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Escape the city to experience wild, small-town Scotland on this 5-day tour of the Highlands and the Isle of Skye from Edinburgh. Aboard a luxury minivan, enjoy the scenery of Cairngorms National Park, Achmelvich Bay and the mysterious Loch Ness. Visit famous sites like the Old Man of Storr and Eilean Donan Castle, hear bloody histories like the massacre of Glen Coe, and admire the dramatic beauty of the Quiraing mountain pass. Four nights in 3- or 4-star lodging and daily breakfasts included.


  • 5-day guided tour of the Scottish Highlands and the Isle of Skye from Edinburgh
  • Travel under thick canopies and past bubbling waterways in Cairngorms National Park
  • See the famous Loch Ness, home to a mysterious water monster
  • Travel along the Loch Torridon coastline and cross by ferry to the Isle of Skye
  • Independently explore the towns of Dores, Lochinver, Portree, Plockton and more
  • Visit historic locations like the ruins of Ardvreck Castle, Eilean Donan Castle and the Old Man of Storr
  • Stop at Glen Coe, site of a horrific Jacobite-era massacre
  • Enjoy two nights accommodation in Ullapool plus two nights in Portree, including daily breakfasts

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

5-Day Highland Explorer and Isle of Skye Small Group Tour from Edinburgh

Loch of Glencoul, Scotland

Your 5-day Highlands and Isle of Skye tour highlights Scotland’s natural beauty and rich heritage. From national parks to ancient castles, this small-group experience allows you to visit parts of the country that many larger groups may not be able to access. Relax with hotel or guesthouse accommodation in Ullapool and Portree, with daily breakfasts included.


Day 1: Edinburgh – Ullapool
Meet your guide at the prearranged meeting point in central Edinburgh, and then hop inside an air-conditioned Mercedes minivan and travel north over the Forth Road Bridge to the charming village of Dunkeld.

Stroll along the village’s well-trodden forest walkways to the Hermitage waterfalls with your guide. Then, continue to Cairngorms National Park, home to the UK’s most extensive range of high mountains. Wander amid the ancient pine forests of the Rothiemurchus Estate, located at the heart of the national park, and learn more about the native flora and fauna from your guide. You’ll also have the opportunity to recharge with lunch (own expense) here.

Then, head for the village of Dores. Along the way, drink in the rambling green hills and other scenic sights of the Scottish countryside before stopping to take in panoramic views of Loch Ness. You may even spot Nessie, the fabled Loch Ness Monster.
Finally, arrive in the fishing of Ullapool, your base for the next two nights. Check in to your accommodation, and then enjoy the rest of the evening at your leisure.

Overnight: 3- or 4-star hotel or guesthouse in Ullapool
Please note: During peak season, accommodation may be in Inverness instead of Ullapool

Day 2: Ullapool – Northwest Highlands – Ullapool (B)
After savoring a delicious breakfast at your hotel, join up with your guide and travel into the far northern wilderness of Assynt, an area typified by rocky inlet, unspoiled beaches and jagged cliffs.

Visit the 15th-century ruins of Ardvreck Castle, which boasts incredible views of the Highlands and rural Scotland, and the beautiful white-sand beach at Achmelvich Bay.

Then, stop in the small fishing village of Lochinver. With time here spent at your leisure, take in the sights independently, enjoy lunch (own expense) at a local restaurant, or perhaps set off in search of eagles, red deer and other native wildlife.
Later, return to your hotel or guesthouse and spend the evening as you wish.

Overnight: 3- or 4-star hotel or guesthouse in Ullapool
Please note: During peak season, accommodation may be in Inverness instead of Ullapool

Day 3: Ullapool – Applecross – Plockton – Isle of Skye (B)
Following breakfast, pack your bags and check out of your Ullapool hotel. Then, join up with your guide and travel west, past the misty peaks of the Beinn Eighe National Nature Reserve and along the undulating coastline of Loch Torridon.

Stop in Applecross, a tranquil peninsula situated on the rugged coast of Wester Ross in the Highlands, where you’ll eat lunch (own expense) before continuing along Bealach nam Bo (Cattle Pass), Britain’s highest road. Drink in the jaw-dropping views, and then arrive in the palm tree–lined village of Plockton. Stretch your legs with a walk around the ‘tropical’ haven and snap photos of beautiful Loch Carron.

When the time comes, continue over the sea to the Isle of Skye. Arrive in the delightful harbor town of Portree, your base for the next two nights, and check in to your accommodation. The rest of the evening is yours to spend at your leisure.

Overnight: 3- or 4-star hotel or guesthouse in Portree

Day 4: Isle of Skye (B)
Tuck into a tasty breakfast at your hotel, and then join up with your guide and set off to explore the Isle of Skye. On route to your first stop, gaze out at the scenic sights and listen to your guide talk about the day’s itinerary. The sights you’ll see are dependent on your guide, the time of year and the weather conditions.

Perhaps travel north to the Trotternish Ridge, which is formed by a series of landslips including the well-known craggy pinnacles of the Old Man of Storr and the dramatic sea cliff of Kilt Rock. Hop out of your minivan on the mountain pass of the Quiraing, and snap photos of the unusual landscape forms that have earned names like the Needle, the Table and the Prison.

Next, break for lunch (own expense) in one of the Isle of Skye’s pretty villages. Then, maybe head for Neist Point and enjoy a leisurely stroll to the lighthouse on Skye’s western tip. Alternatively, visit Dunvegan Castle, the ancient ancestral seat of the Clan McLeod.
In the early evening, return to your accommodation in Portree and spend the rest of the day at your leisure.

Overnight: 3- or 4-star hotel or guesthouse in Portree

Day 5: Isle of Skye – Edinburgh (B)
After enjoying breakfast, gather your bags and check out of your hotel. Then, sitting comfortably aboard your Mercedes minivan, travel south from Skye to the picturesque 13th-century Eilean Donan Castle. Used as a filming location in the 1986 movie Highlander, the ruins of the romantic castle look out over three sea lochs, and the landmark is widely considered as one of Scotland’s most iconic sights.

Continue east through the rugged mountains of Kintail, including the splendor of the Five Sisters, and drive through Glen Garry for jaw-dropping views of Ben Nevis, Britain’s highest mountain.

Stop for lunch (own expense) in Fort William, and then travel to Glencoe — perhaps Scotland's most famous and most scenic glen — before arriving in Killin for refreshments (own expense) beside the beautiful Falls of Dochart.

Your tour then concludes back at the original start point in Edinburgh.

Customer Reviews

Sylvia B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2016

Alan Oliver our Rabbie's guide was excellent. The other travellers were all very nice, which made the trip very good. Alan entertained us with relevant history and folk tales and knew the countryside very well. I felt safe and looked after. The hotels and the local people made our stay enjoyable.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2016

The tour was everything we'd hoped for. Our guide, Ross, was the best. He was full of all sorts of information - historical, environmental - whatever we wanted to know, he had the answers. And all told in an entertaining way. Ross also was very flexible and planned our itinerary to go with the weather conditions. Saw amazing scenery!!


5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2016

The trip was well organized by Rabbies Tours. Our drive/guide was excellent, he took us to phantastic places, gave all necessary info but did not talk too much.
I think this tour is a must for first time visitors to Scotland!

Judith A

5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2016

Super! Five days of incredibly beautiful, dramatic scenery in out-of-the-way places in the Highlands that a shorter trip would have missed. And every inch is absolutely pristine - didn't see one scrap of paper or one cigarette butt on the ground. And Andrew, our guide, couldn't have been more cheerful, helpful, well-informed, or engaging. Five stars all around.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2016

Wonderful tour with Gail from Rabbies for 5day highland tour. The bus was comfortable, hotel arrangements without a hitch. The guide made the whole trip. Clearly enjoys what she dies and loves showing Scotland and telling all sorts if stories and information to anyone interested. Highly recommend.

Alexander P

5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2015

Scenic Beauty in a remote wilderness. What a great trip we took in late-June 2015. Alan was our tour guide and he was great. A history buff, Alan taught us a massive amount during our driving time between sites.

Limited to a group of 16, we were able to cover a lot of the Highlands area over 5 days, getting to experience the scenic beauty and remote landscape that was truly amazing. Alan was laid-back, informative, and very respectful of our groups' desires, not having us on a strict schedule but allowing each stop to happen organically. The result was a tour that never felt rushed, which we appreciated after having done a similar tour the week before in Ireland! Even with the laid back pace, we were always at our lodging by 6:30PM, leaving plenty of time to explore the tiny fishing villages where we stayed.
- Note: There isn't much nightlife at the Ullapool and Portree locations, though there is much scenery.
- We stayed at the B and B Double option, finding the accommodations in Ullapool to be average and the accommodation in Portree to be slightly below average. That is specific to this tour, however, as we had much better experiences with the same level of B and B on our 5 day Ireland tour.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2015

This tour was filled with awesome scenery and spectacular views. We were able to travel so many narrow country roads that the big tour buses would never have been able to drive. Our talented driver Alan kept us entertained with stories of the regions and provided a wide mix of music that enhanced our journey, all while taking us safely throughout the highlands. His friendliness, attention, and knowledge were greatly appreciated. The pace of the trip was perfect, with plenty of stops and enough time to see the sights. The van seats were comfortable and our small number of passengers made it convenient for restaurants and sight-seeing. We were fortunate to have a nice mix of courteous people with us too. Our B and B at Ullapool had a beautiful view of the water and was in easy walking distance to the cafes and restaurants. We enjoyed this trip so much that we took two more one day excursions with Rabbie's while we were in Scotland. We are so glad to have had such a memorable experience. Thanks again, Alan! Wayne and Leslie Gmachl


5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2015

The tour was excellent in all aspects .our tour guide Dan was exceptional in his knowledge of Scotland and surrounding area,highly recommend this tour

Debabrata D

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2015

This is quite a fantastic tour. It is a great advert for Scotland and can easily make you fall in love with the country. Our guide Daniel was awesome with his history, myths and stories about almost every nook and cranny of the Highlands. When we went there, we experienced some rough weather but the enthusiasm of Daniel made almost all of us on the tour brave the blustery winds and getting pelted with hall. Much recommended if you want to know almost everything about Scotland. I had initially planned to drive around but I would not have heard such great Scottish songs, or known about Scottish history if it wasn't for this tour! Fantastic!

Wendy Z

5 star rating: Highly Recommended September 2014

We enjoyed everything about the tour. Our guide brought Scotland to life with his stories about the history, music, and geology of the area. The B and Bs that we stayed in were very comfortable and conveniently located for walking to dinner and shops. The van was comfortable and the small group made it easy to get to know the others on the trip. We will be looking forward to plan another trip with Viator.

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