We plan to purchase our first smart phones before visiting Scotland in June. Are their providers you would recommend and/or any we should avoid? We'll mostly be in Edinburgh and the Highlands.
(The more I learn, the more excited I become in anticipation of this trip.)
How sad that this site is closing! The Scotland page has been so welcoming and helpful! Many thanks to all who've responded to my questions.
Hi. Has anyone used this for the rental car CDW insurance? In the fine print it says some won't accept it. That is the main reason I am buying travelers insurance. Thanks
Looking for ideas of day trips out of Oban (other than the islands). We won't have a car so will be depending on public transportation. Have an 11 year with us who likes castles, medieval history, and fiddle music.
My husband and I are planning a trip to Scotland in the month of June. As we will be traveling with our baby daughter, we're hoping to find an area to base ourselves for the month (or split our time between two home bases; a couple of weeks in each place). We will be renting a car from Glasgow and returning to Glasgow at the end of the month. We would like to see the Highlands (possibly the Isle of Skye) and castles. Any suggestions would be appreciated! Thanks!
Which is more scenic, driving along Loch Ness or the northerly route?
Which would likely take less time?
If I depart from either Edinburg or Glasgow and want to spend 5 days touring the best of the Scottish experience, what should be some of my must sees. I will be driving, and rather spend more time enjoying a site than rushing to get in as much as possible. A few castles, lochs, glens, small villages , and perhaps a view of the seacoast would be great. Any suggestions would be appreciated, thanks, Neil
Since walks and hikes are such an integral part of a Highlands trip this question has been bugging me. We'd like to stop off for a 3-4 hour walk in Glencoe between our B&B stops in Oban and Plockton however we'll have our bags with us. Oddly enough this is the only time that it will be a problem. I suppose that we could re-arrange our day trips however we'd be doubling back to see the area - not that it would be a hardship! Anyway, can any see a problem with leaving our worldly belongings in a road-side car park for a few hours? Thanks, Pete
We re planning to visit Scotland between christmas and new year and would like some advice please. Read that its best not to drive in Edinburgh so we re planning to rent a car after we visit there. We have only 6 days in total and would like to make the best of them. As to accomodation we would like to have a fixed base and we change only once. We prefere to stay in cottages.
Thanks a lot.
We are travelling to Scotland next month and I have just read there are lots of midges in the area where we will be staying for two or three days. Do you know any way of protecting oneself against them?
I think we will have a day trip tomorrow from Edinburgh to St. Andrews along the coast by train and bus, as per my travel question yesterday. Thanks for all the great answers. I am planning to follow Fergie's route via Dunfermline by train, then bus to st Andrews, stopping off at Anstruther and Crail.
Then two or three hours in St. Andrews, then train to Edinburgh.
How does that sound in terms of enjoyment and time feasibility? Happy to get back to Edinburgh about 8.30 or so.
Im in Edinburgh until Monday, and a friend had suggested that a day to East Neuk might be nice. I don't have a car so I was wondering what the best way to go about this by bus or train might be, or whether it is too problematic and I should leave it out.
I am traveling to Scotland in July. My friends and I were hoping to catch a sleeper bus/train from Edinburgh to London on July 2nd. Mega Bus Gold is booked that night and the trains don't seem to run overnight on Saturdays. Any other options I haven't found yet?
Hi! I am going to visit Scotland with a friend sometime this year. We wish to experience as much as possible (without blowing our budgets as we are both students) to do that we were thinking of renting a car. We plan on starting our trip in Edinburgh, driving through Glasgow and work our way up to Inverness before returning to Edinburgh The only problem is that we are 18 and 19 years old, and to rent a car from a company you have to be at least 21... Does anyone know of a way for us to rent a car at our age? We both have a license
Hi, I have an opportunity to take a side trip for 5-7 days while for business in London. Ideally it would include the highlights of Scotland, may be few really cool distilleries....single I will be traveling alone....any suggestion on a tour company or itineraries. Budget is reasonable. something between hostels and fancy hotels :)
Thanks in advance.
I am Rubén from Spain. I want to spend 10 days in Scotland visiting the Highlands and I want to hire a campervan for 2 people for all the trip. I have been searching and the cheapest option is a campervan from a company called "Wicked campervans" (45 gbp/day). On the other hand, I have been looking for comments and opinions for this company and I have seen that it is not too much recommended by people due to offensive slogans painted in the van and other kind of problems (fi bad maintenance, dirt...)
Has anybody experience with this company? Do you recommend others cheap hiring campervan companies?
Many thanks for your attention
In the midst of planning a trip to beautiful Scotland this summer. We want to visit Tulloch Ghru (spelling?) and do some hiking/walking in the area. Looking for walking routes of 1-2 days which will be filled with beautiful scenery and will be manageable for people in normal condition, but with no prior experience to long distances.
From what I gather Tulloch Ghru is close to Aviemore? But where exactly is it located? Can't find it on a map.
We are flying in from Gothenburg to Edinburgh and then planning on either renting a car or taking a bus/train from there. Any tips on other things to se on our way/in the area? Any "do not miss-places"?
Any suggestions are much appreciated! Thanks! :)
I will be travelling to Orkney, Kirkwall by the start of July and I would like to know if I would be able to see the Northern Lights. If I'll be able to what would be the best place to go to see them?
I'm feeling a bit stressed! Help! Here are my certainties: 6 nights in Edinburgh in early July. Then 9 nights car hire (not booked yet). Do not want a stressed holiday, would much rather spend a while in each place.
Is Oban a good place to stay in its own right?
Can we get to Islay from there with our car? And Mull? And how long for in each island?
I was thinking a night in Oban, two nights on Islay, back to Oban and then two nights on Mull.
Then from there to Pitlochry for two nights.
I really have no idea about island trips with a car, even though I feel like I have spent hours poring over the internet.
My other question is - I know it's school holidays - do we absolutely have to book everything in advance?
I've trying to get the rough outline of my trip done up so I can start booking some hotels, let me know if I'm missing something really wonderful. I'll have a few days in London and 1 1/2 days in Edinburgh, one of which I'm day tripping to Glasgow, before Mr. Dabs arrives and we pick up the car, end of August/early September. Big fan of Outlander as you regulars probably already know
Friday Killearn (Outlander), Roslyn chapel is a maybe, can spend the day near Loch Lomond, staying in Dumbarton (stayed here last year before the same swim)
Saturday swim Loch Lomond 10:30am, will have time to see something during the day, head back to Edinburgh for the Tattoo at 7:30pm, stay Edinburgh Park
Sunday Bamburgh castle, Alnwick castle (Downton Abbey), hotel????
Monday Hadrian’s Wall/Housesteads Roman Fort, need to go through the option of places to visit that you gave me on a previous post, hotel near/outside Glasgow?
Tuesday Loch Awe, Inverary Castle (have been to both, Mr. Dabs hasn't), stay in Oban?
Wednesday morning ferry to Mull if possible, stay on Mull, will have car
Thursday looking at boat tours to the Treshnish Isles, hotel Mull or Oban depending on timetables
Friday don't have anything for Friday yet, need to be reasonably close to Loch Ard for the swim at night
Saturday another swim Loch Ard, starts at 11:15, this is not booked yet and isn't essential
Scone Palace if we have enough time, hotel Pitlochry? Pitlochry is not a must but I thought it looked nice when we drove through on our way to Inverness last year
Sunday head back to Edinburgh, can see Scone on the way back, hotel booked in Edinburgh, fly home next morning
1) where to stay between Alnwick and Housesteads, would like to get closer to Housesteads so we can get going in the am
2) where to stay between Housesteads and Oban, I picked outside Glasgow so we weren't driving in the dark
3) where to stay on Mull? I'm guessing it will not be inexpensive which is why I'd be thinking about only one night on Mull
4) recommendations for wildlife boat trips from Mull to ??? I see that it's not puffin season but that there is the possibility of whales or seals. I've found a few to Treshnish
I had a look at Applecross and the rest of Skye and while I'd love to see all of it, I don't want to spend that much time in the car on this trip.
My sister and I have 6 nights in Edinburgh booked in early July (I know it's school holidays but it was the only time my sister could join me). In that time I guess we can visit some of the nearer places to Edinburgh by public transport.
Then we will hire a car which we will have for nine nights. We don't want to be constantly driving, so I thought about three stops to use as bases would be good. We would rather stop for a few nights in one place and explore from there. That's why I thought of three stops at three nights each.
My sister's only stipulation is that she sees Iona. I want to see highlands, scenery, walk, wildlife including sea birds. We are both interested in churches, castles etc.
I have been given some suggestions - stay in Oban, go over to Mull, Iona and Coll (question - would we take the car across and stay in Mull or stay in Oban and do day trips?
Then, go to Torridon and explore around there.
Then, go to Loch Rannoch.
Return to Edinburgh (perhaps in the morning of the last day).
Does that sound interesting and do able? I'm a bit desperate as I'm having to try to plan this in a bit of a hurry and I'm anxious about accommodation being booked up.
Other places that have been mentioned are Glencoe, Plockton to Skye, Cromarty, Inverness. Also East Neuks (but I think maybe we could go there on a day trip from Edinburgh?)
Personally, I have always wanted to go to the Orkneys, but I think it would be too rushed to try to do that? I could arrive in Scotland before my sister and go there by myself at a more leisurely pace...
I know that the gist of this question has been answered many times and I apologise for that! Any concrete advice on a route would be gratefully accepted!
We are thinking of taking another 2-week trip to Scotland this September. This year we want to hire a car again and see some places south of Edinburgh, then go west and visit an island or two, then on to Oban, Glen Coe and no further north than Ullapool as we had gone to the north last year, then back to Edinburgh, perhaps via Inverness and Pitlochry, which we missed last year. On our last year's trip we stayed on Skye and went up north to Durness and Tongue and back via Dundee and Fife so we don't want to repeat that. We'd rather not change places every day as we did last year but stay at B&B's, small guest houses or Travelodges for 2 or 3 nights at a time and make day trips from there. Can you suggest 4 or 5 places from which it will be easy to do sightseeing in the area? Which island (islands) would be best to visit? We like rocky scenery, interesting architecture and castles rather than beaches as we live close to beaches in Poland but we wouldn't mind watching some sea animals. Suggestions of inexpensive accommodation would be very welcome too. Thank you ever so much for your help.
My 14 yo daughter and I are driving around Scotland for the next two weeks. We'll be in Edinburgh on Tuesday May 3. Please suggest affordable places to eat and sleep. We're looking at hostels and Airbnb. We'll also being going to Inverness, The Highlands and Isle of Skye. Your suggestions for those places are welcomed as well. Thank you in advance.
Last year, my 23 year old daughter and I fell in love with Scotland. I had some great help from the travelers here on VT!
We have not stopped talking about it since. The friendly people, jaw dropping scenery, kilts, bagpipes, history, and yes, event the food -it is all so fantastic. We toured Glasgow very briefly (International Pipes Championship was legendary), Edinburgh Fringe, Military Tattoo, 1 day St. Andrews /Fife(with Rabbies, FANTASTIC), 1 day Glencoe/Inverary/Loch Lomond (with Rabbies, FANTASTIC!).
By the way - there was very little rain over 12 days! I had to buy sunglasses in Oban and one day, we got sunburned!
And now, I am so thrilled that we are returning! This year, we were fortunate enough to be accepted last minute to the Isle of Skye half marathon on June 11 - a fantastic excuse to GO BACK! I recently lost my job, so visiting Scotland will cheer me up greatly, I know. I am so happy just anticipating this trip, all smiles.
This year, we plan to focus mostly on the country/islands. I have the first few days planned out, as we have the marathon and needed to get set. But after that, we don’t know how to best use the time and then land back in Glasgow for departure on Sunday morning.
Noting that we will be in Skye for several days, what do you recommend for the next 6 days following? Also, should I rent a car after leaving Skye? I am a fantastic driver in USA and can even drive a stick. Is is scary to drive in Scotland? I am totally open to some guided touring if I could figure out (they all seem to leave from Glasgow/Edinburgh).
Your assistance is greatly appreciated, folks!
Goals: • Outlander sites
Castles (Tour and maybe stay in one?) • Whisky (Speyside touring?) and notably historic/fun PUBS • Gorgeous, stunning scenery • Quaint Inns • Tobermorry! • Incredible food including SEAFOOD (we are foodies) • Fun • Shopping • Possibly: Fly/Ferry to Northern Ireland/Dublin?
Current uncompleted agenda:
Day 1 : Destination :Fort William
Arrival Edinburgh 7:10 AM from USA
Edinburgh to Fort William train, departure 10:48 AM, arrival 4:30 pm
Overnight Fort William
Day 2: Destination: Isle of Skye
Depart Fort Wiliam on Jacobite Steam train to Mailleg, arrival 12:30 pm
Depart Mailleg to Armadale, Isle of Skye (TBD)
Armadale to Portree , Skye (Taxi?)
Overnight, Portree, Skye,
Day 3 Destination: Skye
Isle of Skye Half Marathon! 10 am-2 pm (ish)
Overnight, Portree, Skye
Day 4 Destination: Skye
Scheduled Tour , “SkyeBus” , Real Scottish Tours, 9 am – 7 pm
The rest…OPEN- Need advise from passionate travelers!
Day 5 Monday
Day 6 Tuesday
Day 7 Wednesday
Day 8 Thursday
Day 9 Friday
Day 10 Saturday
Day 11: Depart Glasgow 10:45 AM
Thanks to any and al who view this and can assist.
I'm meeting some old friends in Edinburgh for a weekend away soon and they are keen walkers. They're happy to spend an entire morning or afternoon walking. They're in their late 50s so still fit enough to handle an ascent up the likes of Arthurs Seat. But I'm sure they've been up there already so I'm looking for some alternatives around the city.
I'm in the very beginning stages of planning our next trip to Scotland, we enjoyed our trip so much last year that we've decided to do another. Last year's was a crazy amount of driving, we covered a large part of central Scotland and also made it as far north as Inverness/Loch Ness and spent a rather rushed day at Eilean Donan with a few hours on the Isle of Skye. I'm trying to make this one a little more relaxed, we would arrive early Friday and leave a little over a week later on Sunday so we will have 9 days including the day we arrive. Mr. Dabs is a competitive swimmer so I've found him a couple of races, the 1st is Loch Ard on the 1st Saturday morning, the 2nd is the Firth of Forth on the last morning (Sunday) if I can find a flight late enough to accommodate that.
Friday make our way from Edinburgh or Glasgow to Loch Ard, I haven't visited Glasgow at all on any of my trips and would like to on this trip
Saturday swim at Loch Ard in the morning, make our way to Oban
Sunday-Friday I think I'd like to head towards Mull, maybe spend a day or two there. I saw something about seals, dolphins and whales and that would be something I'd enjoy seeing. From there is what I'm not clear on. More time on Skye (we were there for just an afternoon after seeing Eilean Donan)? Keep heading north towards Applecross? Or maybe something entirely different.
Saturday make our way back to Edinburgh
Sunday swim Firth of Forth, send Mr. Dabs back home (which probably means we would fly in and out of Edinburgh since we'll have a car)
Things I didn't see last time that I'd like to try to see-Beauly Priory, Scone Castle, Cawdor Castle although none are essential. While I love castles and historic sites, we saw A LOT of those on the last trip and I'd like this one to be a bit more balanced between those and the more scenic/outdoor sites. We have visited Eilean Donan (amazing), Urquhart/Loch Ness, Culloden (very moving), Inverness (a little sleepy), Elgin, Fort George, drove through Glencoe, stopped at Glenfinnan to see the monument and the Harry Potter bridge so no need to repeat any of those. We drove up the A9 to Inverness last time but we didn't stop along the way except for petrol
Questions so far
1) transport from Oban to Mull, if we have a car, I assume we'll just keep it and take the car ferry, is it necessary to reserve it in advance?
2) companies that run trips to see wildlife on Mull?
3) the time we spent on Skye last year was from Eilean Donan to Portree and then the loop via Staffin. Is it worth returning to see the other loop towards Dunvegan? From Mull would be better off taking the ferry from Mallaig?
4) the diversion up to Applecross worth it? I thought I had seen it recommended when I was planning the last trip but it doesn't even show up in Frommers
5) If we drive back down the A9 from Inverness, any place to break up the journey this time? I know there was a place in the Cairngorms near Aviemore that was used to film part of Outlander (huge fan of the show) so that might be a possibility
That's it for right now, I'm sure I'll have more once I start to plot it out :-)
We are 4 senior citizens, (60-70 yr range) and this is our first trip to Scotland. We would like to see the Lowlands as well as the Highlands, and one Ise. Our itinerary: Glasgow- via Balloch to Oban- Fortwilliams ...and..??beyond??... Return by Stirling - Fife - Edinburgh. We have about 11 days give and take. Would appreciate answers to these
(1) Where to be our base
(2) What kind of accommodation, if we won't want to rent an apartment. Is B&B the only option?
(3) It seems a long way to drive to get to Inverness, so where would you suggest we go the furthest up northwards
(4) Haggis is something we would like to try, with some bagpipers...........which city has this "touristy" show that you would recommend?
We're 2 girls that are planning a trip through Scotland and we have a doubt. What's the best place for watching dolphins? Inverness or Isle of Skye?
We're going to visit both places and we don't know what's the best place for spending 2 nights.
My husband and I are traveling with our 11 and 6 year old boys to Scotland for 2 weeks in June and I need your help to put this trip together!
Aside from traveling days we'll have 16 full days in Scotland. We want to spend our first 3 days in Edinburgh and then we want to rent a car and spend the rest of our trip in the Highlands. I was thinking we could spend 2 nights in the Isle of Skye and for the rest of the trip I was hoping we could divide the time in two, one part in the western highlands and one on the eastern side. Could you recommend two good locations where we could rent houses or cottages to use as a base?
We are looking for rentals in very scenic and quaint places.
We want to be able to do daily drives to see beautiful scenery, wildlife, nature, villages, castles and just get a taste of life in the Highlands.
We'll try to go to the Highland games in Oban on June 26th.
Thanks for all comments and advise!
Hello! A friend and I wish to travel around 10 April from Montréal to Scotland (Glasgow or Edinburgh). We'd leave Scotland for London on 21 April --
(and carry on, eventually taking the Eurostar to Brussels. Fly from Brussels back to Montréal around 29 April.)
Neither of us know Scotland at all, my friend asked if I would look into basic planning (i.e., number of days in each place, daytrips to consider, etc.) We don't know yet whether we should arrive in Glasgow or Edinburgh, which one offers best flight deals from Montréal, etc. I spent hours last night looking at flights to Glasgow. It got confusing, mostly because I was too excited about the trip to do a proper search.
I'm starting to get my act together now & would be *very* grateful for advice and experience about "How to get there" from Montréal (direct or via London) -- in terms of practicality & cost.
The order of visit for either Glasgow or Edinburgh doesn't matter.
Also, we'll consider flying into London Heathrow or Gatwick, then heading for GLA or EDI by express train, hopefully from London airport (avoiding having to go into London town for a train, if possible.)
On 21 April, we plan to take the train (probably from Edinburgh) to London, accommodations for 4 days in London city centre, to allow for a couple of easy daytrips. (I'll be using "Britain from the Rails" guidebook, 2013 edition, for all train travel. It has great advice & many tips for all of Britain so won't get into that aspect of our trip here now.)
Thanks in advance for any advice you can share, especially about flights Montréal to Scotland, and return flights from Brussels to Montréal. This one, by the way, could well be a return from Amsterdam to Montréal, if it means more frequent flights and lower prices. I personally might not even go to Brussels, other than to meet my friend on last day, for the flight home. :-)
Thank you for time. I am a bit concerned I haven't left enough time for Aviemore region, but don't know what I can do about it? I know we can't see everything in 2weeks. We spent a week in Scotland straight out of Uni and loved it (even in deepths of winter) However, we realised that you'd need months to see it's gems. Unfortunately, time and money will not allow such luxuries. Below is our itinerary so far... any insights would be appreciated.
Arrive 24th August 2016 8am Heathrow Airport. Pick up car drive to Epping?? Train into London.
Spend day in London for our kids. Palace, Park, Westminster Abbey. Train back to Epping in PM. Stay??
25th- August- Quick look around Cambridge drive to York. Stay York Booked
26th August-Leave York. Drive through Durham to Peebles.(lots of little stops.)
27th Drive to Pentlandhills (2hrs to wander) drive to Falkirk and Blackness Castle. Stay?(Do we squeeze in Bannockburn?)
28, 29th Edinburgh- Accom Booked
30th Drive to Perth, then explore Crieff, Dunkeld, hike Hermitage.etc Stay Pitlockry?
1st of September-Pass of Killiecrankie & Queen’s view, Kinloch Rannoch. Stay Pitlochry again.
2nd of September-Drive through Braemar, Ballater, Grantown spey, Stay Nethy Bridge.
3rd of September- Aviemore, Tulloch Ghru, Cairn Gorm Mountain, Newtonmore Highland Folk Museum.(TOO MUCH?) Stay Nethy Bridge again.
4th of September- Drive to Inverness, Urghart Castle, Glen Affric. Stay Inverness.
5th September- Culloden in morning. Drive nth through Lairg, Durness, follow coat south to Stay Ullapool.
6th-8th September on The Outerhebrides-Lewis
9th of September- Ferry back to mainland arrive 4.30pm. Drive coast to Applecross. Arrive is sunset.
10th September-Look around Applecross. Drive to Strome Castle, Plockton, Eilean Donan Castle, Glenfinnan viaduct. Stay Kinlochleven.
11th of September- Glencoe. Stay Kinlochleven again.
12th-Drive through Loch Lomond to Stirling. See Bannockburn? (If haven’t). Stay Stirling.