family vacation to Scotland

Old Jan 5th, 2020, 10:06 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 12
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
family vacation to Scotland

Hi again,
I did some more research and had good advice from janisj regarding our family trip to Scotland. 2 weeks in July, but basically 12 days visiting. Here is my tentative itinerary, feel free to critique it and suggest your ideas. We are flying to and from Glasgow as it is much cheaper than Edinburgh and renting a car for sightseeing:
- day 0: arrive in glasgow by plane
- day 1: leave glasgow to loch lomond, inverarary, oban
- day 2 and 3: isle of mull
- day 4: drive to glencoe, glennfinnan viaduct, mallaig
- day 5, 6, 7: isle of skye
- day 8: eilean donan castle, urquart castle
- day 9: stirling castle
- day 10, 11: edinburgh
- day 12: drive back to glasgow
- day 13: plane back home
I think it is pretty packed so not sure about it since we are traveling with kids (ages 6, 9, 11). What do you think? Any suggestions? Thank you!
lucja is offline  
Old Jan 5th, 2020, 04:14 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 68,361
Likes: 0
Received 50 Likes on 7 Posts
This is a very-island-centric itinerary. Both are wonderful but are light on the castle front and long on water. Also not much tie in Edinburgh. Absolutely nothing wrong with that really, but if you have dreadful weather (which is a possibility at any time of year) you'd be stuck on islands (at least on the mainland there are museums, towns, more castles to fill time when it is raining sideways. I'd bite the bullet and choose one of the islands - either Mull w/ Iona, or Skye. Plus you have Glasgow twice building in an extra hotel stay on an already short trip.

I'd consider something like this (lots of variations are possible but this is just to get you thinking . . . and there are seldom one-way car drop off fees or if there are they are minimal You list day 0 as your arrival day so I'm working with 14 days total)

- day 1: arrive in Glasgow and immediately travel Edinburgh (via a frequent / fast train from central Glasgow.)
- days 2 - 4 Edinburgh (maybe one day take a Rabbies day tour to St Andrews/Fife or the Borders or the Highlands) This will let you be well recovered from the jet lag before driving.
- day 5 Travel out to EDI and collect rental car. Drive to Stirling, visit castle. Also visit Doune and/or Inchmahome. You should have plenty of time to visit all 3 in one day. Stay in Callander or nearby
- day 6: drive to glencoe - stay one night there. Visit Killin and Glen Etive en route
- day 7 Drive to Skye via the bridge - see Eilean Donan en route - you could even take a detour and see Urquhart. Stay at Sligachan or in Portree
- days 7-9 Skye
- day 10 drive to Armadale and take the ferry to Mallaig. See Glenfinnan and carry on through Ft William to Oban. Stay in Oban
- day 11 see Kilmartin and Inveraray then drive along Loch Lomond Drop car at GLA
- day 12-13: Glasgow
- day 14 fly home,
janisj is offline  
Old Jan 5th, 2020, 04:18 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 68,361
Likes: 0
Received 50 Likes on 7 Posts
I think that's clear but just in case -- I meant staying night 11 in central Glasgow after dropping the car out at the airport.

That would give you 3 nights / 2 days in Glasgow.

(sorry for the typos but hopefully you get the drift )
janisj is offline  
Old Jan 5th, 2020, 06:03 PM
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 12
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thank you so much janisj for all your ideas. I think your itinerary sounds fantastic. I will go with that. The only question is whether to do it in your order or the opposite, starting in glasgow and finishing in edinburgh. Any thoughts? Also any suggestions of places to stay or restaurants that you think of? Thanks again!
lucja is offline  
Old Jan 5th, 2020, 06:16 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 68,361
Likes: 0
Received 50 Likes on 7 Posts
You could do it clockwise or counter clockwise . . . But the reason I laid it out the way I did was to be IN Glasgow the night before your flight out (always a good idea to be in one's departure city that night).

Re where to stay -- depends on your budget??

What sort(s) of food do you enjoy?
janisj is offline  
Old Jan 6th, 2020, 08:32 AM
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 12
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
In terms of places to stay, we are on a budget, with 3 kids, so decent hotels or apartments or B&B with private restroom would do. Do you know of any sites that I should look into? Maybe expedia or airbnb or are there any local sites as well? In terms of restaurants, we would like to try scottish food but nothing too pricey or upscale and obviously kid friendly, if you have anything in mind, let me know. Thanks!
lucja is offline  
Old Jan 6th, 2020, 08:39 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 20,704
Received 4 Likes on 4 Posts
Booking.com is pretty good for the UK. airbnb ok.

Glasgow has a pretty old University and, depending on dates, they may have good deals.
Don't ignore https://www.hostellingscotland.org.uk which is often very good value and by being a member you get better deals.

Local town websites are often good value https://peoplemakeglasgow.com/visiti...-accommodation

Last edited by bilboburgler; Jan 6th, 2020 at 08:41 AM.
bilboburgler is online now  
Old Jan 6th, 2020, 09:05 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 68,361
Likes: 0
Received 50 Likes on 7 Posts
For Glencoe definitely try for the Clachaig https://clachaig.com It is VERY popular and does book up far in advance.

In Edinburgh -- there are lots of flat rental sites -- mostly depends on your budget (need a £ - or even $ - number). or Try the Uni -- they do really budget friendly accommodations. https://www.universityrooms.com/en-G...edinburgh/home

For Skye -- it is almost a matter of take what you can get -- The Island has become insanely popular and many places book up months in advance. If You can get into the Sligachan, do. It isn't the 'best' property but it has the most central locations on the isle for touring around -- would cut some of your drive times significantly. Sligachan Hotel
janisj is offline  
Old Jan 6th, 2020, 09:07 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 68,361
Likes: 0
Received 50 Likes on 7 Posts
. . . I also agree that booking.com is often the easiest because most types of places (rentals, B&Bs, hotels in every price range), are listed
janisj is offline  
Old Jan 6th, 2020, 02:56 PM
  #10  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 12
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thank you bilboburgler and janisj. Will look into those sites.
lucja is offline  
Old Jan 6th, 2020, 04:06 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 274
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
We used AirBnB and had a great apartment listed by Gill, a superhost, on the Royal Mile in Edinburgh. I can send it to you on DM if you are interested. I would definitely tour Edinburgh Castle while there. Also, this group offers free walking tours all over Europe: https://www.neweuropetours.eu/edinburgh-walking-tours/
lrice is offline  
Old Jan 6th, 2020, 04:22 PM
  #12  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 12
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thank you lrice! Yes, that would be great, you can pm me.
lucja is offline  
Old Jan 7th, 2020, 08:41 AM
  #13  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 12
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
One quick question: the train from Glasgow to Edinburgh: which site do I find information on ticket prices and schedule and also, should I book the tickets in advance, does it come out cheaper? Thank you!
lucja is offline  
Old Jan 7th, 2020, 08:57 AM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 68,361
Likes: 0
Received 50 Likes on 7 Posts
Booking ahead saves nothing. There is only one rail company on that line - Scotrail. And the journey from Glasgow Queen Street to Edinburgh Waverly takes between about 45 mins and 1:20 depending on the exact schedule/number of stops.


janisj is offline  
Old Jan 7th, 2020, 09:00 AM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 68,361
Likes: 0
Received 50 Likes on 7 Posts
. . . Fare will be about £18.50 - £21 depending on peak vs off peak times so really doesn't make any difference what time you travel.
janisj is offline  
Old Jan 7th, 2020, 09:45 AM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 6,134
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I’ll just add the the train is often very crowded. I started paying for 1st class several years ago just to be sure I got a seat. So, advise you to be at platform early to board early. Note that I always take morning train if traveling later it may or may not be a problem.
historytraveler is offline  
Old Jan 7th, 2020, 10:00 AM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 68,361
Likes: 0
Received 50 Likes on 7 Posts
Originally Posted by historytraveler View Post
Iíll just add the the train is often very crowded. I started paying for 1st class several years ago just to be sure I got a seat. So, advise you to be at platform early to board early. Note that I always take morning train if traveling later it may or may not be a problem.
And First Class on that route is only about £26 so a good option if one has luggage -- HOWEVER on that very short/very frequent route only maybe every 4th or 5th train has a first class carriage. It is really mostly a one-class commuter run.
janisj is offline  
Old Jan 7th, 2020, 02:49 PM
  #18  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 12
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thank you guys. So from what I understand, when we land at Glasgow airport, just to go to the railway station (is it at the airport itself?) and buy tickets there and wait for the train to Edinburgh?
lucja is offline  
Old Jan 7th, 2020, 02:56 PM
  #19  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 12
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Also one quick question, I looked into car rentals on auto-europe and I was a little confused. It looks like for a car for 5 people it is less than 300 $ CAN for a week (July 21 to 27), which is like 200$ US. This is the same price as car rental for 1 day in Canada so I am wondering if it is a daily rate and I must have not understood it or is it really for the dates I put in (about a week duration)?
lucja is offline  
Old Jan 7th, 2020, 03:09 PM
  #20  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 68,361
Likes: 0
Received 50 Likes on 7 Posts
>>Thank you guys. So from what I understand, when we land at Glasgow airport, just to go to the railway station (is it at the airport itself?) and buy tickets there and wait for the train to Edinburgh?<<

No -- there is no train station at GLA (there is one a mile away but trains from there don't go to Edinburgh) . There is a quick bus from the airport to the center of Glasgow and stops at George Square which is across the street from the train station.

No that would not be the daily rate. I have usually paid between US$20 and $40 per day for rentals in Scotland depending on the size of car I need. -- Autoeurope is typically VERY clear about the full price -- they split out rates with and without full insurance coverage.
janisj is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 07:26 AM.