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A veil of mist and a still harbour greeted the first cruise vessel to come into Stornoway since February 2020, early on Friday morning (23 July).

The Hebridean Sky made a short visit to the islands, with only three coach tours taking passengers around the sights of the west side of Lewis.

Guests were not able to disembark unless on accompanied tours, and the visit remained quiet from the moment the small vessel slid alongside the mist-shrouded pier, with the CalMac ferry Loch Seaforth moored on the opposite side.

Last week Stornoway Port Authority welcomed the return to cruising – albeit in a much-restricted form, and said that six more vessels are expected to call into the port during the remainder of the summer (

The Hebridean Sky is due to return on Thursday (29 July) with British passengers on a voyage of exploration around the islands of Britain, starting in Aberdeen and taking in Orkney, Shetland, St Kilda and the Isle of Man before heading south to end the 12-day voyage with the Isles of Scilly.

Pictures of last week’s quiet start to the season are from Stornoway Shipping Services.