Edinburgh and The Highlands of Scotland
Explore the splendour of Scotland on our exclusive guided tour. Take the stress out of travelling and experience the rich heritage and stunning scenery of the Scottish Highlands on our escorted tour.
"I wanted to let you know that our trip was one for the ages. We had more fun than I could have imagined."– Herb Bennett
Feast upon the rich heritage and magnificent landscape of the Scottish Highlands under the expert care of our tour guides on our exclusive deluxe tour. Travelling in a small intimate group this is an unforgettable trip of Scottish treasures from the cultural hub of Edinburgh to the natural splendour of Cairngorm National Park, the wild rugged beauty of Ullapool, the bewitching Isle of Skye and the iconic Eilean Donan Castle.
To customize this itinerary, talk to one of our destination experts on 800.832.1848 or 212.757.5797.
- Arrive in Edinburgh City
- Visit Edinburgh Castle, The Royal Mile, & Holyrood Palace
- Take a hop on, hop off bus tour of Edinburgh
- Enjoy an exclusive escorted five day tour of The Highlands
- Visit Cairngorm National Park and Loch Ness
- Explore the northern wilderness of Assynt and the 15th century ruins of Ardvreck Castle
- Discover the beautiful Isle of Skye
- Visit the iconic Eilean Donan Castle, the majestic Ben Nevis and the wilderness of Glencoe
- Return to Edinburgh
Included in This Tour
- Private Transfers on arrival & departure days between Edinburgh Airport and your hotel.
- 9-nights hotel accommodations with private en suite facilities.
- 5-days touring on Deluxe Coach with a professional Driver Guide – with no more than 16 passengers on board!
- Accommodation taxes & service charges.
- Deluxe portfolio of travel documents before departure with touring map of Scotland.
- List of recommended pubs, restaurants, & places of interest.
- Services of our offices and Concierge Service while traveling
- Arrive: Edinburgh (EDI)
- Depart: Edinburgh (EDI)
Take the hassle out of booking flights. Ask about our best available Economy Fares as well as our Preferred Business and First Class Offers. Our air department experts can help with competitive rates. Just let us know your preferred dates and U.S. Departure City. We will do the rest.
- Breakfast Daily
Depart US on your overnight flight to Edinburgh, Scotland.
Arriving in Edinburgh Airport, enjoy a private transfer to the heart of Edinburgh city where you will stay 2 nights at the Bonham Hotel. The celebrated Scottish writer Robert Louis Stevenson wrote in the nineteenth century, “Edinburgh is what Paris ought to be.” It is still a majestic city memorable for the grace and beauty of the neo-classical Georgian New Town and the unique medieval street layout of Old Town. Dominating the skyline, and perched on Castle Rock, is Edinburgh Castle. Settle into your new surroundings and enjoy a leisurely walk through this culturally rich city.
During your time in Edinburgh today, visit Edinburgh Castle, the Scottish Crown Jewels and The Stone of Destiny. Afterwards, you can follow the Royal Mile on foot to explore various quirky shops, pubs, restaurants and narrow closes steeped in history. We recommend dinner at ‘The Witchery’ by Edinburgh Castle this evening.
After breakfast, you will join your 5-day deluxe coach tour of the Highlands. This award winning tour features a deluxe coach with no more than 16 passengers, and a professional Driver Guide thus ensuring you explore all the hidden treasures Scotland has to offer!
Your tour first takes you north to Dunkeld, on the banks of the River Tay, before spending the afternoon among the grandeur of Cairngorm National Park and its ancient pine forests. Moving onwards your tour will follow the back roads overlooking mysterious Loch Ness before staying in scenic Ullapool*. Your base for the next 2-nights is the Caledonian Hotel. (*some tours may stay in Inverness instead of Ullapool during particularly busy times of the year when Ullapool’s accommodation is scarce.)
Today takes you to the far northern wilderness of Assynt with its contrasting landscape of cliffs, rocky inlets and unspoiled beaches. The day is rich with stunning scenery from the pure white sand beach at Achmelvich Bay to the traditional fishing village of Lochinver, and the 15th century ruins of Ardvreck Castle. An unforgettable day with the possibilities of sighting whales in the sea or red deer on the open moorlands.
Today your tour takes you south to Corrieshalloch Gorge, west to the dramatic nature reserve of Torridon, and along the wild coastline to the remote community of Applecross. We will travel along Britain’s highest road to the “tropical” palm tree lined village of Plockton. Then it’s over the sea to the legendary Isle of Skye, where you’ll stay 2 nights in the Bosville Hotel, located in the picturesque harbor town of Portree.
Today is a flexible day to explore the Isle of Skye. There are many options depending on the weather. Your driver/guide’s knowledge will help plan the best day out for you. Options include: the wild north of the island, the Old Man of Storr, the mountain pass of the Quiraing, Skye’s most westerly point at Neist or the Talisker Whisky Distillery. Return to your accommodation in Portree in the late afternoon so you can enjoy a free evening in the village.
Today returns you to the mainland. You will visit Eilean Donan Castle – the set of “Highlander” – before travelling through the rugged scenery of the Five Sisters of Kintail and Ben Nevis. Your afternoon highlight will be the wilderness of Glencoe before returning to Edinburgh. Enjoy a 2-night stay in the Bonham Hotel in Edinburgh City.
After a leisurely breakfast, perhaps you would like to jump aboard one of the open-top tour buses where the excellent on-board guides provide entertaining and knowledgeable commentaries on this historic city. The buses will allow you to jump on and off at your leisure to visit attractions like the Palace of Holyroodhouse, the Edinburgh Dungeon and the Scottish Parliment while providing a great overview of the city.
After breakfast, enjoy your private transfer to Edinburgh Airport to prepare for your return flight home to the United States.
Channings Hotel, Edinburgh, Scotland
Channings is an informal and relaxed 4 star deluxe hotel with a very friendly approach to service. In keeping with its location just slightly away from Edinburgh city Centre, Channings is a wonderfully quirky property which feels like a Scottish country house, full of charming Victorian paintings, prints, books, furniture and memorabilia.
The Bosville Hotel, Portree, Scotland
Situated in the heart of Portree, capital of the Isle of Skye, above the harbour, this quality 4 Star Hotel offers lovely accommodation and first class Highland customer service. They have an unrivalled reputation for superb, award winning cuisine created using the freshest of local produce from the Isle of Skye and the Highlands of Scotland. The Hotel is centrally located providing the ideal position for exploring local bars, shops, boat trips, walks and visitor attractions.
The Royal Hotel, Ulapool, Scotland
The Royal Hotel will delight the most discerning of guests and offers 55 rooms, half of which boast breath taking views over Loch Broom and the rugged mountain landscapes beyond. Having undergone complete renovation, The Royal Hotel is the definitive venue for a relaxing stay to completely chill out from hectic city life, or, for the more adventurous, an oasis of comfort and calm to unwind after a hard day walking or climbing in the beautiful Scottish mountains, or braving the elements around the rugged sea lochs. The Royal Hotel's owners proudly present the hotel as a matchless and precious jewel of the Highlands, uniquely situated to offer the perfect combination of comfort, and a stunning seaside location.
Travel Tips & FAQs
Passports & Visas
To enter Scotland (Great Britain), you need a valid passport. Citizens of the EEA member states (the 27 countries of the European Union EU, together with Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein) and many other countries including USA, Australia, Canada and New Zealand do not require visas to gain entry to Scotland.
If only one parent is traveling with a child under 17 year of age and that child’s last name differs from the parent, a signed notarised letter from the parent with the same last name as the child’s authorizing permission to allow that child to travel.
For more passport information contact the U.S. Department of State (877/487–2778).
What to Pack
Bring a sweater, even in summer; waterproofs to accompany all outdoor activities; sunglasses; comfortable walking shoes and an umbrella. The weather is changeable so go for layers that you can put on or take off as the temperature changes. And if you are planing to do a lot of walking, comfortable walking shoes. Travel light and save yourself the burden of handling large and heavy luggage. In Scotland wearing casual clothes is acceptable with less emphasis on formal dress codes.
The climate in Scotland is moderate with rarely extremes in temperature.
January and February are the coldest months with an average temperature of 42.8°F.
July and August are the warmest months with an average temperature of 66.2°F.
There are variations from region to region. for example the Western Highlands experience some of the wettest weather in Europe due to the prevailing wind coming in from the Atlantic. In contrast, the Eastern part of Scotland has far less rainfall.
In Scotland the official currency is the pound sterling(£). One pound sterling consists of 100 pence.
Gratuities and tips are lower in Scotland than in the United States and some restaurants include these as a service charge on the bill. When tipping in restaurants you should pay 10 to 15 % and similarly with taxis, hairdressers and barbers.
Police, Fire, Ambulance: Telephone: 999
24 hour medical treatment is available in UK hospitals under the National Health service and you should expect to be billed but it is nowhere as expensive as it is in the United States.
The electrical current in Great Britain is 220–240 volts and the plugs are three-pronged. Adapters are widely available and it is a good idea to bring a couple for your various gadgets.
Traveline provides information on all public transportation in Scotland including timetables.
Most stations and bus terminals in Scotland will accept credit and debit cards for payment of tickets and other services.
The train service in Scotland is efficient, clean and comfortable with long distance journeys including buffet and refreshment cars. First Class, as well as standard class coaches are available on most scheduled services, with wider seats. Fares are much higher in First Class but on weekends you can upgrade for as little as £10 in some cases. Reserving tickets in advance is recommended.
Save online with The Trainline.
Travelling by Taxi
You can hail the typical black hackney taxis, like those in London on the street or book by phone with an additional 80p charge. Private taxi hire is with regular cars but all taxis must display the taxi license and a driver ID and are metered. Metering starts at £2 with increased intervals charged at 25p.
Scotland functions on Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). During the summer it becomes GMT+1. For example, New York is Greenwich Mean Time -5 hours & Los Angeles is Greenwich Mean Time -8 hours.
English is commonly used throughout Scotland but in parts of the Outer Hebrides and Scottish Highlands Scots Gaelic may be spoken. Expect to see signposting in both English and Gaelic.
You will need either a full valid national driving license or an international driving permit (IDP). You can acquire an IDP from the American Automobile Association or from Automobile Association or Royal Automobile Club in the UK. IDPs are only valid with your regular driver’s licence. They are not mandatory but having one can prevent issues when dealing with local authorities.
Cars in Scotland drive on the left-hand side of the road and both driver and passengers are required to wear seat belts at all times by law. Signposts will be presented with place names in English and Scots Gaelic.
You will pay a lot more for gasoline (petrol) in the UK, about £4 per gallon. The imperial gallon is 20% more in volume than the US Gallon and is dispensed at the pump by the litre (4.5 litres to the gallon).
On street parking is available in most urban areas in Scotland. It costs around £1 per hour where fees apply. Pay and display machines, which dispense tickets, are marked with a large P. Tickets should be placed on your dashboard for viewing by traffic wardens who inspect paid-for-parking zones regularly. Parking regulations are enforced with fines of £25 for cars parked illegally.
You will also find privately run parking lots.
There are no vaccinations required to visit Scotland.
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– Herb Bennett
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