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Itinerary Planning

franklin, Pa
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Itinerary Planning

I have 12-13 nights in May and am planning the following (draft) itinerary. Any comments or suggestions, must-sees, could avoids, etc would be appreciated from anyone with experience.

1) Arrive EDI midday

2) EDI

3) Oban--day trip Isle of Mull, Iona Abbey

4) Oban

5) Skye

6) Skye

7) Ulapoole

8) Inverness

9) Inverness

10) Kildrinny Castle--day trip St. Andrew's area

12) Pilochry

13) EDI airport hotel

We're interested in scenery, history, culture, food. Thanks for any help.


Edinburgh, United...
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1. Re: Itinerary Planning

are you planning to drive this route?

I'd recommend using google maps to plan your route and estimate travel times as roads once you get out of the big towns in Edinburgh - particularly the places you're talking about - can be slow. Most are single carrageway with a 60mph speed limit which is ok so long as you're not stuck behind a slow moving lorry, tractor, car towing a caravan, coach....you get the idea!!

At which point are you travelling from Edinburgh to Oban? You'd need to allow 4hours for that journey if you're planning to catch a ferry to Mull on arrival in Oban (google maps quotes around 3hrs drive). Then Mull has very slow roads - single track for the majority of the way round the island and you need to factor in the times of boats Oban-Mull and Mull-Iona.

I can't find the location of Kildrinny Castle but going from Inverness to St Andrews to Pilochry and then to Edinburgh seems madness - Pitlochry is on the way back from Inverness so St Andrews would be a huge detour.

Personally I think that's a lot of driving (assume you're driving!) and travel in a short space of time without much to see things when you get to your destinations. It depends if you like to see scenary from the car or a footpath!

I would be tempted to spend more time in Edinburgh when you arrive (factor in jetlag if you're about to start driving for several hours!). There's plenty of culture and things to do in Edinburgh to occupy 2-3 days if you've not been before and drop either Ullapool (small town, not sure what there is to see other than a ferry terminal and I once went to the swimming pool!!) or a day in Inverness.

Stanley, Falkland...
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2. Re: Itinerary Planning

You could avoid Inverness, and add more time in EDI, Glencoe, Trossachs, Highlands, etc....

Destination Expert
for Scotland
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3. Re: Itinerary Planning

Do you mean Kildrummy Castle. You can't really do St Andrews on a day trip from there. I'd drop Inverness and Ullapool, add a day to Edinburgh, a day to Skye and hit St Andrews on your way from Pitlochry to Edinburgh. Alternatively you could skip Pitlochry and go straight to St Andrews from Kildrummy Castle and spend a night there

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4. Re: Itinerary Planning

I couldn't tell if you meant Kildrummy Castle or Kilrenny, which google tells me is a town in Fife somewhere, which might make more sense for a viit to St. Andrews - though google doesn't know about any castle there. We didn't get to Kildrummy Castle, it was on the list, but we ran tight on time. Note, it is a ruin, so it might be worth a visit if it's on the way somewhere, but I can't see it being a focal point for the day - of course, your mileage may vary.

Anyway, I suggest you work out an itinerary for your own purposes, that includes...

1) starting point

2) time estimates for breakfast/lunch/dinner

3) attraction/activity/location/time estimate for all planned activities for the day

3a) prioritization - must sees and nice to sees

3b) time constraints, opening & closing times, also verify days open, last tour, etc...

4) mileage/time estimates between each attraction/activity.

5) end point - hotel

By doing this, you'll have a better idea whether what you have planned makes sense and is doable.

And remember, in May you will have pretty long daylight hours, so you can get a lot of travel miles in before/after hours for attractions (typically 9-5+/-). This time would be very good for sight seeing, nature, walks/hikes, eating but obviously not good for castle tours, museums, etc... However, also note that many castles have specific hours for tours, but their grounds/gardens are open dawn to dusk - this would be spelled out on their websites.

Hope this is useful,...

franklin, Pa
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5. Re: Itinerary Planning

Thank you all for the good info. At this point I am back to the drawing board. I believe that we'll skip Ulapoole unless someone comes up with a compelling reason to keep it on the list. Will add Glencoe to must see.


Stanley, Falkland...
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6. Re: Itinerary Planning

Well, Ullapool, is a lovely Highland village on a sea loch. To reach it means driving through some of Scotlands best scenery.

As I said, I can't think of a compellng reason to spend much time in Inverness, never mind 2 nights.

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7. Re: Itinerary Planning

I'm not an expert on the area you are going to but my first thought was what time have you allowed for travelling? Finding, checking into and out of hotels.

My second what that you are going to be really disappointed you didn't spend bit more time in Edinburgh.

Just a thought.

Edited: 16 January 2014, 18:51
8. Re: Itinerary Planning

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