A Scottish Journey
9 day / 8 night tour
This superb small group tour gives you the opportunity of experiencing many of Scotland’s best loved sights. Spend time on Royal Deeside then visit Cawdor Castle and Culloden Moor. Explore three Hebridean Islands - Skye, Mull and Iona. Discover the quaint fishing villages of the East Neuk of Fife and spend time in St Andrews. For foodie’s there is even a delightful seafood lunch served in the idyllic surroundings of Kyle of Lochalsh. If you want to escape from the crowds this is the tour for you.
Price range: £2,399 - £3,559
Small Group Tour - travel in an intimate group of just 16 or 18 passengers
Crathes Castle - visit this fairy-tale castle famed for its spectacular gardens
Skye - see the dramatic Cuillin Mountains and the Jurassic scenery of Trotternish
Mull - tour through this scenic island and stay in the picture-postcard town of Tobermory
Iona - explore this island wilderness to discover the legend of St Columba
Movie locations – Bloodied, BFG and Local Hero
Hotel accommodation included
Full Tour Itinerary
Day 1 - Edinburgh - St Andrews - Ballater
We travel to the picturesque fishing villages of the East Neuk region, such as Pittenweem, which is home to brightly-hulled fishing boats and a jumble of red painted and grey slated houses. We continue to St Andrews, known as the home of golf and where Prince William met Catherine ‘Kate’ Middleton while studying at St Andrews University, Scotland's oldest. The medieval centre, with its narrow alleys and cobbled streets, leads to the now ruined St Andrews Cathedral and the adjacent church of St Regulus. Later we travel north towards the picturesque Victorian village of Ballater to stay one night. On arrival we enjoy a welcome dinner.
The Loch Kinord Hotel (or similar) (2 nights)
Day 2 - Royal Deeside Excursion
A wonderful excursion today as we travel through Royal Deeside to visit impressive Crathes Castle, complete with its round towers and overhanging turrets. During your tour discover the intriguing history of the castle and take an enjoyable stroll through the famous gardens.
Later we’ll have a traditional bagpiper welcome when we visit an Aberdeenshire Highland Beef farm. Say hello to the herd of traditional Highland Cattle and enjoy a delicious home-cooked beef tasting lunch.
Day 3 - Royal Deeside - Culloden Moor - Inverness
We travel through the natural beauty of the Cairngorms National Park to reach evocative Culloden Moor where a trip to the visitor centre gives us an insight into the bloody battle that took place here between the Jacobite army of Bonnie Prince Charlie and the British army under the command of the Duke of Cumberland on a fateful day in April, 1746.
Our hotel for the next two nights is in the heart of the "Highland Capital" of Inverness.
Overnight: Kingsmills Hotel, Inverness (or similar) (2 nights)
Day 4 - Exploring Inverness
After having had a busy start to the week it’s time to relax in our new Highland surroundings. Enjoy a guided walking tour this morning then explore Inverness on your own. You could stroll through the Old Town and shop in the Victorian Market, take in the views from Inverness Castle, or follow the river, listening for the tell-tale splash of leaping salmon. A popular visit is to Fraser’s Highland House to discover the history of tartan through the centuries.
Day 5 - Inverness - Loch Ness - Isle of Skye
We travel through the picturesque scenery of the Scottish Highlands to reach Plockton, a charming little village comprised of neatly painted cottages and a tiny harbour. A real highlight is our seafood lunch in Kyle of Lochalsh, before we drive across the bridge to the Sligachan Hotel on the stunning Isle of Skye, our base for the next two nights.
Overnight: Sligachan Hotel (or similar) (2 nights)
Day 6 - Isle of Skye Excursion
Today is devoted to the Isle of Skye, renowned for its incredible scenery, geology, wildlife and history. The north of the island delivers scenery on a grand scale and today we see examples of Skye’s most startling geological features including the extraordinary Quiraing, famous Kilt Rock and the spectacular Old Man of Storr.
Day 7 - Isle of Skye - Fort William - Tobermory (Isle of Mull)
Returning to the mainland we travel through remote Moidart before catching the ferry to the Isle of Mull, the second largest island of the Inner Hebrides. Our base for the next two nights is in the delightful town of Tobermory. Tonight the evening is yours to spend as you please.
Overnight: Western Isles Hotel, Tobermory (or similar) (2 nights)
Day 8 - Isle of Mull & Isle of Iona Excursion
Today is dedicated to exploring the isles of Mull & Iona. We first visit 13th century Duart Castle. The oldest inhabited castle on Mull, Duart Castle is dramatically perched on a cliff overlooking the rugged coast. Walk through the dungeons and staterooms or explore its extensive grounds.
Next we travel to the charming village of Fionnphort, which means 'Port of the White Sands' in Gaelic. Home to just 100 people it is famed worldwide for its unique red granite which is quarried just north of the village. We take the ferry from here to Iona, a tiny island steeped in history and renowned for its natural beauty and serenity. After visiting Iona Abbey and Nunnery, we return to Mull and our hotel where we enjoy a farewell dinner together.
Day 9 - Tobermory - Stirling - Edinburgh
After returning by ferry to the Scottish mainland, we travel to Stirling, known as the heritage capital of Scotland. This is where the Wars of Independence were fought and won and three centuries of monarchs ruled. Here we wander through the Old Town and enter spectacular Stirling Castle, one of the largest and most important Scottish castles, both historically and architecturally, in Scotland. It was here that Mary, Queen of Scots was crowned Queen aged just 9 months old. As we make our way towards Edinburgh we’ll pass the impressive Kelpies horse head statues. On returning to Edinburgh our tour ends.
Frequently Asked Questions
What can I expect on this Premium Small Group Tour?
Many of our customers choose a small group tour for a more intimate and flexible travelling experience. Comprising of no more than 18 passengers these tours are carefully planned to travel off the highways so you’ll discover quaint villages and picturesque vistas that other tours just drive on by. All the small group tours that we feature are operated by purpose built luxury minicoaches that feature air-conditioning, panoramic windows and comfortable seating. Each group is led by an experienced driver/guide who will entertain and inform you with stories of our history, nature and folklore. Admission fees to the key attractions are included in the price of your tour. You will also enjoy local experiences such as cooking demonstrations or a freshly caught seafood lunch. It’s the little details that set these superb tours apart. Comfortable accommodation has been arranged in carefully selected small hotels, manor houses and inns. Carefully chosen for their quality and ambiance they provide an authentic experience yet boast modern amenities. You will find they add real character to your touring experience. A tasty breakfast will get each touring day off to a delicious start. Many dinners are included too so you can join your new found friends for a delicious meal carefully prepared using local ingredients - it’s a great way to end your day of discovery!!
What type of room should I choose?
There are different bedrooms types to choose from, here is what you can expect: Single room - one person sleeping in a single bed. Twin room - two people sleeping in two separate beds. Double room - two people sharing one large bed. Family room - three people sharing a room sleeping in one large bed (2 people) and one single bed (1 person). Please note that a family room can be a standard double room with either a sofa bed or a rollaway bed.
Will there be a tour commentary?
Each tour is led by an experienced driver/guide who will provide an informative and entertaining commentary in English. You’ll hear tales of the Clans, bloody battles and the famous characters that have shaped the history of Scotland. You will learn too of the landscape that surrounds you and of the nature that makes Scotland so special. Be ready to have a laugh as well - you’re bound to be told some really corny jokes!
How many people will be on the tour?
The average number of travellers on a Small Group Tour is 16.
Can I reserve specific seats on the coach?
Seats cannot be pre-booked however your driver/guide will normally implement a seat rotation system which will allow all passengers the opportunity of experiencing spectacular views from different seats on the minicoach.
- 8 nights hotel accommodation
- Location: Ballater (2); Inverness (2); Isle of Skye (2) and Tobermory, Isle of Mull (2)
- Scottish/Continental breakfast (8)
- Table d’hôte dinners (4)
- Seafood lunch at Kyle of Lochalsh
- Heritage Aberdeenshire beef tasting lunch at Royal Deeside
Visits, Admissions and Experiences
- Admission to Crathes Castle, Culloden Visitor Centre, Iona Abbey, Duart Castle and Stirling Castle.
- Touring by luxury air-conditioned minicoach
- Ferry to the Isle of Mull
- Ferry to the Isle of Iona
- Live commentary in English
- Services of an experienced driver/guide
- Service charges and taxes
- Admission charges unless otherwise stated above
- Meals, snacks or items of a personal nature
- Gratuity to your driver/guide
Please check your tour documention for the commencement time of the tour
From The Principal Edinburgh Hotel
19-21 George Street
Edinburgh EH2 2PB
Check-in: 08.15 hrs
Tour Departs: 08.30 hrs
Tour Returns: 17:30 hrs
Children aged 12 years and older can be considered for travel on this tour.
The price of this tour includes hotel accommodation with en-suite bathroom.
Please see the FAQ section for more information on this tour.