Gills Bay


St Margarets Hope to Gills Bay / Gills Bay to St Margarets Hope
3 crossings daily
1 hr

Gills Bay is in the very north of Scotland and is separated from the Orkney Islands by the Strait of Pentland Firth. There is a port in the bay, through which the ferry service between Britain and the Orkney Islands is operated. There are several lodges in the community of Gills a kilometer from the port, and there is a bus stop in the community. The nearest town – Thurso – is 25 km to the west. The rugged nature and distinctive wildlife of the North of Scotland can be of interest to tourists – seals can be seen on the shore, killer whales and pilot whales come close to the shore. The ferry is a great place to visit.

Gills Bay
Gills Bay
Gills Bay

Ferry service from Gills Bay

The ferry route from Gills Bay to the Orkney Islands is more than 150 years old. It is considered the fastest and safest in these waters, even during the winter.

Pentland Ferries operates three daily voyages from Gills Bay to St. Margaret Hope on South Ronaldsay Island. Travel time is approximately 1 hour, with catamaran ferries departing in the morning, noon and evening. A ticket for an adult passenger costs £17, crossing a car – from £40, depending on size and class. The ferry costs £17. On board the ferries, passengers are accommodated in an enclosed cabin, but you can step out onto the outdoor terrace for an outdoor stroll or sunbathing on the covered terrace. There are cafes, kiosks, and game lounges for children on the ferries. In contrast to many ferry lines pets are free. Pets are allowed on the ferries.

Gills Bay Port

The port of Gills Bay is located in the heart of Gills Bay near the A-836. The nearest airports are in the Orkney Islands and can only be reached by car via ferry. The nearest international airport on the UK mainland is in Edinburgh – it is about 500km and it will take at least 6-7 hours to travel to Gills Bay.

The access roads to the port are good, but all the infrastructure is represented by Pentland Ferries' one-story office. There are only a few farms around the port, and the nearest hotel is a mile from the dock. The port is not a good place to live.

There is no need to linger at the port; it is best to arrive at the embarkation with your ticket already purchased. One day before departure the sale of tickets via the Internet stops, so it is better to buy your ticket in advance on our website.