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Time restriction...places to go in western scotland

Time restriction...places to go in western scotland

Feb 21st, 2007, 11:02 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 11
Time restriction...places to go in western scotland

Hi. thank you all for your help in choosing scotland. the problem now is that it doesnt look like we have enough time to make it up to the isle of skye or the north west highlands (in between skye and inverness) which is what I originally wanted to do.

we are meeting up as a family in edinburgh on friday-sunday, then after we'd like to explore some fun country side and enjoy the local culture. unfortunately my dad must fly back to the US on the next friday (a week after arrival).

1.how long is the drive from edinburgh to isle of sky?
2.are there a couple of interesting places we could see monday-thursday in the trossachs area, central highlands, or the western islands/penninsulas?

our main priority is to see some of scotlands stunning landscape over those 4 or 5 days.

thanks so much for your help!
strikerpc is offline  
Feb 21st, 2007, 11:38 AM
Join Date: Dec 2006
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Have you considered taking a train instead? You could go from Edinburgh to Inverness, take the scenic train across to Skye (basically), and then another train south. Gorgeous scenery without having to worry about the roads!
kja is offline  
Feb 21st, 2007, 12:02 PM
Join Date: Feb 2004
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So you have 4 days total ? Monday - Thursday? When on Friday does he leave?
The drive from Edinburgh to Skye would be about 5-6 hours...not including stops for food/picture-taking, etc. Then to ride around Skye to see the scenery is many more hours.
There are lots of interesting places to see on the way, in the Trossachs area and beyond.
Stirling is a must see. St. Andrews is supposed to be beautiful.
We really enjoyed the Ichamome Priory (but it may be closed in March).
The small towns of Aberfoyle and Callander are nice to visit and have lunch.
The drive up through GlenCoe is a must see.

steviegene is offline  
Feb 21st, 2007, 12:41 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 8,156
Could we do this another way? Pick one thing you really want to do- there's nowhere in Scotland you can't get in 4 days- and we'll build you a trip around that.
sheila is offline  
Feb 21st, 2007, 01:13 PM
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hi! thanks for your responses. i think we'd like to center around isle of skye and the area in between skye and inverness. my dad will probably fly out of inverness to LGW thursday evening.

right now we are thinking of getting a car when we leave edinburgh or at inverness if we take the train from edin.

and to repeat, we love landscapes (mountains, oceans...) and 'charming' towns

strikerpc is offline  
Feb 22nd, 2007, 04:42 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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My suggestion would be that you base yourselves somewhere around Plockton or Invercarron.

Head out of Edinburgh towards Stirling on the Monday, options for stopping would include Linlithgow Palace and Stirling Castle. And you have the option of visiting the Bannockburn battlefield site and visitor centre.

Meander on through Strathyre via Callender- maybe take a side turn down to the Lake of Menteith, should the spirit move you.

You then get to Crianlarich and Tyndrum and carry on North west through Glencoe to Ballachulish, and on north to Fort William.

When you get to Fort William you're 2 hours from Plockton. I'd time my day and my stops so that I got to Plockton to eat for dinner time.

The scenery gets more spectacular the further west you go, so don't loiter too much at the start of the day.

Next day, leave the tantalising views of Skye behind you, and drive round the Applecross peninsula and through Torridon to Gairloch and Poolewe. Come back down Loch Maree to Achnasheen, and back to Plockton.

Wednesday, go to Skye.

Thursday go up to Inverness. Go to Culloden, and maybe down into Speyside, and then drop your dad at Dalcross.

Back down to Plockton then pick your route south in the morning.Or do you have more time after that?

sheila is offline  
Feb 22nd, 2007, 07:41 AM
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hey sounds great sheila! youre a great help! it turns out that my mom and I will probably spend another 5 days or so after we drop off my dad in inverness, but we will be using the train instead.

im not sure the extent of the trains, but we were thinking of maybe a day trip up north/west from inverness, or starting to head south maybe to the eastern coast of the country. do you have any suggestions for areas in east or southeast? i dont really know much about that area. thanks!
strikerpc is offline  
Feb 22nd, 2007, 08:26 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Based upon my visit last summer, I'd suggest the Isle of Mull as an alternative to Skye. A couple of reasons:

--it is a bit closer to Edinburgh
--it is even less developed (access only by ferry, not road bridge)
--scenery is comparable to Skye

KidsToLondon is offline  
Feb 22nd, 2007, 10:51 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Well, you'll have done most of the west bit that's accessible by train, but you COULD go north as far as Wick and Thurso, and if you were feeling very adventurous on to Orkney, or come down to Aberdeen, then, maybe St Andrews, then finish up in Glasgow?

I disagree with Kids a bit on the Mull thing. It's MORE developed because it's closer to Glasgow. That's where they invented the expression "white settler" to refer to the English; and it's not a patch on Skye for scenery- although it DOES have beaches which are few and far between on Skye. It also has Iona.
sheila is offline  
Feb 22nd, 2007, 06:23 PM
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I'm benefitting from your post as I am planning a week long trip to Scotland in May. Based on what little I know, it sounds like Western and Highlands are most appealing. We will have 7 days, plus the afternoon/evening we arrive in Glasgow. Any suggestions for how to alter this itinerary since we aren't locked into several days in Edinburgh?
NatalieM is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2007, 09:41 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 640
To Sheila
Re: Skye or Mull--who's more crowded?

In the 2001 census Mull (with Iona) had 1,841 permanent residents. The islands are 338 square miles. That's 5.4 people per square mile.

In 2001, Skye had 9,232 residents. The size of that island is 639 square miles. Equals 14.4 people per square mile.

KidsToLondon is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2007, 11:29 AM
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I went looking to prove that was wrong, but am wrong. Well, would you know it.

Your figures are low, actually, Kids- David, isn't it?

Still, Skye's still miles better.
sheila is offline  
Feb 26th, 2007, 10:48 AM
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 25
We did a driving tour in Scotland a couple of summers ago. Skye was the highlight of our trip. We were there for three nights and would have been happy to stay longer.

Here's what we did:

First night in a farmhouse B&B just south of Glasgow. Drove in from Manchester airport.

Day 2 - drove to Skye via roads along Loch Lamon, Glencoe, the "Road to the Isles" and the ferry. Stayed first night in Broadford (?).

Days 3 and 4 - drove around Skye and went on several hikes. Spectacular scenery. Stayed at the north end of Skye (near Duntulm Castle)

Day 5 - left Skye and drove to near Balmoral via Inverness. Mostly a travel day, but visted a castle and a whiskey place along the way.

Day 6 - relaxing drive to Edinburgh via St. Andrews. Stayed Edinburgh

Day 7 - toured Edinburgh and stayed there again.

Day 8 - drove down into the Borders area. Saw some beautiful abbys's (Melrose, Jedburgh I think). Stayed in that area.

Day 9 - drove back to Manchester to fly out the next morning. Visited Hadrian's Wall along the way.

Anyway, sorry for the spelling of places and probably some mistakes. Just wanted to give a rough idea of an itinerary that worked great for us.

Whatever you do, don't miss Skye.
bpajax is offline  
Feb 27th, 2007, 08:28 AM
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Thanks for the input. Any specific recommendations for lodging bpajax? Thanks!
NatalieM is offline  
Feb 27th, 2007, 06:02 PM
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 25
NatalieM - as for lodging, we were traveling with our 18 and 21 year old children and stayed at mid-priced B&B's/inns. Here are the ones I can remember:

Limestone Cottage - Broadford, Skye.
Stayed here one night after arriving to Skye via ferry - cute little place - not fancy - nice owners
http://uk.geocities.com/[email protected]/

Duntulm Castle Hotel - north end of Skye - great location, amazing setting on the Atlantic in the shadows of the castle ruins - ok accomodations - I thought I had heard they had closed but their website is still up

Callater Lodge Guesthouse in Braemer (Royal Deeside area) - we stayed here enroute from Skye to Edinburgh. One of our favorite places. Nice quiet little town, great house with a little bar and lounge, nice rooms, and nice owners. Also, two little Westies named Mac and Beth.

The rest of the places we stayed weren't really memorable.

bpajax is offline  

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