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Classic Scotland & Outer Hebrides

(12 days / 11 nights)

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Discover the Western Isles of Scotland

This road trip will take you from the heart of Scotland into the Scottish Highlands, sailing to some of the most beautiful western isles. Come experience the famous places you’ve heard all about, including Edinburgh, Glen Coe, Loch Ness, the Callanish Standing Stones, and dozens more castles and historical landmarks along the way. On this tour, you get all the exciting adventures and highlights of our Classic Scotland tour, which goes around the Highlands and to the Isle of Skye, plus the chance to discover the mysterious Outer Hebrides islands Harris and Lewis.

12 days / 11 nights

Price p.p. from

Approx 1605 GBP

The amount will be charged in GBP

— Why book with Nordic Visitor

  • Hassle-free & seamless travel experience
  • Flexible & customisable tour options
  • Quality & value for your money
  • Trusted local experts in Scotland

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Tour Highlights

  • Explore some of Scotland’s top sights on the famous and breathtaking Isle of Skye
  • Enjoy island-hopping between Harris, Lewis and Skye
  • Walk along the mysterious Loch Ness and visit the castle on its shores
  • See the striking natural beauty of the Scottish Highlands
  • Visit the spectacular Callanish Standing Stones
  • Discover Scotland‘s historic capital Edinburgh and stroll up the Royal Mile
  • Enjoy some quiet time in nature at the Trossachs National Park
  • Photograph the picturesque Dunnottar Castle
  • Discover historic sites around the country with the Historic Scotland Explorer Pass
  • Enjoy a road trip with peace of mind with your personal itinerary from a local travel expert

 

Travel style

Self-Drive i

Interest

Active i, Castles and Royalty i, Classic i, Countryside and natural scenery i, Heritage i, Highlands i, Hiking i, Honeymoon & Romance i, Isles i

Season

Apr - Oct

Departure

Daily

Driving distance

1570/970 km/mi

Itinerary

A day-by-day plan to guide your journey.

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  • Day 1: Arrival in Edinburgh

    Make your way into Edinburgh city centre where your hotel will be located. Many travellers opt to take a taxi or use public transport, but for a more direct and comfortable ride, we will be happy to organise a private airport transfer for you. For those arriving early in the day, we recommend spending the afternoon walking through the city, strolling along the Royal Mile and exploring the Old Town and New Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There are also plenty of museums and landmarks to visit within the city centre, including the majestic Edinburgh Castle.

    Spend the night in Edinburgh. 

    Included: Entrance to Edinburgh Castle

    Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Optional Activity
  • Day 2: Scotland's Dramatic East Coast

    Today, start your road trip driving up to Fife. Your first stop will be the quaint village of Falkland, where you can explore its Renaissance palace. From there, drive east to the town of St Andrews, famous for being the home of golf and of the oldest university in Scotland. As you continue north, pass by Dundee, a UNESCO City of Design. You can then take the direct route to Aberdeen, or take the coastal scenic route, which will take you past the St. Cyrus National Nature Reserve and the spectacular Dunnottar Castle, near Stonehaven.

    Spend the night in the Aberdeen area.

    Included: Entrances to St Andrews Castle & St Andrews Cathedral

    Driving distance: 235 km / 145 miles

    Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions
  • Day 3: Royal Deeside, Castles & Whisky

    Today will take you into the Scottish Highlands. First drive along the “Deeside Tourist Route”, an enchanting route through the Cairngorms National Park. On the way, there is a plethora of castles you could visit, including 16th-century Crathes Castle, and of course, the Scottish residence of the Royal Family, Balmoral Castle, which you can visit from April to July. You will then continue to Speyside, which is famous for its whiskies. You may want to visit one of the many distilleries (there are over 40 to choose from!), such as Glenfiddich or Aberlour.

    Spend the night in the Inverness area.

    Driving distance: 240 km  / 150 miles

    Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions
  • Day 4: North Coast 500 Route

    This morning, you can visit the famous Battlefield of Culloden Moor and roam the Bronze-age cemetery Clava Cairns. Leaving Inverness behind, take a walk at the picturesque Rogie Falls. From here you can choose a direct route to reach the small fishing village of Ullapool. We recommend visiting the breathtaking Corrieshalloch Gorge and the Falls of Measach.

    Alternatively, you can choose a longer drive along the North Coast 500, one of Scotland’s most scenic driving routes. Pass through the imperious and dramatic landscape of the Torridon Hills. Explore the Inverewe Garden, a botanical garden which boasts exotic plants and flowers that flourish in Northern Scotland due to the warmth of the Gulf Stream.

    Spend the night in the Ullapool area.

    Driving distance shorter route: 115 km / 70 miles
    Driving distance via North Coast 500: 220 km / 140 miles

    Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions
  • Day 5: Gaelic Culture & Neholithic Megaliths of Lewis

    This morning catch the ferry from Ullapool to Stornoway on the Isle of Lewis, where the Gaelic culture and language still thrives. In Stornoway, you could visit the Stornoway Museum located within Lews Castle, which houses exhibits about the island including six of the famous Lewis Chessmen. You will want to make the detour toward the west side of the island to see the spectacular Callanish Standing Stones, an impressive collection of Neolithic stone circles and megaliths. We also recommend visiting the Black Arnol Museum to learn about the history of the island life.

    Spend the night on Lewis or Harris.

    Included: Entrances to Skara Brae & Maeshowe

    Ferry from Ullapool to Stornoway: 2.5 hours

    Driving distance: 165 km / 100 miles 

    Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions
  • Day 6: Harris & The Golden Road

    Today enjoy the beauty of the Isle of Harris. You can explore the small village of Tarbert and then take in the striking scenery on a drive along “The Golden Road” towards Rodel. We recommend exploring the beautiful medieval St Clement’s Church and going for a walk on Luskentyre Beach, one of the most spectacular in Scotland, boasting miles of white sands and dazzling turquoise waters. You can also visit the Harris Tweed outlets for a genuine souvenir, as this tweed is still woven by hand in the Outer Hebrides.

    Spend another night on Lewis or Harris.

    Driving distance: 70 km / 45 miles

    Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions
  • Day 7: Island Hopping to Skye

    Today you’ll catch the ferry from Tarbert to Uig on the Isle of Skye. Upon your arrival on Skye, we recommend a drive around the northern part of the island via the breathtaking Trotternish Peninsula. There you can enjoy a walk up to “The Old Man of Storr” rock pinnacle and see the beautiful Kilt Rock Waterfall. Other highlights include the Quiraing, the An Corran Beach at Staffin, where you may spot ancient dinosaur footprints, and the mystical Fairy Glen.

    Spend the night on the Isle of Skye or nearby.

    Ferry from Tarbert to Uig: 1 hour and 40 min

    Driving distance: 80 km / 50 miles

    Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions
  • Day 8: The Isle of Skye

    Today take full advantage of your day on Skye, a haven for nature and history lovers alike. Take some time to wander around the scenic village of Portree with its colourful buildings and local shops. Drive to the west of the island to enjoy a walk to the crystal-clear Fairy Pools at the foot of the Black Cuillin Hills and discover and taste the local Single Malt whisky of Talisker Distillery . In the northern part of the peninsula you can visit the romantic Dunvegan Castle, home to the Chief of Clan MacLeod.

    Spend another night on the Isle of Skye or nearby.

    Driving distance: 145 km / 90 miles

    Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions
  • Day 9: The Beauty of Loch Ness

    Today’s journey will bring you back to the Scottish mainland. Make sure to stop at the picturesque Eilean Donan Castle, a sight you will surely recognise from many photographs, films and TV shows. Drive all the way to the shores of the mysterious Loch Ness, where you can visit the Loch Ness Centre and Exhibition. You might also wish to take a boat tour on Loch Ness in search of its notorious and elusive monster, or explore the nearby Urquhart Castle ruins on the shores of the loch.

    Spend the night in the Fort William area.

    Included: Entrance to Urquhart Castle

    Driving distance: 260 km / 160 miles

    Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions
  • Day 10: Travel Along Dramatic Valleys

    Today’s journey takes you past Scotland’s most famous valley, Glen Coe, which offers world-famous scenery. You could stop at the grave of Rob Roy at Balquidder and the beautiful Falls of Dochart in the village of Killin. Alternatively, you could travel the longer scenic route via the seaside town of Oban onto the historical valley of Kilmartin Glen and past the charming village of Inveraray. This region is considered to have one of the most important concentrations of Neolithic and Bronze Age remains in Scotland, including cairns, standing stones, and castles.

    Spend the night in the Trossachs National Park area.

    Driving distance via Glen Coe: 130 km / 80 miles
    Driving distance via Kilmartin Glen/Inveraray: 285 km / 180 miles

    Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions
  • Day 11: Trossachs National Park to Edinburgh

    Today’s drive will bring you back to Edinburgh (you can choose to end your trip in Glasgow in the optional activities below). Drive through the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park, where you could stop to take a walk in nature, enjoy an optional steamship tour on Loch Katrine, or visit a local whisky distillery. For a fun photo opportunity, don’t miss Doune Castle, featured in Monty Python & the Holy Grail and Outlander. If time allows, you could also stop by Stirling Castle, one of Scotland’s top attractions, or at the Kelpies, two impressive horse-head sculptures.

    Spend the night in Edinburgh. 

    Included: Entrances to Doune Castle and Stirling Castle

    Driving distance: 130 km / 80 miles

    Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Optional Activity
  • Day 12: Departure from Scotland

    On your day of departure, we recommend taking the Airlink bus or a taxi directly from your hotel to reach the airport. If you would like to add any additional nights to your trip or to arrange a private transfer, you can do so during the booking process. If your flight is in the afternoon, you may have time for some last-minute shopping, to visit one of Edinburgh’s museums, or take one last stroll through the charming city centre.

    Optional Activity

Map

Here’s a map of your travel route, to help put things in perspective.