By Fergus Graemsay
A local entrepreneur and tour guide has come up with his own idea to circumnavigate the problem of fair ferry funding whilst providing a once in a lifetime experience for visitors to the islands of Orkney.
Weel kent face Siefrer Siefrersson who runs the tour business ‘Exploration Norse’ dressed in authentic Viking garb has commissioned local boat builders to construct a full size Longship. Siefrer intends to ply the routes between Orkney’s islands taking visitors to locations all missed out by those who arrive by cruise ship.
The bespoke tours will immerse visitors in the whole Viking experience as they will be powering the Longships themselves.
“Our Viking ancestors didn’t let fair ferry funding stop them getting about. My guests will know what it was like to be chained as a galley slave powering the swiftest ships of their day, and losing a few pounds in the process.”
Being close to the action of the sea and the fast flowing currents between Orkney’s islands will also allow the visitors to appreciate not only the endeavours of the Norsemen of the past but of the potential renewable energy for the future.
Eye level with the surging seas will mean that viewing our marine wildlife will be close up and very personal whilst batting away hungry seabirds and keeping one hand remaining on the oar.
Siefrer has selected several landing locations away from the conventional piers favoured by the inter island ferries. Hauling the longship ashore and in some cases physically carrying it across land is all part of the day long activities which as tradition dictates end up in a drinking hall.
Although construction on the longship has not yet commenced Siefrer has started taking advance bookings for his unique solution to fair ferry funding and cruise ship congestion.