Edinburgh, Loch Ness and the Highlands - 3 day tour
Edinburgh, Loch Ness and the Highlands
3 day / 2 night tour
From London speed northwards by train to Edinburgh. Check-in to a city centre hotel for a two night stay then enjoy exploring the historic Royal Mile and Edinburgh Castle. Experience a full day excursion through the picturesque Scottish Highlands to visit Loch Ness. On the last day explore more of Edinburgh on an open-top bus tour before returning to London by train.
Price range: £415 - £645
High Speed Train - travel from London to Edinburgh in just under 4.5 hours
Edinburgh Castle - enjoy a guided tour and see the Scottish Crown Jewels
The Highlands - marvel at the natural beauty of Rannoch Moor, Glen Coe and the Cairngorm National Park
Loch Ness - explore the impressive ruins of Urquhart castle and enjoy a short monster-spotting cruise on Loch Ness
Edinburgh Tour - discover the Georgian New Town and the cobbled streets of the medieval Old Town
Move locations - Brave, Skyfall and Deacon Brodie
Hotel accommodation included
Full Tour Itinerary
Day 1 - London - Edinburgh - Edinburgh Castle
After a swift journey by high speed train from London to Edinburgh settle in to your city-centre hotel for your two-night stay in Scotland.
This afternoon discover the history and architecture of Edinburgh’s medieval Royal Mile. For centuries this famous thoroughfare was the hub of life in Edinburgh. A gentle stroll along any part of this historic street will take you in the footsteps of Robert Burns, Sir Walter Scott and a host of colourful Scottish characters.
The highlight is a visit to Edinburgh Castle which sits on a crag and provides a striking backdrop to Edinburgh’s skyline. Join a guided tour led by one of the castles warders to hear dramatic tales of siege, warfare, dark deeds and intrigue! On your tour you’ll see the Scottish Crown Jewels, Mons Meg (a giant cannon) and St Margaret’s Chapel, the oldest building in Edinburgh. There are also spectacular views of Edinburgh to enjoy from the battlements. A short stroll from the castle you'll find the popular Scotch Whisky Experience which tells the story of Scotland's national drink.
Edinburgh has lots of quality restaurants to choose from with many specialising in Scottish fish and seafood. Look out for popular "pre-theatre” menus where you can enjoy good food at great savings, if you eat early. There will be plenty of choices available, just a short walk from your hotel.
Overnight: Edinburgh (2 nights)
Day 2 - Loch Ness and the Highlands Excursion
The Loch Ness Monster - fact or fiction? We’ll find out on this splendid tour through the glorious Scottish Highlands. From Edinburgh our journey northwards starts with a drive to Stirling, with it’s dramatically sited castle overlooking the surrounding countryside. Through Rob Roy Macgregor Country to haunting Glen Coe, the "Glen of Weeping”, where in 1692 forty of the resident MacDonald clan were massacred in cold blood by the Campbells for not foreswearing the Jacobite cause. They say you can still hear their cries!
We’ll spend time at Loch Ness, where you can enjoy a cruise on the loch and a visit ancient Urquhart Castle or you can simply enjoy a relaxing break. We’ll return to Edinburgh by early evening after a wonderful day of discovery and maybe, just maybe………..
Day 3 - Edinburgh Sightseeing Tour - Free time - London
Today enjoy an open-top bus tour of Edinburgh to explore the city at your own pace. You can hop-off to visit the places that interest you then catch the next bus to continue your tour.
You'll discover the New Town with its grand squares and sweeping crescents that feature some of the finest Georgian architecture in Europe. There are dark tales to be told of executions and two of Edinburgh’s most infamous citizens, Burke and Hare, as you tour through the Grassmarket. Hear the tale of Greyfriar’s Bobby and see the statue of the little Skye terrier after touring the new Quartermile area. At the foot of the Royal Mile sits the iconic Scottish Parliament building and the Palace of Holyroodhouse, HM The Queen’s official residence in Scotland. Finally there are wonderful views of Arthurs Seat and Holyrood Park to enjoy as we make our way back to the city centre.
If you fancy some retail therapy you’ll find the designer label shopping aplenty in fashionable George Street whilst grand Princes Street provides world-class shops and department stores including Jenners, Edinburgh’s very own version of Harrods! If you’re looking for antiques or quirky souvenirs try friendly Stockbridge or Victoria Street, just off the Royal Mile. Visit our Scotland Travel Tips page for helpful planning information.
All too soon it’s time to head to Waverley Station to board your comfortable train for the return journey to London. Haste ye back!
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. Just print these out and you are good to go. Any questions or if you need your documents early - just email or call us, we’re here to help. On the 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 happening at any time during your tour, as well as helpful city guides for you to download to your smart-device. Accommodation in Edinburgh and Glasgow is provided in comfortable 3-star hotels that are just a short walk from the railway station and are convenient for sightseeing and the tour departure points. A buffet breakfast is included in the cost of the tour. The sightseeing tours that are included as part of this package are led by experienced driver/guides who will provide an entertaining and informative commentary in English.
How will I find my hotel?
This Freestyle Train Tour has been very carefully planned. Your hotel has been selected not just for its comfort but also for its location close to the railway station as well as your sightseeing requirements. Concise directions on how to reach your hotel will be given in your customised tour itinerary.
Tell me more about the optional visit to Urquhart Castle and Loch Ness Cruise?
You can maximise your time at Loch Ness by purchasing the optional Urquhart Castle and Loch Ness Cruise combination ticket.
The cost of the ticket is £19 per adult and £15 per child.
Visit hauntingly beautiful Urquhart Castle, once one of Scotland’s largest castles. The castle boasts a commanding presence overlooking the loch. After time to explore the castle and admire the views take to the water for a cruise on 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 this combination ticket from your driver/guide on the day of the tour and payment is in cash only. For operational reasons it’s not possible to purchase the cruise or admission to Urquhart Castle separately.
What happens if I miss my train?
The tickets that are issued as part of this package are only valid on the train service shown on the ticket and in your itinerary. If you miss the train you will need to purchase new tickets at your own expense. We recommend arriving at London and Inverness Stations at least 30 minutes prior to the scheduled departure time of your train so that you have time to locate the departure platform.
How and when will I get my train tickets?
All your documentation will be emailed to you approximately 7 days prior to your tour commencing . It is important that you print these documents and bring them with you on the tour as you will need to exchange the vouchers to access the various services that make up this package.
- 2 nights hotel accommodation
- Location: Edinburgh (2)
- Scottish/Continental breakfast (2)
Visits, Admissions and Experiences
- Admission to Edinburgh Castle
- Full day tour to Loch Ness and the Highlands
- Hop-on, Hop-off tour of Edinburgh
- Return standard class train tickets between London and Edinburgh with seat reservations
- Customised tour itinerary & Official Edinburgh Guide
- Service charges and taxes
- Admission charges unless stated above
- Meals, snacks or items of a personal nature
- Gratuity to your driver/guide
From Kings Cross Railway Station
London N1 9AL
Check-in: 06:30 hrs
Tour Departs: 07:00 hrs
Tour Returns: 20:55 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.
Please see the FAQ section for more information on this tour.
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Customer Reviews Overall Rating:
Rating:06 Nov 2019
The guide was intended fun. He made the trip great. Very knowledgeable on Scotland historyNicole from New Beith, AU
Rating:07 Oct 2019
This is an Independent trip. Everything is done before hand for you!! David - my tour manager was extremely helpful, and he made me aware of everything i needed to know for the trip.SUMERA from Slough, GB
Rating:14 Sep 2019
The tour was good but was not able to get assistance in making a change in travel back to London. Once you are there you appear to be on your own.Catherine from Alexandria, US