Scotland, Highlands and Isles
From the untamed landscapes of the Isle of Skye, featuring dramatic cliffs and castles, to the enigmatic depths of Loch Ness in search of the legendary Nessie, our journey to Scotland will lead us through the iconic sites and tales that define this enchanting nation.
As our journey unfolds, we will explore ancient castles, visit a renowned distillery to savour the finest Scotch whiskies, and delve into the stirring history of Culloden. The bustling streets of Edinburgh will uncover the stories of inventors and novelists who were born in this remarkable city, and let us indulge in the unique flavours of haggis and other delicacies. You'll have the chance to witness a grand performance of the renowned Military Tattoo and discover the opulent world of royalty aboard the Royal Yacht Britannia.
- Visit Scotland’s Mull, Iona and Skye Isles
- Attend a performance of the Edinburgh Military Tattoo
- Explore Urquhart, Edinburgh, Crathes, Culzean and Dunvegan Castles
- Sample Speyside Scottish whiskey
- Relive history at the Bannockburn Heritage Centre, Kelvingrove Museum, Robert Burns Museum, Glencoe Visitor Centre, Iona Abbey, Rosslyn Chapel, Royal Yacht Britannia, Holyrood House and Culloden Centre
- Cruise in search of the legendary Loch Ness Monster
- Return economy group airfare from Canada
- Accommodation in comfortable tourist class hotels as indicated or similar
- 23 meals (B - 12 breakfasts, D - 11 dinners)
- All gratuities, surcharges, taxes, and fees for included services
- Services of our Canadian journey leader plus a professional local guide in Scotland
- Airport transfers in Canada or equivalent value with purchase of group airfare
- VOX audio headset system
Group members gather in Toronto for the direct overnight flight to Edinburgh.
On arrival in Edinburgh, we are met by our driver and guide and transfer to Glasgow. Enjoy an orientation tour of the city featuring a visit to Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum. We continue to our hotel for some free time until we gather this evening for a welcome dinner.
Jurys Inn Glasgow (2 nights)
We journey into the lowlands on a drive through Ayrshire's picturesque countryside, to the village of Alloway. Here, we shall visit the birthplace and national museum of Scotland’s beloved poet, Robert Burns. We then follow the coastal route to Culzean Castle, home of the Kennedy family since 1759, converted from a modest fortified Tower House into one of the north's most splendid country homes.
Splendid scenery beckons as we travel through the Trossachs to Stirling. The year 1314 marked one of Scots' most remarkable victories at Bannockburn, an event we will explore in the Bannockburn Heritage Centre. We'll also admire the impressive fortifications of Stirling Castle, known as the "key to the kingdom" during the late 13th and early 14th centuries due to several significant battles with the English taking place in the vicinity.
The Perle Hotel (2 nights)
We set out on a full-day exploration of the Isle of Mull and the holy Isle of Iona. In 563 AD, St. Columba founded the very first Christian monastery in the British Isles on Iona. The island also serves as the final resting place for numerous Scottish kings and chieftains, Macbeth among them. You'll have the opportunity to visit the cathedral and immerse yourself in the history of this religious settlement before we return to the mainland for dinner.
Venturing further into the Highlands, we head to Glencoe, a place renowned for the tragic clan massacre of the MacDonalds by the Campbells. At the Glencoe Visitor Centre, you'll gain insights into the local landscape and historical events. Our next destination lies across from the town of Fort William, nestled at the base of Ben Nevis, Scotland's tallest peak. As we continue along the scenic "Road to the Isles," we pass through Glenfinnan, where Bonnie Prince Charlie raised his standard in 1745. Finally, we'll traverse the road that leads to the romantic and misty Isle of Skye.
The Uig Hotel (2 nights)
We dedicate a day to exploring Skye. As we follow the coastal route, take in the stunning scenery, including opportunities to view Kilt Rock and Old Man Storr (weather permitting). Our day also includes a visit to Dunvegan Castle.
Departing from Skye, we make a photo stop at Eilean Donan Castle. Our route for the day leads us south to the shores of Loch Ness, where we'll explore the ruins of Urquhart Castle. We will then skirt the 54.7-kilometer shoreline to reach the charming town of Fort Augustus for some free time to explore. Later, we embark on a Loch Ness cruise in search of the legendary Loch Ness Monster, Nessie, before returning to our hotel for dinner.
MacDonald Aviemore Highland Resort (1 night)
Explore the Culloden Centre and uncover the story of Bonnie Prince Charlie's Scottish Clans' defeat by King George II, marking the last battle on British soil. We then travel across Speyside, renowned for its exceptional Scotch whiskies, where we have a delightful experience planned: a visit to a distillery and the opportunity to savour Scotland's finest. Our journey continues to Aberdeen for dinner.
Jurys Inn Aberdeen (1 night)
Enjoy a gentle drive, tracing the path of Royal Deeside to Braemar, home of the Royal Highland Games for over nine centuries. We'll explore Crathes Castle and its gardens, with a history dating back to the early 1500s. From Dundee, we cross the Firth of Tay to reach St. Andrews, renowned for its Royal and Ancient Golf Club, established in 1754 and responsible for shaping the rules of golf. We continue through Fife and Queensferry Crossing to arrive in Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland and often referred to as the "Prince of Cities”.
Yotel Edinburgh (4 nights)
On our city tour, we'll be introduced to Edinburgh's 200-year-old "New Town," where you'll hear fascinating tales of some of the world's most renowned scientists, inventors, and novelists born in this remarkable city. In the "Old Town," we'll ascend the narrow Royal Mile to visit Edinburgh Castle and marvel at Scotland's Crown Jewels. The afternoon and evening are yours to relish at your own pace in this magnificent city.
We've set aside a full free day for your personal enjoyment. August is an exciting festival month in Edinburgh, offering a plethora of activities to occupy your time. After we dine at the hotel, a special highlight awaits – a performance of the renowned Military Tattoo. This grand spectacle, featuring massed Scottish pipe bands, unfolds in an arena on the esplanade of Edinburgh Castle.
Our first stop is the newly restored Rosslyn Chapel, constructed in 1446 and made famous by Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code. We'll visit the Royal Yacht Britannia, a former floating palace that served Queen Elizabeth II and the Royal Family for 44 years. You'll have the chance to experience the lavish lifestyle of royalty as you explore its five decks. Next is Holyrood Palace, the official Scottish residence of the King in Edinburgh. You'll have some free time to relax and explore at your own pace before gathering for our farewell dinner.
We transfer to the airport for our return flight to Canada, taking with us wonderful memories of our adventure.
Have any questions? Contact Sharon at sbahadur [at] craigtravel.com or call 1-800-387-8890
Tour Cost in Canadian Dollars Per Person
Deposit is $700 per person. Final payment is due on Tuesday, April 23, 2024.
*Land only price is based on joining the group at the first hotel in Glasgow and leaving the group at the last hotel in Edinburgh. Airfares from other gateways are available on request. Airfares and carrier are subject to change and will be confirmed prior to final payment. Refer to inclusive features for details. Tour price is based on sharing a twin-bedded room. Prices are based on a minimum of 20 members and on rates, taxes, and fees effective October 2023, and are subject to change due to factors beyond our control.
Insurance is NOT INCLUDED but is highly recommended. Premiums are calculated based on the individual’s age, destination (country), trip length, and trip booking window –please contact our staff to receive a quote. Your coverage starts on the effective date of your confirmation of coverage. Please discuss your insurance coverage prior to booking. Check our website for the most current information. Refer to the enrollment form for terms and conditions.