You’ll depart from the famous Royal Mile in Edinburgh and begin your journey north towards the historic city of Stirling, whilst learning the true Braveheart story from your driver-guide. You’ll pass the famous Wallace Monument and stop close by the castle for a chance to take photos. We then continue on to Kilmahog, the perfect place for coffee and Highland coo spotting!
Loch Tulla offers a wonderful photo opportunity before hopping back on the bus to learn about the brutal MacDonald Clan Massacre on your way to Glen Coe. You’ll stop here to stand amongst dramatic mountains and weeping waterfalls and take in one of the most memorable parts of our Scottish landscape.
Next, we’ll visit Fort William, a town dominated by Ben Nevis, the UK’s tallest mountain and situated next to the beautiful sea Loch Linnhe. We’ll have enough time here to eat lunch and explore the town. You’ll then head towards Fort Augustus, a lovely village by the banks of Loch Ness, where you’ll spend your first night.
Your second day begins with a stop in Inverness to meet fellow travellers and get an introduction to the capital of the Highlands. Then we’ll head to Golspie, an attractive seaside village, which offers a chance to stretch your legs and grab a coffee. The skyline here is ruled by a 100 foot tall statue of the first Duke of Sutherland, notorious due to the part he played in the Highland Clearances.
We’ll then make our way further north to Gills Bay and jump aboard our ferry to the Orkney Islands. You will sail through the Pentland Firth and into the Orkney Archipelago, which offers the opportunity to see countless wildlife; look out for seals, porpoises, killer whales, puffins and other sea birds.
Once on Orkney you can take in the stunning scenery whilst on the way to see the famous Churchill Barriers - causeways that were constructed to protect the British fleet from submarines. You also have the chance to visit an incredible work of art, a beautiful Italian Chapel, which was built with salvaged materials by Italian prisoners of war.
You then journey on towards Kirkwall, capital of the Orkney Islands, for your second night. There are some fantastic restaurants in which you can enjoy your evening meals here.
Day three is all about Orkney. The island is full of ancient history and you'll be able to take in prehistoric wonders such as the Maes Howe chambered cairn, a tomb more than 5000 years old. Next we’ll stop at the brooding Stone Circles of Stenness, a sight to spur your imagination; the tallest stone reaches over 19ft high! Anyone with an interest in archaeology will love the Ness of Brodgar a Neolithic excavation site, only open whilst archaeologists are busy uncovering new items! Another source of ancient mystery is the Ring of Brodgar, bigger than Stonehenge and only improved by its incredible setting.
We will have an extended visit to the world-famous Neolithic village of Skara Brae, you can’t fail to be impressed. Your day will culminate with a visit to beautiful St Magnus Cathedral, widely considered the finest medieval building in the north of Scotland. You’ll spend your third night in Kirkwall.
Your fourth day begins bright and early as we board the ferry to return to the mainland. We’ll stop in the harbour town of Wick, before continuing south to Helmsdale. We’ll visit the Emigrants Statue here, which reminds us of a vital part of Scottish history; the Highland Clearances.
We’ll also stop by the battlefield of Culloden, the site of the defeat of the Jacobite forces. You have the opportunity to visit the interactive visitor centre* here and learn how this brutal battle changed life in the Highlands and Islands forever.
On the way back to Edinburgh we’ll pass by Inverness, the stunning Cairngorm Mountains and have a chance to enjoy the picturesque town of Pitlochry.
Please note, optional extras
Maes Howe £6.50
Skara Brae and Skaill House £7.10
Culloden Visitor Centre £7.00