There and Back Again
International Travel Tips to the United Kingdom
Travel Documents:A valid passport for the full duration of your time in Scotland, United Kingdom (UK) is required. To come to the UK as a general visitor, you must show that:
You are 18 or older if travelling alone,
You intend to visit the UK for no more than six months;
You intend to leave the UK at the end of your visit;
You have enough money to support and accommodate yourself on your trip
The currency in Scotland is the British Pound Sterling – credit and debit cards are accepted on Iona
For other situations and more detailed information, please visit the UK Visa and Immigration website (www.gov.uk)or check with the United Kingdom embassy in your home country to verify visa requirements.
IMPORTANT: Make several color copies of your passport ID page and travel documents in case something should happen to your actual passport. Do not pack your official passport or travel documents in your checked luggage as you will need them at the airport and upon boarding the plane. Keep these, as well as any prescription medications and/or valuables, in your carry-on bags. Keep your carry-on with you at all times while traveling.
Recommended Travel Steps to Iona, Scotland
The experience of traveling to Iona is a pilgrimage in itself, involving several modes of transportation. Upon registering for the retreat, we advise our guests as to how to purchase tickets for specific buses, trains and ferries. Enjoy the scenic journey, and take time to converse and connect with the typically very friendly Scottish people along the way!
DEPARTURE FROM HOME:
1. If you’re flying directly to Scotland to travel to Iona, look for flights arriving at Glasgow International Airport (GLA). If traveling to London first, there are many connecting flights to Glasgow. Plan to arrive in Glasgow by Thursday, Sept. 26 at the latest. For some, this may mean departing from the U.S. a full day prior – check carefully!
We recognize you may be visiting other destinations prior to our retreat on Iona. If so, simply coordinate your itinerary so that it aligns with Step 3 below, with a morning departure from Glasgow for Oban on Friday, Sept. 27.
ARRIVAL IN GLASGOW: Thursday, September 26, 2019
2. Highly Recommended: If traveling internationally through several time zones, we encourage you to spend at least one night in Glasgow. If you arrive at Glasgow International Airport, take Airport Shuttle Bus 500 into the center of the city (it runs every 10 minutes). There are many wonderful lodging opportunities in Glasgow - get some rest and enjoy exploring! Sally and Laurie are happy to share recommendations. Glasgow is a friendly and unique city, with many fascinating free museums and great public transportation.
TRAVEL TO OBAN: Friday, September 27, 2019
3. Take a morning train from Glasgow to Oban (depart from Queen Street Train Station). It’s approximately a 3-hour ride and beautifully scenic. You should plan on arriving in Oban around 3:30-4:00 pm, which allows you time to check-in at your chosen Oban lodging and freshen up before meeting everyone for dinner at the Lorne.
TRAVEL TO IONA: Saturday, September 28, 2019
4. Take a mid-day ferry from Oban to Craignure on the Isle of Mull. We’ll help you choose a time so we can all travel together.
5. Upon arrival to Craignure, you will take a bus across the island of Mull to Fionnphort, a tiny ferry landing where we will make our final short sea-crossing to the isle of Iona.
6. Take the ferry from Fionnphort to the jetty on the isle of Iona – you have arrived! Sally and Laurie will be waiting on the jetty to take you to the Bishop’s House, which is just a short stroll away. Welcome!