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Scotland with minimal driving?

Old Jun 6th, 2006, 07:06 AM
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Scotland with minimal driving?

We're meeting my parents for a week in Scotland this August. My mom prefers not to move from hotel to hotel. Is this possible in Scotland or are we going to miss out on a lot? If we were going to pick just 2 different areas to stay in (i.e., just 1 hotel change), what do you recommend?
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Old Jun 6th, 2006, 07:22 AM
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If you have a week I would definitely consider renting a cottage for the whole time.

Or next best is to use two bases like you mention, staying in 2 B&Bs or hotels .

In either case you can do day trips w/i a large circle and come "home" every night.

As an example (depending on what you want to see) a cottage somewhere in the Trossachs near Callander would let you do day trips everywhere from Stirling, to Loch Lomond, Glencoe/Loch Ness, Perth/Blair atholl, Edinburgh (best by train rather than driving into the city), Glasgow, Oban, Culross, Falkirk, or even St Andrews.

If you wanted 2 bases - you have tons of choices. Edinburgh/near Inverness, Trossachs/Aberdeenshire, Skye/Edinburgh, Borders/Perthshire, etc etc etc. Just depends on what you want to see.
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Old Jun 6th, 2006, 11:43 AM
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For August I think one of your choices must be Edinburgh as at that time of year there are numerous Festivals and events ongoing.

Edinburgh Military Tattoo website www.edintattoo.co.uk

Edinburgh Fringe Festival www.edfringe.com

Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival www.jazzmusic.co.uk

Edinburgh Book Festival www.edbookfest.co.uk

Edinburgh International Festival of Music and Drama www.eif.com

Edinburgh Film Festival www.edfilmfest.org to name but a few.

Apart from the usual historic buildings and attractions there are literally thousands of shows and events ongoing so there must be something for everyone. (Possibly apart from accommodation which seems to be getting slightly more difficult) I would suggest a self catering apartment rather than hotel as it will be cheaper, more convenient and you can eat out or eat in as you prefer. There is so much going on that you will no doubt eat out as you go.

As Janisj mentions you then have numerous other choices such as Skye for which you will need a car, Inverness, Fort William, the Trossachs etc.

Edinburgh will be very busy but offers more choices for everyone throughout the whole day and into the night, although some of the other places will be reasonably busy they will be more relaxed.

It depends on the preferences of your family and yourself.
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Old Jun 6th, 2006, 11:55 AM
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But the corollary of August being festival time in Edinburgh is that it will be extremely difficult, if not impossible, to book accomodation there now.
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Old Jun 6th, 2006, 12:39 PM
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When I put Edinburgh in the "base pairs" I didn't mean staying IN Edinburgh, but somewhere w/i about 30 or 40 miles. Unfortunately, it is waaaaaay too late to be trying to book accomodations for Edinburgh - especially for 4. Edinburgh books full up from about the 3rd week in July through early Sept. In August most B&Bs and flats are spoken for by about March.

So I'd forget about trying to find rooms there and just visit the city as a day trip by train from where ever you end up staying.
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Old Jun 6th, 2006, 01:20 PM
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Edinburgh Tattoo was booked out months ago.

The program for the Fringe BTW is available from thursday
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Old Jun 6th, 2006, 11:40 PM
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If you mean to minimise your time in a car a single base will not help you. Two would be better. If your concern is moving hotels then a central location- Dunkeld, Aberfeldy, Comrie, Crieff- would work well as a base from which you could radiate.
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Old Jun 6th, 2006, 11:40 PM
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Do not be put off with some of the comments re Edinburgh accommodation and events being full or sold out.
I have just checked on the Tattoo website and they are frequently offering tickets. tattoo website www.edintattoo.co.uk There is also a comment put on only yesterday, on the tripadvisor.com website forum confirming this from someone who has just bought tickets.

Similarly there are still plenty of places with accommodation for August.

Look at some of the other websites not the booking section of visitscotland.com as they only push the accommodation providers who pay them commission. Go to the smaller individual accommodation providers who are highly graded but who are not linked to the visitscotland booking system and you will probably get accommodation.
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Old Jun 6th, 2006, 11:55 PM
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Must be returns - or for the preview - as the tattoo website says that it was sold out in February
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Old Jun 7th, 2006, 04:51 AM
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meks: I never said events were all sold out (though the Tattooo certainly is) - I said rooms are VERY difficult to get. Sure, someone might find a room - it will probably either be a last minute cancelleation - or a dump. Not such good options for the OP and her parents.

Kristin7701: Sheila is right about one base not eliminating driving. But it definitelynwould eliminate packing/moving from hotel to hotel.

Depending on what areas you want to visit - either 1 base/rental cottage or 2 bases/hotels would work fine.
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Old Jun 7th, 2006, 06:25 AM
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I think that you are well out of date with your accommodation comments and the fact that in August there are mainly dumps available.
There are now literally thousands of bed spaces available in Edinburgh with more and more hotels, apartments etc continually coming on stream.
A lot of visitors are now shying away from the bigger hotels (supposedly better) because although they are graded as four star and highly priced etc they are not receiving good reviews from guests. Just look at the Edinburgh Hotel reviews on www.tripadvisor.com and you wil see what I mean. More travellers now do their homework approach forums and look at previous guests comments and reviews on the likes of www.tripadvisor.com and www.slowtrav.com before they book.
Apartments seem to be coming more fashionable. especially those where the providers are flexible with start and finish days and the length of time they can be rented.
I have just looked at the wide choice on www.visitscotland.com website and there are numerous good hotels / accommodations available in August. For example Fountain Court Apartments who have three complexes which generally all receive good reviews (6th, 7th and 12th in the placings of Edinburgh hotels) have a availabilty throughout the whole of August. There are numerous other groups of accommodation providers with good properties available so you can get good accommodation if needed.
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Old Jun 10th, 2006, 12:07 PM
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Your choice of bases depends on what you are want to do. Are you looking for culture, history, shopping or quiet?
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