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realistic plans for a week long "tour" of Scotland?

Sandy, Utah
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44 posts
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realistic plans for a week long "tour" of Scotland?

hi - i posted a question a few days ago about driving on the left side of the road and everyone was very kind with their responses and reasurances. Could i now get some feedback on my tentative itinerary? we have about a week so plans are (as of now!): arrive Edinburgh on a Sunday (understand that much is closed on Sunday's so figure we will far better in a large city on that day than a small town) spend half day exploring the city, maybe the HOHO bus. Monday day tour to the border abbeys and Hadrians wall with a tour group. Tuesday pick up rental car and drive to Inverness, spend afternoon looking around Loch Ness and Urquhart Castle, Inverness city, etc. Wednesday Culloden, Ruthven Barracks, Clava Cairns. Thursday ferry to Lewis, spend afternoon looking around on our own. Friday a day tour with a guide. Saturday ferry to Skye. Not sure what to see/do as we travel south on Skye. Of course want to see Eilean Donan but as that would be at the end of the day, what should we see on the way there? Sun drive to Edin for flight home. Our trip is not until spring or fall (recommendations on season?!) of next year so there is plenty of time to make changes to our plans. Likely we will not make it back and my must see items were rather spread out (border abbeys, hadrian's wall, culloden, clava cairns, callanish stones, dun carloway broch). sad knowing that no matter what i see it will only be the smallest fraction of what there is to see! what sights should we watch for on the drives? thanks for any advice you can offer. oh! also recommendations on b&b's in Edinburgh, Inverness (or that area), and Skye? think i am set on Leumadair in Callanish. thinking about Fraoch house in Edinburgh, not sure at all about Inverness or Dornie area. Thanks again!

Edinburgh, United...
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1. Re: realistic plans for a week long "tour" of Scotland?

Wow Lisa thats a lot of words in a small space!

My opiniion would be that its all a bit too much. You are in danger of seeing everything but experiencing nothing. It feels like a tick box tour but I guess thats up to you.

May and September are the best months in my opinion. Beautiful late spring or autumn colours really add to the experience again its your choice.

Sandy, Utah
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44 posts
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2. Re: realistic plans for a week long "tour" of Scotland?

@embra - thanks - that is sort of what i am afraid of, but i am not sure what to do about it! not sure what to cut out. lewis would be the most likely, but it is one of the highest on my priority list! think what i need to do is try to find a way to extend my time even by a couple of days. unfortunately i have to stick with april or oct due to the times the kids are on vacation from school!

Fife, United Kingdom
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for St Andrews
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3. Re: realistic plans for a week long "tour" of Scotland?

OK - so you already know you want to see Lewis - so take something else off your itinerary.

You have far too much planned for the Tuesday and Wednesday after Edinburgh - you CANNOT fit all that in, believe me!

Agree with Embrachap about the best seasons to travel though but if you have to stick with April or October, be aware that they are also school holidays in Scotland so book ahead!

This is useful for what to see on Skye - I haven't been yet but was looking at it for an upcoming trip in the summer

tripadvisor.co.uk/Attractions-g186585-Activi…

The problem with Scotland is its so darned scenic and a trip that says 2 hours journey time will probably take you double because you will want to stop, take photos and explore - and so you should. I would have a major rethink and re-organise your trip into something more manageable

Good luck! At least you are planning nice and far in advance but my advice is focus on what interests YOU and try not to be overwhelmed or side tracked by too many other people's recommendations. You almost have a plan, it just needs "tweeking"

Woody x

Kingston, Washington
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4. Re: realistic plans for a week long "tour" of Scotland?

+1 to two things Woody said - focus on what interests YOU and not me...and it is true that you will take much longer to get to places because you'll constantly be stopping to take photos and explore. We planned to spend a day on Skye after visiting Urquhart Castle after it first opened. In the end we had to turn around just as we got to Skye because we ran out of daylight due to stopping and smelling the heather so much (so to speak).

We went to Scotland in October and loved it. Yes, we had a wee bit of rain each day but that only enhanced the sights and smells for us. There's something magical about sitting all alone in the middle of a glen after a good rain. It is the one memory I have of Scotland that I can physically feel and smell to this day.

Suffolk, United...
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for Cephalonia
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5. Re: realistic plans for a week long "tour" of Scotland?

Hi Lisa,

If someone told me they had a week to spend in Scotland and that was all the info they gave me, I would suggest a couple of days in Edinburgh followed by the rest of the time on the Isle of Arran which is described as "Scotland in miniature". Mountains, scenic drives, rugged coastlines, Stone circles, lowlands, distillery, seals, red deer, red squirrels, eagles, but no monster unless you count the landlord of the ..... No! Forget that!

So next time.......

Keep planning!!

:-) Bob

6. Re: realistic plans for a week long "tour" of Scotland?

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