The heritage of Scotland is fascinating
From journeys on the West Highland Line and discovering previously hidden streets in Edinburgh, to exploring the history of some of Scotland's famous clans, the heritage of Scotland is fascinating. On a small group tour, you have the benefit of enjoying more exclusive entrances and special experiences such as the fantastic Mary King's Close and Armadale Castle, both of which are closed off to larger groups.
Meet your Tour Manager in London Euston today, where you board the Caledonian Sleeper. Arrive in Edinburgh on Day 2, where you are at leisure until dinner at our hotel this evening.
After breakfast on Day 3, you are at leisure to relax and explore the beautiful city of Edinburgh. Crowned by iconic Edinburgh Castle and built over the caldera of a long extinct volcano this is a beautiful part of Edinburgh. The history of the castle stretches way back to the 2nd century AD, and is fascinating to discover. Alternatively, you may want to take a walk up to Arthur's Seat, which boasts of some truly incredible views over the city.
This afternoon, we take a guided historical underground tour of Edinburgh featuring the Mary King's Close. This infamous alley is famous as the Scottish capital's most haunted street, and is the birthplace of various legends and ghost stories. Mary King's Close was closed to the public since the 18th century, only to be opened more recently. During that time, the street became shrouded in mystery, which we unravel on our tour. This evening you are again at leisure to discover Edinburgh by night - why not take a stroll up the lively Royal Mile?
Leaving Edinburgh today, we transfer to the station for our journey across Scotland to Glasgow. Enjoy the wonderful passing scenery as we travel through the country, enjoying the beautiful hills and moorlands of this windswept place. From Glasgow, we take the iconic West Highland Line to Spean Bridge, a railway journey that is regularly voted one of the best of its kind in the world. We transfer to our hotel where we enjoy dinner this evening, after which, we enjoy a sample of Scotland's most famous exports, whisky, with a tasting and talk about the production of this fine drink.
We delve into the history of Scotland today, firstly with a trip to Glencoe. This beautiful glen is surrounded by dramatic mountains, and was once the home of Clan Donald. The glen is also infamous for being the location of a massacre in 1689, after Clan Donald refused to pledge their allegiance to the new monarchs of England following the Jacobite uprising. After some time at the Glencoe and its visitor centre, we transfer to Fort William for lunch, then travel on to Achnacarry. Here, we enjoy an informative Clan Heritage tour and talk at the Clan Cameron Museum. We learn about the history of this clan, which has survived from the 14th century until today. After some more free time here, we go back to our hotel in time for dinner.
Please note: For Departure SKS1903 the journey on the Jacobite is the morning on Day 5 and visit the Clan Cameron Museum in the afternoon.
After breakfast, we travel to Fort William for a highlight of our tour. The Jacobite is one of the United Kingdom's most famous steam trains, and it takes us along the West Highland Line to Mallaig. This stretch of the railway is one of the most famous, as along the route you travel over the spectacular Glenfinnan Viaduct. An enormous, 21-spanned concrete structure should not fit in so perfectly with the surrounding countryside, but it blends so seamlessly it has become part of the beauty of Scotland. From Mallaig, we journey over to Skye, one of the most well-known islands of the Inner Hebrides, for the next two nights.
Please note: For Departure SKS1903 the journey on the Jacobite is on Day 5 and we visit the Glencoe Visitor Centre on Day 6.
This morning, we travel by coach to Portree, where we enjoy a scenic boat trip. We travel around the pretty bay, delighting in the quaint views of Portree and the numerous little fishing boats that dot the shimmering waters. We then enjoy some free time in the delightful town, perhaps to enjoy lunch, or to stroll along the waterfront and past the pretty pastel-coloured houses that fringe the shore.
Armadale Castle is our afternoon excursion. The home of Clan Donald, we enjoy a guided tour of the castle, where we learn more of its fascinating history. This incredible castle is exactly how you'd expect a medieval fortress to look, with square towers and crenellated parapets. Despite its ancient appearance, this castle was only built during the 18th and 19th centuries, but fell into ruin in 1925. The remains of this castle are now romantically draped in ivy, and are a delightful place to while away a few hours. We also enjoy afternoon tea here, which is the ideal way to spend our final afternoon in Scotland. Tonight, we enjoy dinner at the hotel.
We leave beautiful Scotland today. After breakfast, we transfer by coach to the ferry terminal, where we sail back over to Mallaig. A return journey on the West Highland Line is next, and on our way back, we stop off at Glenfinnan Viaduct and enjoy a trip to the visitor centre. We continue on to Fort William, where we board the Caledonian Sleeper for our return journey back to London. On arrival, our tour ends.
For this tour, we recommend arriving to, and departing from, London Gatwick or London Heathrow airport (LGW or LHR). London Gatwick is approximately 30 miles from your start and end point, and London Heathrow is approximately 15 miles from your start and end point.
It is your responsibility to check and fulfil the passport, visa, health and immigration requirements applicable to your itinerary. We do not accept any responsibility if you cannot travel, or incur any other loss because you have not complied with any passport, visa, immigration requirements or health formalities. You agree to reimburse us in relation to any fines or other losses which we incur as a result of your failure to comply with any passport, visa, immigration requirements or health formalities.
You may check in at the first hotel on your itinerary anytime after 14:00; your Tour Manager will be available between 16:00 and 18:00. However, if you are arriving later, you can meet your Tour Manager before dinner from 19:00.
An escorted experience and travel during your tour
Characterful accommodation in your destination
Delicious meals included
Exciting excursions and free time to explore
The heritage of Scotland is fascinating