9 Day Scottish Dream – CIE
Scottish Dream 9 Days / 8 Nights
(8DAY/7NIGHT Scottish Dream also available-Deduct $290 per person off listed prices)
Day 1: Glasgow City Tour
Your Scottish trip starts at 2:30 pm when you meet your tour director at your Glasgow hotel and set out on an introductory tour of central Glasgow. See the main attractions of Glasgow including red sandstone Victorian buildings, delightful parks, Glasgow Cathedral and the River Clyde, once famous for shipbuilding, especially during the 19th century when the city burgeoned. Visit extensive and varied art collections in Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, originally opened in 1901. Chat with your tour director and your fellow travelers about your trip with a welcome drink before dinner in your hotel.
Day 2: Loch Lomond Cruise & Inveraray Castle
Depart Glasgow and drive north along the banks of Loch Lomond with views of Ben Lomond and other Highland peaks. At Tarbet embark on a short cruise to appreciate the beauty of this famous loch and admire panoramic views of the Highlands. Then travel across the mountains for time to browse around the town of Inveraray before visiting Inveraray Castle, which featured in Downton Abbey’s Season IV production. This imposing Campbell family home with four conical spires was built between 1746 and 1789. A guided tour will reveal the history of the family and region as you view the magnificent Armory Hall and many fine rooms with tapestries, porcelains and portraits. Journey across mysterious Rannoch Moor and through Glen Coe, a spectacular glen made famous by the Campbells’ massacre of the Clan Macdonald in 1692, to Ballachulish on the coast.
Day 3: Road to the Isles & Isle of Skye
This morning head north via Fort William and take the “Road to the Isles” through some of Scotland’s loveliest scenery, stopping for photos at the Glenfinnan Monument. At Mallaig cross by ferry to the Isle of Skye, sometimes called the “Misty Isle” due to the many showers brought by the Atlantic breezes. Visit the Clan Donald Centre at Armadale Castle to discover the history of the Lords of the Isles and the most powerful clan of the Isle of Skye. Drive through part of the island and return to the mainland by bridge, stopping for photos at the picturesque Eilean Donan Castle. Then drive along the beautiful shores of Loch Ness, famous for its monster. Continue to your hotel in Nairn, a manor house property set in spacious grounds near the North Sea.
Day 4: Culloden Battlefield & Sheepdogs
A short distance from Nairn is the Culloden Battlefield Visitor Centre. Learn about the battle which took place on 16th April 1746 when British Government forces defeated the army of Prince Charles Edward Stuart, popularly named Bonnie Prince Charlie, in just one hour. The Visitor Centre shows the background to this bloody battle and you can walk around the moorland to see various monuments commemorating troops. Continue through majestic Highland scenery to Leault Farm where dogs herd sheep through various obstacles. Drive south through the high peaks of the Grampian Mountains to your gracious manor-style hotel near Pitlochry and take a brief tour of this historic hotel and its museum.
Day 5: Blair Castle & Whisky Tasting
A short drive will bring you to Blair Castle, home of the Dukes and Earls of Atholl. Dating back to 1269, the castle has been transformed through the ages, from a strong medieval fortress to a Victorian castle in the baronial style. These influences can still be seen today across the 30 rooms on full display. You will learn about Mary, Queen of Scots, Bonnie Prince Charlie and how Queen Victoria’s famous stay led to the creation of Europe’s only private army, the Atholl Highlanders. Visit Blair Athol Distillery to learn about the simple ingredients and many steps involved in whisky making. Tour the facilities and sample a “wee dram” at the end of the tour. Spend the afternoon at leisure to explore the gardens, hotel museum and other facilities or browse around the town of Pitlochry, within easy walking distance.
Day 6: Glamis Castle & St Andrews
Travel through lush countryside to visit Glamis Castle, the legendary setting of “Macbeth” and childhood home of the late Queen Mother. This is a majestic building and filled with contrasting priceless artifacts and homely furnishings. Drive across the modern Tay Bridge to St Andrews, the “Home of Golf.” See the famous Royal and Ancient Clubhouse and the Old Course and enjoy free time to browse in golf specialty stores or through the medieval town with its ruined cathedral and castle. This is the location of Scotland’s oldest university. Drive south into Edinburgh, Scotland’s capital and enjoy a Scottish Evening with dinner and lively singing, story-telling and step-dancing.
Day 7: Edinburgh Castle & City Tour
This morning explore Edinburgh on a sightseeing tour. Compare and contrast the wide streets and elegant mansions of the Georgian 200-year-old “New Town” with the narrow lanes and medieval townhouses along the Royal Mile, the oldest part of the city. See Princes Street, the main shopping thoroughfare that separates the two areas. Learn about many prominent Scottish inventors, doctors and writers. Tour the imposing Edinburgh Castle where you can see historic buildings and enjoy splendid views of Edinburgh. The balance of the day is free for independent exploring, shopping and dining. On Jul 31 to Aug 21 departures enjoy the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo at the Castle esplanade.
Day 8: Extend your Stay in Edinburgh
Spend the day on an independent hop-on hop-off bus tour of Edinburgh; there are a number of different routes that you may choose to explore distinct areas of the city.
Day 9: Depart Edinburgh for Home
Your tour ends after breakfast.
B: Breakfast; L: Lunch; D: Dinner
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- Scottish Evening in Edinburgh
- Loch Lomond Scenic Cruise
- Isle of Skye
- Culloden Battlefield
- St Andrews
- Edinburgh Castle
- Whisky Tasting
Superior First Class Hotels
- Glasgow Marriott HotelGlasgow (1 night)
- Isles of Glencoe HotelBallachulish (Sunday & Wednesday Departure)
- Ballachulish HotelBallachulish (Friday Departure) (1 night)
- Newton HotelNairn (1 night)
- Atholl Palace HotelPitlochry (2 nights)
- Macdonald Holyrood HotelEdinburgh (3 nights)
- Sightseeing by luxury coach
- Professional tour director
- 8 nights in hotels listed
- Full breakfast daily (B) except on day 1
- 6 dinners (D) including- Scottish Evening in Edinburgh- 5 table d’hote dinners
- Welcome get-together drink
- Tours of Glasgow and Edinburgh
- Loch Lomond scenic cruise
- Ferry to the Isle of Skye
- Sheepdog trials at Leault Farm
- Blair Athol Distillery whisky tasting and tour
- Reserved seats for Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo on July 31 to August 21 departures
- Edinburgh open-top bus tour
- Visits and admissions to Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum, Inveraray Castle, Clan Donald Centre at Armadale Castle, Culloden Battlefield Visitor Centre, Blair Castle, Glamis Castle, St Andrews and Edinburgh Castle
- Headsets for walking tours
- Deluxe carry-on backpack, ticket wallet, luggage tags & strap
- All local taxes, hotel service charges & porterage for one suitcase per person
- Free Wi-Fi on coaches and in hotel lobbies