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From Edinburgh: West Highland Lochs & Castles Full-Day Trip

1. From Edinburgh: West Highland Lochs & Castles Full-Day Trip

From Edinburgh, travel west, passing the historic and imposing Stirling Castle, high on its volcanic rock, and on to a visit at the magnificent Doune Castle (which featured in the cult movie "Monty Python and the Holy Grail"). From there, drive into the Highlands, past the lovely Loch Lubnaig and up through impressive Glen Ogle, stopping nearby for lunch and beautiful views of the surrounding scenery. After lunch, drive further into the Highlands, stopping to view one of the most photographed castles in Scotland, Kilchurn Castle, jutting into beautiful Loch Awe and stunningly framed by the surrounding mountains. Then it’s on to Inveraray, a quaint small town built in the mid-18th century, on the shore of Loch Fyne. Explore the town and pick up some Highland souvenirs, or pay an optional visit to Inveraray Castle (April to October only), the historic home of the Duke of Argyll, chief of the Clan Campbell, which is set in large beautiful gardens overlooking Loch Fyne. Now start your homeward journey, driving over the Arrochar Alps, an attractive range of mountains, with a brief pause near the top of the "Rest and Be Thankful Pass." A little later, reach enchanting Loch Lomond, where you'll stop at the pretty lochside village of Luss before returning to Edinburgh. *Inveraray Castle open Apr-Oct, alternatives offered Nov-March

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Stirling Castle, Loch Lomond & Whisky Tour from Edinburgh

2. Stirling Castle, Loch Lomond & Whisky Tour from Edinburgh

As you drive north from Edinburgh on this 9-hour excursion you’ll marvel at the engineering miracle of the Forth Railway Bridge. Then, as you travel through Stirlingshire, your guide will bring to life the turbulent times of William Wallace, dramatized in the film Braveheart, and explain his link to the area you're passing through. Your first stop is the city of Stirling, where you'll have ample time to visit the stunning castle (admission not included) or enjoy a walk along the atmospheric, ancient streets that surround it. You'll then have the opportunity to visit one of Scotland's best known distilleries, where you’ll learn how they make their whisky and get a dram of their Highland Single Malt Whisky (optional extra). The tour route takes you past Loch Lubnaig and then through the Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park, home of the Highland rogue Rob Roy. Stopping at some of the best view points, you’ll be able to take in the view from the An Ceann Mor platform at Inveruglus and then walk the shore of Scotland’s biggest loch at Luss.

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From Glasgow: Oban, Glencoe, Highland Lochs & Castles Tour

3. From Glasgow: Oban, Glencoe, Highland Lochs & Castles Tour

Explore the stunning lochs and castles of the Western Highlands on this small group tour from Glasgow. You'll see the superb ruins of Kilchurn on Loch Awe, the bustling west coast harbor town of Oban, and the dramatic beauty of Glencoe. Depart Glasgow at 8:30 AM and travel through gorgeous Glen Fruin, driving parallel with Loch Long. You'll then cross the Highland boundary, where the scenery changes quickly and dramatically–the flat plains of the Lowlands give way to shimmering lochs, rugged mountain tops and forest-filled glens. Continue your drive over the Rest and Be Thankful mountain pass before traveling through the Arrochar Alps. You'll then arrive at the picturesque harbor town of Inveraray on the shores of Loch Fyne. From here you will drive along the shore of Scotland’s longest loch, Loch Awe, where you'll stop to take photos of Kilchurn Castle, a magnificent ruin right in the middle of Loch Awe and the former home of the Campbells of Breadalbane. You will then continue to the harbor town of Oban, gateway to the Isles, where you will eat lunch. After lunch you'll travel north along the coast around Appin, passing imposing Castle Stalker, and into Scotland's most famous valley, Glencoe. This is Scotland's largest loch and it takes its name from the mountain Ben Lomond. The last stop of the day will be in Luss, an 18th-century conservation village with old workers' cottages, built for the laborers of the estate.

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From Glasgow: Loch Lomond, Trossachs & Stirling Castle Tour

4. From Glasgow: Loch Lomond, Trossachs & Stirling Castle Tour

After leaving Glasgow, stop at the ‘bonnie banks’ of Loch Lomond, one of the prettiest and largest lochs in the whole of Scotland. Take a one-hour cruise, enjoying spectacular views of the loch’s many islands and the surrounding mountains. Alternatively, take a stroll through the picturesque loch-side conservation village of Luss, with its quaint houses, cafes and stunning views across the loch’s western shoreline. Eat lunch in the small village of Aberfoyle, nestled in the heart of the beautiful Trossachs National Park. After lunch, continue through the Trossachs, Scotland’s first national park, known as ‘the Highlands in miniature’ for its abundance of lochs, mountains, and forests. It is also known as the homeland of legendary outlaw, Rob Roy MacGregor. The final stop is the magnificent Stirling Castle, which sits high on volcanic rock and offers wonderful views of the surrounding landscape. You will have time to visit the castle and learn of the exploits of key historic figures including William Wallace, Robert the Bruce, and Mary Queen of Scots. With plenty of interesting things to see and do, the Stirling Castle experience is well worth a visit. You then make your way back to Glasgow. Please note: the Loch Lomond cruise is only available in winter for groups of 6 and over. If this number is not met, an alternative stop will be offered.

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West Highlands Lochs & Castles Tour from Edinburgh

5. West Highlands Lochs & Castles Tour from Edinburgh

Enjoy a small group tour of Scotland’s Western Highlands, and explore some of its most atmospheric lochs and castles. Traveling in a comfortable 16-seat Mercedes minibus, you will depart Edinburgh and head west past Stirling Castle. The first stop will be Doune Castle, built for Robert Stewart, the Duke of Albany, over 600 years ago. You might recognize it from the famous comedy film, Monty Python and The Holy Grail. Continue to Callander, where you will pause for a coffee, before leaving the rolling farms for the wild mountains and forests of the Highlands. Visit Loch Luibnaig, and continue over the Braes of Balquhidder, final resting place of Highland outlaw Rob Roy MacGregor. Made famous by Sir Walter Scott, Rob Roy was a sort-of Highland Robin Hood, who stole from the rich, but never quite got round to giving it to the poor! From Balquhidder, the tour winds its way through the tough knot of mountains known as Breadalbane. Stop for lunch in a small West Highland village. Continue past Kilchurn Castle in the middle of Loch Awe, and on through Campbell country to the picturesque town of Inveraray on the shores of Loch Fyne. Visit the 18th-Century castle, home of the Duke of Argyll, chief of the Campbell clan. Depart Inveraray, and drive up through the steep mountains of the Arrochar Alps, to the great viewpoint at “Rest and Be Thankful,” given its name by the weary soldiers who had just finished building the military road up through Glen Croe. Skirt Loch Long, and drive down to the bonnie banks of Loch Lomond, Scotland's largest loch. Stop at the conservation village of Luss, to admire its quaint houses and stunning views across the loch, and then make your way back to Edinburgh, with a short stop underneath Stirling Castle.

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From Glasgow: 3-Day Isle of Skye, Highlands & Loch Ness Tour

6. From Glasgow: 3-Day Isle of Skye, Highlands & Loch Ness Tour

Day One: Visit the village of Luss on the banks of Loch Lomond, within a national park. Admire Rannoch Moor before walking through Glen Coe valley. Pause for photos after lunch by Britain's highest mountain, Ben Nevis. End your first day by relaxing in the charming village of Portree, on the Isle of Skye.  Day Two: Enjoy breakfast in Portree, before deciding how you will spend your day. Choose between a tour of Dunvegan Castle, Duntulm Castle or a visit to Uig and the traditional blackhouses. End your day by viewing The Storr, before returning to Portree. Day Three: Experience a tour of Eilean Donan Castle. Visit the pretty loch-side village of Fort Augustus for lunch and views of Loch Ness. Continue your journey to the Victorian resort town of Pitlochry, before driving back to Edinburgh where you will be dropped off outside Edinburgh Waverley Train Station. Passengers that began the tour in Glasgow will be provided with a free train ticket to return to Glasgow.

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Edinburgh: Isle of Skye and Highlands 3-Day Sightseeing Tour

7. Edinburgh: Isle of Skye and Highlands 3-Day Sightseeing Tour

Day 1 Departing from Edinburgh, you will travel west to Glasgow, and then into the Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park. On the bonnie banks of Loch Lomond sits your first stop, the charming village of Luss. Take in views of lochs, waterfalls, and Munros on your way to Rannoch Moor and Glencoe. There will be time for lunch there. Your Highland road trip then continues through Fort William and onward to the spectacular views of Glenfinnan and Loch Shiel. Departing Glenfinnan, your tour will travel north and over the bridge to Skye. You will stay overnight either in the village of Kyleakin or Broadford. Day 2 With a full day to explore the amazing Isle of Skye, your driver-guide will ensure you see the best of the island whatever the weather. You cannot miss Skye’s mountain range, the Black Cuillins. The clear, cool waters of the Fairy Pools lie near their foot in Glenbrittle. You will have time to hike to the pools and take photos of the scenery too. Your lunch stop will be in Skye’s main town of Portree, before travelling to the spectacular geological wonders of the Trotternish Peninsula. Visit the Quiraing, an iconic geological landslip. Then continue to a photo stop at the magnificent Mealt waterfall and Kilt Rock, a spectacular 90-meter-tall column of basalt that appears to resemble Scotland's national tartan dress. On your return, your tour will also stop for photos at the Old Man of Storr, a pinnacle of rock created by a massive ancient landslide. Day 3 Your final day will start with a photo stop at Eilean Donan, Scotland’s most iconic fortress. You will then go off the beaten track to visit Glenelg viewpoint for amazing views over towards Loch Duich and the Five Sisters of Kintail. Next, drive to Fort Augustus at the southern tip of Loch Ness, where there will be time for lunch and a stroll beside one of the world’s great waterways. Or you might like to hop on a one-hour ‘monster-spotting’ cruise. Then it’s back to dry land and a road trip through the Grampian Mountains. You will have the opportunity to visit a whisky distillery for a dram, if you have not already visited a distillery on Skye. Your final refreshment stop will be in the Victorian resort town of Pitlochry. Your tour will return to Scotland’s capital city Edinburgh via the Queensferry Crossing. As you cross, look left for a great view of Scotland’s most famous structure, the Forth Bridge. The Forth Bridge has been declared a UNESCO world heritage site, placing it on a par with the Great Wall of China and the Taj Mahal.

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Glasgow: Isle of Skye and Highlands 3-Day Sightseeing Tour

8. Glasgow: Isle of Skye and Highlands 3-Day Sightseeing Tour

Day 1 Departing from Glasgow, drive to Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park. On the bonnie banks of Loch Lomond sits your first stop, the charming village of Luss. Take in views of lochs, waterfalls, and Munros on your way to Rannoch Moor and Glencoe. There will be time for lunch there. Your Highland road trip then continues through Fort William and onward to the spectacular views of Glenfinnan and Loch Shiel. Departing Glenfinnan, your tour will travel north and over the bridge to Skye. You will stay overnight either in the village of Kyleakin or Broadford. Day 2 With a full day to explore the amazing Isle of Skye, your driver-guide will ensure you see the best of the island whatever the weather. You cannot miss Skye’s mountain range, the Black Cuillins. The clear, cool waters of the Fairy Pools lie near their foot in Glenbrittle. You will have time to hike to the pools and take photos of the scenery too. Your lunch stop will be in Skye’s main town of Portree, before traveling to the spectacular geological wonders of the Trotternish Peninsula. Visit the Quiraing, an iconic geological landslip. Then continue to a photo stop at the magnificent Mealt Waterfall and Kilt Rock, a spectacular 90-meter-tall column of basalt that appears to resemble Scotland's national tartan dress. On your return, your tour will also stop for photos at the Old Man of Storr, a pinnacle of rock created by a massive ancient landslide. Day 3 Your final day will start with a photo stop at Eilean Donan, Scotland’s most iconic fortress. You will then go off the beaten track to visit Glenelg viewpoint for amazing views over Loch Duich and the Five Sisters of Kintail. Next, drive to Fort Augustus at the southern tip of Loch Ness, where there will be time for lunch and a stroll beside one of the world’s great waterways. Or you might like to hop on a one-hour ‘monster spotting' cruise. Then it’s back to dry land and a road trip through the Grampian Mountains. You will have the opportunity to visit a whisky distillery for a dram if you have not already visited a distillery on Skye. Your final refreshment stop will be in the Victorian resort town of Pitlochry. You will then return to Glasgow via Edinburgh and the Queensferry Crossing. Admire the Firth of Forth’s oldest crossing the Forth Bridge, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Please note, if there are no passengers booked to return to Edinburgh, the return to Glasgow will take you past Stirling Castle.

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Loch Ness, Inverness and Highlands 2-Day Tour from Edinburgh

9. Loch Ness, Inverness and Highlands 2-Day Tour from Edinburgh

Get back to nature in the Scottish Highlands and go for gentle walks. Spend the night in the city of Inverness and avail of a flexible itinerary on day 2. Day 1: Depart Edinburgh and head west to Glasgow before visiting the pretty village of Luss on the banks of Loch Lomond. Descend into Rannoch Moor and pass the Black Mount and Glencoe at the site of the 1692 massacre of the MacDonald Clan. Go for a leisurely walk to soak up the atmosphere. Head north towards Fort William and get stunning views of Ben Nevis before traveling around Loch Ness after lunch. Pass historic Urquhart Castle before arriving in Inverness, where you will spend the night. Day 2: Choose to visit the Culloden Battlefield, where Bonnie Prince Charlie was defeated by the Duke of Cumberland. Glimpse the ancient stones of Clava Cairns and taste the whisky at Dalwhinnie Distillery. Go to the old military garrison of Ruthven Barracks. Return via the Hermitage and stop for a gentle forest walk in idyllic woodlands (summer only) before crossing the Forth Bridge to arrive back in Edinburgh.

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From Glasgow: Oban, Glencoe & West Highland Castles Day Tour

10. From Glasgow: Oban, Glencoe & West Highland Castles Day Tour

On this tour you will experience the shimmering lochs, scenic mountain views, and romantic and historic castles of the western highlands. From Glasgow we will cross the Firth of Clyde, passing Dumbarton's famous and imposing rock fortress. Our first stop is the pretty conservation village of Luss, on the 'Bonny, Bonny Banks' of Loch Lomond. Here you can walk along the shore or stay to admire the village. We then pass several dramatic castles and lochs as we climb into the Highlands. We will stop for lunch at the fishing town of Oban. We then journey on a southern route that takes us past the spectacular Kilchurn Castle, majestically situated on Loch Awe. Our final stop is Inveraray, historic seat of the Duke of Argyll, where you can choose to either visit Inveraray Castle* (April-October only) or explore the town’s Georgian houses and wide streets. We return to Glasgow via the Rest and Be Thankful pass. *This tour visits Inveraray Castle from April - October and to Dunstaffnage Castle from November to March.

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What people are saying about Luss

I had a really great time with a fun small group of people. John was a really fun guide and made sure we could see as much as possible even though the sun set very early in the day. Everything was beautiful and I can’t wait to get to spend some more time in the highlands.

Cameron was one of the most insightful travel guides we've met. He is extremely knowledgeable about the regions covered under the tour. He is also very helpful, friendly and humorous. Would highly recommend this tour!

Highly recommended! Nick, overall lovely guy, is a great driver and excellent guide. His historical/local anecdotes, illustrative tea towels and thematic music added great value to the trip.

Great experience, Kelly was amazing, a fully detailed tour and nice atmosphere (music +jokes). I will definitely do it again.

Wonderful one day trip. For someone without a car I absolutely recommend Rabbis