We have 5 nights to spend in Scotland in September as a result of a business trip and this is our first trip to the area. We plan on leaving Bath, England on a Thursday and arriving in Edinburgh that afternoon. We wanted to make Edinburgh our base for at least the first 2-3 nights of the trip. This will likely be our last trip to Scotland for many years so we want to make this count. I am overwhelmed by the many options and was hoping to get some itinerary assistance.
We have to be in Glasgow for business for most of the day on Friday (just taking a train) so this leaves all day Saturday, Sunday and Monday for exploring before we return to London on Tuesday. We have many questions: 1) How should we get from Bath to Edinburgh? Is there direct train service or do we have to return to London? How long should it take?; 2) Should we stay in Edinburgh for the whole 5 nights and do day trips (I have no concept of the distance to the other interesting cities); 3) If we go to other areas, should we rent a car or just hire a car service? (I admit to some intimidation to driving on the “correct” side of the road); 4) What is the best area in Edinburgh to seek accommodations? We’d like something central as we love to walk but in an area that is considered “nice”.
We really want to see areas that are considered “quintessential Scotland”. We are in our 40’s, active and like to pack in a lot into our vacations (figure we can relax when we get home). We’d love to see the cities but also want to see a lot of the beautiful countryside. Finding a great restaurant is not a goal but finding a fabulous hotel/B&B is considered a big treat. Any advice would be much appreciated.