Kyleakin, Isle of Skye
Eilean Donan Castle
Five Sisters of Kintail
This memorable three-day tour to the the Isle of Skye – National Geographic’s 4th best island in the world-departs from the City of Glasgow.
After just an hour’s drive we arrive at our first stop – the picturesque highland village of Luss. It sits perched on the banks of Loch Lomond and is our guests’ first chance to breathe in pristine highland air and enjoy the beauty of the Scottish Highlands.
We then head north along the western shore of Loch Lomond towards Glencoe, scene of perhaps the most brutal episode in Scottish history, The Glencoe Massacre of 1692. Lochs and mountains give way to the desolate Rannoch Moor before we arrive at the Glen which never fails to take the breath away.
Fort William sits in the shadow of Britain’s highest peak, Ben Nevis, and is an ideal place for a spot of lunch. The coach then heads north past the Commando Memorial at Spean Bridge and on to Glens; Garry, Clunie & Shiel.
Our next stop is at surely Scotland’s most photographed castle. Eilean Donan Castle is built on an island at the meeting of three great sea lochs, a location that has inspired movie makers from all over the world. Films like Highlander, The World is Not Enough and the Bollywood blockbuster Kutch Kutch Hota Hai have all used Eilean Donan Castle as a dramatic backdrop.
It’s then just a short journey to Kyleakin. Our early evening arrival allows plenty of time for a stroll and some dinner in this beautiful coastal town before settling down for a wee dram and good night’s rest.
After indulging in a hearty Scottish breakfast, we’re ready for a full, day-long tour of this wonderful island.
The Scottish weather can be changeable, so we keep day two as flexible as possible. Your expert Tour Leader will ensure our route takes you to the sights and attractions best suited to the prevailing conditions.
And Skye never disappoints – there is just so much to see.
There’s the River Brittle’s fairy pools with their azure blue water – tempting enough for some to try wild swimming! The Trotternish peninsula and its unique geology is another tourist hotspot. If weather permits we include a stop at the Faerie Glen – 365 rather odd, grassy, cone-shaped hills. In a leap year, they say you’ll find 366!
The Skye Museum of Island Life is closed in the winter months, but it is still possible to get up close to the preserved thatched cottages that provide an insight into how people lived on Skye 100 years ago.
We make our way to the Quiraing and its astounding rock formations, none more spectacular than Kilt Rock – a 90-metre-tall column of basalt with ‘pleats’ resembling a kilt – before heading past the Old Man of Storr to Portree, the largest town on the island.
We leave time for guests to explore this busy little port and cultural centre of Skye, before returning to Kyleakin for the night.
We take the Skye Bridge back to the mainland and make our way to the Glenelg Viewpoint. It’s some way off the beaten track but is worth it, as the views over Loch Duich and the Five Sisters of Kintail are quite simply breathtaking.
We then journey on to Loch Ness. Travelling along its shoreline towards Urquhart Castle (ruins). The castle sits close to the loch’s deepest parts; a perfect spot for those interested in hunting for the elusive Loch Ness Monster. Here there is the option for you to explore Urquhart Castle & Visitor Centre and/or take the superb Loch Ness by Jacobite Cruise.
From Loch Ness we travel to Inverness, where we will make a stop to enjoy lunch in our the Highland capital and stretch the legs with a stroll along the River Ness.
A few miles south of Inverness lies the Prehistoric Burial Cairns of Balnuaran of Clava, beautifully preserved burial cairns built about 4000 years ago. This wonderful setting is well worth a look, so we stop to give you the opportunity to explore.
Our journey continues down through the Cairngorms National Park and Grampian mountains past the pristine Blair Castle (home to Europe’s last remaining private army – the Atholl Highlanders) and on to the Victorian town of Pitlochry. This busy little town is a great place to stop for refreshments and possibly even some retail therapy.
We are then bound for Glasgow – the largest city in Scotland, famed for its ship building industry.
When we have passengers disembarking in Edinburgh, we cross the mighty Firth of Forth and enjoy the sight of the awe-inspiring Forth Rail Bridge before heading into the city. Then we head west to our final stop at George Square in Glasgow.
When there are no Edinburgh passengers on board, we take a more direct route, passing Stirling Castle and The Wallace Monument, before arriving in Glasgow in plenty of time to experience the buzz of this vibrant city.