01: Edinburgh.Arrive Edinburgh. Transfer to your hotel is
included. You are free to enjoy this beautiful city on your own. (Please
note, hotel check-in is generally between 2:00 and 4:00 pm. If you are
arriving into Edinburgh early - the hotel will be happy to hold your
luggage until your room is ready)
Day 02: Edinburgh - Touring Begins -
Ullapool*. Make your way to the Edinburgh departure point at
Rabbies Cafe at 6 Waterloo Place for 8:45 (unless optional transfers were
purchased at time of reservation). Depart Edinburgh at 9:00 am, our journey
takes us north over the Forth Road Bridge to the charming highland village
of Dunkeld on the banks of the river Tay. From here we head into the
Cairngorm national park and the ancient pine forests of the Rothiemurchus
estate. We will spend time on the beautiful shores of Loch Insh before a
short forest walk takes us to the ruins of Loch an Eilean castle. Panoramic
views of Loch Ness follow as we travel down to the banks of the famous loch
and the village of Dores where we can do some “Nessie” spotting! Then it's on
to the shores of Loch Broom where we spend two nights at Ullapool. (*on some
tours it may be necessary to stay in Inverness in which case the itinerary
will be subject to slight changes).
Day 03: Touring -
Ullapool. Today we visit the far northwest highlands and the
grandeur, expanse and wildness of the mountains of Assynt with its abundance
of wildlife. We will be immersed in the history of the area and visit the
15th century ruins of Ardvreck Castle, once the stronghold of the MacLeods
of Assynt. The day is full of amazing views of some of Europe's oldest
landscapes from the stunning white sand beach at Achmelvich Bay to the
traditional fishing village of Lochinver. With the chance of seeing wildlife
such as whales and red deer as well, this is sure to be a memorable day.
Overnight in Ullapool.
Day 04: Toruing - Portree.
We leave Ullapool heading south to take in the drama of the River
Droma as it plunges 60m down into the Corrieshalloch Gorge. From here we
travel past the mountains of the Beinn Eighe national nature reserve and
along the picturesque coastline of Loch Torridon. The tranquil setting of
Applecross is your destination for lunch before taking one of the highest
roads in Scotland, Bealach nam Bo, with its jaw-dropping views, hairpin
bends and precipitous cliffs. In the afternoon we stop in “tropical” Plockton
where we can see palm trees growing alongside Loch Carron and take time to
enjoy its sheltered serenity. Then it's over the sea to Skye and the
delightful harbor town of Portree with its friendly welcome.
Day 05: Touring - Portree. Is a very
flexible day on Skye. There are many possibilities depending on the weather
and our driver/guide will use his/her local knowledge to decide on the best
day out for the group. For example we might travel north to the stunning
Quiraing mountain pass and enjoy a spectacular walk through some of Skye's
extraordinary geological scenery or visit the Kilt Rock, composed of basalt
columns with its waterfall cascading over the cliffs and down into the sea
below. After lunch [on your own] we may travel to Neist Point for a walk out
to the lighthouse at the most westerly point on Skye. Alternatively a visit
to Dunvegan Castle, ancient ancestral seat of the Clan McLeod, may be
possible. We return to our accommodation in Portree in the late afternoon
where we enjoy a free evening in the village.
Day 06: Touring - Edinburgh.
We travel south from Skye stopping first at the famous
stronghold Eilean Donan Castle, used in the film “Highlander”, set at the head
of 3 lochs as protection against Viking raiders. Continuing east through the
rugged mountains of Kintail including the splendor of the Five Sisters, we
drive down through Glen Garry past Britain's highest mountain, Ben Nevis, then
onto Fort William for lunch. In the afternoon we will explore spectacular
Glencoe, scene of the infamous massacre of the Clan Macdonald in 1692, before
stopping in Killin for refreshments beside the Falls of Dochart, arriving
into Edinburgh at around 7:00 pm. Our tour ends at Waverly Bridge in
Edinburgh, where you will make your own way back to your pre-booked hotel
(unless transfers were purchased at time of reservation).
Day 07: Edinburgh - Home.After breakfast, transfer from your hotel to the Airport for your return
flight to the US.