Itinerary for 5 1/2 days in Scotland

Old Jul 16th, 2012, 07:02 PM
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Itinerary for 5 1/2 days in Scotland

I would like to know if anyone has advice on the best way to spend 5 1/2 days in Scotland. We will be arriving in Edinburgh on Saturday around 12:00. Planning to stay in Edinburgh for three nights and leave there on Tuesday morning. I was thinking we would go to Glasgow on Tuesday then up to Oban on Wednesday/Thursday, and drive back to Edinburgh Thursday night. From what I have read on this forum, I have not allowed enough time to go to Oban and the islands of Mull and Iona. Should I skip Glasgow? The guidebooks make Glasgow sound fairly uninteresting. Any advice would be appreciated.
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Old Jul 16th, 2012, 07:55 PM
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You need to re-think most everything. 5.5 days is not enough time to tour around big swaths of Scotland - IF you are spending three of those days in Edinburgh. Sorry, but with or without Glasgow you don't have time for Mull/Iona.

Edinburgh to Fionnphort (on Mull across from Iona) takes about 6 hours PLUS the ferry. So basically a full day there and a full day back.

Now you could drive (or take the train) to Oban and stay overnight. Next morning take a day trip coach tour across to Mull/Iona and back to Oban that afternoon. Drive halfway back towards Edinburgh and stay the night. Then back to EDI to fly out.

That is a LOT of traveling for about 1 hour on Iona and 4.5 hours on Mull (mostly on the bus).

If you want 3 days in Edinburgh (which is a decent first taste), you'll want to stick to areas closer than the far west coast/islands.
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Old Jul 17th, 2012, 05:00 AM
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Thanks, Janisj! I will start a new plan.
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Old Jul 17th, 2012, 09:18 AM
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Scottish roads are not equivalent to US roads. Thus a 200 mile trip in Scotland will take far longer than the 3+ hours it takes to drive from Dallas to Houston.
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Old Jul 17th, 2012, 09:49 AM
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Check out Arran Island as an alternative - closer and 'Scotland in Miniature'
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Old Jul 19th, 2012, 09:23 AM
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But, sadly, no Iona on Arran
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Old Jul 19th, 2012, 10:44 AM
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That is true, Sheila...
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Old Jul 19th, 2012, 02:32 PM
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I would skip Glasgow - its a nice City - for shopping, eating, clubs but for a short stay you will get more of a taste of Scotland elsewhere.

Closer to Edinburgh are the Scottish Borders which consist of beautiful rolling hills - more gentle than the highlands. There are several ruined, romantic Abbeys like Jedburgh, Melrose, Dryburgh and the area is linked by the river tweed. If you like castles, I highly recommend Floors Castle - it is still lived in and you feel like you are getting a real taste of the family that stays there. There is also Roslyn Chapel made famous by the Davinci code.

From Edinburgh you can go north to Perth, Aberfeldy, The Queen's View, Pitlochery which will get you to the start of the Highlands and some larger, more rugged mountains. You could also consider Loch Lomond.
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