Edinburgh, Glasgow and the Highlands - 4 day tour
Edinburgh, Glasgow and the Highlands
4 day / 3 night tour
From central London, speed northwards to Edinburgh in just under 4.5 hours. On arrival, discover more of Scotland’s Capital City on a hop-on, hop-off bus tour. From your base in Edinburgh, enjoy a full-day excursion to Loch Ness and the beautiful Scottish Highlands. Bid farewell to Edinburgh at your leisure and head westwards to Glasgow. Enjoy discovering Scotland's largest city on a hop-on, hop-off tour before joining an express train back to London.
High-Speed Train - travel between London and Scotland in just under 4.5 hours
Edinburgh - jump on the hop-on, hop-off tour to see Edinburgh Castle, the Palace of Holyroodhouse and much, much more
The Highlands - discover the natural beauty of Rannoch Moor, Glen Coe and the Cairngorms National Park
Loch Ness - take a cruise across the dark and mysterious waters to visit Urquhart Castle
Glasgow - explore the stunning architecture of the city centre then visit World-class museums and art galleries
Movie locations - Rob Roy, Downton Abbey and World War Z
Hotel accommodation included
Full Tour Itinerary
Day 1 - London - Edinburgh - Edinburgh Castle
Welcome aboard! You’ll travel from London to Edinburgh by express train along the route of the famed Flying Scotsman.
This fascinating journey will take you through the Viking City of York and the University City of Durham.
Enjoy the panoramic views as you slip from England into Scotland at Berwick-upon-Tweed, then speed towards Edinburgh.
You’ll arrive in Edinburgh by late morning, and after checking into your hotel, the city of Edinburgh is waiting to be discovered.
Discover Edinburgh from a different perspective aboard your open-top double-deck bus. This tour allows you to hop on and off to visit many of the city’s attractions, including Edinburgh Castle.
During your visit, see the many attractions of this historic stronghold, including the Royal Palace, St Margaret’s Chapel, the oldest building in Edinburgh and the spectacular Scottish Crown Jewels, known as "The Honours of Scotland". The views from the battlements over the city are just stunning.
Later, catch a tour bus to see the Palace of Holyroodhouse and drive down the famous Royal Mile.
Why not seek out one of Edinburgh’s lively restaurants for dinner tonight? Afterwards, enjoy a nightcap in a local hostelry.
Visit our Scotland Travel Tips page for helpful planning information on your visit to Edinburgh.
Overnight: Motel One, Edinburgh or similar (2 nights)
Day 2 - Loch Ness and the Highlands Excursion
There’s a delightful journey into the Highlands of Scotland today.
From Edinburgh, we cross the Firth of Forth and tour through the ancient Kingdom of Fife.
On reaching Highland Perthshire, our first stop will be in the pleasant town of Pitlochry, which boasts a wide range of shops and eateries.
Next, we make our way through the Pass of Drumochter and enter the beautiful Cairngorms National Park, where the mountains soar skywards, and lovely loch-side vistas are savour.
The highlight of our tour is Loch Ness, probably Scotland’s most famous lake. The stats of this mysterious body are just epic. At 23 miles long and over 250 m (750 ft) in places, there’s plenty of room for a monster to hide. During our extended stop, why not take a monster-spotting cruise to improve your chances of coming face to face with Nessie?
From Fort William, which is overshadowed by Ben Nevis, Britain’s highest peak, it’s into eerie Glen Coe. We will hear the sad story of the infamous massacre in 1692 while marvelling at the outstanding beauty of this remarkable place.
Soon we cross from the Highlands into the Lowlands and join the motorway for the last part of our tour back to Edinburgh.
This excursion may operate in the reverse direction.
Day 3 - Edinburgh - Sightseeing - Glasgow
After a leisurely breakfast, spend more time discovering Edinburgh.
Take a tour to escape the hustle and bustle of city life at the Royal Botanical Gardens. In Leith, there’s the opportunity of visiting the former Royal Yacht Britannia before heading along the famous Royal Mile.
Alternatively, take a stroll through the stately Georgian New Town to see the grand squares, imposing monuments and impressive architecture that got Edinburgh its nickname of “The Athens of the North”.
If you’re a fan of Harry Potter, seek out some of the locations that were said to have influenced the global phenomenon. Make a visit to Greyfriars Kirkyard to see the grave of Thomas Riddell, the inspiration for arch-villain Thomas Riddle, Lord Voldemort. Later take a stroll up Victoria Street, where the brightly painted shops may have been the muse for Diagon Alley.
Head to Edinburgh Waverley Station to catch a train to Glasgow at your leisure. The journey time between Scotland’s two great cities is around 50 minutes.
After arriving at Glasgow’s Queen Street Station, head to your city-centre hotel. Tonight, why not head to the historic Merchant City or the “foodie-quarter” of Finnieston to enjoy top-quality cuisine at a friendly eatery?
Overnight: Jury’s Inn, Glasgow (or similar)
Day 4 - Glasgow Sightseeing - Free Time - London
Glasgow is one of Europe’s most exciting cities.
A city of striking architecture, heritage and culture and today, you can discover the city for yourself on an open-top bus tour. It’s the ideal way to experience Scotland’s largest city.
Follow the banks of the River Clyde to experience Old Glasgow, including the vibrant Merchant City and ancient Glasgow Cathedral.
Take time to seek out the hidden work of Charles Rennie Mackintosh, Glasgow’s famous architect, whose art nouveau gems can be seen throughout the city.
Later this afternoon, board your express train at Glasgow’s Central Railway Station for the journey back to London.
Frequently Asked Questions
What can I expect on this Freestyle Train Tour?
This carefully planned semi-independent tour will stretch your holiday time to the max without making you feeling rushed.
A unique combination of travel by train, comfortable accommodation and quality sightseeing will give you extra time to explore Scotland in greater detail.
All the documentation you need, including your rail tickets, will be emailed to you. They are in electronic format, so all you need to do is show them on your smart device. If you prefer, you can print your documents, so you have hard copies.
Any questions or if you need your documents early - just email or call us. We’re here to help.
On tour, you’ll travel independently by train to and from London. We’ll make sure you have a reserved seat, and we’ll send you a comprehensive itinerary so you know what’s planned day by day.
Accommodation is provided in comfortable 3-star hotels that are just a short walk from the railway station and convenient for sightseeing and the tour departure points.
A buffet breakfast is included in the cost of the tour.
The sightseeing tours included in this package are led by an experienced driver/guide who will provide an entertaining and informative commentary in English.
Tell me more about the optional Loch Ness Cruise?
Mount your very own Nessie adventure by taking a one hour cruise to explore the deep, dark and mysterious waters of Loch Ness.
The cruise boat is equipped with on-board sonar, comfortable seating inside and out as well as toilets.
Refreshments are available for purchase or you can bring packed food.
You can purchase a ticket from your driver/guide on the day of the tour and payment is in cash only.
How and when will I get my train tickets?
All your documentation will be emailed to you approximately 7 days before your tour starts. If you require your documentation earlier, just let us know, and we’ll do our best to accommodate your request.
All the vouchers and tickets will be in electronic format, so all you need to do is download them onto your smart device, and you’re good to go.
If you don’t have a smartphone or prefer hard copies, the documents we send are printer-friendly.
What meals are included?
A full Scottish breakfast is included from day 2 onwards. This hearty meal can consist of fruit juice; a choice of cereal; bakery basket; cooked items such as eggs, bacon, sausage, mushrooms, tomato and, maybe, a taste of haggis! plus tea or coffee.
Vegetarian and vegan options are always available.
Lunch and dinner are not included in the price.
During the touring day there will be a stop where you can enjoy lunch in a local pub or restaurant.
Can I cancel or alter this tour?
We are sorry but once booked it is not possible to cancel or change this tour without incurring 100% cancellation charges.
We strongly recommend that you have travel insurance coverage in place.
- 3 nights hotel accommodation - all rooms with private bathrooms
- Location: Edinburgh (2) and Glasgow (1)
- Scottish/Continental breakfast (3)
Visits, Admissions and Experiences
- Admission to Edinburgh Castle
- Hop-on, Hop-off tour of Edinburgh
- Full-day tour to Loch Ness and the Scottish Highlands
- Hop-on, Hop-off tour of Glasgow
- Standard class train tickets from London to Edinburgh, Edinburgh to Glasgow and Glasgow to London with seat reservations
- Customised tour itinerary
- Service charges and taxes
- Admission charges unless otherwise stated in the itinerary
- Meals, snacks or items of a personal nature
From Kings Cross Railway Station
London N1 9AL
Check-in: 06:30 hrs
Tour Departs: 07:00 hrs
Tour Returns: 21:24 hrs
Child discount applies to children aged 3 to 15 years inclusive.
We’re sorry but children aged under 3 years cannot travel on this tour.
Photo-ID may be requested to confirm discount entitlement.
IMPORTANT: Once booked this tour cannot be changed or cancelled
The price of this tour includes hotel accommodation with en-suite bathroom.
The times shown above are for guidance only. The train times for your journey will be shown on your tickets and itinerary.
Tour documentation including service vouchers and tickets are issued in electronic format. A smart device with an IOS or Android operating system is required.
To give you maximum flexibility, admission fees are not included in the cost of this tour (except Edinburgh Castle).
Please see the FAQ section for more information on this tour.
Blogs and Guides - discover insider tips and ideas
Customer Reviews Overall Rating:
Rating:(5 /5) 09 Sep 2023
Great 4 day tour to Edinburg, The Highlands, Loch Ness and Glasgow. Keep in mind that this tour is for folks who like to travel on trains with instructions and getting to your hotels from the trains with instructions. However, the instructions were incredibly easy to follow as every step of the way is planned out for you. Would recommend this tour company as one of the best that I have ever used. If you have any question or problem they answer you almost immediately. Incredible service from an incredible company.Patricia from Rockaway Park, US
Rating:(4 /5) 07 Aug 2023
The city of Edinburgh is beautiful and the Edinburgh Castle is incredible. Our hotel was walking distance to most everything. We did take a hop-on-hop-off bus which took us to the Castle and spent quite a bit of time there. The views of the city from there are beautiful. We had a wonderful tour guide to the Scottish Highlands. He was very informative, friendly and comical. We were concerned that we hadn't had our tickets for any excursions before we began traveling, but were able to pull them when we arrived at our hotel for wifi. All in all we both enjoyed our Scotland trip.Mary from White Bear Lake, US
Rating:(4 /5) 30 May 2023
Overall great trip. Would do it again.Daryl from ,