Scotland itinerary help

Old Nov 19th, 2016, 07:27 AM
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Agree with Gardyloo. I frequently stay in Oban for the convenience of getting to the islands. I also really like The Manor House where I stay. Very nice place with beautiful views. Take a look at one of Oban's websites www.oban.org.uk. BTW most people who go to there are unaware of Kerrera, Dunollie etc.
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Old Nov 19th, 2016, 07:40 AM
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If you're going to Pitlochry, there are 2 nearby distilleries, Blair Athol and cute little Edradour.
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Old Nov 19th, 2016, 08:33 AM
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I cant thank you all enough for your suggestions! I am almost certain we will do 3 nights in Pitlochry. The day we arrive in Pitlochry we could do a walk from town before or after dinner, the next day perhaps Blair castle, Killecrankie and House of Bruar (still looking into this one), and the following day Glamis castle, Dunkeld and Eradour. Would this still give us enough time to fit in a couple scenic walks from town (Pitlochry) before dinner or perhaps the morning prior to leaving? It appears it will stay light until very late in June which helps. Would you recommend stopping in Glencoe for a walk on the way to Oban? I am thinking we would stay in Oban for 2 nights using it as a base for Kerrera, assuming we don't have time for both Mull and Kerrera given our timeline. Lastly - any suggestions for stops on the way back to Glasgow from Oban?
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Old Nov 19th, 2016, 12:03 PM
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Kerrera has two routes, the northern and southern. The southern route ( my favorite ) takes about 4 hours. Mull really takes a full day but highly recommend.

For places to stop on way to Glasgow, Kilmartin Glen and Carnasserie Castle.
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Old Nov 19th, 2016, 12:09 PM
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>> Mull really takes a full day<< or more. Still highly recommended.
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Old Nov 19th, 2016, 02:57 PM
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Ok great - Mull it is then for our full day after first night in Oban...I found somewhere that we have 3 choices on a day trip to Mull: 1)Head south to the Ross of Mull and Iona 2) Stay in the vicinity of Craignure and do Duart and Torosay castles or 3) Head north to Tobermory. Is this accurate and should we stick to one of these options? Assuming we should take our car over with us?

Kerrera may have to wait until next time unless we are able to go the morning prior to our trip back to Glasgow. We will play that part by ear.

Thoughts on whether a hike is doable on the way from Pitlochry to Oban? If so - what are our options?
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Old Nov 19th, 2016, 03:17 PM
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You can traverse most of Mull ( from Craignure to Fionnphort ) with a stop at Duart Castle. At Fionnphort take the ferry over to Iona and visit the Abbey with a quick look at the ruined Augustinian nunnery. There are some excellent walks on Iona you may have time for a short one. Have lunch at St.Columba's Hotel near the Abbey. Excellent. Then back to Fionnphort. The ferry runs frequently.

After driving back to Craignure you may have time for a quick look at Tobermory about 30/40 minute drive from the ferry dock. Another option is to take a short trip via boat out to Staffa and Fingal's Cave at Fionnphort, but if you do, you'll likely have to eliminate something else. The trips to Staffa are weather dependent.

I think Torosay Castle is no longer an option. Things may have changed since I was there a couple of years ago. It as up for sale last I heard.
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Old Nov 19th, 2016, 03:23 PM
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Just checked and Torosay Castle is closed.
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Old Nov 19th, 2016, 03:37 PM
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You are talking day trip right? Not staying over night. In that case I would head out to Fionnphort. Visit Iona, then take a boat trip to Staffa IF the timing works - then head back and visit Duart Castle before boarding the ferry.

But IMO/IME one really (REALLY should stay on Mull one night (Preferably in Fionnphort) using the first day for Duart, Iona/Staffa and the second day to circle around via Calgary Bay and Tobermory and back to Craignure for a late afternoon ferry.. Mull is a fabulous place and needs some time.

But -- IF you aren't staying over, you might as well take a tour from Oban and save the cost of taking the car on the ferry -- they will bus you across to Fionnphort.
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Old Nov 19th, 2016, 03:56 PM
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<i>Thoughts on whether a hike is doable on the way from Pitlochry to Oban? If so - what are our options?</i>

On one of your Pitlochry days, or in a pinch on your way to Oban, take a drive up Glen Lyon to the very pretty village of Fortingall. Glen Lyon is generally overlooked by overseas travelers, because it's basically a cul-de-sac, but it's one of Scotland's most beautiful glens, especially in the autumn when the mist settles in and the sunlight, when it's available, turns the entire world to gold.

(But I digress poetically... oy. You'll be visiting in June.) Fortingall is unusual in Scotland for having a number of thatched buildings, a terrific pub and hotel, and - in the churchyard - the Fortingall Yew tree, apparently one of the oldest living things on Earth. Pontius Pilate was ostensibly born in Fortingall during Roman days; the tree would have been mature then. A walk around Fortingall would be a marvelous thing - it's a lovely and rather hidden place. http://www.undiscoveredscotland.co.u...all/index.html

Anyway, on your way to Oban, if time permits I'd travel via the A82 rather than the more direct A85. That would take you through Glen Coe, but I would strongly urge you detour before reaching Glen Coe to Glen Etive, the road to which branches from the A82 right on the west edge of the Rannoch Moor.

Glen Etive is spectacularly beautiful and, unlike adjacent Glen Coe, is very empty of people, tour buses and cars. The single-track road (with passing places) follows the River Etive toward Loch Etive where the road ends. Along the road there are plenty of places to pull over (NOT in a passing place!) and walk out to the river or just listen to the wind or maybe some sheep. A couple of photos which really don't do it justice:

Buachaille Etive Mor at the top of the Glen - http://gardyloo.us/20130613_71Hs.jpg and a scene along the road a few miles into the glen - http://gardyloo.us/20130613_96ha.jpg

http://www.undiscoveredscotland.co.u...ive/index.html

One or both of these stops will add between 30 and 60 minutes total drive time, but remember in June daylight in Scotland lasts until very late.

Map - https://goo.gl/maps/y3VbfgyP9HJ2
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Old Nov 19th, 2016, 04:00 PM
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Meant to say, 30 to 60 minutes not counting time to drive down and back Glen Etive or for exploring Fortingall and/or Glen Lyon.
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Old Nov 19th, 2016, 04:17 PM
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I've stayed in Fortingall twice (and driven through it/Glen Lyon 5 or 6 other times). And it really is different than other villages you will see -- squint just right and you will think your are in SW England w/ the thatched cottages (ignoring all the evergreens)
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Old Nov 19th, 2016, 05:23 PM
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I've haven't yet managed to stay in Fortingall, but it is certainly on my bucket list. Highly recommend if possible.
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Old Nov 19th, 2016, 07:02 PM
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Argh, this gets more and more difficult! Love the specific suggestions though - thank you, this is exactly what I need to help guide and make my decisions. Would it make sense to perhaps 1 night in between Pitlochry and Oban to 1) Take advantage of a full day hike in Loch Lomond, and 2) Make it more feasable for us to get to Mull to stay the last 2 nights? I was originally planning on staying in Oban just because i thought it would be too much to drive from Pitlochry to Mull in one stretch given the stops and scenery along the way. If this is a good plan, where to stay in between? My new itinerary would look something like:

Day 1 - Arrive and explore Edinburgh, sleep Edinburgh
Day 2 - Explore Edinburgh, sleep Edinburgh
Day 3 - Stirling Castle, Glamis castle, Edra Dour distillary, Pitlochry, sleep Pitlochry
Day 4 - Walk/Hike near Pitlochry, possible day trip, sleep Pitlochry
Day 5 - Drive to Glencoe, stops Glen Etive, possible long hill walk, sleep where???
Day 6 - Drive to Mull, sleep Mull
Day 7 - Explore Mull, sleep Mull
Day 8 - AM unsure (more Mull depending on what was accomplished 1st day, or plan on stops between Mull and Glasgow)

Does this look ok? What changes would you suggest if any?
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Old Nov 19th, 2016, 07:11 PM
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http://www.clachaig.com/ Stay here perhaps?
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Old Nov 19th, 2016, 07:36 PM
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The Clachaig Inn, absolutely!
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Old Nov 19th, 2016, 07:50 PM
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Absolutely stay at the Clachaig. Fun place in a great location.

Mostly nice and mostly doable. But IME Day 3 in pretty much impossible. Stirling is a 2 to 3 hour stop (it is massive). Glamis Castle is a 2 to 3 hour stop. And the drive EDI > Stirling > Glamis > Pitlochry would take a minimum of 4 hours so easily a 10 hour day for just the two castles plus a meal. No way you'd get to the distillery before closing. But you could visit Edradour the next morning at opening time and still have plenty of time for a hike/walk.

Take a mid-morning ferry off Mull and there are several options what to see enroute to GLA. Via Inveraray and Loch Fyne then along the lower half of Loch Lomodn, or via Crianlarish and down the A82 all the way along Loch Lomond.

Anywhere towards the southern end of Loch Lomond would be an easy drive the next morning to GLA.
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Old Nov 20th, 2016, 09:51 AM
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Ok and another question on the Pitlochry stay..originally I was attracted to that area because of the ability to take walks from town, and the castles/distilleries and options near by for day trips. However - it appears that Dunkeld might be a bit more authentic/less touristy and still close to all above? We definitely want some local music and good eats within walking distance, it looks like both places would offer that, but what are your thoughts on advantages of one place over the other? I
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Old Nov 20th, 2016, 10:15 AM
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I Love Dunkeld -- really pretty and IMO nicer (though smaller) than Pitlochry.

Did want to comment though -- It seems you picked the Pitlochry area because walks and Edradour. There are <u>countless</u> towns/villages in Scotland that offer >> walks from town, and the castles/distilleries and options near by for day trips<<

In fact just about ANY town in the highlands/Islands will have all of that (and in the Lowlands as well)
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Old Nov 20th, 2016, 10:43 AM
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Re: The House of Bruar. We stopped there to look around for about an hour and have lunch. It is a collection of buildings (bigger than I had thought) filled with lovely but expensive things. I enjoyed a short time there, and it worked well for lunch for us, but I would only stop if I was going by and had the time. I should add that I am not a shopper by nature, and there are so any other things to do and see. Have a look at their web site to get a better idea.

Jane
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