Today is my first time doing the Glenfinnan, Mallaig and Jacobite Steam Train tour. I’ve been looking forward to this one and don my circular specs and pack my cloak in anticipation of the sight of the Glenfinnan Viaduct…or Harry Potter Bridge as my younger guests call it.
I’ve got two families on board today. The kids are all between 12 and 14 and are Harry Potter daft. I’ve done my research and have a killer quiz for these kids. Let’s see how they do…
It’s not all about the Potter fans though. Both sets of parents are looking forward to seeing some locations for movies from their era – Highlander and Local Hero in particular.
We have a quick coffee stop at Tyndrum and the excitement builds as we approach the awe-inspiring Glencoe, location for scenes from world renowned films like Skyfall. This dramatic landscape seems a perfect fit for the world’s most famous spy.
I think these kids might explode with excitement as I spot Hagrid! Not really, but it’s easy to imagine him skimming stones on the waters of Loch Eilt.
Next, we all feel like we’ve been transported to the Caribbean. The sun appears and lights up the sands and turquoise waters of Morar. It’s a beautiful sight but thank goodness it’s not as sunny as this every day. If it was, this place would be like Blackpool in July. I prefer it the way it is – peaceful, calm and unspoilt, just like it was in Local Hero – a film I’d encourage everyone to see. It is a true classic.
The lovely town of Mallaig is next and while it’s the ideal spot for lunch and a gentle stroll, the kids on the tour cannot wait to board the train to Fort William.
I leave both families to it and head to Fort William to pick them up and begin my big Harry Potter quiz.
I’m now sure there could be much more enthusiasm when we meet up but they are raring to go and are convinced a perfect score is guaranteed.
It’s not. My research pays of and they each get one question wrong. Very impressive knowledge nonetheless.
Once safely delivered back to Glasgow I reflect on my first experience of this tour. It’s a cracker with plenty to see and do at every point. I’m doing it again next week – let’s hope I can bamboozle a few more of the Harry Potter generation…
For more information on this tour, as well as details of our other Scottish trips, click here or call us on 0141 887 6777.