The Outer Hebrides & The Highlands
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Enjoy the natural beauty of the Scottish Highlands and the Outer Hebrides on a tour that takes in Stornoway and the Jacobite steam train.
Arrive in Glasgow and meet your Tour Manager and fellow travellers. You are free for the rest of the day to explore at leisure. Glasgow is filled with incredible examples of Victorian architecture, having undergone a massive period of growth during the industrial age. Architecture from this time now has the name 'Glasgow style', and was initially developed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh. Now, the stunning buildings stand along some truly incredible examples of modern architecture, including 'the Armadillo', named due to likeness to an armadillo, and the Glasgow Science Centre.
Transfer to the train station for a scenic ride on the West Highland Line to Fort William, travelling through stunning mountain and forest scenery. Easily one of the most scenic routes in Britain, the route is often hailed as one of the best rail journeys of the world. Highlights include the Clyde Estuary, Ben Lomond, and the Falls of Falloch. Discover Fort William at your own leisure, perhaps exploring Old Inverlochy Castle, located about 1 mile from the city centre. You could also visit the West Highland Museum that details the history of the Scottish Highlands and Islands.
Take the famous Jacobite Steam Train* today, from Fort William to Mallaig. One of the most beautiful train lines in the world, a highlight of the route comes as you cross the 21 dramatic arches of Glenfinnan Viaduct, famously a filming location for Harry Potter. You have free time in Mallaig before moving on to the Glenfinnan Monument by coach. This afternoon, visit the Ben Nevis Distillery, where a whisky tasting is included.
*Steam-hauled when possible. Some departures will make this journey on Scotrail's diesel service.
Travel by coach from Fort William to Uig today, on a drive through the scenery of Skye. Pause along the way at Eilean Donan Castle, a 13th-century castle that occurs frequently in pictures and television shows because of its stunning location, and Portree, a fishing village on the east side of Skye. You have time to take photographs before boarding the ferry to Tarbert, one of the main harbours of the area. On arrival, your coach will deliver you to your hotel in Stornoway.
Today, enjoy a full-day guided sight-seeing tour. Depart Stornoway by coach and drive north to see the Butt of Lewis and the Port of Ness. You then return south to Barvas, visiting the Gearrannan Blackhouse Village and the Callanish Standing Stones. This circle, comprising 13 stones, was erected in the late Neolithic era and was used for rituals during the Bronze Age. The stones enjoy a prominent position in popular culture, including the television series Outlander. Enjoy lunch at the Doune Braes Hotel before taking a scenic tour of the Uig District of Lewis. Enjoy the stunning views over Uig Bay as you walk along the pier.
Back at the hotel your time is at leisure, and there is authentic Scottish entertainment, including bagpipers and Ceilidh dancers before dinner.
This morning, explore the town of Stornoway and Garry Beach on a guided sightseeing tour. Stornoway is home to an arts and cinema centre, and Tasglann nan, a small but informative museum. From here, visit the golden sands of Garry Beach, taking a scenic walk along its heritage trail.
Take the ferry from Stornoway harbour to Ullapool, a quaint Scottish village. You are free to explore this Highland destination, nestled on the shores of Lochbroom about 1 hour north of Loch Ness. You can visit the museum, where local historical artefacts from different eras are on display, and the community-run gallery that promotes works by Highland artists. Perhaps stop at one of the waterfront pubs where beautiful views and traditional Scottish music await. To the west of Ullapool is Inverpolly National Nature Reserve, home to some unique Scottish wildlife.
Journey from Ullapool to Inverness by coach, then continue to Edinburgh by rail for the night. On Day 8, you are free to depart at your leisure.
On many of our UK & Ireland tours, you may check in at the first hotel on your itinerary anytime after 14:00; your Tour Manager will be available between 16:00 and 18:00. However, if you are arriving later, you can meet your Tour Manager before dinner from 19:00.
Please note: This tour may be suitable for reduced mobility passengers, please call for further information.
Enjoy the natural beauty of the Scottish Highlands and the Outer Hebrides