- 5-day Highlands and Isle of Skye trip from Edinburgh
- Scenic drive through Stirling and the wild Rannoch Moors
- See the legendary scenery including the Old Man of Storr and the Cuillin Mountains
- Ride the famous Hogwarts Express (as seen in the Harry Potter films)
- Choice of B&B or hotel accommodation
See 'Itinerary' below for full details of your 5-day Isle of Skye, Loch Ness and the Scottish West Coast Tour.
Leaving Edinburgh we head north to the ancient capital of Stirling and the site of the Battle of Stirling Bridge. Here there are stunning views towards the impressive Castle and towering Wallace Monument. Next stop is Doune with an optional visit to its Castle, famously featured in the movie ‘Monty Python and the Holy Grail’. Get a picture with Hamish the Hairy Coo as we enter the Trossachs, where the Highlands begin. Our journey takes us through wild Rannoch Moor and into brooding Glencoe, site of the massacre of 1692. We head through some beautiful scenery, past the Isles of the Dead and onto Oban, a stunning west coast fishing port.
After driving along the west coast, we take the steam train from Fort William to Mallaig (voted by Wanderlust Magazine as the 'Top Rail Journey in the World’), crossing the Glenfinnan viaduct made famous in the Harry Potter films. This trip will pass Glenfinnan, where Bonne Prince Charlie raised his standard at the start of the failed Jacobite campaign. We take the ferry and cross the sea to the Isle of Skye full of awe-inspiring mountains, myths and legends. Here, we have the chance to explore the Clan Donald centre and gardens before driving north through stunning scenery to the island’s capital, Portree.
The start of the day is spent exploring Skye. Highlights include the mysterious Quiraing, Kilt Rock and some of Skye's extraordinary geological scenery. Returning to the mainland, we cross the Skye Bridge and visit the most photographed castle in Scotland, the famous stronghold Eilean Donan Castle (used in the film "Highlander”). We wind our way into along the Great Glen to infamous Loch Ness, home of Nessie. Where you can look for the monster before we dock at Inverness, our home for the night.
The morning is free to explore Inverness, capital of the Highlands, with beautiful river views and shops to buy some unique Scottish souvenirs. Onward bound we head into the heart of the country and stop at a whisky distillery to discover how the ‘water of life’ is made. Here’s your chance to have a dram after an optional guided tour then it’s on to Beauly, with its 13th Century priory and numerous pubs and cafes for a spot of afternoon tea. We return to Inverness for our final night.
We explore the atmospheric Culloden Battlefield, scene of Bonnie Prince Charlie’s defeat and the end of Jacobite Rebellion. After travelling through the Cairngorms National Park, we make a visit to the Museum of Highland Life to learn how Scotland’s clans lived and their traditional ways. Heading south into Perthshire, a land of forests, rivers and mountains, we stop at the quaint village of Dunkeld on the banks of the River Tay and visit its stunning historic Cathedral. Finally, we return to Edinburgh with one last view of the Forth Bridge.
Reviewed by Stu, Australia, October 2012
Was a fantastic five days! Our driver/guide Chris was the best guide I've had from many tours, with a dearth of knowledge and humour to keep us all entertained for the entire trip. Especially loved the well timed music! Saw a great selection of Scottish sights on this trip, and the B and Bs were comfortable, pleasant, and well located in all cases.
Reviewed by eric j, September 2012
chris was excellent what a trip. Once in a life time, thanks for everything everyone involved.