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“Perfect way to visit the Highlands!”

The Hairy Coo - Free Scottish Highlands Tour
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US$65.88*
and up
Loch Ness, Highlands and Whisky Distillery Day Tour from Edinburgh
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US$419.09*
and up
3-Day Isle of Skye Inverness Highlands and Glenfinnan Viaduct Tour from...
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US$58.87*
and up
Lochs, Stirling Castle, and Whisky Day Trip from Edinburgh
Ranked #3 of 218 Tours in Edinburgh
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Free Day Tour of the Scottish Highlands. We believe everyone should be able to discover the real Scotland, that’s why we pioneered the only Free tour of this beautiful wilderness; through the eyes of a passionate and knowledgeable, local tour guide. We pride ourselves on exceeding the expectations of our guests; maintaining a professional but relaxed approach, and ensuring every tour is entertaining, informative and utterly unique.
Useful Information: Activities for older children
Reviewed 19 November 2013

I went on this tour due to the good reviews on tripadvisor and since it is based on the principal by pay what you want. Normally, I am not the person who goes on tours because I like to plan and explore by myself.

Because it was a tour on the tip base, I went on it and during the tour, our guide and owner Daniel was not hinting or begging for any money. He was a great guide with good stories about the Scotland and the places we visited. Although, I was getting the feeling that it was a bit like a script he was telling since I heard some of the comments mentioned on Tripadvisor. But what else do you want when you have done this tour 500 times before (what makes you an expert of the highlands). He told his stories with humor and talked loud and clear. The perfect guide!

The tour it self was a pretty good way to visit the highlands. It shows some beautiful spots in the park near the lakes and offcourse, the hairy coo's. We also visited some village's where we have got some perfect tips from Daniel. He told in Callander that the best fish and chips could be eaten at Mhor, and his tip paid off: Excellent! We also saw the Forth bridge, Wallis monument in Stirling and the village of Aberfoye. Unfortunately, we could not visit Stirling castle due to the time and the Doune castle due to the filming of a big tv serie.

After all, I will definitely recommend the Hairy Coo free tour. The guide is good and works hard for his money. Therefore he realy tries to make your day a perfect day and I believe in his concept of the pay want you want principal.

1  Thank rickzwart
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TheDonEdinburgh, Owner at The Hairy Coo - Free Scottish Highlands Tour, responded to this reviewResponded 12 December 2013

Hello rickzwart,

It is really good to hear from you again and very encouraging to read such a charming and positive review of your experiences with The Hairy Coo. Thank you for your support and generosity which is sincerely appreciated.

Kindest regards,

Donald,

The Hairy Coo

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1,301 - 1,305 of 2,821 reviews

Reviewed 19 November 2013

I took this tour with my friend around two weeks ago, and we were marveled not just about the beautiful sights of the Highlands, but also at the enthusiasm of Jonathan, our guide. I can't very well understand how he manages to be as enthusiastic with all the tours, but he is very friendly, and always with a smile on his face.

We couldn't get to see the cows, or the castle of Monty Python, nevertheless, that doesn't matter when we saw so much more. Lakes, lochs, Stirling and its castle, ponies, many beautiful sights.

My friend and me were students, so we weren't able to give enough tip for this tour, which really, is worth a lot. Thank you very much, to Jonathan, and to everyone from the Hairy coo. Thanks to all of them, we can actually go and see more of Scotland, and the experience is fantastic, and one for all the life.

Thank you, and would very highly recommend it to everyone.

Remember to book in advance, and keep umbrellas/rain coats in case. Also, the journey changes with the season, so I think there's something like a "Winter Journey" and another "Summer Journey".

Thank kaseymitsuri
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TheDonEdinburgh, Owner at The Hairy Coo - Free Scottish Highlands Tour, responded to this reviewResponded 12 December 2013

Hello kaseymitsuri,

Thank you for posting such a charming and insightful review of your Hairy Coo tour with Jonathan. He will be delighted to hear that you and your friend enjoyed the experience so much. your support and recommendation are sincerely appreciated.

Kindest regards,

Donald,

The Hairy Coo

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 November 2013

My husband and I booked this tour after reading the reviews on Tripadvisor, and were not disappointed. We had Russell as our guide, and he provided very interesting commentary all day long. It was important to him to give accurate information, and not a disneyfied version of Scottish history, which we appreciated. We also appreciated his sense of humor, as well as his having an actual point of view about many subjects, making the tour feel much more authentic than the usual bland tour. We were very comfortable on the bus, and saw a lot of places in just one day. Of course, the high point was getting to feed the hairy coos themselves. Unfortunately the day was dreary and rainy, so the views were not as good as they could be, but still quite lovely. We chose this tour because of the reviews, not because of the no-cost, and were happy to pay 50 pounds each. There was no pressure to tip any amount in particular. I don't think you could go wrong with the Hairy Coo.

Thank maxoss215
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TheDonEdinburgh, Owner at The Hairy Coo - Free Scottish Highlands Tour, responded to this reviewResponded 22 November 2013

Hello maxoss215,

Russell will be delighted to hear that you enjoyed your Hairy Coo tour so much. Thank you for taking the time to post such a charming and descriptive review of your experience. We sincerely appreciate your custom and support.

Kindest regards,

Donald,

The Hairy Coo

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 November 2013

After reading so many glowing reviews I booked this tour for me, my sister and my mom. We were very lucky it was a sunny day and we could enjoy the views, since our guide, Jonathan, was clearly tired and seemed like he wanted to be anywhere but in that bus. Scotland history is so rich, so I was really disappointed by how little information he was able to give us. He tried to be funny and talked a lot about himself, but, for the most part, he just turned on the radio and "let us enjoy the view".

I know many people end up sleeping in tour buses or talking among themselves, which can be frustrating for a guide, but my mom and I are really interested in history and are among the few that actually want to learn more and expect the guide be, at least, well informed about the places he is taking the group.

Also, the last stop (Doune castle) was closed for filming, but a more proactive and friendly guide could have easily stopped to show it to us from a distant or come up to a last interesting stop since it was still early (around 4pm) and sunny in the highlands (in November!). We ended up arriving earlier than expected back in Edinburgh. I wish I was one of those persons who can actually feel ok for not paying for something but in the end I decided to give £20/person and call it a day (I figured is around what I would be willing to pay a driver to take us around the highlands for the day).

So, next time, I would just book the more expensive tour (around £35) so I can have a good guide and be able to enjoy the tour fully.

1  Thank Roberta G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TheDonEdinburgh, Owner at The Hairy Coo - Free Scottish Highlands Tour, responded to this reviewResponded 22 November 2013

Hello Roberta G,

We are sorry to hear that you found your Hairy Coo tour to be a disappointing experience and we accept most of the points that you make. However, we would like to make the point that tour guides (like everyone else) do have occasional days where they might be tired or experiencing events in their lives which you would be unaware of, which can affect their performance. In response to your last statement, we would suggest that even a cursory glance at reviews for similar "paid for" tours will make it quite clear that paying a fee for a tour is no guarantee of any tour guide's performance on any particular day.

Thank you for posting your review and for choosing to tour with us.

Kindest regards,

Donald,

The Hairy Coo

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Reviewed 16 November 2013

I got the recommendation of The Hairy Coo Tour from another guide I met on my stay in Edinburgh, when myself and my friend were trying to decide on which tour to do around the Highlands. I can sincerely say it was a great choice.
We decided on this trip at first because it was on a "tips only" basis, and it adjusted our tight budget perfectly. But after the hole day went by, I definitely could recommend it to anyone going to Scotland, no matter the kind of trip they are doing.

Donald, the guide, made the day the great experience that it was. Cheerful, very good story teller, and just putting that extra effort on giving a good tour.

All in all, you wont regret it. Beautiful scenery, fun people, fun guide.. and of course the great Hairy Coos!!, the cutest cows I've met.

Thank ugi_papp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TheDonEdinburgh, Owner at The Hairy Coo - Free Scottish Highlands Tour, responded to this reviewResponded 22 November 2013

Hello ugi_papp,

Thank you for posting such a charming review of your Hairy Coo tour. It is really good to hear that you enjoyed the experience so much. Your custom, support and recommendation are sincerely appreciated.

Kindest regards,

Donald,

The Hairy Coo

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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