Scotland - Help with Itinerary

Apr 24th, 2007, 05:08 AM
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Scotland - Help with Itinerary

Right now, our itinerary consists of:

Friday-Sunday nights in Edinburgh (may spend one day in Glasgow)

Monday night in Glenfinnan (possibly check out Lomond/Trossachs on way)

Tuesday/Wednesday nights in Portree (Skye)

We have one more day and night before we return to Edinburgh the night before our flight. Where should we go? We're both low maintenance and like both cities and countryside. We like history and architecture and watching the world go by. My sis is more into hiking then I am, though I don't mind a leisurely scenic walk.

We're both used to long drives (within reason). Any ideas?

mowrites is offline  
Apr 24th, 2007, 06:16 AM
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How about Fort William and take the train to/from Mallaig?
GBbabe is offline  
Apr 24th, 2007, 02:59 PM
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Thanks. We're now thinking of Glencoe for the Thursday night, staying at the Clachaig Inn. It seems we'll be backtracking toward Edinburgh along pretty much the same route, but it also seems like there's so much to see along that route we could just make a point of stopping at different places on the way out and the way back. Does that make sense? (P.S. I'm the sister.)
Doriana is offline  
Apr 24th, 2007, 11:07 PM
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Go on further west than on teh road up and stay somewhere about Dunkeld, giving you a chance to see Loch Tay and some of Highland Perthshire.
sheila is offline  
Apr 25th, 2007, 04:11 AM
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Haven't been there for a while but we absolutely loved Sterling Castle and going to the Wallace Monument. Not far from Edinburgh and on the way to Glasgow - you may want to check it out.
plpreston is offline  
Apr 25th, 2007, 04:41 AM
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I wouldn't backtrack either. Follow Sheila's suggestion and see a different part of Scotland. I'd drive off Skye via the bridge, take the A87 past the Five Sisters (beautiful scenery), then south a bit to Invergarry then east through Glen Spean on the A86, cut over to the A9 through Blair Atholl and Pitlochry. There are a host of places to stop, depending on your interests and lots of really pretty views. Pitlochry has the Edradour distillery, the smallest in Scotland, which is very nice.
noe847 is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 06:36 PM
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Thanks for all your advice. We're now torn between Pitlochry and Dunkeld. Any thoughts? Some comments I've seen have suggested that Pitlochry is overrun with motorcoaches. Exaggeration? This will be in a couple of weeks, so at least it won't be high tourist season. Also, I was worried about driving after touring distilleries, though a friend who did said the wee dram they serve you is truly a wee dram, so I don't need to worry about that. Is that others' experience also?
Doriana is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 06:50 PM
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Dunkeld is a really lovely place. Nicer than Pitlochry.

Stopping at one distillery and having one sample would be fine - it isn't like in the Napa Valley where there are 35 wineries w/i 5 miles of each other.
janisj is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 06:58 PM
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Take a look at Tantallon Castle. You should find it here
LeighTravelClub is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 07:03 PM
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Interesting as it is, how would Tantallon fit into this itinerary? It is east of Edinburgh and not near anything else they are visiting.
janisj is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 08:09 PM
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janisj, I am well aware of the location of Tantallon Castle, having lived in this area for the first twenty years of my life. I sudgested here because it's a less visited castle and in an area full of interest. Some of the best walks in Scotland are around here. Wonderful coastal views, The Bass Rock, The May Island, Traprain and North Berwick Laws, Dunbar Castle, Dirleton Castle, Aberlady bird reserve, the links around Gullane, Muirfield golf course etc. etc. etc.
The list is endless.

A good area to end their trip to Scotland and very close to Edinburgh.

Just an opinion from a scotsman trying to be helpful.
LeighTravelClub is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 08:23 PM
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I have not been to Dunkeld, although I have no doubt it is great and probably nicer than staying in Pitlochry.

However, if you find yourself in Pitlochry, I'm here to tell you that it would not be the end of the world. We had events that brought us to Pitlochry in 2003 and 2005. We spent a full day and an overnight each time, and I will say that we had a nice time in the town and the surrounding area.

It is true that there are a lot of tourists, and the downtown businesses are pretty much totally tourist oriented, but the town is quite pretty. We visited The Edradour distillery, and also followed the walking path behind the town, along the fish ladder and across the suspension foot bridge. There's a very nice restaurant back that way where we enjoyed dinner:

While I know this doesn't fit your particular schedule, on Monday nights in the summer there is a Highland entertainment night (Bagpipe band, Scottish country dancing, Highland dancing, fiddle I think) outside in this grassy ampitheatre. It is quite a hoot. People sit on the terraced hillside or park their cars in a semicircle facing in. There is lots of audience participation; people applaud and cheer, cars flash their lights and honk their horns. We saw it both years, and I think the jokes were the same, but still funny.

That all being said, if I were in your place, based on the strong recommendations here, I'd probably go for Dunkeld.

If you have time along the drive, Blair Castle is worth a look (and has a nice tearoom/cafeteria), and you can walk up the hill behind it to the old town/church ruins.

Also nice is the Queen's View, just a few miles from Blair. It's a spectacular view just a few yards from a small car park.
noe847 is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 08:27 PM
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Of course - Tantallon is wonderful, as is Dirleton, North Berwick, etc. etc. etc - and the list IS endless. But the poor OPs are already having trouble narrowing down what to see w/o having even more info/territory (in the opposite direction) to digest . . . .

We can all recommend really wonderful places off their chosen route - but there simply isn't time to do/see it all.
janisj is offline  
Apr 28th, 2007, 08:17 PM
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Dunkeld is IMO an excellent place to visit.The cathedral is located in a particularily scenic setting beside the River Tay. Although the cathedral was resored in the 19th c., traces of the 12th c. structure still remain. The cathedral contains an effigy of the Wolf of Badenoch,one of Scotland's more interesting historical figures.

If you're interesteed in doing any walks, this spot has a number of trails to select from. The area is quite beautiful and was once an important center for the Celtic church.

The National Trust of Scotland has restored many of the houses and shops surrounding the cathedral, making for an extremly pleasant spot.

While Tantallon Castle is a worthy stop, it really does not fit into your current itinerary.
historytraveler is offline  
Apr 29th, 2007, 09:05 AM
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Thanks historytraveler. We did settle on Dunkeld, so that's good to hear!
Doriana is offline  

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