Duration: 7 Days
Take a journey into the fabled land of adventure on this affordable holiday in Scotland. From the elegant Georgian squares and 12th-century cathedral in Glasgow, you’ll travel to legendary Edinburgh, stop in Stirling to admire the prized castle of Scottish kings and symbol of the country’s independence. Enjoy a full day of guided sightseeing in Edinburgh, including 200-year-old New Town—home to famous scientists, inventors, and novelists—and visit Edinburgh Castle to see the Crown Jewels. Next, you’ll take the elegant Forth Road Bridge to St. Andrews—the home of golf, the cross Firth of Tay and head into the Highlands. You’ll stop on the way in the Victorian mountain resort of Pitlochry before crossing haunting Culloden Moor, where the Jacobites made their final stand in 1746.
Continue into the Highlands for an overnight stay in Strathpeffer and a west coast excursion through spectacular Scottish landscapes. Your Scottish adventure leads you through the heather-clad moors of the western Highlands to Lochalsh and the Isle of Skye. Then, via ferry across the Sound of Sleat, it’s back to the mainland. Take in the scenic highlights on your way back to Glasgow, including Glenfinnan and the monument to fallen clansmen, the viaduct that is recognisable to “Harry Potter” fans, and many other historic spots. Drive along the “bonnie banks” of Loch Lomond as well. Your value-minded holiday in Scotland is an experience of spectacular landscapes, legends, and lore.
Check into your hotel. In the afternoon, there's time to rest or discover Scotland's great cultural city. This evening, meet your Tour Director and travelling companions for dinner at the hotel. (D)
Start your day with an orientation drive taking in the fine 12th-century cathedral, imposing university buildings, and elegant Georgian squares. Continue on to Stirling where you will have time to admire the castle, a great symbol of Scottish independence and favoured residence of Scotland's kings and queens. Pause in Culross featured in the popular TV series Outlander. After arrival in Edinburgh, why not join an optional excursion: a traditional Scottish night out with Highland dancers, bagpipers, and of course, the Ceremony of the Haggis? (B)
Today's Distance: 69 mi/ 111 km
A full day to enjoy the Scottish capital. Morning sightseeing with a Local Guide introduces you to the 200-year-old "New Town," home to famous scientists, inventors, and novelists. In the "Old Town," visit Edinburgh Castle to admire Scotland's Crown Jewels. Afternoon at leisure. Later, a unique optional experience: board the former Royal Yacht Britannia. Tour five decks and see how the Royal Family and crew of 240 lived and worked on board. Dinner rounds out this optional evening. For departure number 0815 tickets are included for tonight's performance of the world-renowned Military Tattoo, a vast spectacle of massed Scottish pipe bands that takes place in an arena on the esplanade of Edinburgh Castle. (B)
A day of memorable sightseeing. Take the elegant Forth Road Bridge to St. Andrews, whose Royal and Ancient Golf Club has given us the rules of golfing, then cross the Firth of Tay and head into the Highlands, with a stop in the Victorian mountain resort of Pitlochry. Cross the battlefield of Culloden Moor with its memories of Bonnie Prince Charlie, then proceed to your Highland destination. (B,D)
Today's Distance: 225 mi/ 362 km
More spectacular Scottish scenery: Dornoch Firth, the Kyle of Sutherland, the Falls of Shin, the Mountains of Assynt, and Knockan Crag. Then, follow Strath Oykel for a visit to Ullapool, a remote fishing harbour on Loch Broom, before returning along Loch Glascarnoch. Our recommendation for this afternoon: join the optional Loch Ness Experience, which includes a cruise, followed by supper. (B)
Today's Distance: 123 mi/ 198 km
More heather-clad moors as you drive through the western Highlands to Lochalsh and the Inner Hebridean Isle of Skye. The route back to the mainland is by ferry across the Sound of Sleat to Mallaig. Pause at Glenfinnan to see the monument to fallen Jacobite clansmen and the famous viaduct well known to Harry Potter fans before reaching Fort William beneath Ben Nevis. Glen Coe, where the MacDonald Clan was massacred in 1692, and a drive along the "Bonnie Banks" of Loch Lomond are scenic highlights on the way back to Glasgow. (B,D)
Today's Distance: 234 mi/ 377 km
Your holiday ends with breakfast this morning. (B)