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Not sure WHERE to go this October! How does 7 days in Scotland sound?

Not sure WHERE to go this October! How does 7 days in Scotland sound?

Aug 1st, 2006, 12:01 PM
  #1  
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Not sure WHERE to go this October! How does 7 days in Scotland sound?

So, DH and I originally had a trip planned for this August to Alaska. However, we bought a house and then felt guilty about going - so we cancelled. Now that it is August, we are saying "we should have gone!!". So, we want to go on vacation - for real this time!
We want to go in October , and we just arent sure where to go! DH suggested Scotland. But we just arent sure if that is a good time to go.
If we did go to Scotland - we would probably go to Edinburgh for 2 days and then drive into the highlands - for 4 days? Is it doable to drive up to say - the isle of skye in the same trip as visiting Edinburgh?
A little about us - we are in our late 20's and enjoy the culture of a place, great scenery, museums, visiting historic sites, walking, sitting with drinks at a quirky bar, driving, being independant travellers, and seeing/doing a lot in a trip. Basically we have one week and a budget of about $3,000-$4,000.
Any Scotland itinerary suggestions or advice about other places to go for a week in October would be greatly appreciated.
steviegene is offline  
Aug 1st, 2006, 12:13 PM
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Sounds cold. Sounds wet. Just look at the climate data. Perhaps even a bit of snow at that time of year.

Shudder!

nukesafe is offline  
Aug 1st, 2006, 12:29 PM
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Hi, Not sure about the weather, although the days will obviously be shorter by then-remember that Scotland is pretty far north. Can tell you that the trip to Skye is certainly doable though. If you didn't want to drive there is the West Highland train--rated as one of the most beautiful in the world--I just loved it. Skye is beautiful--I expected to be disappointed, but I wasn't. It is however, highly weather dependent. Other suggestions are: Stirling, St. Andrews, Argyll, Isle of Mull. I didn't care for Glasgow much, but was there five years ago or so and I hear its changed. You could also just stay in Edinburgh and take day trips easily enough. Hope this helps
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Aug 1st, 2006, 02:09 PM
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so I guess it will be too unpleasant in scotland....hmmm. Is it a lot cheaper?
Any other suggestions for a week in october?
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Aug 1st, 2006, 02:19 PM
  #5  
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October is my favorite month in Italy -- how about Rome? Usually warm days and cool nights in the first two weeks of the month. You could take a few days of your week and visit Tuscany or the Amalfi coast if you don't want to spend all your time in a city.
 
Aug 1st, 2006, 02:24 PM
  #6  
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forgot to say we were in italy 2 years ago for our honeymoon, actually rome and amalfi coast! We loved it! but want to try something new...
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Aug 1st, 2006, 02:25 PM
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I lived in Edinburgh for a year. October is definitely not the best time to go. It can get cool and wet in Edinburgh, and even more so in the Highlands.

I would look at a more southern destination. Have you thought of North Africa?
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Aug 1st, 2006, 02:25 PM
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ooh, north africa? No havent thought about it. Where specifically?
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Aug 1st, 2006, 02:30 PM
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Sicily, Greece, Turkey, Provence, the Dordogne, Andalucia, central Italy would all be ideal in October.
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Aug 1st, 2006, 02:31 PM
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Scotland will be fine. Dress for the weather and you'll have a ball.

The weather may not be good, but it might be. The same is true of tomorrow.

Your idea is perfectly workable, and you could certainly make it to Skye.

Here's one option for youbr />
Day One- Edinburgh

Day Two-Edinburgh to Speyside

Drive north over the Forth Road Bridge and up the M90 to Perth. At Perth take the A93 through Blairgowrie to Glenshee, and down to Braemar and Deeside. This is where Lizzie Windsor has her summer place, much beloved of American tourists. It's also in a beautiful location and therefore worth the visit. Just at Crathie, which is where you will find Balmoral, if you're daft enough to want to, there's a sign to Royal Lochnagar distillery. (old Scottish joke- How deep is Lochnagar? Ha, ha, ha...it's a mountain!!! Well it's funny if you're five)It's not the best whisky in the world but there's no such thing as a bad malt and it does a good tour.

Come back onto the A93 and continue east a few miles till you see signs ponting left to Tomintoul. Take that road and go over Gairn Shiel to Corgarff then turn left towards Cockbridge and up over the Lecht to Tomintoul.

By now, you have crossed two of Scotland's highest roads, and it's not yet tea time. There's a very good whisky shop in Tomintoul (much better than the tourist trap on the Royal Mile in Edinburgh)and, incidentally, there is also a very good wood carver. I would suggest staying here.

Day 3, Tomintoul to Drumnadochit (but not in a straight line). Go back on your tracks a bit and follow the road down to Dufftown. Here you will find Glenfiddich distillery. Still not my favourite dram, but probably one of the best sellers in the world and almost certainly the best tour.

Follow the road down to the Spey at Aberlour (or Charlestown of Aberlour, to give it its Sunday name)You are right in the heart of Speyside, on the Whisky trail. If you want to see more, almost every second distillery is open to the public. If you have a favourite, ask at one of the tourist offices if they do a tour and just go along. The Macallan is pobably the best Speyside whisky, but Aberlour itself is a good second. Follow the river to Grantown then go up to Nethy Bridge on the south bank. Outside Nethy Bridge you will find Abernethy Forest and Loch Garten which is a huge nature reserve and is worth stopping at although the ospreys will have gone.

Drive on to Aviemore, close your eyes so you miss it (a travesty of 1960s planning) and go stright up to inverness on the A9. Spend a little time in Invernes and either spend the night here or (my choice) set off down Loch Ness towards Drumnadrochit, and find somewhere to stay on the lochside.

Day four- Loch Ness to Skye
Get up early and drive quickly down the Loch and then strike west to Kyle of Lochalsh and cross the bridge to Skye and spend the whole of the next day there. You can visit Dunvegan Castle, the Cuillin mountains, Portree, Isle Ornsay, Broadford, Uig, the Clan Donald centre and many more. Scenery terrific. Accommodations available include the Rosedale hotel in Portree and the Isle Ornsay Hotel, both of which are excellent but in different budget categories. An available castle is Kinloch Castle owned and run by Lady Clare MacDonald who is also a gourmet chef

Day Five- Skye to Glasgow

Take the ferry from the south end of Skye at Armadale to Mallaig then drive right east to Fort William through Morar and Arisaig. Drive down the coast road to Oban, through Kilmartin Glen and past Dunadd to Crinan; back to Lochgilphead and over to Inveraray. Cross the Rest and be Thankful to Arrochar on Loch Lomond, go down the lochside and back into Glasgow, and you're ready for home. Thatís a long day and could be easily split

sheila is offline  
Aug 1st, 2006, 02:35 PM
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Whoa sheila - thanks a lot!
Youre fabulous!
We'll see what the hubbie thinks of a chilly vacation...might be a nice cozy time with a lot of good excuses to slip into a pub!
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Aug 1st, 2006, 02:43 PM
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steviegene, Morocco and Tunisia would be really nice. I'd say Egypt, but with the Middle East situation, that would be a bit too close for my comfort.
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Aug 1st, 2006, 02:44 PM
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The weather in Scotland usually isn't bad in October. Might be, for sure but much more often it is very nice. Cool - but not snowy or freezing or even close. And the bit about short days really isn't so -- the shortening days don't really start until much later in the Fall.

For instance sunrise in Edinburgh in the middle of Oct are approx. 0730 and 1830 -- almost exactly same as in Portland Oregon.
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Aug 1st, 2006, 02:48 PM
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Oops - meant to edit out the "exactly" bit

Just meant "almost the same" - like about 5 or 6 minutes different at both ends of the day.

BTW - I LOVE Scotland in the Autumn.
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Aug 1st, 2006, 03:00 PM
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For Scotland just think of peat fires, the best whisky in the world, cheery pubs, beds piled high with fluffy blankets for those cold nights, some of the most beautiful scenery in the world, and few if any tourists. I know where I'd go!
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Aug 1st, 2006, 08:57 PM
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My husband is originally from Scotland, and we had five weeks there, including most of October, in 2002. We were possibly very lucky, but the weather was great the entire time (except for out last day, when we were rained out in Edinburgh). We saw rain in the distance some days, but we rarely needed an umbrella. The mornings were crisp and cold, and the days were mostly sunny. Definitely warm coats required, but we didn't have scarves or glovees. The most fantastic thing was that there were so few tourists outside the main areas. We had "Historic Scotland" passes, which give access to all their sites (mostly ruined castles, abbeys etc - our favourites!!) and most days we'd park and walk across a field or whatever to a castle where the only other person was the guy in the ticket box. A couple of times they gave us the key and we let outselves in because we were the only people to visit so far that day. It's the most amazing thing to have the whole place to yourselves.
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Aug 1st, 2006, 11:23 PM
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October is a great time for Italy - Tuscany in particular. Few tourists and the temperature is just right.
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Aug 2nd, 2006, 05:39 AM
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Ok, so the husband is a little skeptical about the weather- but I think he will REALLY enjoy scotland. His favorite places we've been so far have been England and Ireland....so I think he will love it. There is still some talk about doing a fly/drive in Portugal/Southern Spain. But here's my thoughts about Scotland -if anyone has advice...please!

It looks like Continental flies out of Newark directly to Edinburgh. Newark is a little less convenient for us - then laguardia or jfk, but it seems to be the only direct flight.

If we spend a day or two in Edinburgh -and then do a drive up to the highlands - lochs, isle of skye....would the wise thing be to fly out of Glasgow? Is Glasgow worth spending any time in?
steviegene is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2006, 05:44 AM
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OR, it just occurred to me...we could fly into Glasgow (also direct flight from Newark) do our driving and then fly out of Edinburgh. Suggestions?
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Aug 2nd, 2006, 05:51 AM
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It can sometimes be beautiful in October.
You do have to remember the shorter days, but cities like Edinburgh and London are at their best in October IMHO
There are very few tourists around and the Christmas rush has not started.
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