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Meet at a central location in Edinburgh and head toward the Scottish Highlands on a comfortable coach to begin your daylong adventure. On the way, see the impressive new Queensferry Crossing and the Forth Railway Bridge (UNESCO Heritage Site), a red cantilever bridge connecting Edinburgh to the countryside. Stop in the picturesque town of Pitlochry for a cup of tea or some home-baked cakes (own expense). Make your way through Britain’s highest mountain range in Cairngorms National Park, taking in sensational panoramas at every turn. Then, arrive at Loch Ness, where you will have time to have lunch at a nearby restaurant or enjoy a picnic (own expense). If weather conditions permit, hop on a boat with your guide and enjoy a cruise and tour the famous ruins of Urquhart Castle (own expense) around this world-famous loch. Keep your eyes peeled for the legendary Loch Ness Monster, a dinosaur-like creature who some believe lurks deep beneath these waters. Have your camera ready – even if you don’t spot ‘Nessie,’ the atmospheric Loch Ness area is beautiful. Should you choose not to take the boat and castle tour - free time to explore the charming highland village of Drumnadrochit.Continue your drive to Glen Coe, a lushly rugged glen formed by an ice age glacier. Learn how this breathtaking place was the site of a terrible massacre in 1692 that took the lives of scores of members of the MacDonald clan. On the way back to Edinburgh, pass by Stirling, an ancient Scottish city known as the ‘Gateway to the Highlands.’ Admire the town’s magnificent cliffside castle as you hear tales of William Wallace, a medieval Scottish war hero who was immortalized in the Oscar-winning film Braveheart. Your tour concludes in central Edinburgh.
Depart Inverness by minivan and travel with your guide to the heart of Scotland’s dramatic Highlands. The first stop of the day is at the banks of Loch Ness to try and catch a sight of the fabled Loch Ness monster. As you stroll through the village of Drumnadrochit and around the gorgeous shores of this famous loch (lake) surrounded by flora and fauna, you’ll soon realize that there’s more to Loch Ness than just a monster! Next you’ll head to the nearby town of Beauly for lunch (own expense) and to have a look around. The name of the town comes from the French beau lieu meaning ‘beautiful place,’ and you’ll find it to be just that while you explore its charming streets at leisure. The town is home to the legendary Glen Ord Whisky Distillery, and you’ll visit this next with your guide. While touring the cellars and distillery itself, you’ll see the whisky workers creating their flagship product – a 12-year-old single malt whisky – and you’ll be given a wee dram to sample before leaving. Our next stop of the day is in Cromarty, a picturesque village where time feels like it’s truly standing still. Enjoy a leisurely walking tour around its quaint streets, seeing cute fisherman’s cottages and houses with typical Scottish crow-stepped gables. Heading west, you’ll venture along a stunning stretch of the Highlands known as the Black Isle, an area of land that’s actually a peninsula and named for its association with the dark arts during medieval times. Hear tales like this and more from your friendly guide as you journey deep into the Black Isle’s beautifully barren countryside. Continue traveling by minivan through the pretty villages of Rosemarkie and Fortrose, and then stop for a walk along a ridge known as Chanonry Point. Jutting out into the sea at Moray Firth, the ridge is widely acknowledged as the best place in Britain for see dolphins – home to a community of some 130 bottleneck dolphins. After dolphin spotting to your heart’s content, your tour continues back to Inverness.
On day one we’ll head west through the Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park and on towards Kilmartin Glen. You’ll get lost in Scotland’s incredible nature before spending the evening in the incredible coastal town of Oban: Seafood capital of Scotland! Your second day takes you through some incredible mountain landscapes at Glencoe. At Fort Wiliam, where the highest mountain in the UK lies - Ben Nevis - you jump aboard the Jacobite Steam Train, to enjoy one of the greatest train journeys. Taste the best seafood at Mallaig and cross over the sea to the Isle of Skye on the ferry for your second night. Departures 13th May - Sep 12 will include the Jacobite Steam Train All other departure will include Loch Ness Cruise and Urquhart Castle instead.Day three is all about Skye! You’ll get the chance to enjoy Sligachan, unforgettable views of the Black and Red Cuillin Mountains. You’ll then head to explore the Misty Isle and for great photographs of the Old Man of Storr, the Trotternish Peninsula and visit the colourful harbour town of Portree. We’ll spend the second night on Skye. On our fourth day we’ll leave Skye and head straight to one of Scotland’s most photographed castles, Eilean Donan* which you’ll have ample time to explore. You’ll stop at the pretty Lochside village of Drumnadrochit for lunch, before having the option to cruise on Loch Ness, look out for Nessie and visit Urquhart Castle ruin. We’ll then head to the south end of the Loch for our overnight stop in Fort Augustus. Our final day begins with a Loch Ness cruise (entrance fee not included, except 21st March - 9th May & 5th September - 10th October) and and visit to Culloden Battlefield (entrance fee not included). You will then visit a whisky distillery (entrance fee not included), pass through the Cairngorm Mountains National Park and the picturesque town of Pitlochry as we journey south back to Glasgow.
On day one we’ll head west through the Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park and on towards Kilmartin Glen. You’ll get lost in Scotland’s incredible nature before spending the evening in the incredible coastal town of Oban. Your journey takes you through the magnificent mountains at Glen Coe where you will hear the terrible massacre of the MacDonald Clan. Then you will jump aboard the Jacobite Steam Train and go on one of the most famous train journeys in the world. You will get to Mallaig for an early dinner before taking a short ferry ride (included) to the Isle of Skye, where you will spend your second night. Departures 13th May-Sep 12 will include the Jacobite Steam Train All other departure will include Loch Ness Cruise and Urquhart Castle instead. Day three is all about Skye. You’ll get the chance to enjoy unforgettable views of the Black and Red Cuillin Mountains and the colourful harbour town of Portree. Take in the spectacular views of the Old Man of Storr, the Kilt Rock waterfall and the beautiful Trotternish Peninsula. Your third night is also on Skye. On day 4 we’ll leave Skye and head straight to one of Scotland’s most photographed castles, Eilean Donan* which you’ll have ample time to explore. You’ll stop at the pretty Lochside village of Drumnadrochit for lunch, before having the option to cruise on Loch Ness, look out for Nessie and visit Urquhart Castle ruin. We’ll then head to the south end of the Loch for our overnight stop in Fort Augustus. Day five begins visiting Dunrobin Castle (entrance fee not included), where you can enjoy a falconry display and walk in its beautiful gardens. You will drive then through the Sutherland area, towards Knockan Crag Nature Natural Reserve and see one of the oldest landscapes in Europe. Then we catch the ferry to the Isle of Lewis and Harris (included in the price). Overnight: Stornoway Here we’ll visit a Black House village (entrance fee not included) where you can step back in time and experience the history and heritage of crofting life. You’ll also see a Traditional Harris Tweed Weaver at work (entrance fee not included) and Carloway Broch, a prehistoric circular stone tower and Callanish, home of the most complete historic stone circles in Europe. Overnight in Stornoway. Day seven takes you to the most northerly point of the Western Isles, the Butt of Lewis, a great spot for bird and seal watching, and with its spectacular cliffs this part of the coastline is a must see! Then it’s time to take your ferry back to mainland, spending the night in Inverness. On your final day we stop by the battlefield of Culloden (entrance fee not included), the site of the defeat of the Jacobite forces. We’ll also travel though the dramatic Cairngorms National Park, visit a whisky distillery (entrance fee not included) and have the chance to explore the picturesque town of Pitlochry before returning back to Edinburgh.
ItineraryThis is a typical itinerary for this productStop At: Clava Cairns, Scottish Highlands, ScotlandHeading first to Culloden to visit the Clava Cairns where Claire stepped through the time continuum to meet Jamie Fraser from Outlander fame. These prehistoric cairns date back 4,000 years. Craigh na Dun stone circle is based on Clava Cairns in Diana Gabaldon's book, Outlander.Duration: 1 hourStop At: Culloden Viaduct, Inverness, Scottish Highlands, ScotlandAfter a half hour visit at Clava Cairns, we will pop around the corner to see the famous Culloden or Nairn viaduct, designed by Murdoch Paterson and opened as a railway crossing in 1898. It is a spectacle to behold – there will be photo opportunities.Duration: 15 minutesPass By: Culloden Battlefield, Culloden Moor, Scottish Highlands, ScotlandAround 11.40am we travel past the Culloden Battlefield, where the Jacobites lost many a soul in the 1946 uprising. This was the last battle to be fought on British soil. Pass By: Inverness Castle, Inverness, Scottish Highlands, ScotlandJourneying onwards through the city of Inverness we will pass the historic town hall and the Inverness Castle. There will be photo opportunities for the castle and Inverness Cathedral.Pass By: Loch Ness, Loch Ness, Scottish Highlands, ScotlandGoing over the River Ness onto Loch Ness, where you need to be ready to spot our legend, Nessie, the Loch Ness Monster. Enjoy the comfortable ride to Uquhart Castle, which takes just around 30 minutes , searching for a sighting of Nessie herself. The last famous recorded sighting of her was a few decades ago, but we live in hope she will be photographed again soon. The scenery is second to none, so have your cameras ready. In recent months there has been footage circulated online of video recordings of an animal similar to Nessie playing in Loch Ness.Stop At: Urquhart Castle, Drumnadrochit, Loch Ness, Scottish Highlands, ScotlandArriving at the famous Urquhart Castle, around 12.30pm you will have the opportunity to be shown around the battlements, see a short film of the castle’s history, purchase memorabilia or simply relax. There is a small hill to navigate after you visit the ruins, so please bear this in mind for the less able. There will be no push put on your ability though, so a slow walk up is an option. You will have a good hour and a half to look around. We will not hurry you. Duration: 1 hour 30 minutesStop At: Beauly Priory, Beauly, Scottish Highlands, ScotlandWe will leave the castle around 2-2.30pm to journey via a scenic route to Beauly to visit the historic priory, now a ruin, built in 1230 by a little-known French order of monks. It is also the location where Claire of Outlander fame, is supposed to have met Mairi. It is the true site of the burial ground for the chiefs of Clan Fraser of which the fictional character from Outlander, Jamie Fraser is related. The small town centre of Beauly also contains many lovely shops containing gifts, artworks, pottery and nice little cafes. Duration: 45 minutes
ItineraryThis is a typical itinerary for this productStop At: Urquhart Castle, Drumnadrochit, Loch Ness, Scottish Highlands, ScotlandVisiting Urquhart Castle and Loch Ness, Culloden Battlefield, Clava CairnsDuration: 1 hour