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Roadtrip to Scotland

Hatfield, United...
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Roadtrip to Scotland

Hello everyone.

My friend and I got two weeks of holidays in the end of December. As we don't have the Schengen visa we thought of going around England, Scotland and Northern Ireland (Maybe).

We have booked a rented car for that period, i.e. 21st of December to 5th of January.

We plan to go on road and explore as we are just 2 months old in this country and this is a great opportunity for us. I know the weather is not very favorable. But we have no choice. I went through some forums and they say anytime is a good time to be in Scotland.

I live near St Albans in the Hertfordshire and we plan to start from there. The problem is that we are quite new to the country and unable to come up with a good plan, and we have good 14 days with us we love to explore the wilderness. Also, we just have 2 weeks. I tried searching the net and make a plan but I am kind of bombarded with information and unable to decide on what and how.

It would be really great if you all experienced people could help me come up with a skeleton of a plan so that we can build upon that.

For a start I can just add that we are open to all places which we can cover. 14 days. Scotland is in the itinerary. Northern Ireland maybe.

I will add up to the post as I build my plan. And also we are just two of us and any of you is welcome to join us as we have 2 empty seats with us :)

Thanks in advance.

The Stunning...
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for Scottish Highlands, Crete
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21. Re: Roadtrip to Scotland

For the Scotland leg of the trip I would probably start with a couple of nights in Edinburgh.

Edinburgh, United...
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22. Re: Roadtrip to Scotland

Definitely a couple of nights at least in Edinburgh. If you base yourselves there you have the option of lots of day trips which you can decide on nearer the time depending on the weather - St. Andrews, Glasgow, Stirling, Perth, North Berwick.

The Stunning...
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23. Re: Roadtrip to Scotland

I was thinking about this today and another option would be to do the Scottish circuit the other way round as this way you would reach Edinburgh after New Year and accommodation would probably be cheaper than just before Xmas. I noticed some good prices for Premier Inns just after New Years (and just before as well) the other week.

Hatfield, United...
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24. Re: Roadtrip to Scotland

i have booked accommodation in Edinburgh already for a couple of nights. I thought of booking the rest on the fly as we don't know what the weather holds on for us. :(

Currently planning what all I have to include. Last minute trips do eat up some money. But well I am sure it will be worth it

Glasgow, United...
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25. Re: Roadtrip to Scotland

If you keep your plans open, that will allow them to change depending on how the weather goes.We often leave things open as Scotland has so many micro climates.

For example, if the cloud is down I personally don't think Skye is great and doesn't offer the splendour you will still see in Torridon or Kintail or Knoydart.I say this as someone who loves Skye but if it is the very best you're looking for re.the highland scene ,Torridon round to Applecross takes some beating, as do the wilderness areas around Loch Maree. Many mainland areas also offer more walking variety, high and low,than Skye,given short days and winter weather.Wildlife is more plentiful in these areas too if you're interested, simply because they are less populated than Skye and definitely wilder.I'd agree with the reference to the excellent walkhighlands website for great info and photos on walks and climbs.

You'll love Scotland in winter and what's nicer than a cosy inn and fire at night plus the chance of seeing the Aurora Borealis.It might be worth at least checking a broad list of possible B and Bs Youth Hostels etc re whether they are open in Dec, so you have a general feel about accommodation without tying yourself down now.

The Stunning...
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26. Re: Roadtrip to Scotland

Great post Scotlandmac :-) Funnily enough I was driving through Torridon and onto Applecross through the week and although the weather wasn't great the scenery was still majestic and moody :-)

Glasgow, United...
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27. Re: Roadtrip to Scotland

Yes, much of that area is just so stunning even without the high tops clear.In mid - November; the colours were just incredible - burnt orange,copper and gold set against pink sandstone. W.H .Murray once wrote that he thought Torridon exhibited more mountain beauty than any area of Scotland, including Skye.Always subjective of course but hard to disagree.

Hatfield, United...
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28. Re: Roadtrip to Scotland

Thanks a lot everyone. Especially @goanjock.

We had a wonderful trip in spite of the cold weather.

We started off from Hatfield on 20th. Reached Flamborough only to experience extreme winds. We reached the lighthouse when it was dark. So nothing much to do there. We left for Stockton on Tees from there and the cops caught us as we were driving quite slow and that made people suspicious :D (First time drivers in UK. We got better in a day)

Reached the hotel and rested and left for Holy Island the next day (21st). Amazing experience there, Very beautiful island and castle. We left the island nick in time to escape the tides. From there we left for Edinburgh. Reached quite late. Next day we were quite clueless and went to Camera Obscura (22nd) and had a fun time there :D. On 23rd we went to Arthurs seat to experience heavily extreme winds and had a great view and time up there. On 24th we left Edinburgh and went to Aberdeen via Portobello Beach. 25th was a day devoted to shopping on the occasion of Boxing day. So we roamed around Aberdeen shopping. Next day (26th) we went to Bullers of Borough walk which was breathtaking and amazing and from there we went to Aviemore. Here we met Bernice and he suggested that we ski. So next day 27th, we get up but my friend faces some issues and calls from office and we get late to get out in the morning. By the time we reach the Cairngorm mountain we are told to come the next day for ski school. We just play around in the snow and come down, walk around in the town and relax. Next day morning (28th) we reach atop Cairngorm mountain only to be surprised by the crowd. There were too many people and we end up standing in the queue for 5 hours. By the time we get the ski it was 3 PM. We managed to stand up without slipping in 30 minutes and then we get attacked by a snow storm. We go down disappointed and talk to the ski school guys and we are told that if you come again you will get a 10£ discount. We say OK and leave.

On 29th we leave for Onich (near Glencoe). We reach there at night and kind of baffled what we were there for. I went to a nearby pub and enquired and they told if Isle of sky is the target then we need to go early morning.

So, 30th morning we leave for Isle of skye. Breathtaking scenery. And we reached the town of Portree. It was a small town and had a good time there.

On 31st we left for Inverness. Reached Inverness in the evening and went for the Hogmanay. Had a great New year with the Red Hot Chilli Pipers.

On 1st we went to ullapool from Inverness and came back. Good scenery on the way.

On 2nd we went and stayed at the Loch Ness Clansman Hotel which is beside the Loch ness river. Had a very good view there.

From here on 3rd we went to Tomatin Distillery and a Loch Ness Monster exhibition.

On 4th we went to Glasgow to see the Sea life aquarium. And from there we started the return journey to Hatfield and reached home at 3 AM

This was the summary of the trip. Though I have missed a lot in between. This is the skeletal of the trip.

We had a great time everyday. It was very chilly, but we managed. :) and it was a treat to the eyes.

It would not have been possible if you guys wouldnt have been there to guide us.

Thanks a lot everyone :)

Stanley, Falkland...
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29. Re: Roadtrip to Scotland

I love the honest comment about being "baffled" as to why you went somewhere.

I think that must happen a lot! Thanks for the feedback!

30. Re: Roadtrip to Scotland

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