5. From Edinburgh: 2-Day Scottish Highlands & St. Andrews Tour
Take a 2-day adventure out into the Highlands with a charismatic and knowledgeable guide. See the views that inspired countless artists and writers, and visit its most famous attractions, including Loch Ness.
Departing from Edinburgh, pass the iconic Forth Bridge as you make your way to St. Andrews. Take time to explore the town’s medieval castle and cathedral, ancient University buildings (where Prince William and Kate met), or wander along the fairways edge of the world-famous Old Course.
You’ll then venture into the Scottish Highlands with a visit to the peaceful Hermitage nature reserve. Take a short walk through the forest to the Falls of Brann before lunch in Pitlochry. Continue north into the Cairngorm National Park and watch as the rolling mountains turn blue in the summer or white with falling snow in the winter. In the late afternoon, you'll arrive at Clava Cairns, the Neolithic burial chambers that inspired Diana Gabaldon during the writing of her famous Outlander novels.
Your second-to-last stop today is at Culloden Moor, the site of the last battle fought on British soil in 1746. Your guide will retell the events of the battle and teach you about its significance not only to the Highlands, but also to the Scottish diaspora since. Spend the night in Inverness, a small city packed with restaurants and fun pubs—meet the locals and dance the night away to Highland music in the famous Hootenanny’s Bar with your fellow travelers.
Your second day begins by venturing the entire length of the most famous body of water in the world, Loch Ness. Pass Urquhart Castle on your way to Fort Augustus at the mouth of the Loch, where you’ll have the option of taking a 1-hour boat cruise to search for Nessie.
Continue West towards the iconic Glenfinnan Viaduct, recently made famous by the Harry Potter movies. Hike to a viewpoint to get the best photos of this impressive piece of 19th-century engineering and, in the other direction, be treated to views of Loch Shiel and the monument to the Jacobites: one of the finest views in Scotland.
After lunch, you’ll arrive in Glencoe, the site of the infamous Massacre of 1692. Your guide will share this terribly sad story of betrayal with you. However, the beauty of Glencoe stays with those who visit this place for a very long time.
Your unforgettable Highland adventure ends with a scenic drive through Loch Lomond and Trossachs Park, passing Stirling Castle and into Edinburgh.