Scotland driving times

Old Apr 27th, 2005, 08:21 AM
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Scotland driving times

After reading countless threads here, we've decided that after arriving in Edinburgh (early May), we would book a cottage near Oban for the week and just do day trips, some long and some shorter. 1st question: is it feasible to go as far as Inverness and return the same day from Oban? 2nd: How long should it take us to drive back from Oban to Edinburgh airport for a 10:30am flight? Can it be done, starting as early as 6am? Or should we plan to return the night before and stay in Edinburgh or near the airport? Thanks for all the great reading so far!
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Old Apr 27th, 2005, 08:58 AM
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Check out theaa.com -- the site has a route planner that you might find useful. We used it last year when we drove around Scotland and found it to be pretty reliable in terms of time.
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Old Apr 27th, 2005, 09:30 AM
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1.Yes you can go to Inverness and back in a day from Oban.

2.It's maybe 2 - 2 1/2 hours from Oban to Edinburgh.

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Old Apr 27th, 2005, 09:31 AM
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Yes - you could drive from Oban, visit Glencoe in the morning, drive along Loch Ness w/ a stop at Urquhart Castle, and visit Culloden in the late afternoon before driving back to Oban. There really isn't any reason to go all the way to Inverness unless you want to see Culloden or something else in the area. Inverness itself is no great shakes.

As for the 10:30 flight - yes you could make it - but it would be a long drive under a bit of pressure to get there on time. And a wreck on the M9 could mess you up. I personally would want to be closer to Edinburgh for a morning flight. I'd consider leaving the cottage in the evening - days are long in May so it would still be daylight - and stay near Linlithgow or Falkirk - or even right at the airport. You won't be getting anything much out of the last night at the cottage anyway (except of course, that it is paid for) because you'd have to leave so early in the a.m.
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Old Apr 27th, 2005, 11:52 AM
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Thanks, everyone, that clears up a few things. I think we may miss Inverness, but only go as far as Urquhart Castle. Our thinking was to stay at the cottage until the morning we leave - as you said, it's paid for already! But now we have what we need to know to decide.
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Old Apr 27th, 2005, 01:50 PM
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One thing to remember if your flight from Edinburgh is on the weekend: We ran into horrendous traffic around the airport last May due to some car show or antiques fair or something nearby. Maybe somebody familiar with Edinburgh can explain why, but I just assumed there is some type of exhibition hall in the area. The traffic was literally at a crawl and what should have taken 20 minutes took about an hour!
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Old Apr 27th, 2005, 02:35 PM
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The Royal Highland Centre, where such events are held, is next to the airport. If you're worried, you could probably check their website and see if anything's scheduled that might affect you.
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Old Apr 28th, 2005, 03:43 PM
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A 10:30 flight from Edinburgh prsumably means checking in around 8 or 8.30 a.m. If it's a weekday don't even think about driving any distance into Edinburgh at that time in the morning. All routes from the west, north west and north converge on a big interchange at Newbridge. It's almost in sight of the airport but you could be stuck there for ever on a bad day. OK, you could get lucky and have no delays at all, but if you get held up by an accident / breakdwon / road works, your plane won't wait. Find a hotel on the airport complex, or in the west end of Edinburgh, with a courtesy bus to the airport, and let them do the worrying.
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Old Apr 28th, 2005, 05:39 PM
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Thanks, KT. I figured it had to be something like that. I also remember that we were coming from Dunkeld and wanted to go across the Firth of Forth Bridge, but found it was closed due to ?? (I don't remember). We ended up having to take a detour that added a considerable amount of time to our trip on top of all the traffic around the airport. Fortunately, we weren't going to the airport for a flight, just to return our rental car since we knew we wouldn't need it in Edinburgh. But it really frayed the old nerves a bit!
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