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Edinburgh, the Highlands & Islands: 9 Days

Featuring: The West Highland Line

Majestic lochs and glens lie in wait as we cross Edinburgh and the Highlands and visit the isles of Skye and Mull. We travel through the West Highlands and Cairngorms on this fabulous round trip climaxing with a 'Scottish Evening' on Edinburgh's stately Royal Mile.

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  • Package Includes:

    SIGHTSEEING HIGHLIGHTS
    •Isle of Mull including a visit to Duart Castle
    •Neptune's Staircase and a scenic cruise across Loch Linnhe
    •A picturesque journey on the Kyle Line to Kyle of Lochalsh
    •Visit to Eilean Donan Castle
    •Free time to explore Inverness
    •A scenic rail journey on the West Highland Line
    •Excursion on the Jacobite Steam Train*


    ALSO INCLUDED
    •8 nights hotel accommodations
    •16 meals (8 breakfasts, 8 dinners)
    •The services of a professional Tour Manager


    *On early departures the Jacobite Steam Train does not operate and we make this excursion using Scotrail's scheduled service.


    This rail vacation is operated by our partner, Great Rail Journeys.

  • DAY 1 ARRIVE EDINBURGH
    Our fantastic Scottish tour begins at the superb Apex Hotel Waterloo Place, located close to Edinburgh's main station, just off the renowned Princes Street. Your Tour Manager greets you at the hotel and the remainder of your day is free to explore Scotland's fascinating capital. D


    DAY 2 THE WEST HIGHLAND LINE
    Today we travel to Glasgow, before changing trains for a journey on one of the world's most spectacular scenic railway lines, The West Highland Line. Mighty mountains provide an imposing backdrop to our journey as we approach Fort William. On arrival we transfer to the nearby village of Ballachulish where we will transfer to our hotel, Isles of Glencoe. B,D


    DAY 3 THE ISLE OF MULL AND DUART CASTLE
    This morning we travel by motorcoach to the town of Oban. Leaving the mainland by Caledonian MacBrayne ferry, we make the 40-minute crossing to the Isle of Mull. This is Scotland's stunning west coast just as you had imagined it to be. We arrive at the town of Craignure from where we visit Duart's Castle, the ancestral home of the Maclean Clan. After our visit, we retrace our journey to Oban and Ballachulish. B,D


    DAY 4 NEPTUNE'S STAIRCASE AND LOCH LINNHE CRUISE
    Today we travel by motorcoach to Neptune's Staircase, an impressive flight of eight locks operated by a team of at least three lock keepers. The 22-ton lock gates were originally hand-powered, but are now operated by hydraulics. It now takes approximately one-and-a-half hours to pass from one end of the staircase to the other, where water overcomes gravity and nature to climb the hillside. From here we continue to Loch Linnhe where we enjoy a scenic cruise across the water. B,D

     
    DAY 5 THE JACOBITE STEAM TRAIN AND INVERNESS
    This morning we join the Jacobite Steam Train* for a return journey to Mallaig on the final leg of the wonderful West Highland Line, arguably the most scenic in the UK. We cross the 21-arched Glenfinnan Viaduct seen in the ‘Harry Potter' films; one of the most iconic engineering works found throughout the British railway network. After time for lunch, we make the return journey to Fort William, from where we will check into the Best Western Inverness for three nights. B,D

     
    DAY 6 AT LEISURE IN INVERNESS
    Enjoy a day at leisure in Inverness, the capital of the Highlands with a relaxing stroll along the River Ness, or take the opportunity to explore further afield. Your options also include the Battlefield where Bonnie Prince Charlie and his Jacobite forces were defeated in the last pitched battle to be fought on British soil. B,D


    DAY 7 THE KYLE LINE AND EILEAN DONAN CASTLE
    Today we enjoy one of the most breathtaking railway journeys in Europe, the Kyle Line. This incredibly scenic route takes us across Scotland from east coast to west. The tracks rise and fall over hills and valleys, travelling at low speed throughout most of the journey, giving you time to soak up the terrific views. We arrive at Kyle of Lochalsh, the end of the line, located across a short stretch of water from the Isle of Skye. Afterwards we make a visit to Eilean Donan Castle, situated on a tiny island in Loch Duich, joined to the mainland by a small, elegant bridge. B,D


    DAY 8 INVERNESS TO EDINBURGH
    We leave Inverness, travelling south through the Cairngorms, via Aviemore, Pitlochry and Kingussie, to arrive back in Edinburgh for a night at the Radisson Blu Hotel. Our farewell dinner here is a part of a special ‘Scottish Evening' held in the hotel's Great Scots Hall. Our traditional meal is piped in and we are regaled with Scottish tales. B,D


    DAY 9 DEPART EDINBURGH
    After breakfast this morning, the tour concludes, and your Tour Manager bids you farewell. You are free to begin your journey home or enjoy more time sightseeing independently. B


    Legend for meals: B - Breakfast, BR - Brunch, L - Lunch, D - Dinner



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    To book this package, please call 800-569-5335.

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