Scotland by Rail - June 20 - 29, 2017
WESTERN HIGHLANDS & HEBRIDES 2017
Discover the incredibly picturesque Western Highlands and the rugged, breathtaking coastal islands which lie off Scotland's western coast. This tour takes us on some of the world's most scenic railroad journeys as part of a truly memorable exploration of the Highlands.
JOINING THE TOUR IN EDINBURGH
Your Scottish tour begins at the superb Radisson Blu Hotel, located on the famous Royal Mile, close to Edinburgh's main Waverley station. Your Tour Manager greets you, then remainder of the day is free for you to explore Scotland's fascinating capital city until dinner this evening.
West Highland Line/DAYS 2-3
WEST HIGHLAND LINE TO BALLACHULISH
We journey along the incredible West Highland Line. At Fort William, we transfer by coach to the nearby village of Ballachulish, situated at the head of Loch Leven. On Day 3 we join the Jacobite Steam Train* for an unforgettable journey to Mallaig on the final leg of the iconic West Highland Line, perhaps the most scenic stretch of track in the UK, en route to Mallaig.
*Please note - on departures 18 April and 2 May the Jacobite does not operate and we make this journey using Scotrail's scheduled service. Please call for details
Days 2-3 - Breakfast, Dinner
Duart Castle/DAY 4
THE ISLE OF MULL AND DUART CASTLE
This morning we travel by coach to Oban and onwards to Isle of Mull. Later, we visit Duart Castle. After time to explore the castle's stately rooms and dungeons, we check in to Isle of Mull Hotel for 2 nights.
WILDLIFE SPOTTING CRUISE TO STAFFA AND IONA
Today we enjoy a spectacular cruising tour around some of the tiny islands west of Mull. Here minke whales and dolphins can be seen. Later we cruise to Iona.
WHISKY TASTING AND ONWARDS TO PITLOCHRY
Leaving Mull, today we return to the mainland by ferry to Oban. Here we visit the Oban Distillery for a "Sensory & Flavours" tour including whisky tasting. After lunch in Oban we continue by coach to Pitlochry, an attractive town in the heart of the Highlands, at the foot of Ben Vrackie, and spend three nights here at Atholl Palace Hotel.
Excursion Loch Dunmore, Pitlochry
AT LEISURE/DAY 7
Enjoy a free day to relax in Pitlochry with its pretty Victorian center, or perhaps take advantage of the local railroad station to explore a little further afield. If you fancy a serene stroll then Pitlochry has excellent woodland nearby. Faskally Wood is set within Tay Forest Park on the banks of Loch Dunmore. and is only one mile north of Pitlochry. The wood is home to a wide array of tree species, some more than 200 years old. The wood has many well signposted paths which make it an easy area to explore amidst the fantastic views of the area. Loch Dunmore is wonderfully picturesque, it has a boat house and a timber footbridge. The manmade wood was originally used to train new foresters, made in the 19th century in the grounds of Faskally House the wood was home to the Forestry Commission School.
Cairngorm Mountain Railroad/DAY 8
CAIRNGORM MOUNTAIN RAILROAD
On today's excursion we travel north to Aviemore, a charming town in the heart of the Cairngorms National Park. Later we transfer to the Cairngorm Mountain Railroad, Scotland's only funicular line.
Cairngorm Mountain Railroad
TO EDINBURGH/DAY 9
After breakfast, we travel by rail down through the mighty Cairngorms to Edinburgh.
Depart Scotland on your flight home.
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