back to Tingwall on the Mainland and stay somewhere nearby the start of the walk, such as Woodwick House or Eviedale Campsite.
day two - Evie to Birsay
day three - Birsay to Dounby
Again there is a range of self catering and bed and breakfast options, along with the Smithfield Hotel which sits at the crossroads near to the end of this section. Or walk on a bit further along the St Magnus Way to the Merkister Hotel.
day four - Dounby to Finstown
Short stay options are more limited here but you can book single nights at the Atlantis Lodges, subject to availability.
day five - Finstown to Orphir
Crystal Brook B&B is near the school in Orphir, close to the Gyre Road, which leads up from the Round Kirk to the village.
day six - Orphir to Kirkwall
There are a plethora of options near the cathedral in Kirkwall, many of which can be found here.
Option 3 – wild camping
In Scotland rights of access include permission for wild camping. If you want to camp near to a building, ask the owner for permission and avoid camping in enclosed fields of crops and animals. Further guidance on wild camping can be found here but there are spaces suitable for wild camping at the end of every section.
If you have found other options or information that you think would be helpful on this page, do let us know.