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Getting around the UK

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Finger Lakes NY
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Getting around the UK

I'm planning a 25th wedding annivesary trip to the UK in May 2006 for 10 days. We've never been to the UK before. We plan to arrive at LHR and spend 3 nights in London, go to the theatre, and see the sights. From there we'd like visit Scotland or Wales for a few days each before flying out of LHR. I'm looking for suggestions. I thought a one way flight to Inverness, spend 2 nights, then train to Edinburgh spend 2 nights. Train back to London. Any suggestions welcome. What is best way to get around the UK? Places to see. We like to walk, see beautiful scenery, etc. Thanks.

somewhere out there
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1. Re: Getting around the UK

YOu don't say how long you will be in the country in total or what you are interested in doing /seeing Scotland.

Best form of transport is train if you are not going to drive.

You may be interested in taking the sleeper train to Inverness.

firstgroup.com/scotrail/…index.php

Halifax, NS
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2. Re: Getting around the UK

I agree that train is the way to go. When comparing travel times, remember to add the check-in times at the airport and the time it takes to get to the airport. Then the train journeys don't seem too long and you do get to see more along the way.

Calgary, Canada
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3. Re: Getting around the UK

Hiker ~> Congratulations that is what my wife and I are celebrating in June. Enjoy yourself.

Watford
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4. Re: Getting around the UK

Congratulations.

The sleeper is a useful to get to the north of Scotland and it's certainly worth comparing prices with the low budget airlines. Easyjet fly to Inverness from Gatwick and Luton (both about half an hour from central London) whilst BMI Baby fly from Heathrow. Fares start from as little as £16.00.

www.flybmi.com

www.easyjet.com

It's a 3 1/2 train journey from Inverness back to Edinburgh and from Edinburgh it may make sense to head for Wales before returning to London depending on what your plans are.

Use www.thetrainline.com to give you an idea of timetables and prices although with our complicated pricing system you could easily end up more confused! In fact a Britrail pass might well work out cheaper and more flexible. www.acprailnet.com details the various passes and can also be very useful in your trip planning.

I think that's enough to get you started but please don't hesitate to ask should anything be unclear or if you need more information.

adamhornets@yahoo.com

Calgary, Canada
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5. Re: Getting around the UK

I'm sure I don't need to correct our resident expert Adam. However, I think he meant to say 3 1/2 hour. Can you just imagine all those train transfers and that 1/2 train would seem pointless. Hopefully it would be the front half.

Watford
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6. Re: Getting around the UK

Thanks Onward, what's a missing hour between forumites?

There are some trains especially those that run to the south coast from Victoria and other main line termini that split in two at places such as Ashford.

Finger Lakes NY
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7. Re: Getting around the UK

Thanks for the helpful advice. I'll check the rail web sites mentioned. I assume it is easy to get the train from London to Inverness if we take a cab. We'll be staying at the Chesterfield Mayfair Hotel.

Where would you recommend we go? (ie Inverness, Cardiff, Ilse of Skye, etc) for dramatic scenery, ferry ride, etc. Something special, memorable for the occasion.

I've made no plans beyond London yet. We'll have 6 nights. We're not trying to see everything. We're looking to relax, soak up a bit of the culture, history, and natural beauty in a relaxed place. Perhaps Loch Ness or Stonehenge? Any thoughts?

Thanks again for your assistance.

Watford
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8. Re: Getting around the UK

You might consider posting on The United Kingdom and Scotland Forums for some more ideas.

The Inverness sleeper goes from Kings Cross which will be a 10-12GBP taxi ride from your hotel.

South Wales has less dramatic scenery than North Wales and with only 6 nights I would be tempted to stay longer in Scotland and forego Wales. You could then consider an organised coach trip to take in Bath & Sonehenge.

Vancouver, Canada
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9. Re: Getting around the UK

Congratulations, Hiker! What a nice trip it will be.

If I had the time, I'd take the Caledonian sleeper to Inverness, it sounds a fabbo trip. One thing you might consider once you're in the north of Scotland is a day trip to the Orkneys - the John o'Groats Ferry company will do a one day tour from John o'Groats to the islands for just £37. They offer a longer trip including transfer from Inverness, but that doesn't start until 01 June. Have a look at www.jogferry.co.uk for more info, if it sounds interesting.

The West Highland (railway) Line is worth the trip, if you have the time. Fort William to Mallaig is meant to be quite lovely (I was going to head there myself this summer, but have had a change of plan).

Three days in London will likely leave you wanting more - make sure you leave a bit of spare time to sit in a cafe or walk in one of the Royal parks, just to absorb the great city.

One more thing to keep in mind is that 29 May is a Bank Holiday, and the last week of the month is half term for schools, so some sights may be crowded.

somewhere out there
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10. Re: Getting around the UK

Is that six nights in the UK total including London or six nights for your excursions to Scotland and or Wales?