Start Date: 18th June 2023
Duration: 8 nights
An exhilarating 9-day exploration of some of the most dramatic and beautiful scenery in Scotland. Relax and enjoy 2 nights on the rugged Isle of Mull with a whole afternoon dedicated to viewing Puffins at close quarters, 2 nights around the enchanting Isle of Skye, and 2 nights in the Inverness Highland region. Explore the charming, traditional communities of Inveraray, Oban, Portree, and Ballater in Royal Deeside. Visit Loch Ness, the village of Applecross, and the historic castles of Eilean Donan and Duart.
Today is a fabulous introduction to the Scottish landscape as we take in the mountains, glens, lochs and rivers of the Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park. Explore the charming village of Luss and admire the view when touring over the Rest and Be Thankful. Arriving in the seaside town of Inveraray, we pause for lunch and a look around the interesting shops here before traveling past Loch Awe to the bustling seaside town of Oban, ‘Gateway to the Isles’ to spend the evening. Overnight Oban.
This morning we take the morning ferry to the rugged Isle of Mull. Crossing the Firth of Lorne, we arrive on the island and explore the north of the island with its stunning mountain scenery, seascapes, and abundant wildlife - look out for Deer, Otters and White-Tailed Eagles. We visit the town of Tobermory with its wonderful frontage of painted houses and interesting shops before we venture west to walk the white sand beach at Calgary Bay. Overnight Mull.
We head out to explore the south of the island with its stunning mountain scenery and seascapes. After touring through the Ardmeanach Peninsula, step aboard a wildlife cruise to the Treshnish Isles and Staffa. Enjoy 2¼ hours ashore to observe and photograph puffins, and 1hr ashore on Staffa, where Atlantic waves crash into Fingal's Cave formed from giant basalt columns. After viewing seabirds and seals we make our way back. Overnight Mull.
After breakfast, we leave the Isle of Mull by taking the ferry to explore the peaceful Ardnamurchan Peninsula by way of single-track road where the relics of ancient volcanic activity are conspicuous features. This is an area ideal for wildlife watching opportunities and we hope to see Sea-Eagles, Red Deer, Otters and Seals amongst others. Later, we travel up the coast to the village of Mallaig to take the ferry “Over the Sea to Skye”. Overnight Skye.
After breakfast we head out for a tour of the Isle of Skye, passing through Broadford and on to the main settlement on the Island, Portree, with its colourful harbour front and interesting shops. After lunch, tour through the rugged Trotternish Peninsula and take in the views at Uig, the Old Man of Storr, and Kilt Rock Falls before travelling back down the island for the evening. Other options are a possibility. Overnight nr Skye.
This morning, visit iconic Eilean Donan Castle before taking a scenic trip over the “Bealach Na Ba” mountain pass to the remote Applecross Peninsula. This is a beautiful and tranquil place on the rugged coast of Wester Ross with stunning scenery and well known for its spectacular mountain scenery, especially the Torridon Hills. Later we visit Rogie Falls where you can see the waterfall that is famous for salmon viewing. Overnight Inverness area.
This morning, enjoy some free time to explore the city of Inverness “Capital of the Highlands” before making our way to enjoy the famous Loch Ness. We take in the charming village of Fort Augustus on the south shores of Loch Ness - keep your eyes peeled for the legend of Nessie and later we spend the afternoon at the last surviving distillery in the ‘Black Isle’ for some much-needed whisky tasting. Overnight Inverness area.
After breakfast, we take a scenic trip through the Cairngorms National Park stopping to admire the oldest pack-horse bridge in the highlands at Carrbridge, before touring through Grantown-on-Spey to enjoy some free time to explore the village of Ballater with its royal connection. This afternoon we relax in highland Perthshire and enjoy a stroll through Pitlochry’s high street to experience the array of interesting shops and cafes here. Overnight Pitlochry.
This morning we explore Highland Perthshire further when we venture out to visit the nearby “Queens View” and then we tour onto the Highland town of Aberfeldy where we will have time to take in the shops before making our way to the riverside setting on the river Tay at Dunkeld. Here we can have some free time taking in the historic Cathedral. Our journey south takes us to South Queensferry to view its famous rail bridge. Tour ends in Edinburgh