Our three day tour to the Isle of Skye – recently voted 4th best island in the world – gives you time to relax and enjoy the island’s natural beauty, its unique culture and vast array of wildlife. Guests taking our summer tour can even enjoy a trip on the Jacobite Steam Train (15th May to 15th September) as seen in Harry Potter and often described and one of the world’s great train journeys.
Our three day tour to the Isle of Skye – recently voted 4th best island in the world – gives you time to relax and enjoy the island’s natural beauty, its unique culture and vast array of wildlife.
Guests taking our summer tour can even enjoy a trip on the Jacobite Steam Train (15th May to 15th September) as seen in Harry Potter and often described and one of the world’s great train journeys.
It’s an early start in the cosmopolitan city of Edinburgh before we set off via Scotland’s largest city, Glasgow, for the picturesque highland village of Luss which is perched on the western shore of Loch Lomond.
There’s some time to explore this quaint little village before heading to Glencoe, spectacular setting for possibly the most shameful episode in Scottish history, The Glencoe Massacre. We stop here to soak up the stunning beauty and dramatic atmosphere of the Glen.
Sitting in the shadow of Britain’s highest peak, Ben Nevis, lies Fort William the perfect stop for a spot of lunch.
Movie fans will undoubtedly want to make the next leg of the tour on the Jacobite Steam Train (15thMay to 15th September) which runs from Fort William, over the 21-arch Glenfinnan Viaduct of Harry Potter fame, to Mallaig where your Tour Leader will meet the train.
Guests who prefer to stay on the coach will travel by road to Glenfinnan taking in views of the Viaduct as well as Loch Eilt, where Hagrid was seen skimming stones in Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire. Glenfinnan is the place where, in 1745, Bonnie Prince Charlie raised his Standard in an ill-fated attempt to reinstate the exiled Stuarts to the throne of Great Britain and Ireland.
We take in the spell-binding Sands of Morar where guests can enjoy views over perfect turquoise seas to the islands of Eigg, Rum and north to our destination – Skye.
Enjoy the short ferry ride from Mallaig to Armadale (weather dependent) on the Isle of Skye before a 30-minute drive takes us to Kyleakin, where an early evening stroll around this traditional island village and your accommodation await.
After breakfast we head off on a full-day tour of this incredibly diverse island. Guests can choose to enjoy a leisurely 1.5hr boat trip from Elgol or a more exhilarating, wind-in-your-hair, RIB ride (RIB ride has limited availability, please reserve in advance). Either way, you’ll see the jaw-dropping Cuillin Mountains up close as well as a rich variety of sea birds including, if you’re lucky, majestic Golden and Sea Eagles. There are regular sightings of dolphins, porpoise and sometimes whales, especially in the summer months and the large resident colony of harbour seals near to Loch Coruisk is guaranteed.
Next stop is Portree – the largest town on Skye. It’s the ideal opportunity to have some lunch and, time permitting, a stroll before we head in the direction of the breath-taking Trotternish Peninsula and its unique geology.
Our guests love the Skye Museum of Island Life where they get an incredible insight into how people lived on Skye around a century ago.
Skye’s landscapes never cease to thrill and the next stop – the Quiraing – is no different. Guests disembark here just to soak up the beautiful panoramas before we head to Kilt Rock – an enormous 90-metre-tall column of basalt. Finally, the tour passes the The Old Man of Storr, created by a massive ancient landslide, on our route to Kyleakin and a relaxing evening at your leisure.
This morning we leave Skye via the controversial Skye Bridge which opened in 1995. Our first stop is at the iconic Eilean Donan Castle – possibly Scotland’s most photographed castle and location for many famous films including Highlander, The World is Not Enough and the Bollywood Blockbuster Kutch Kutch Hota Hai. It’s easy to see why film makers are so enthralled as the castle sits on an island where three great sea lochs meet and is surrounded by magnificent highland scenery.
Heading for home our lunch stop will be in Fort Augustus a charming highland village that sits at the southern tip of Loch Ness. Here you can either take in the Fort Augustus locks which are part of the Caledonian Canal (one of the greatest waterways of the world) or alternatively, if you’re feeling lucky, you can embark on a one-hour monster-spotting cruise.
The coach then heads over the Laggan and Grampian mountains, passing Blair Castle (the ancient seat of the Dukes of Atholl and home to Europe’s only remaining private army) until we reach the Victorian town of Pitlochry.
After a stop for refreshments in this bustling town, we return to Scotland’s Capital via the Forth Bridge and the iconic sight of the Forth Rail Bridge which has been in service since 1890.