classic tours of Scotland

your own guided tour of the Scottish Highlands, the Isle of Skye, Stirling and St. Andrews

Neist Point Skye - Classic Tour Scotland

Day One: Leave Edinburgh at 8.30am for Stirling and the West Highlands; plenty of opportunities for sightseeing on this private tour and first off we visit the Old Town of Stirling with its castle and Renaissance palace, and the Holy Rude Church; view Stirling Bridge and the Wallace Monument. We recount the big Scottish stories, drawing on history and legend, from Braveheart to Bannockburn, and have a closer look at how these have had an impact on the Scots and on people outside Scotland. View Doune Castle, a film location for 'Monty Python's Holy Grail'. Along the old drovers route of Glen Dochart, and through the country of Rob Roy, we take a light lunch at the ethically aware The Real Food Cafe.

Skyfall Tour, Classic Scotland

Journey across Rannoch Moor and by Glen Etive, a location for the 2012 Bond movie, Skyfall, to Glen Coe (Harry Potter, Monty Python...) to view its epic splendour and hear some well-known and lesser-known tales, stay for the evening at the hideaway Pierhouse Hotel and Restaurant in Port Appin with its fine fresh seafood (including shellfish such as lobster and scallops) or via the Glenfinnan Viaduct (commonly known these days as the "Harry Potter Bridge") to the country house comforts of Arisaig House with its family atmosphere and wonderful locally grown and sourced food.

Skye - Tour, Portree

Day Two: After awaking to the sound of the sea, and a delicious home-cooked breakfast, saunter along the Road to the Isles to Mallaig to take the ferry to the magical Isle of Skye, travel in the shadow of giants by experiencing the Tolkeinesque landscapes of the Red and Black Cuillin Mountains, walk to an Iron Age Broch (fort), tread lightly at the wonderful and enigmatic Fairy Glen (option of walk up into Castle Ewen), take in the Quirang (part of the Trotternish landslip), Kilt Rock and the Old Man of Storr; this is a day of breathtaking scenery, reading the land, and hearing a local story or two; night in Portree at Viewfield House.or Ben Tianavaig B&B.

Classic Tour - Tales with a local fisherman on Loch Ness

Day Three: Visit Eilean Donan Castle, a great Edwardian reconstruction of a medieval castle, along Glen Moriston and by Roderick Mackenzie''s grave, visit Loch Ness and its kaleidoscope of theories and stories, option of going out onto Loch Ness for the folklore, history, geology and the special tranquility at the centre of this loch, lunch stop at the crafty Pottery Bunkhouse with its unmissable tartan scones, views of Blair Castle (a great fund of family lore and treasure in an ancient family home), stay at the small highland resort town of Pitlochry at: Wellwood House or Poplars Guest House.

Day Four: visit the tiny 'city' of Dunkeld with its ancient cathedral, a place of spiritual significance and a centre of Christianity for over a thousand years, its' carefully restored early 18th century village centre with water wynds, fountain and Ell measure, across Thomas Telford's Bridge over the River Tay to Birnam (of Shakespeare's Macbeth) and Beatrix Potter Garden, over the Tay Bridge to St. Andrews, home of golf, Scotland's oldest university, castle and cathedral, beaches, and fine old town with medieval street plan, beautiful houses, cafes and restaurants. Back to Edinburgh for early evening. See the map below.

This tour can also be built around bagpipe playing in Portree (Tuesday in summer). The tour can be taken with accommodation and stops serving vegetarian food. This tour can be customised for instance by adding on a tour from London to Scotland.

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Scotland tour at its best

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Highland cattle on the road at Duirnish by Plockton