Rob Roy Tours

Scotland Deluxe - Whiskey Trail & More!
Western Isles - the essential island experience
Gardens Walking Tour
Walking in Scotland - in the footsteps of Rob Roy
Islands and Highlands Walking tour
Quilters Tour
Scotland Self Guided walking tour
Scottish Railway Adventure tour
The Nature of Scotland - Natural History tour
In the Heart of Scotland
Northern Highlights guided walking tour
Rob Roy Munros Tour

    

           

SCOTLAND SELF-GUIDED WALKING TOUR
Explore wild romantic Scotland by rail - traveling in style.

Self-guided or guided railway adventure tour, 9 days from and to Edinburgh, with three different choices of accommodation.

Also as an option "Walking in Scotland away from roads - (self-guided tour)": you receive from us detailed descriptions of a superb choice of idyllic shorter and rewarding longer walks which you can enjoy on this tour.

Traveling by train through Scotland combines the romance of the railways with the enjoyment, in comfort, of overwhelming natural beauty. Queen Victoria and countless writers, composers, poets and painters have known the value of this mode of travel. Allow yourself to be captivated by the enchantment as slowly rising mists reveal the romantic scenery of isolated glens. Discover the landscape, from the wild flower meadows of the island valleys to the fascinating world of mountain and waterfall in the northern Highlands. Rail travel in Scotland has a romance all its own.

The special charms of a train journey through Scotland are the distant views of tremendous cliffs and ancient castles, of empty moorland and misty peaks, of lochs and glens, giving way to isolated beaches of white sand and dreamy vistas over the Hebridean islands, or to a picturesque fishing village.

Be astonished by the achievements of pioneering engineers, such as the world-famous Forth Railway Bridge and the bold viaducts of the West Highland Line. Encounter the impressive monuments of Scotland's eventful history as you follow winding rail tracks through deep glens.

The capital city, Edinburgh, with its abundant choice of cultural activities, and a flexible and varied sightseeing program which includes castles, distilleries, woolen mills, cozy little Highland towns and many other attractions complement a successful discovery tour of Scotland.

As a variation, the self-guided walking tour away from roads: would you like a superb choice of idyllic shorter and rewarding longer walks and demanding all day hikes described in detail which you can enjoy on this tour?

The trains all have open-plan carriages with large windows and comfortable seats, normally in double rows or single seats facing rearward as well as forward. There are many tables for four people. All trains have drinks and snacks available, generally served from a small trolley which is pushed through the compartments.

INCLUDED IN THE PRICE:
All packages include the following: 8 nights in room with bath/shower and WC, 8 full Scottish breakfasts, all train, ferry and bus journeys in the itinerary, Edinburgh City Tour, welcome drink, maps, vouchers and comprehensive information package for clients, airport transfers by bus, transfers from station to hotel whenever the hotel is more than 3 minutes on foot from the station, 24 hour telephone service.
 

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The Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive Edinburgh. Transfer from airport to hotel or B&B as booked.

Day 2: Edinburgh. Use the time for:
- a city tour, departures every 30 minutes,
- sightseeing: castle, museums, Carlton Hill, galleries
- a hill walk on Edinburgh's mountain, Arthur's Seat,
- in the evening, for instance, a ghost tour, or pub crawl, jazz club or Scottish evening,
- day trips as an alternative to a day in Edinburgh, e.g. to Glasgow, St.
Andrews (the golfer's Mecca), or Berwick upon Tweed.
Overnight in Edinburgh

Day 3:
by rail to Glasgow. - either a stopover in Glasgow or travel directly on to Crianlarich. Here you are in the historic and scenic land of "Movie Scotland" - The Highlander, Rob Roy, Braveheart - the Western Highlands.

Nature lovers will find this an ideal centre for hiking, canoeing, fishing etc. The famous long distance footpath, the West Highland Way, is right beside the hotel. Or you can just indulge yourself in the hotel's excellent four star accommodation.

Day 4: one of the world's beautiful railway journeys: the West Highland Line is the 'Road to the Isles' from Crianlarich over wild, romantic Rannoch Moor and along the Atlantic coast to Mallaig. Use the time for:

- idyllic short walks before departure, or from stops along the route, or from Mallaig. Today you could even climb Britain's highest mountain, Ben Nevis
- breaks at Fort William and Glenfinnan for museums and boat trips, cycle rides and shopping
- visiting the historic monuments of famous Glenfinnan
- a day on the white sandy beaches, swimming and relaxing

Days 5 and 6: Mallaig. Wander through the small coastal town and its harbor. Do you fancy a day trip to the seat of Clan Macdonald? Armadale Castle will charm you with its magnificent garden on the Isle of Skye. Or you can take a picnic to the Small Isles of Rum, Eigg or Muck. Experience an idyllic stroll or a breathtaking longer hike beside Europe's deepest lake, Loch Morar, or in the walkers' paradise of wild Knoydart. The warmth of the Gulf Stream tempts you to bathe. Hire a bicycle or a car for a day, or play golf on Arisaig Links. Daily in July and August an historic steam train travels to Fort William.

Day 7: The Wild, Wild West. You have a choice:
- either a romantic ferry trip over the sea to Skye followed by a scenic bus journey across the island and over the famous Skye Bridge back to the mainland at Kyle of Lochalsh. Some free time in the little port, before a wonderful rail journey through the lonely north-west of Scotland to Inverness.  - or train from Mallaig to Fort William and public bus through the Great Glen to Inverness. You can comfortably explore the small Highland capital on foot. From there you continue your train journey to Pitlochry in the heart of the Central Highlands.

Day 8: Central Highlands. Enjoy the attractive scenery of mountain, waterfall and loch. There is wonderful walking on Ben Vrackie or beside the River Tummel with the Pass of Killiecrankie and the Queen's View. Visit the imposing ducal seat of Blair Castle and its grounds or the famous salmon ladder. A particular favorite is the tour of Scotland's smallest whisky distillery.

Day 9: rail journey to Edinburgh, airport transfer, return journey or next tour program.




 

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Scotland de Luxe - The Whisky Trail and More!

Experience Scotland, its wealth of wildlife and landscapes, its innumerable lochs and imposing mountains. Deep green glens, jagged coastlines fretted by sea lochs, and the northern Scottish world of mountain range and waterfall promise you unforgettable memories of a famously beautiful countryside.
This unique and spellbinding scenery, shrouded in mists from which emerge ruined strongholds, castles and stately homes, has a mysterious and fascinating atmosphere.

You discover Scotland by traveling in style on an exclusive 9 day tour packed with visits and experiences. What really makes Scotland truly unique is that this is the countryside that produces whisky. More than two thousand different blended whiskies and around 120 single malts. We sample many malts right at their source in the Highland distilleries.

After incomparable Edinburgh you explore the Lowlands and then enter the most beautiful areas of the Highlands. The rugged Hebridean island of Skye with its fairy tale glens, together with the one and only Malt Whisky Trail in idyllic Speyside, are but two of the highlights of your journey of discovery. You follow this fascinating theme of whisky in its finest manifestations. In the course of this exceptional tour we look behind many normally closed doors. By way of Inverness and Loch Ness we return once more to Edinburgh.

You stay in very good small hotels in stylish surroundings with personal attention. You eat generous breakfasts and invariably excellent three course dinners. Your friendly guide is an expert on Scotch whisky, as well as on the culture, the history and the countryside of Scotland.

Travelling as a V.I.P., you discover the secrets of the classic flavors in distilleries specially chosen for you. High points of the Whisky Tour, are, among others, the interesting Scotch Whisky Heritage Centre; tastings of soft Glenkinchie, light Glengoyne, smoky Talisker, impressive Tomatin and famous Glenfiddich; as well as visits to a traditional cooperage and Scotland's smallest distillery, Edradour. To end your tour of discovery with a special treat, the most highly regarded whisky club in the world, the Scotch Malt Whisky Society, opens its doors just for you. Such good access is only exceptionally granted to non-members. By the end of your tour you are a true whisky connoisseur - as the certificates we issue confirm.

A wealth of cultural opportunities and a flexible and varied sightseeing program with many highlights round off an unforgettable visit to Scotland.
These include castles, fortresses, a ducal seat, mysterious stone circles, and a woolen mill, to say nothing of Scotland's cultural heart, Edinburgh; small friendly Highland towns like Inverness; romantic fishing villages, and many other interesting sights. We bring you into intimate contact with Scotland and the Scots. On the last evening of the tour you play a traditional game of skittles in Edinburgh's oldest pub - prepare yourself for a surprise.


The Itinerary

Day 1:
Arrive Edinburgh, welcome by tour guide, transfer to hotel. Free time to relax, meet one another, dinner.

Day 2: In the morning a city tour of Edinburgh's highlights. If a rewarding stay in one of in one of Europe's most beautiful cities is for you, then you have come to exactly the right place. Among the picture book scenes of the medieval old town and the fascinating attractions of the adjoining new town (250 years old!), we can comfortably discover the sightseeing highlights by tour bus or, quite easily, on foot. You will respond enthusiastically to the extremely welcoming atmosphere of this friendly city.

Next a visit to the unique Scotch Whisky Heritage Centre. On the exceptionally interesting guided tour we obtain a profound insight into what whisky means to Scotland. In the afternoon we drive to beautiful East Lothian, and on the way we go for a short stroll on one of the North Sea coast's finest beaches, followed by a visit to our first whisky distillery, where we sample Scotland's water of life. Glenkinchie Single Malt has a very pleasing, well balanced, mild flavor. Indeed, it is often sold as a "Ladies' Whisky". Glenkinchie is a leading brand and well liked by connoisseurs.

After an excellent dinner in the hotel restaurant, a pub crawl is on offer, of course, visiting some of Edinburgh's older pubs. Or we can take a historic ghost tour through the darkest alleyways of the medieval old town.
Dr Jekyll or some other long dead Edinburgh character will guide us in person. (optional)
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Day 3: Travel to Stirling and the Trossachs. We visit fascinating Stirling Castle and learn about the eventful history of the medieval fortress, including, among other things, the first documented reference to Scotland's "Aqua Vitae". It goes without saying that it's about a whisky - "water of life" - order for the king's court.

The next whisky distillery on our program is Glengoyne. With a dram (small glass) of Glengoyne's single malt we bid farewell to the "Lowland malts". Our minds are now concentrated on the Highlands.

We drive to the western Highlands and into the real movie Scotland. Here the Scottish films Braveheart, Rob Roy and Highlander were shot. You encounter the open spaces of Rannoch Moor and the incomparable "Glen of Weeping", Glencoe. In wonderful scenery such as that of Loch Lubnaig we will certainly linger awhile.

Our next hotel is in the neighborhood of Fort William. Here we have something special to stir the imagination. We stay in a hotel converted from a former royal hunting lodge. Here the whisky tastes even better!

In the evening you could play safe by trying out one of the milder tasting whiskies. But why not sample one of Islay's smoky malts? You will find both in plentiful supply in the hotel bar, where the manager will be happy to advise you personally. Slainte! Whatever you do, don't miss out on the classic Scottish dessert, Cranachan.

Day 4: You will enjoy beautiful scenery on today's journey to the little coastal town of Kyle of Lochalsh. En route we stop to photograph Eilean Donan Castle, the castle of the film "Highlander"

Over the second longest single span bridge in the world we reach the unique Hebridean Island of Skye. On our circular tour of Skye we see the Cuillin Hills, regarded as the finest mountain range in Britain. In the little island capital, Portree, we have a brief lunch break. Anyone who wants to can use the break to take an idyllic short coastal walk.

Next we visit the Talisker whisky distillery, because one cannot possibly miss out on one of the celebrated classic island malts. The smoky Talisker Single Malt is definitely one of the finest.

Late in the afternoon we leave Skye with a pleasant ferry trip over the Sound of Sleat from Armadale to Mallaig. The journey continues past Europe's deepest inland lake, Loch Morar, along the Road to the Isles, famous in song, and back to our hotel.

Day 5: In Fort William we should be able to take a short morning break. A possibility is to take the cable car up on to Aonach Mor to get a wonderful view of Britain's highest mountain, Ben Nevis. Those travelers who are ever thirsting for more can pay an optional visit to the Ben Nevis distillery.

Even without the aid of whisky our onward journey could bring a very spiritual experience, for now comes the beautiful Great Glen whose main attraction is legendary Loch Ness, complete, of course, with the monster, Nessie. But Nessie is certainly no phantom; she really is there. One possibility is an interesting trip on Loch Ness with a demonstration of sonar in a sonar-equipped boat.

At Inverness is the interesting Moniack winery, but in Scotland we prefer to concentrate on the "water of life" and its associated products, while we enjoy wine in southern lands. A short stroll in attractive Inverness along the banks of the River Ness is worthwhile, or a visit to the excellent "Pringles Weavers of Inverness" Woolen Mill. Here, besides the very interesting permanent display of wool production, one can also buy top quality woolens direct from the manufacturer.

Continuing the journey, you encounter one of the best preserved prehistoric sites in Scotland. Three identical stone circles and tombs radiate an atmosphere of mystery and enchantment.

Now there is time for the nearby and, until the year 2000, largest Scottish whisky distillery. During a visit to Tomatin Distillery you find out a lot about the brands produced here. Incidentally, Tomatin whisky is found in many other brands such as Johnnie Walker, J&B and Ballantines. There is also a Tomatin single malt which we shall sample.
 

 

 

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SCOTTISH RAILWAY ADVENTURE TOUR

Explore wild romantic Scotland by rail - traveling in style. Self-guided or guided sightseeing or walking railway adventure tour, 9 days from and to Edinburgh, with three different choices of accommodation.

If you choose the option "Walking in Scotland away from roads - (self-guided tour)": you receive from us detailed descriptions of a superb choice of idyllic shorter and rewarding longer walks which you can enjoy on this tour.

Traveling by train through Scotland combines the romance of the railways with the enjoyment, in comfort, of overwhelming natural beauty. Queen Victoria and countless writers, composers, poets and painters have known the value of this mode of travel. Allow yourself to be captivated by the enchantment as slowly rising mists reveal the romantic scenery of isolated glens. Discover the landscape, from the wild flower meadows of the island valleys to the fascinating world of mountain and waterfall in the northern Highlands. Rail travel in Scotland has a romance all its own.

The special charms of a train journey through Scotland are the distant views of tremendous cliffs and ancient castles, of empty moorland and misty peaks, of lochs and glens, giving way to isolated beaches of white sand and dreamy vistas over the Hebridean islands, or to a picturesque fishing village.

Be astonished by the achievements of pioneering engineers, such as the world-famous Forth Railway Bridge and the bold viaducts of the West Highland Line. Encounter the impressive monuments of Scotland's eventful history as you follow winding rail tracks through deep glens.

The capital city, Edinburgh, with its abundant choice of cultural activities, and a flexible and varied sightseeing program which includes castles, distilleries, woolen mills, cozy little Highland towns and many other attractions complement a successful discovery tour of Scotland.

As a variation, the self-guided walking tour away from roads: would you like a superb choice of idyllic shorter and rewarding longer walks and demanding all day hikes described in detail which you can enjoy on this tour?

The trains all have open-plan carriages with large windows and comfortable seats, normally in double rows or single seats facing rearward as well as forward. There are many tables for four people. All trains have drinks and snacks available, generally served from a small trolley which is pushed through the compartments.

WOULD YOU LIKE TO TOUR FOR MORE THAN 9 DAYS?  You can readily combine this self-guided railway tour with our other tours "Western Highlands - in the Footsteps of Rob Roy" - our classic tour "Islands and Highlands" (Mull, Iona, Skye and Western Highlands) " In the Heart of Scotland" (walking, cultural and sporting activities based on one hotel/great value) "Northern Highlights" (Orkney and Shetland Islands and Sutherland) We will organize your own individual holiday extension.

INCLUDED IN THE PRICE:
All  packages include the following: 8 nights in room with bath/shower and WC, 8 full Scottish breakfasts, all train, ferry and bus journeys in the itinerary, Edinburgh City Tour, welcome drink, maps, vouchers and comprehensive information package for clients, airport transfers by bus, transfers from station to hotel whenever the hotel is more than 3 minutes on foot from the station, 24 hour telephone service.

 

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The Itinerary

Day 1:
Arrive Edinburgh. Transfer from airport to hotel or B&B as booked.

Day 2: Edinburgh. Use the time for:
- a city tour, departures every 30 minutes,
- sightseeing: castle, museums, Carlton Hill, galleries
- a hill walk on Edinburgh's mountain, Arthur's Seat,
- in the evening, for instance, a ghost tour, or pub crawl, jazz club or Scottish evening,
- day trips as an alternative to a day in Edinburgh, e.g. to Glasgow, St.
Andrews (the golfer's Mecca), or Berwick upon Tweed.
Overnight in Edinburgh

Day 3: by rail to Glasgow.
- either a stopover in Glasgow or travel directly on to Crianlarich. Here you are in the historic and scenic land of "Movie Scotland" - Highlander, Rob Roy, Braveheart - the Western Highlands.

Nature lovers will find this an ideal centre for hiking, canoeing, fishing etc. The famous long distance footpath, the West Highland Way, is right beside the hotel. Or you can just indulge yourself in the hotel's excellent four star accommodation.

Day 4: one of the world's beautiful railway journeys: the West Highland Line is the 'Road to the Isles' from Crianlarich over wild, romantic Rannoch Moor and along the Atlantic coast to Mallaig. Use the time for:
- idyllic short walks before departure, or from stops along the route, or from Mallaig. Today you could even climb Britain's highest mountain, Ben Nevis,
- breaks at Fort William and Glenfinnan for museums and boat trips, cycle rides and shopping,
- visiting the historic monuments of famous Glenfinnan,
- a day on the white sandy beaches, swimming and relaxing

Days 5 and 6: Mallaig. Wander through the small coastal town and its harbor.
Do you fancy a day trip to the seat of Clan Macdonald? Armadale Castle will charm you with its magnificent garden on the Isle of Skye. Or you can take a picnic to the Small Isles of Rum, Eigg or Muck. Experience an idyllic stroll or a breathtaking longer hike beside Europe's deepest lake, Loch Morar, or in the walkers' paradise of wild Knoydart. The warmth of the Gulf Stream tempts you to bathe. Hire a bicycle or a car for a day, or play golf on Arisaig Links. Daily in July and August an historic steam train travels to Fort William.

Day 7: The Wild, Wild West. You have a choice:
- either a romantic ferry trip over the sea to Skye followed by a scenic bus journey across the island and over the famous Skye Bridge back to the mainland at Kyle of Lochalsh. Some free time in the little port, before a wonderful rail journey through the lonely north-west of Scotland to Inverness.
- or train from Mallaig to Fort William and public bus through the Great Glen to Inverness. You can comfortably explore the small Highland capital on foot. From there you continue your train journey to Pitlochry in the heart of the Central Highlands.

Day 8: Central Highlands. Enjoy the attractive scenery of mountain, waterfall and loch. There is wonderful walking on Ben Vrackie or beside the River Tummel with the Pass of Killiecrankie and the Queen's View. Visit the imposing ducal seat of Blair Castle and its grounds or the famous salmon ladder. A particular favorite is the tour of Scotland's smallest whisky distillery.

Day 9: rail journey to Edinburgh, airport transfer, return journey or next tour program.

 
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GUIDED WALKING TOURS

WESTERN ISLES - The Essential Island Experience

Anyone who has already enjoyed the sunsets on our Islands and Highlands tour will feel themselves enticed even further westwards towards the enchanting islands of the Outer Hebrides.

We discover the haunts of a variety of seabirds, including puffins, as well as of whales, dolphins, otters and golden eagles, and everywhere a wide range of flora and fauna in one of Europe's richest wildlife habitats. In addition to 4000 years of tangible human history in the form of stone circles, brochs, castles and the traditional Celtic way of life, to say nothing of the evidence of Scandinavian influences, we encounter the wild places of the north-western fringes of Europe, surrounded by the deep waters of the Atlantic Ocean.

Fantastic endless beaches with crystal clear seas and the emerald green of the warm Gulf Stream cast their spell on us as we walk amidst stunning views of the coastal scenery, mountains and fiords of the Western Isles. Here are the oldest rocks in the world.

The wild, romantic beauty and peace of the islands are revealed as we follow
ever changing paths. They take us over picturesque green hills and through the wildflower meadows of the machair as well as along stupendous cliffs with strange rock formations and impressive caves. On relatively short journeys by road you enjoy romantic views of unforgettable seascapes enlivened by sea birds and sea mammals.

In charming little fishing communities, always with a friendly and engaging atmosphere, inhabitants and visitors find time and leisure each day to get acquainted with one another. You can learn much in conversation with the locals in cozy tea-rooms and homely pubs about the country and its people, ale and whisky.

In the North Atlantic, summer daylight hardly fades; long, lingering sunsets create an enchanting atmosphere and a bewitching light that dissolve into a romantic dusk only around midnight.

Varied cultural opportunities with room for personal choices, many encounters with the countryside, the people and their history, individual attention in small groups of like-minded travelers, as well as selected accommodation with a minimum of packing and unpacking and good food, complete the perfect plan for a successful holiday experience.

Overall Description of the Tour

Our friendly, approachable tour guides are delighted to share their enthusiasm and love for the country, its people and culture, with you. You travel in safety and enjoy the company of a real insider with specialist knowledge and training.

Our guides are experts in history, nature and culture so that specialists for particular tour programs can provide competent and informed leadership. It is most important for the guide that you have fun together and that you can enjoy the imparting of culture and history in an amusing and light-hearted but informative way. Our tour guides are bi- and often trilingual (frequently with a repertoire of jokes that sound better in the other language).

In the Western Isles you have to change accommodation only once, and on the whole tour three times. The result is that you always spend the evenings in good small hotels and pleasant Bed and Breakfast guesthouses with personal service and good food. All rooms are well furnished with bath/shower and WC as well as tea and coffee making facilities.

The essence of the walking tour is the experience of the countryside rather than arduous physical exertion. You don't have to be an experienced walker, but you should have the physical ability to walk for up to four hours. Some walks can be longer, but your guide can always suggest pleasant alternatives to the more demanding stretches. Participants can, if they wish, forgo or shorten most of the walks. It's a good idea to bring bathing things. The waters of the Gulf Stream are warm and inviting.

You hike and tour in small groups which permits personal attention. The minimum number of participants is 8, the maximum 16. A tour group is generally 10 to 14 people. On the walks you need take only a small day sack to hold your packed lunch, photographic equipment and so on. Your luggage is transported for you from hotel to hotel.

At the start and finish of your tour you travel by bus through the Western Highland landscapes made familiar by film (Braveheart, Highlander, Rob Roy, Harry Potter, Local Hero), as well as through the north-west Highlands via Inverness and Central Scotland to Edinburgh.

We are happy to organize a holiday extension for you in hotels, guesthouses or self-catering cottages in the Scottish Islands, in the Western Highlands, or in Edinburgh or Glasgow.

The Western Isles tour can be ideally combined with our Highlands and Islands tour to make a two week Hebridean experience complete.

This tour can ideally be booked in combination with our other walking and sightseeing tours. Please ask us for details.

INCLUDED IN THE PRICE
The walking tour price includes all ferry crossings and transfers, sightseeing visits, guiding and entry fees as described in the program, experienced walking and tour guide; eight nights in good small hotels and guesthouses with en suite rooms and full Scottish breakfast, four dinners, airport transfers, luggage transfer, maps as needed and a welcoming drink.

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The Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Edinburgh by 15.00 hrs. A very attractive journey by way of the Trossachs and Western Highlands to the west coast. Our route takes us between the Black Mount and Rannoch Moor to Glencoe, providing unforgettable impressions of the Scottish landscape. We travel on by Fort William and see, at the start of the Caledonian Canal, "Neptune's Staircase" with its multiple locks. After a stop in historically important Glenfinnan we come to the famous white beaches of Arisaig and enjoy open views of the Hebridean islands. Finally we catch sight of the tremendous Cuillin range on the Isle of Skye before arriving at our first hotel in the Arisaig/Mallaig area.  Dinner and getting to know one another. Possibility after dinner of a short circular walk in Mallaig.

Day 2: After a substantial breakfast a short ferry crossing from Mallaig to Skye. Panoramic drive past the Cuillin Hills to the coastal town of Portree. Here a delightful round trip walk along the shore and over "The Bile". Drive on past the bizarre rock formations of the Trotternish peninsula and then to the little ferry port of Uig. Once on board we sail over dark blue waters across the Little Minch to the fascinating island world of the Outer Hebrides, following the historic route taken by Flora MacDonald and commemorated in song. With luck today we might see whales or dolphins. After nearly two hours, arrival in North Uist. To familiarize ourselves with our new surroundings right away, we enjoy an idyllic coastal walk, before driving to our hotel where we will stay three nights. The islands of North Uist, Benbecula and South Uist are linked by scenic causeways. Dinner.

Day 3: We discover the island of South Uist. On a particularly attractive country walk at Glendale we enjoy extensive views of the islands and the Atlantic. Along white beaches and by an old crofting settlement we go over the low hills of Heartabreck and Cruachan. Only small ascents, ideal as a first longer walk. Duration around 4 hours (13 km). The coast attracts various seabirds and seals. Above all, otters can often be seen in the Uists. Dinner.

On a tour of enchanting South Uist and Benbecula we encounter green island glens, the fishing village of Lochboisdale, Flora MacDonald's birthplace, the romantic ruins of isolated castles, as well as an outstanding nature reserve. White sandy beaches run for over 30 kilometres on the west coast of South Uist.

Day 4: A short ferry crossing to the island of Barra, a nature photographer's paradise. From the boat there's a good chance of seeing puffins which breed on uninhabited islets off the coast. A varied day's walking in the most beautiful island landscapes of Barra and Vatersay. The colorful wildflower carpets of the machair arouse the enthusiasm of visitor and native alike. Mainly on Barra's west coast one finds seal colonies. We see the ruins of romantically situated Kisimul Castle, seat of clan MacNeil, and visit a cozy pub in the harbor town of Castlebay to round off a successful day. Dinner in the hotel.

Day 5: Harris. Along narrow roads we discover North Uist's western shore, passing Scolpaig Tower, and obtain marvelous coastal views on the one hour ferry journey cross the Sound of Harris. With a little luck we might see golden eagles. The island of Harris and Lewis is our home for the next three days.

Visit to the fascinating Rodel Church and an idyllic walk from there to Rhenish Point. Drive on past the beautiful backdrop of Harris's mountains to the delightful beach of Losgaintir Sands for a short walk.
Free time for an evening meal in the picturesque fishing village of Tarbert.  In the glow of evening sunlight on the onward journey, we drive through Lewis, a land of mountains, moors and sea lochs, on our way to the town of Stornoway. Perhaps a local will be cutting peat near the roadside. Three nights in Stornoway.

Day 6: Lewis highlights. The mysterious Callanish Stone Circle; the Pictish round tower, Carloway Broch; the Blackhouse Village, the Butt of Lewis lighthouse and much more. Short walks among the impressive Callanish standing stones and along gigantic cliffs. The cliffs of the Butt of Lewis offer good bird watching and are one of the best places in Britain for seeing whales and dolphins. Time in Stornoway for an evening meal.

Day 7:
Walking highlight. The last walk of the tour will be tailored to suit the abilities and interests of the group. Lewis and Harris, with their extensive areas of wilderness and isolated lochs in fairy tale glens, in addition to their impressive mountain and coastal scenery, offer the perfect climax to our walking tour. One of the possible round walks takes us to the incomparable Huishinish peninsula, another to southwest Lewis. Another possibility is the ascent of the of the Western Isles' highest peak, Clisham. During the climb, but especially from the summit, you will be rewarded with breathtaking panoramic views. In fine weather the entire Hebridean archipelago is visible. How would it be if, in the evening, your tour guide were to lead you in some ceilidh dancing (optional)?

Day 8: In the morning a chance to do some shopping and sightseeing in Stornoway. Places of interest are the Lewis Loom Centre, where you can find out all there is to know about the famous Harris Tweed, and the Museum nan Eilean, a museum of island life, or the grounds of Lewis Castle. Alternatively, you could enjoy tea and scones in one of the tearooms. There are shops where one can buy tasteful souvenirs in the form of jewelry and artwork made by local artists. Towards midday, a beautiful ferry crossing of the Minch of almost 3 hours, passing the Summer Isles, to reach the north western Highlands at Ullapool.

The varied onward journey, with opportunities for photography and short strolls, leads past deep Corrieshalloch Gorge and Rogie Falls where a short walk leads to a salmon ladder. In Inverness you can visit the pleasant town centre and eat an evening meal. Continuing our drive, we pass the Monadhliath Mountains and the Cairngorm National Park. Overnight in a hotel.

Day 9: Transfer to Edinburgh Airport. Please do not book a flight departure earlier than 11.30h. Departure or follow-on holiday program.
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THE NATURE OF SCOTLAND -
NATURAL HISTORY TOUR


A stunning natural history discovery tour offering wonderful encounters with wildlife together with comfortable hotels and the intimacy of small groups.

On our guided natural history tours we introduce you to the fascinating flora and fauna of Scotland against a backdrop of unparalleled coastal scenery and high lonely moorland. You gain unique experiences in wildlife watching and encounter an unbelievably large variety of rare seabirds, plants and flowers as well as wild animals in one of the last true wildernesses of Europe.

It does not matter whether you are already really knowledgeable about natural history, or want to take a closer look at the hidden wonders of nature for the first time - seabirds such as guillemots, razorbills, puffins or fulmars (which can live for over 100 years) as well as seal colonies, dolphins or whales, and the rarest of plants like Primula Scotica, will enthuse expert and beginner alike.

Constantly changing views of nature lead you along towering cliffs with bizarre rock formations and caves, by way of isolated white beaches, picturesque green hills and through flower bedecked island valleys to the enchanting Highland world of mountain and waterfall. On our unique tour you don't have to go for very long hikes, but you should have the wish, determination and fitness to spend long days in the open air.

You discover the Highlands, Central Scotland, the east, north and west coasts as well as the beautiful Orkney Islands and the Hebrides, the island highlights being the Orkneys, Hoy, Mull and Iona or Staffa. You find out about interesting eco-systems and the geology of Scotland. In addition the riches of a unique culture cannot be ignored, with so much evidence of 6000 years of eventful history all around; nor should the opportunities for getting to know the local people in relaxed and informal circumstances be forgotten.

You stay in good small hotels in comfort and with personal service. You enjoy generous breakfasts and very good three course dinners. In your small group or on your own initiative you discover whisky distilleries, castles and amazing landscaped gardens, the renowned abbey of Iona, a woolen mill and perhaps the most impressive stone circle in the world, sheepdog trials and much more. The ever present influences of Scandinavian and Celtic life and the little fishing villages whose inhabitants and visitors alike let the world pass by quietly and timelessly each day add to the special charm of our unique tour.

Depending on the timing of the tour, you have the promise of wonderful and varied impressions: these include large breeding colonies of gannets, puffins and great skuas (known in Scotland as bonxies), to say nothing of the chances of seeing red and black throated divers, golden eagles, ospreys, sea eagles, dolphins and whales, herds of red deer, otters, mountain hares, incredibly luxuriant woods of rhododendrons, golden gorse, moorland plants such as bog myrtle, wild orchids and insectivorous plants, and rare ferns, as well as arctic/alpine ecosystems and the magical purple of heather covered hillsides.

Forget the myth that it always rains in Scotland! The mild, soft climate is influenced by the warmth of the Gulf Stream. Often a light breeze blows, and the summer temperatures are not too hot for pleasant walking or observing wildlife. In Scotland the summer daylight scarcely fades. The evening atmosphere is prolonged by an enchanting luminescence that only towards midnight fades slowly from an idyllic and spectacular sunset into a romantic half light.

Your friendly humorous guide, Richard, is our expert for wildlife tours. He always knows exactly where the wild things are and can identify every kind of bird, even if it looks to you no more than a black dot in the sky. For evening entertainment he may, as one possibility, get you into the swing of Scottish country dancing.


DO YOU WANT TO EXTEND YOUR TOUR?
This holiday combines perfectly with the following tours: "Scotland in Style - Railway Adventure" (guided or self-guided) "Western Highlands - In the Footsteps of Rob Roy" - our classic tour "In the Heart of Scotland" walking, culture and sport based on one
center, great value) We organize your own individual holiday extension.

INCLUDED IN THE PRICE
8 nights in good mid-range small hotels, 3 star or equivalent, with en-suite rooms, 8 full Scottish breakfasts, 7 three course dinners with coffee, English speaking guide, all transfers, travel in modern coaches, rail travel, all ferry crossings: Mainland-Orkney, Orkney-Hoy, Hoy-Orkney,
Orkney-Mainland, Mainland-Mull, Mull-Iona, Iona-Mull, Mull-Mainland, all entry fees according to program, welcome drink.

The Itinerary
Day 1: Arrival in Edinburgh and welcome from the tour leader.Drive to East Lothian and the nature reserve at Aberlady Bay or to North Berwick. Very varied marine habitats such as an estuary, dunes, salt flats, all rich in rare plants. Birds which may be seen include, among others, a variety of waders and ducks, and gannets.

Alternative bad weather program: To the Scottish Seabird Centre in North Berwick. The very interesting and interactive Seabird Centre is situated directly opposite the world famous Bass Rock, with its enormous gannet colony. The displays are especially interesting to nature lovers. There are cameras set up on the offshore islands which the watcher can control from the Centre. Besides many other rare and fascinating seabirds whose breeding colonies gather on these islands in spring, gannets and puffins will definitely still be seen in July. Entry: £6.00 per person. Finally we still have time for a guided stroll along North Berwick's beautiful beach.

Excellent weather alternative: From North Berwick we take a boat trip to the world famous Bass Rock to watch the unbelievably crowded seabird colonies in close up. The boat does not land and you can see everything on the steep cliffs wonderfully well on the round trip.

Drive back to the beautiful city of Edinburgh. Short city tour of the city centre. Dinner and overnight stay. In the evening we recommend a pub crawl, or would you prefer to be taken by Dr Jekyll himself on a Ghost Tour (optional) through the darkest alleyways of Edinburgh's medieval Old Town? Or we will walk in the evening on the geologically interesting volcanic plug of Arthur's Seat, the mountain in the middle of Edinburgh, and enjoy the late lingering sunset.

Day 2:  - We drive in a northerly direction. On the way we visit Loch of the Lowes where we might possibly watch a rare osprey at the nest or, with luck, hunting.

Our next destination is the Cairngorms National Park. "Cairn" is Gaelic for a heap of stones or a mountain, and "gorm" is Gaelic for blue. The Cairngorm massif, especially in the evenings, is colored in intense shades of dark blue. The Cairngorms are unique. The high plateau is the only arctic-alpine environment in Great Britain with a herd of reindeer and a flora and fauna unique in the British Isles. The blooming of the heather turns the surrounding landscape of the Cairngorm mountains, Rothiemurchus estate and Glenmore Forest Park, into an unforgettable experience.

Here you enter Scotland's primary woodland as it originally appeared. The unique ecosystem depends on the Scots pine. This is the only coniferous forest in Scotland that has persisted since the end of the last ice age. Both geology and flora are very interesting. Animals and birds that we will probably encounter are, among others, many red deer, rare Scottish crossbills and red grouse.

Day 3:  We continue northwards. On request we make a little detour to Loch Ness, as well as to a small whisky distillery to sample Scotland's water of life (already included in the price). At the impressive Falls of Shin we watch wild Scottish salmon dauntlessly leaping the waterfall. We go on next to reach Scotland's north coast and embark on a beautiful trip by ferry to Orkney's mainland.
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Sightseeing at the unique Stone Age settlement of Skara Brae and a short walk along the imposing and geologically interesting cliff scenery of Yesnaby's rocky coast, a playground for many different kinds of seabird such as guillemot, razorbill, fulmar, shag and arctic skua. With a lot of luck we might see dolphins or whales. Today we can admire the extremely rare primula scotica which is often to be found growing on Yesnaby's cliffs. Overnight in Kirkwall, the friendly "capital" of Orkney with its traditional pubs. The gothic St. Magnus cathedral is one of only two in Scotland that survived the destruction of the Reformation.

Day 4:  Short ferry journey to the island of Hoy, a paradise for hikers and for nature. Today many seals will certainly keep us company on the boat trip. Hoy is a nature reserve. We enjoy a varied walk through fairy tale glens to the rock stack of the Old Man of Hoy and along 300 meter high cliffs, where puffins breed. In landscape terms this is a highlight of any Scottish tour, further enhanced by the wildlife. Where else would you go to see such a large breeding colony of great skuas, as well as arctic skuas, red throated divers, razorbills and guillemots? But watch out for the great skuas, or "bonxies" as they are known locally, which defend their nest sites even against people.

Two nights in Kirkwall. In the glow of the evening light, perhaps we can summon up the will or the energy to visit the Ring of Brodgar and the Stones
of Stenness, two of the best preserved stone circles in the world. In addition Kirkwall can offer you plenty of historical interest on both days. We will not miss out the Churchill Barriers, Scapa Flow and the Italian
Chapel.

Day 5: Ferry trip back to the mainland. Today we encounter "the wild, wild west". We drive along Scotland's north coast through Sutherland (so named by the Vikings for whom it was indeed a southern land) and Wester Ross. These landscapes are supremely wild and little changed since the last ice age. Sutherland is part of a region which is the least populated in all Europe. Today we see rare moorland and coastal plants, and, of course, wildly
romantic landscapes, as well as deserted, kilometer-long, white, sandy beaches - not forgetting the world's most northerly palm tree. We spend the night in the small town of Ullapool.

Day 6: We begin with the geologically extremely interesting and very deep Corrieshalloch Gorge. Who will trust themselves to the shaky bridge above the waterfall? Further on, and sheltered in a bay warmed by the Gulf Stream, lie the totally unexpected and wonderful subtropical Inverewe Gardens. Sightseeing with free time. As the journey continues, we encounter ever more impressive landscapes. We enjoy an unforgettable drive beside picturesque Loch Maree. Then Torridon makes the hearts of any climbers beat faster. At Loch Duich we stop at famous Eilean Donan Castle (featured in the film, "Highlander"). Through wild Kintail, and by way of the geological fault of the Great Glen, and a little later via Fort William, we continue our journey to the ferry crossing to the Isle of Mull. This evening we can amuse ourselves with a ceilidh when you can practice some Highland dancing under the guidance of your tour leader.

Day 7: After the strenuous activities of the previous day we can choose to take things a little easier. We decide for ourselves the evening before.

Possibility 1: In Tobermory there is a successful nature conservation project which concerns itself with whales and dolphins. There is the possibility of organizing a whole day's boat trip to look for sea mammals. The price is dependent on the size of the group.

Possibility 2:  First we visit the picture book Torosay Castle with its superb gardens. This laird's house is very welcoming, with hardly any barriers, and above much of the furniture is a notice inviting you to take a seat. Then we continue, according to the wishes of the group, either to beautiful Loch Buie and nature observation, an ancient castle, a cliff walk and stone circle. Or we drive to the pretty little island capital, Tobermory. Its colorfully painted fishermen's houses overlooking the harbor bay and its friendly inhabitants give Tobermory an exceptionally homely and welcoming feel. Here the locals and the visitors have plenty of time and peace to allow each day to take its course. Relax on a guided tour of Tobermory whisky distillery, with a sampling of Scotland's "water of life". Enjoy lunch in a traditional pub or a real British afternoon tea in one of the pleasant tea rooms with a panoramic view of the harbor and the sea. Many small shops sell interesting and tasteful souvenirs, jewelry and the products of local craftsmen. There are also interesting visits to be made to the Tobermory chocolate factory or to Sgriob Ruadh cheese farm. Both the chocolates and the traditional cheese are splendid. A coastal walk to the picturesque lighthouse, from which one can often see dolphins, or a stroll along the attractive seafront and into Aros Park concludes a rewarding day. (all entry fees in Tobermory optional).

After dinner in a fish restaurant (optional) we take a look at the renowned Mishnish pub in Tobermory which has been chosen as the friendliest pub in Scotland. Second night on Mull.

Day 8: We visit the sacred island of Iona, "the cradle of Christianity'. The geology of Iona is surprisingly different from that of Mull, although the
islands lie so close together. On Iona we find the rare ecosystem of "Machair", typical only of the Outer Hebrides, where particular grasses and flowers grow on the sandy soil. In addition to seals and many types of sea bird, with any luck we should perhaps see a sea eagle, a golden eagle, and, hopefully, an otter, or even dolphins or whales. We might even glimpse a rare corncrake on Iona, where they are making a comeback.

First by tour bus to Fionnphort and then by small passenger ferry over clear blue water we go to Iona. We see impressively carved Celtic crosses and romanticaly situated ruins and have the choice of a visit to the historicaly significant site of Iona Abbey. From here St Columba sent out his missionaries and warriors to convert the natives and to many parts of
Continental Europe. In the oldest graveyard in Scotland Scottish, Irish and Norwegian royalty are buried - amongst others, Macbeth and Duncan. We explore the island on foot and experience the spiritual tranquility of the island. Our walk takes us along empty white beaches, through dramatic rock scenery and over smooth green hillocks. We get magical views of the Hebridean islands. Alternatively on this day participants can take a boat  trip from Fionnphort to the island of Staffa, famous for its spectacular rock formations, unique basalt columns and Fingal's Cave. Staffa inspired Mendelssohn to compose his Hebridean Overture. After you have landed on Staffa, the boat brings you to Iona. You then have plenty of time to visit Iona Abbey.

The eventful day's program is made complete with a wonderful bus tour of south-eastern Mull. We follow the rest of the route of David Balfour's escape from his kidnappers after his stranding on Iona in Robert Louis Stevenson's novel "Kidnapped". Depending on the time left, we visit Duart Castle (optional), seat of the chiefs of Clan MacLean, where the present chief may be in residence.

Day 9: Ferry from Mull to Oban. Wonderfully scenic journey to Edinburgh Airport and return flight, or to the start of the next program.

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GUIDED WALKING TOURS
GARDENS WALKING TOUR

A guided walking and gardens tour on the Hebridean islands of Mull, Iona and Skye and in the Western Highlands as well as in Edinburgh and its neighborhood.

In addition to wonderful walking you can visit five public and private gardens, either by yourself or with a guide, which will inspire any garden lover. These comprise Torosay Castle and Gardens, Armadale Castle and Gardens, The Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh, Dirleton Castle and Gardens, as well as having the option of a private or public garden in the Edinburgh area, and other gardens on the tour.

A background of dramatic coastal landscapes and lonely moorlands sets the scene for Scotland's fascinating flora and fauna. It does not matter if you are already knowledgeable about gardening and natural history, or if you would just like to catch a glimpse of the hidden wealth of natural beauty - beginners and experts alike will be enthused by unique opportunities for watching nature and seeing an incredibly wide variety of rare seabirds, plants and flowers, as well as wild animals, in one of Europe's last real wildernesses.

Our walks take you through the Scottish islands' and Highlands' breathtaking scenery. On foot you enter the romantic, wild beauty and tranquility of the islands and the wide open spaces of the Highlands, always returning in the evenings to good small hotels with good food and personal service. We change hotels only twice during the whole tour. You round off your richly varied journey by exploring the finest aspects of Scotland's capital city.

As part of a small group or on your own initiative you discover spectacular landscapes, castles, whisky distilleries, the important monastic sites of Iona and much more. The continuing influences of Celtic and Scandinavian cultures, as well as the picturesque little fishing communities where visitors and inhabitants alike look forward to passing each day away from bustle and stress, contribute to the special charm of our exclusive tour.

Depending on the length of your holiday, along with the pleasure of visiting the superbly landscaped gardens of Torosay, Armadale and Dirleton, is the possibility of other wonderful experiences, among them seeing breeding colonies of gannets and puffins, sea eagles and golden eagles, dolphins and whales, herds of red deer, unbelievably extensive rhododendron woods, brilliant yellow gorse, moorland plants such as bog myrtle and orchids, insectivorous plants, rare ferns and alpine-arctic environments or bright heather-clad hillsides.

General Description of the Tour
You will be guided by your tour leader who is an experienced walking and Scottish tourist guide and knowledgeable about gardens.

The essence of the tours is enjoyment of the countryside, not mountain sport. You undertake idyllic island walks in lonely glens with picturesque lochs, along deserted beaches of white sand, and through colorful fishing villages. You wander along cliffs with marvelous views over the islands of the Hebrides; you make numerous boat trips and picnic on beautiful beaches.
Also included is the possibility of a demanding mountain walk, the ascent of Ben More, Mull's highest summit. You can ask your tour guide for alternatives to the more strenuous walks.

A varied journey in a small bus takes you from Edinburgh or Glasgow through Argyll, on to the beautiful Hebridean islands, and finally through the Western Highlands via Glencoe. You see the romantic wilderness of Rannoch Moor and travel parallel to the famous West Highland Way and beside scenic Loch Lomond. Then, at the conclusion of the tour, Scotland's cultural centre, Edinburgh, awaits you with its castle, cafés and botanical garden, followed by further garden visits and walks in East Lothian.

The sightseeing highlights of the trip are the island of Iona, known as the cradle of Christianity, Castle Tioram, the fortress of Duart castle or impressive Torosay Castle with its garden. In the picture book little town of Inveraray stands the fairytale Inveraray Castle, seat of the Duke of Argyll, and the interesting Inveraray Gaol Museum. On request you may be able to take part in a Scottish evening, and much, much more.

We make frequent stops on our journeys by comfortable minibus: for instance, beside Loch Lomond, famous in song, at the evocative ruin of Kilchurn Castle, in dramatic Glencoe and in historic Glenfinnan, as well as at a traditional fish smokery.

Maybe you would sometimes like to do something on your own as an alternative to a walk.

An excursion to picturesque fishing villages or small towns like Tobermory, the island 'capital' of Mull, is a possibility. Discover the impressive island of Staffa with its unique rock formations, or other islands such as Muck, Eigg and Rum. Tour Tobermory whisky distillery or visit Britain's smallest theatre on Mull. Experience a historic railway journey or the historically significant Glenfinnan monument, as well additional walks, for instance to Europe's deepest lake, Loch Morar. Take time out at the seat of Clan Donald, Armadale Castle and Gardens, or at significant prehistoric sites such as stone circles, or in cozy tearooms and traditional pubs where you can learn much about the country, the people, ale and whisky in conversation with the locals.

You do not have to be an experienced walker. You should arrive with the stamina and fitness to walk for 4 hours, bearing in mind that the Ben More walk can last 6 hours. Your tour leader will offer alternatives to all the more tiring and strenuous sections, so that no one need be overtaxed.
Clients can easily take a day off from walking in order to relax, or to do something on their own.

You walk and travel in small groups which facilitates personal attention.
The smallest possible group is 8 people. A tour group generally consists of 10 to 14 persons. On the walks you need bring only a small day sack to carry packed lunches, camera and so on. Luggage is transferred by road from hotel to hotel. Frequently we walk directly from the hotel. In cases where it is unnecessary to use a tour bus to take us to the start of a walk, if possible we take the train or a boat. In this way even a transfer can be an experience, and you enjoy your walk away from roads and traffic.

Individual holiday extensions in hotels, guest houses or self catering accommodation on the islands, in the Western Highlands, or in Glasgow and Edinburgh are a possibility.

Climate
Forget the prejudice that it rains constantly in Scotland. The mild, temperate climate is influenced by the warmth of the Gulf Stream. Frequently a light breeze blows and the temperature even in summer is not too hot for comfortable walking. When it does rain it is usually a shower. It does not rain all day long as in many other countries. The passage of clouds creates constantly changing scenes and wonderful contrasts of light and shade for the photographer. You can walk in ideal conditions from May to October.

*2 guaranteed departures all others departures, minimum of just 8 people - maximum group size 16!!

WOULD YOU LIKE TO EXTEND YOUR HOLIDAY?
You can combine this tour perfectly with the walking tours:
"In the Heart of Scotland" - walking and culture based on a single
location
"Northern Highlights" - Orkney and Shetland Islands and Sutherland
"Western Highlands" - in the footsteps of Rob Roy - our classic!
"Western Isles" - Islands of Lewis, Harris, Uists, Barra, and north-west
Scotland
"Lake District" - English Lake District and Yorkshire Dales
Self-guided railway and walking tour

Tours of Scotland:
"Scotland - the Whisky Trail and More" (exclusive bus tour for connoisseurs) "Scotland in Style - Railway Adventure" (self-guided)

INCLUDED IN THE PRICE
8 day program: Gardens and walking tour includes all visits, guiding, admissions, road and/or rail travel, and transfers according to the program. English-speaking tour leader - guide, 7 nights in good small hotels with en-suite rooms with bath/shower and WC and full Scottish breakfasts. 4
evening meals, luggage transfers, welcome drink. Brief city tour of Glasgow. Airport transfer. Entry to Glasgow and Edinburgh botanical gardens is free. There is an admission fee for Armadale and Torosay Castles.

11 day program INCLUDES IN ADDITION:
Gardens and walking tour as in the published program. Detailed walking and touring information, 3 nights in good hotels with en-suite rooms with bath/shower and WC and full Scottish breakfast. Brief city tour of Edinburgh. Transfer to Edinburgh Airport.

The Itinerary
Day 1:
Arrive in Edinburgh or Glasgow. Arrival in Glasgow up to 13.30 hrs or in Edinburgh before 11.30 hrs or a day earlier. If you arrive early enough you will have time to visit Glasgow's fine Botanical Garden. Around 14.00h a very varied journey from Glasgow Airport by coach or minibus through the Western Highlands, taking in Loch Lomond, Loch Awe, Kilchurn Castle and Loch Etive, to Oban (about 21/2 hours). One hour ferry trip to Craignure on the Isle of Mull and transfer by bus to your hotel (c.1/2 hour). Check in at hotel where you stay for the first four nights. Getting to know each other, free drink, and dinner.

Day 2: Round Walk across Mull from the hotel and back. (5 hours, 8 miles, total ascent 300 meters). A beautiful coast to coast walk from the hotel across the island's narrowest point through both forested and open country with wonderful views. Short and gentle ascents and descents ensure an easy start to the walking holiday on this five-hour (13 km.) exploration. With a little luck on this first day you will see seals, eagles and rare seabirds.
Individual participants can if they wish extend the walk: for example to Aros Castle or prehistoric sites.

Day 3: To the holy island of Iona, the "cradle of Christianity". First by tour bus we travel for a little over an hour to Fionnphort to take the small passenger ferry over clear blue water to Iona. We explore the island on foot and enjoy the spiritual tranquility of Iona. Our walk takes us along empty white beaches, through dramatic rock scenery and over smooth green hillocks with wonderful views of the Hebridean islands. (5 hours, 6 miles, total ascent 300 - 350 meters). At the start of our walk we see impressively carved Celtic crosses and romantically situated monastic ruins. We have the option of visiting historic Iona Abbey. From here St Columba sent out his missionaries and warriors to convert the natives. In the oldest graveyard in Scotland Scottish, Irish and Norwegian royalty are buried - amongst others, Macbeth and Duncan.

Alternatively on this day you can take a boat trip from Fionnphort to Staffa, famous for its spectacular rock formations and Fingal's Cave. Staffa inspired Mendelssohn to write his Hebridean Symphony. Around Staffa from May to the end of July you should be able to see numerous puffins. At the end of the Staffa trip the boat sails to Iona which leaves you plenty of time to visit the Abbey.

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The eventful day's program is made complete with a wonderful bus tour of south-eastern Mull. Most of the way we follow the escape route taken by David Balfour, hero of Robert Louis Stevenson's 'Kidnapped', who was stranded on the island of Erraid off the Ross of Mull. We stop at Duart Castle, ancient seat of the Macleans. Depending on the duration of the walk on Iona and the time available in the afternoon, participants have the option of visiting the fortress of Duart Castle or the nearby Torosay castle and gardens.

Day 4:
Walk Ben More. Ascent of the highest mountain in Mull, Ben More. (5-6 hours, 4-5 miles, 966 metres). During the ascent and especially on the summit you will be rewarded with breathtaking panoramic views. In good conditions you can see the Western Highlands and virtually all the Hebrides.

Garden enthusiasts should take the time today to enjoy Torosay castle and its garden at leisure. The castle is a charmingly hospitable and comfortable family home in a captivating setting. In the drawing room you will find over the sofa a sign inviting you to take a seat, and beside the stylish old wooden rocking horse another sign in which Stella, the horse, introduces herself and says that she loves children to ride her.
The landscaped garden's attractions are not just its beauty and its plants, but also its Italian Renaissance statues (which are allegedly tucked up at night and allowed to spend the winter in the house!). A rewarding excursion!
If you wish both to climb Ben More and to see Torosay Castle and Gardens, you can visit Torosay the previous day instead of Duart Castle.

Less demanding alternatives for this day are various walks without a guide.
Possible examples are along the coast, or through beautiful Salen forest to lonely Loch Frisa. The length of the walks is up to you.

Another sightseeing option today is a visit to the pretty little island capital, Tobermory. A service bus takes you in half an hour from just outside your hotel to Tobermory. The colorfully painted fishermen's houses lining the harbor and the friendly inhabitants give Tobermory a welcoming character. Here islanders and visitors alike have time and peace to enjoy the relaxed pace of Hebridean life. You might take a guided tour of the Tobermory Distillery with a tasting of Scotland's 'water of life', eat lunch in a traditional pub, or you might enjoy a traditional British afternoon tea in a teashop overlooking the harbor and the sea. Small shops sell interesting and tasteful souvenirs, jewellery and the work of local artists and craftsmen. Also worthwhile is a visit to the cheese farm at Sgriob-Ruadh. The Mull cheese is excellent. A walk round the picturesque harbor or in beautiful Aros Park ends a rewarding day. You can also walk the 12 kilometers back to the hotel.

Day 5: Check out from the hotel,10 minutes in the bus and short ferry ride to Lochaline in the Morvern district of the mainland. A drive of about 2 hours through the varied landscape of Morvern, one of the last extensive undisturbed natural areas of Europe, to Castle Tioram's romantic ruin.

After a picnic lunch at the castle, our round walk leads through graceful pines along the craggy shores of tranquil Loch Moidart and then continues through open country to traverse the slopes of Beinn Breach, passing small lochans and with wonderful views, and finally back to the castle. (3-31/2 hours, 4 miles, 6 km, total ascent 250-300 meters)

Continuing our journey for about 11/2 hours via Lochailort on the famous Road to the Isles, we drive along what is said to be Britain's most beautiful road. En route we see Loch nan Uamh, scene of Bonnie Prince Charlie's first step onto Scottish soil to raise the clans in the 1745 rebellion. To the west we enjoy open views across the famous white sands of Arisaig over to the islands of Muck, Eigg and Rum. We pass by Loch Morar, Europe's deepest freshwater lake, home of the monster Morag.

If the group wishes, we can take a second walk in the afternoon. Finally we see the jagged outline of the Cuillin Hills of Skye before us as we approach our hotel in the Arisaig/Mallaig neighborhood. Check in to the hotel where we stay for two nights.

Day 6: Walking on Skye and Armadale Castle and Gardens.
With a 30 minute ferry trip In the morning we sail 'over the sea to Skye'
from Mallaig to Armadale. The final walk of the holiday will be tailored to the interests and abilities of the group. Skye offers lonely lochs in fairytale glens and the breathtaking Cuillin range - which is reckoned to be the most beautiful in Britain - making this day the climax of our walking tour.

Garden lovers can expect a treat today in the form of Armadale Castle and Gardens. You can either spend a restful day in the superb gardens, from which several different short walks can be taken, or you can visit the gardens more briefly on the return journey to the hotel, following the programmed group walk on Skye. In the landscaped gardens you will find the extremely interesting museum of The Clan Donald Centre, here because Armadale Castle is the headquarters of the MacDonald clan.

Day 7: Bus Trip to Glasgow and onwards to Edinburgh.

The eventful day's journey, with lots of opportunities for photography and sightseeing, takes you through the Western Highlands. At first we drive south along the Road to the Isles. After a stop in historic Glenfinnan, and passing Neptune's staircase, the multiple locks at the start of the Caledonian Canal, we reach Fort William at the foot of Ben Nevis, Britain's highest mountain.

Continuing along the banks of Loch Linnhe we come to the superb mountain scenery of the famous 'Glen of Weeping', Glencoe, where in 1692 the MacDonalds of Glencoe were murdered at night in their homes on the orders of the English king by soldiers of Clan Campbell. Even today the massacre has not lost its power to shock and is certainly not forgotten. Our route crosses the western end of the wilderness of Rannoch Moor.

Rannoch Moor covers an area of 145 square kilometers and is one of the few remaining wild areas of Europe, a paradise for wild animals and birds and home of rare plants. Our way lies amid unforgettable scenery between Rannoch Moor and the impressive hills of the Black Mount. Once again we pick up the trail of Robert Louis Stevenson's hero, David Balfour.

For some distance the road runs parallel to the famous West Highland Way, before we make a photo stop at the imposing ruined stronghold of Kilchurn Castle on Loch Awe, and come eventually to the picturesque little town of Inveraray. Here, during a longer break you can, for example, visit the fairytale Inveraray Castle, seat of the Duke of Argyll or the fascinating museum in the old Inveraray jail. Even more relaxing perhaps is a stroll around the town on the shores of Loch Fyne.

After a stop at a fish smokery we go on to experience the beauty of Loch Lomond, celebrated in the famous song. Stopping at the village of Luss, we can see the "bonnie banks of Loch Lomond" for ourselves.
Soon we come to the city of Glasgow which has much to interest the traveler. After a brief city tour we take some of the party to their Glasgow hotel. Finally we take you in about 1 hour to Edinburgh. Check in at a centrally located hotel, 3 stars or equivalent, in which you will spend the next four nights. Later you could choose to attend a traditional Scottish Evening or undertake a Ghost Tour or Pub Tour.

The last night is spent in the city of Glasgow which offers many choices of entertainment for the last evening - from ghost tours to pub crawls.

Days 8 to 10: Edinburgh, its environs and gardens

If a rewarding day in one of Europe's most beautiful cities is for you, then you've come to the right place. In this picture book city, consisting of the medieval Old Town and the fascinating New Town (250 years old!), you can comfortably discover the highlights on foot. You will be entranced by the wonderfully welcoming atmosphere of this friendly city. In August the biggest arts festival in the world takes place in Edinburgh. We recommend that first of all you familiarize yourself with the city by taking a city tour organized by us for you.

Edinburgh's Botanic Garden is one of the finest in all Great Britain. You should plan to spend not less than three hours there.

As an option we can organize a further visit for you to one of the most attractive private gardens in the Edinburgh area.

Always and everywhere there is something going on in Scotland's festival city. You really will chance upon its many sights. Visit a couple of its important museums, the impressive castle, perhaps too one of the major art galleries. Discover St. Giles Cathedral, or the fascinating Botanic Garden, or trace the footsteps of Mary Queen of Scots when you explore Holyrood Palace. Between sightseeing and excellent shopping you can relax in a friendly café and watch the lively hustle and bustle of the passing scene.


For Edinburgh we recommend three excellent self-guided walks we have selected for you:

Coastal Walk, Dirleton Castle and Garden The coastal walk combines beaches, islands, a lighthouse and seabirds with the small seaside town of North Berwick. On this walk you can easily make a visit to Dirleton Castle and Gardens. The charming gardens even have an entry in the Guinness Book of Records.

The second walk is a delightful round walk in the rolling Pentland Hills just outside Edinburgh. The route combines easy hillwalking with picturesque lochs and stunning views not only of Edinburgh's coastal scenery, stretching from the Firth of Forth to the North Sea, but also of the Borders and of the Highlands. You finish up at a traditional pub, the Flotterstone Inn.

A walk of about two hours on Arthur's Seat, the little mountain in the heart of Edinburgh, gives you a superb overview of the city and its surroundings.

If you would prefer to plan your own program, you will find the Tourist Information Office at Waverley Market on Princes Street, just above Waverley Station. There you can find precise information about all the sightseeing possibilities as well as about the day trips by train and bus which most interest you. Examples of these might be Glasgow, or the golfer's Mecca, St Andrews. Picturesque expeditions can be made along the beautiful East Lothian coast with its seabird colonies and to the rolling hills and ruined abbeys of the Borders.
On one of the three evenings you might like to go on a pub crawl or take a ghost tour. Various hotels offer a Scottish Evening. The Tourist Information Office can tell you about these attractions or about pub entertainment, jazz clubs and a range of restaurants.

Day 11:
Depending on the time of the return flight, individually planned free time in Glasgow followed by transfer to the airport and departure.


We reserve the right to make changes to the published program.

 

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GUIDED WALKING TOURS
IN THE HEART OF SCOTLAND

A leisurely walking holiday with an experienced guide and many opportunities to make friends. A charmingly situated hotel with plenty of chances for cultural and sporting leisure activities. Discovering an outstandingly beautiful region of Scotland. An activity holiday for couples, families and singles, offering excellent value for money.

A secret the Scots keep to themselves: Pitlochry in the county of Perthshire.

The heart of Scotland is a country of mountains, lochs and rushing waters. Here you can enjoy walking in idyllic surroundings while making new friends. Your tour guide knows the area intimately and will be delighted to introduce you to Scotland's culture, country and people.

Pitlochry is a friendly, picturesque little highland town on the banks of the River Tummel and Loch Faskally, with numerous shops and banks, restaurants and cozy, traditional pubs. Pleasurable outings may be made to the famous fish ladder, to the smallest whisky distillery in Scotland or to the internationally-renowned Festival Theatre.

Our hotel, from which you can take many a stroll or longer walk, is a fine Victorian building situated peacefully above the attractive little town. It is a very good three-star hotel with cozy public rooms, a homely bar, a tastefully-furnished dining room and a swimming pool and modern sports and leisure centre available to residents free of charge. The bedrooms, with en suite shower/bath/WC, are modern, comfortably furnished and have TV, hairdryer and tea/coffee-making facilities.

The meals included in the price consist of a plentiful breakfast each day and five excellent evening dinners. The chef is delighted to cook vegetarian dishes and attend to your dietary needs. One can buy a good, low-cost packed lunch for walks and other outings.

The neighborhood offers many creative and leisure opportunities, such as cycling, mountain biking, swimming, sailing, rowing, canoeing, kayaking, golf, tennis, riding, fishing, or mountaineering.

Extensive cultural choices include the ducal seat of Blair Castle, medieval castles, whisky distilleries, museums of Scottish life and history, medieval churches and cathedrals, as well as the galleries of local artists. Drama at Pitlochry's Festival Theatre, the Highland Games, and other events where you can meet the locals, enhance the wealth of holiday experiences. You can organize your own bus or rail trips from Pitlochry to discover, for example, Loch Ness, Inverness, Edinburgh and much more of Scotland.

Pitlochry meets all the requirements of the landscape painter or photographer. Materials can be obtained locally. Interesting little shops in Pitlochry and Perth tempt the souvenir-hunting shopper.

Walks
Perthshire is one of Scotland's most beautiful walking areas. Three guided all-day walks and one half-day walk are already included in the price and range from peaceful strolls along branching footpaths among woods and lochs, with lunch breaks in picturesque villages and cozy pubs, to a hill walking expedition. Individual walks will be tailored to suit the interests and stamina of the group. Often you can cut a walk shorter or extend it to suit yourself. We generally follow established footpaths, enabling us to enjoy the romantic world of mountains, waterfalls and lochs whose ever-changing greens, blues and greys give the landscape endless variety. You need to be reasonably fit and able to walk for at least three to four hours.
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SUMMARY OF THE TOUR PROGRAM:

Day One: Airport transfer, introductions, welcome drink, dinner together.

Day Two: All-day walk. Discover the neighborhood, picturesque River Tummel, Loch Faskally, River Garry, Pass of Killiecrankie and the Soldier's Leap.
The walk can be extended to Blair Atholl with a visit to Blair Castle (additional cost). Dinner together.

Day Three: The half-day walk takes you to Scotland's smallest whisky distillery, Edradour. This scenic excursion and sampling of Scotland's "water-of-life" is included in the tour price. The afternoon is free for your choice of activity.

Day Four: All-day walk. A varied walk through woods and with fine views to Loch Tummel and the Queen's View. Dinner together.

Day Five:
Various organized outings as described below may be booked.

Day Six: All-day walk. Today we climb Ben Vrackie (841 m) on a varied and beautiful round walk. Dinner together.

Day Seven: All-day walk. This walk will be adapted to the wishes and abilities of the group. Later in the day we will possibly be entertained to a Scottish evening (still to be confirmed). Dinner together.

Day Eight: Airport transfer to Edinburgh and departure or connection to the next tour program.

Organized Outings may be booked during the tour. Arrangements are dependent on reaching a minimum number of twelve participants. In weather conditions unsuitable for walking an alternative all-day excursion will be offered (not included in the price).

1. By bus. A Highland excursion: Loch Ness, Inverness, the prehistoric site of Clava Cairns, the Caledonian Canal, Fort William, the Western Highlands, Glencoe, Rannoch Moor and the Trossachs.

2. By train. To Edinburgh for an interesting city sightseeing tour or the option of an amusing afternoon's treasure hunt in the Old Town.

3. By bus. Discover Royal Deeside with the Queen's castle at Balmoral, Aberdeen, the North Sea coast, romantic Dunnottar Castle, Dundee and Perth.

Climate
Forget the received wisdom that it always rains in Scotland. The mild and temperate climate is influenced by the Gulf Stream. A light breeze often blows and the temperature, even in summer, is not too hot for pleasant walking.

Walking Tour Guide and Tour Leader
Your friendly and enthusiastic tour guide is experienced in leading demanding walking and study tours. He knows Perthshire intimately and will be delighted to introduce you to its culture, land, people and language.


Included in the price of the 8 day tour:
- Transfers to all the walks described
- 2 Airport transfers - to and from Edinburgh Airport
- Accommodation for 7 nights in double/twin room with en suite shower/bath/WC, TV, hairdryer, tea and coffee making facilities.
- 5 full dinners with menu to choose from
- 7 full Scottish breakfasts- 4 guided walks as described
- Entry to some attractions, e.g. whisky distillery
- Welcome drink
- Evening program as described

Not included: excursions by bus or train.

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WALKING IN SCOTLAND - IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF ROB ROY

A Guided Walking and Sightseeing Tour through the Western Highlands with an Introductory Coach or Minibus Tour of Scotland

Our walking tour explores the most scenic regions of the Scottish Highlands. You will discover, on foot, the wide-open spaces of the Highlands and relax in the evenings in small, quality hotels which pride themselves on their personal service and excellent food. The walking part of the trip is based on just two hotels. Our walks take us through the locations of famous films such as "Braveheart", "Rob Roy" and "The Highlander". To finish off your tour you will be taken south through Scotland to Edinburgh.

General Description of the Itinerary
An experienced walking and tour guide who has lived in Scotland for many years will accompany you.

The essence of the walking tour is the experience of the countryside rather than arduous physical exertion. It includes parts of the West Highland Way with optional ascents to the high tops, walks through some of the most beautiful of the Scottish glens, and across wild moorland; there is also a chance to climb Britain's highest mountain, Ben Nevis, and to explore some mountain ridges. An eventful day's journey at the end of the walking tour takes you through Scotland, the length of the Great Glen, from Fort Augustus, alongside Loch Ness to the Highland capital, Inverness, south through the Grampian Mountains, and over the Forth Bridge to Edinburgh where we show you round the Scottish capital.

The sightseeing highlights of the trip include a city tour of Edinburgh; visits to a whisky distillery and to one of the best preserved prehistoric stone circles in Scotland; a journey on the West Highland Railway Line across wild, romantic Rannoch Moor and an excursion to Loch Ness, where there is the chance of a boat trip. If you wish, a Scottish evening can be arranged.

You do not have to be an experienced walker, but you should have the physical ability to walk for up to six hours. Strenuous or challenging elements of the walks can be avoided by easy alternative routes which your guide can arrange. On the other hand, you can take a day off from walking if you prefer to relax, or you might like to hire a mountain bike for a day, or visit an interesting museum.

Walking and touring groups are small so that we can give you personal attention. The smallest viable group is of six people, though usually a group consists of twelve to sixteen people. On the walks you need carry only a small day-sack to hold your packed lunch and camera. In most instances the walk starts directly from the hotel you are staying in. Where transport is needed to the start of a walk we try to use the West Highland Railway wherever it is convenient. Thus the journey to the walk is itself an enjoyable experience, away from cars and roads.

DO YOU WANT TO EXTEND YOUR TOUR?
This holiday combines perfectly with the following tours: "In the Heart of Scotland" (walking, culture and sport based on one centre, great value) "Islands and Highlands" (Mull, Iona, Skye, and Western Highlands) "Northern Highlights" (Orkney and Shetland Islands and Sutherland) "Scotland in Style - Railway Adventure" (guided or self-guided) "We organize your own individual holiday extension

INCLUDED IN THE PRICE
The walking tour price includes all visits, guides, entry fees, railway journeys and transfers as detailed in the program; experienced walking and tour guide; seven nights in very good small hotels with en-suite rooms and full Scottish breakfast, five three course dinners and five packed lunches; airport transfers, luggage transfer, maps as required and welcoming drink.




 

Daily Itineraries

Day 1. Arrival in Glasgow by 3:00pm. Transfer to your hotel in the Crianlarich area. Getting to know one another and dinner.

Day 2. Walk the West Highland Way amid beautiful and varied mountain scenery, through woods and open country with superb views, following historic routes used by Scottish clansmen. Very brief ascents and descents, ideal for the first day's walking. Duration about 6 hours. 21km (13 ½ miles)

Day 3. Walk Today you have a choice of 2 routes: most often walkers choose the seductively beautiful level or slightly undulating and less demanding route along a former military road. Duration 4 to 5 hours. 16 km (10 miles). The alternative route for all or for part of the group consists of steep ascents and descents and leads you over 3 summits with breathtaking panoramic views. Duration 10 hours. 28 kilometers (17 ½ miles).

Day 4. Walk Rannoch Moor. Walk across the wilderness of Rannoch Moor. It is one of the last vast areas of unspoiled nature in Europe, with its own flora and fauna. The walk takes you past picturesque lochs with wide, sandy beaches, far from roads and civilization. If the mythical creatures of Scottish folklore still exist anywhere, then it must be here! Duration 6 or 7 hours. 22 kilometers (13 ½ miles). This fascinating day is rounded off by a railway journey to Fort William. Enjoy going to a pub or attending a Scottish evening.

Day 5. Walk Ben Nevis. Ascend to the summit of the highest mountain in Great Britain, Ben Nevis, 1343 meters. Duration 8 hours. 16 kilometers (10 miles).
During the ascent, especially from the summit, you will be rewarded by very impressive panoramic views. In ideal weather conditions you can see most of the Scottish Highlands and many of the Hebridean islands. An alternative walk is offered through Glen Nevis with its spectacular waterfalls. Duration from 3 to 6 hours.

Day 6. Walk Glencoe. Journey into Glencoe, famed in history. Visit the Hidden Valley or choose alternative routes according to the walking abilities of the group. Or walk the final stretch of the West Highland Way. Duration 6 hours. 21 kilometers (13 ½ miles).

Day 7. Coach or minibus (depending on size of group) to Edinburgh. After a week's walking we relax on an extensive tour of the Great Glen and the Caledonian Canal to Loch Ness, followed by a short tour of Inverness, the Highland capital. You can visit a woolen mill and enjoy a guided tour of a whisky distillery with a chance to taste the Scottish elixir of life. After visiting the Culloden battlefield and a beautifully preserved prehistoric stone circle, you travel to Edinburgh where you enjoy a short city tour. As an optional extra you can take a ghost tour, a traditional Scottish evening, or a pub-crawl.

Day 8. Edinburgh and Departure or Transfer to the Second Week's Tour. Depending on travel arrangements, free time in Edinburgh, transfer to the airport and departure, or transfer to the next tour.

 
 
GUIDED WALKING TOURS
ISLANDS AND HIGHLANDS TOUR

A guided walking and sightseeing tour in the Hebridean islands of Mull, Iona and Skye, and in the Western Highlands with a coach or minibus tour of Western Scotland.

Our walking tour takes you through the most scenic areas of the Western Isles and the West Coast of Scotland. You discover the romantic wildness and peace of the islands and the open spaces of the Western Highlands on foot; and stay in small, quality hotels with personal service and good food.
During the whole journey there are only two changes of hotel. Experience the fascinating monuments of Scotland's eventful past and round off your holiday with a coach or minibus trip through the mountains and past the lochs of Scotland's western mainland.

General Description of the Tour

An experienced walking and tour guide who has lived in Scotland for many years will accompany you.

The essence of the tour is to engage with the countryside, rather than in strenuous mountain sports. It includes idyllic island walks through wild glens, past picturesque lochs and empty white beaches. You discover fishing villages and walk along cliffs with magical views of the Hebridean island seascapes. Enjoy many boat trips and picnics at deserted beaches. In addition, the tour also allows you the option of more demanding mountain walks - such as the ascent of Ben More, Mull's highest mountain- or even more challenging walks. A whole day's exploration by coach or minibus (depending on the size of group) gives you an eventful day's trip through western Scotland, taking in the Western Highlands, the dramatic scenery of Glencoe and the wilderness of Rannoch Moor before taking the road south, following a route parallel to the old West Highland Way, to Loch Lomond and Glasgow.

The Sightseeing Highlights of the journey include the Isle of Iona, renowned as the cradle of Christianity in Scotland; the fortress of Duart Castle, ancient seat of the Macleans, or the impressive Torosay Castle; Castle Tioram; the picturesque village of Inveraray, where you can visit the stately Inveraray Castle, home of the Dukes of Argyll, or the interesting museum housed in the old Inveraray Gaol. If you wish, you can participate in a Scottish evening.
If you prefer to be independent, you can choose your own activity as an alternative to the guided walk: for instance, excursions to fishing villages, to the little town of Tobermory, the 'capital' of Mull, to the impressive island of Staffa with its extraordinary rock formations, or to other islands such as Muck, Eigg or Rhum. You can visit Tobermory whisky distillery or Britain's smallest theatre, or relax on a railway journey on the historic West Highland Line, passing the impressive monument in Glenfinnan, which commemorates the raising of Bonnie Prince Charlie's standard in 1745, and lovely Loch Morar, the deepest fresh water in Europe.

Also you can visit the seat of the Macdonalds, Armadale Castle and its gardens, or prehistoric stone circles, and you can discover the country, the people and their traditional food and drink in cozy tearooms and characterful pubs where you can learn a great deal from talking to the locals. All these outings you can arrange for yourself.

You do not have to be an experienced walker, but you should have the physical stamina to walk for up to five hours.

You walk and travel in small groups which ensures personal attention. The smallest viable number for a group is 6 people, though usually a group consists of 12 to 16 people. Your luggage is transferred for you from hotel to hotel. All you need to carry is a small day sack for your packed lunch, camera and other essentials. Most of the time, walks leave directly from the hotel you are staying in. If we have to transport you to the start of a walk, we try to avoid using the bus, instead taking a train or boat whenever possible. By doing this, the transfer itself becomes something special and you can enjoy your holiday away from roads and cars. Extensions to your holiday can be arranged by us in hotels, B and Bs and self-catering holiday cottages in the Islands, Western Highlands, or in Glasgow or Edinburgh.


This tour can ideally be booked in combination with our walking and sightseeing tour in the Western Highlands - In the Footsteps of Rob Roy.

Tariff The walking tour price includes all sightseeing visits, entry fees, guides, ferry crossings, railway journeys and transfers described in the program; experienced walking and tour guide; seven nights in good small hotels with en suite rooms and full Scottish breakfast, four dinners, airport transfers, luggage transfer, maps as needed and a welcoming drink.

This tour can ideally be booked in combination with our other walking and sightseeing tours. Please ask us for details.

DO YOU WANT TO EXTEND YOUR TOUR?
This holiday combines perfectly with the following tours:
"In the Heart of Scotland" (walking, culture and sport based on one centre, great value) "Northern Highlights" (Orkney and Shetland Islands and Sutherland) "Western Highlands - in the Footsteps of Rob Roy" - our classic!
"Scotland in Style - Railway Adventure" (guided or self-guided) We organize your own individual holiday extension

INCLUDED IN THE PRICE
The walking tour price includes all sightseeing visits, entry fees, guides, ferry crossings, railway journeys and transfers described in the program; experienced walking and tour guide; seven nights in good small hotels with en suite rooms and full Scottish breakfast, four dinners, airport transfers, luggage transfer, maps as needed and a welcoming drink.

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DAILY ITINERARY
Day 1: Arrive in Glasgow, journey by coach or minibus through spectacular Highland scenery through the Western Highlands, taking in Loch Lomond, Loch Awe, Kilchurn Castle and Loch Etive, to Oban. One hour ferry trip to the Isle of Mull and transfer to your hotel for the first four nights. Getting to know each other, free drink, and dinner.

Day 2: Walk Mull. The first walking day starts with a beautiful coast-to-coast walk through both forested and open country with wonderful views. Small and gentle ascents and descents ensure an easy start to the walking holiday on this five-hour exploration. With a little luck on this first day you will see seals, eagles and rare seabirds. Individual participants can extend the walk: for example to prehistoric sites or to the summit of Beinn Bhuidhe. (5 hours, 6 miles, total ascent 300 meters).

Day 3: Walk Iona and Coach or Minibus Trip Mull. First by tour bus and then by small passenger ferry over clear blue water we go to Iona, the cradle of Christianity in Scotland. We walk around the island (5 hours, 6 miles, total ascent 300 - 350 meters) and experience its spiritual tranquility, with magical views of the Hebridean islands. Our walk takes us along empty white beaches, through dramatic rock scenery and over smooth green hillocks. We see impressively carved Celtic crosses and romantically situated ruins and visit historic Iona Abbey. From here St Columba sent out his missionaries and warriors to convert the natives. In the oldest graveyard in Scotland Scottish, Irish and Norwegian royalty are buried - amongst others, Macbeth and Duncan. Alternatively on this day you can take a boat trip to Staffa, famous for its spectacular rock formations and Fingal's Cave. The eventful day's program is made complete with a wonderful bus tour of south-eastern Mull. We stop at Duart Castle, ancient seat of the Macleans. Depending on the time left, you can visit Duart Castle or the nearby Torosay castle.

Day 4: Walk Ben More. Ascent of the highest mountain in Mull, Ben More. During the ascent and especially on the summit you will be rewarded with breathtaking panoramic views. In good conditions you can see the Western Highlands and virtually all the Hebrides. (5-6 hours, 4-5 miles, 966 meters). Less demanding alternatives for this day are walks along the coast, or through the beautiful Salen forest, or a visit to the little island capital, Tobermory. The colorfully painted fishermen's houses lining the harbor and the friendly inhabitants give Tobermory a welcoming character.
Here islanders and visitors alike have time and peace to enjoy the relaxed pace of Hebridean life. You might take a guided tour of the Tobermory Distillery with a tasting of Scotland's 'water of life', eat lunch in a traditional pub, or you might prefer to enjoy a traditional British afternoon tea. Small shops sell Celtic jewellery and the work of local artists and craftsmen. Also available are interesting tours of the Tobermory chocolate factory or of the cheese farm at Sgriob-Ruadh. Both chocolate and cheese are excellent. A walk round the harbor or in the beautiful Aros Park ends a rewarding day.

Day 5: Walk Loch Moidart. We leave Mull on a small ferry, and embark on a coach or minibus which takes us north through marvelous scenery to Morvern where we go for a short walk through one of the last great wildernesses in Europe. Our round trip starts from the picturesque ruin of Castle Tioram and leads us among graceful pines along the craggy hillside of tranquil Loch Moidart and then continues through open country to Beinn Brach from where there are wonderful views. (3-31/2 hours, 4 miles, total ascent 250-300
meters).
Continuing our journey along what is said to be Britain's most beautiful road, we approach our hotel for the next two nights in the Mallaig/Arisaig area and, for those who wish, there is the chance of another walk. On the way, we enjoy views over the famous white beaches of Arisaig to the Inner Hebridean islands of Muck, Eigg and Rhum. We pass Loch Morar, Europe's deepest freshwater lake, home of the monster, Morag. Finally we see the jagged outline of the Cuillin Mountains of Skye.

Day 6: Walk Skye. In the morning we sail 'over the sea to Skye'. The final walk of the holiday will be tailored to the interests and abilities of the group. Usually we visit the Quiraing in North Skye, with its fantastic rock pinnacles and cliffs and views over the Outer Hebrides. (3 hours, 4 miles, total ascent 150 metres). Lonely lochs in fairytale glens, and the breathtaking Cuillin range - which is reckoned to be the most beautiful in Britain - make this day the climax of our Scottish journey. The headquarters of the Macdonald clan, Armadale Castle, with its beautiful gardens is another attraction which well repays a visit.

Day 7: Coach Trip to Glasgow. We drive south along the Road to the Isles past historic Glenfinnan to reach Fort William at the foot of Ben Nevis, and then along the banks of Loch Linnhe to the superb mountain scenery of the 'Glen of Weeping', Glencoe. The journey continues across the western end of Rannoch Moor below the Black Mount and reveals unforgettable views. Numerous photo-stops and strolls take in Kilchurn Castle and, briefly, the eighteenth century town of Inveraray where you may visit the castle or the museum in the old jail. After a stop at a fish smokery we go on to experience the beauty of Loch Lomond, celebrated in the famous song. The last night is spent in the city of Glasgow which offers many choices of entertainment for the last evening - from ghost tours to pub crawls.

Day 8: Glasgow and Departure or Transfer to the Second Week's Tour.
 

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GUIDED WALKING TOURS
NORTHERN HIGHLIGHTS


In choosing Sutherland, the Orkneys and Shetlands you will discover three of the most fascinating travel destinations in northern Europe.

Here you'll encounter extremes of nature, where mankind has left an astonishing legacy of monuments to 6000 years of history; a rich culture born of the mingling of Celtic and Viking peoples, and some of the most abundant birdlife in the world, as well as picturesque little fishing villages in which visitors and locals alike relax to a daily pace of life characterized by peace and tranquility. You too will be seduced by the atmosphere and charm of the islands which the Gulf Stream favors with a mild climate and warm summer months.

The varied walks take us along immense cliffs with bizarre rock formations and caves, over deserted white beaches to fishing villages, over pretty green hills and through hollows bright with wild flowers to the world of mountain and waterfall that is the northern Highlands.

Your tour takes in the Highland capital, Inverness, followed by a drive through the wilds of Sutherland; you will spend a day walking on Scotland's north coast, three days in the Orkneys, three days in the Shetlands and finally you'll be able to visit the beautiful city of Aberdeen.

In the North Atlantic, summer daylight hardly fades; long, lingering sunsets create an enchanting atmosphere and bewitching light that dissolve into a romantic twilight only around midnight.

You'll stay in highly commended small hotels which pride themselves on providing personal service and excellent food. Two nights are spent on the very comfortable island ferries.

Your walking and tour guide has lived for many years in Scotland. He is an experienced walking leader and Scottish Tourist Guide.

Sightseeing highlights of the tour include the famous stone age settlement of Skara Brae, numerous important stone circles - most notably the Ring of Brodgar - the Churchill Barriers, Scapa Flow, the Italian Chapel, St Magnus'
Cathedral in Kirkwall, brochs, strange rock stacks such as the Old Man of Hoy and Dore Holm - as well as the possibility of a Scottish evening and much more.

To these many sights you can add - either going in a group or as an individual - visits to other prehistoric sites such as Maes Howe and Jarlshof, to local art galleries and interesting museums, or to the most northerly whisky distillery, Highland Park. You can seek out unpretentious pubs where you can chat with the locals about the area and its people, about the islands and about beer and whisky.

You do not need to be an experienced walker, but you should enjoy going for walks of at least 4 hours. Your guide can offer alternatives to the more strenuous hikes. You may wish to spend a whole day with no walking, in order to relax or to make your own arrangements to engage with the cultural wealth and leisure activities of the islands.

Walking groups are small, the minimum being 10 people. On the walks you'll need only a small day-sack for your camera and so on. Your luggage is transported.

Usually we walk straight from the hotel. For transfers we take a boat, using a coach or minibus only when necessary, so that your transfer itself becomes an adventure and you can enjoy your holiday far from streets and cars.

Please ask for further details of our daily program.

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DO YOU WANT TO EXTEND YOUR TOUR?
This holiday combines perfectly with the following tours:  "In the Heart of Scotland" (walking, culture and sport based on one centre, great value) "Western Highlands - in the Footsteps of Rob Roy" - our classic! "Islands and Highlands" (Mull, Iona, Skye, and Western Highlands) "Scotland in Style - Railway Adventure" (guided or self-guided) "We organize your own individual holiday extension.

Travel to your starting point by plane, train or car; individual holiday extensions can be arranged for you in hotels, bed and breakfast guesthouses or self-catering holiday cottages.

INCLUDED IN THE PRICE
Walking tours include all sightseeing, guiding, entry fees, ferries (two night ferries), rail journeys and transfers as detailed in the program. Experienced walking and tour guide. 6 nights in highly commended small hotels with en-suite rooms and full breakfast, 2 nights aboard ship in twin cabins with shower/WC, breakfast not included (single berth cabins share facilities), 1 light evening meal, 5 full evening meals, airport and luggage transfers, maps, welcome drink.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DAILY PROGRAM


Day 1: Airport pick-up from Edinburgh or Inverness, followed by a delightful journey to the north coast through remote Sutherland.

Day 2: The chance to take an idyllic coastal walk along the deserted white sandy beaches and impressive cliffs of Faraid Head or to climb Scotland's most northerly Munro, Ben Hope.

Day 3: Ferry to the Orkneys, and an impressive walk along Yesnaby's rocky coast, a magnet for a variety of seabirds, dolphins and whales.

Day 4: A short ferry trip to the Orkney island of Hoy, a walker's paradise. The day's walking is richly rewarding through enchanted glens to the Old Man of Hoy and along 300m cliffs.

Day 5: Orkney highlights: sightseeing trip to Skara Brae, the Ring of Brodgar, Churchill Barriers, Scapa Flow, Italian Chapel, St Magnus Cathedral, and, on request, the Highland Park distillery. There are also delightful short walks and some free time in the island capital, Kirkwall. Night ferry in the evening to Shetland.

Day 6: Shetlands. A return crossing of one island on foot and a walk right round another. Starting from the Shetland capital, Lerwick, you travel by ferry to Bressay. A walk to the eastern shore, and a ride in an inflatable boat brings you to the nature reserve of Noss, world-famous seabird cliffs and a spectacular circular island walk. Finally, back to Bressay and Lerwick by the same route. If sea conditions prevent access to Noss, cliff walk to a lighthouse and views of the Shetland archipelago from a hilltop viewpoint on Bressay.

Day 7: Shetlands. Along the narrow roads of the North and West Mainland you'll encounter Shetland ponies and flocks of sheep. You roam the breathtaking sandstone cliffs of the Eshaness Peninsula with their caves, unique stone arches and towering rock stacks.

Day 8: Shetlands. The South Mainland is a paradise for natural history photographers. Experience an unforgettable walk over the most beautiful sand-tombolo in Great Britain to St Ninian's Isle where we will see a variety of seabirds and may also see seals. Free time in the pleasant 'capital', Lerwick, and in the evening the overnight ferry to Aberdeen.

Day 9: A short tour of the Granite City of Aberdeen with the world's only granite cathedral, St. Machar's. Airport transfer and departure or follow-on holiday program.
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QUILTERS TOUR

On the Trail of a Scottish Tradition.  Discover the proud and ancient cities of Edinburgh and Glasgow.
Visit the Harris Tweed and Paisley Museums and the Scottish Wool Centre.

Picturesque castles; the wild, romantic landscapes of the Outer Hebrides - beauty to take your breath away...

Specialist shops for quilters and a wide choice of evening activities in Edinburgh.

On this tour, fascinating for quilters and non-quilters alike, through the north of Scotland you will find intellectual and spiritual stimulus.
Edinburgh's medieval Old Town, the wide Highland landscapes and flower-filled castle gardens are an eye opener.

The wind and weather beaten shorelines of the Outer Hebrides, as well as the small, romantic fishing villages, the fairytale lochs and the peaks of the Cuillin Hills will reveal why this is reckoned to be the most beautiful region in the whole of north-western Europe. Among the other highlights of your tour are sightseeing tours of Glasgow and Edinburgh and a demonstration of Tweed manufacture.

On this tour an unbelievable wealth of delightful sights and experiences awaits you, ranging from the exciting to the spectacular, but without giving you the feeling that you have no time to yourself.

An experienced tour guide who has lived in Scotland for many years will accompany you.


Please contact us for dates

This tour can ideally be booked in combination with our other walking and sightseeing tours. Please ask us for details.

DO YOU WANT TO EXTEND YOUR TOUR?
Please contact us

INCLUDED IN THE PRICE
The walking tour price includes all visits, guides, entry fees, ferries and transfers as detailed in the program; transport by modern coach or minibus; experienced tour guide; eight nights in very good small hotels with en-suite rooms and full Scottish breakfast, eight three course dinners; airport transfers, luggage transfer, maps as required and welcoming drink.


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Planned Itinerary:

Day 1: Arrival Edinburgh Airport. Short city tour and a visit to the textile collection in the Royal Scottish Museum. After dinner you have the opportunity to make your own exploration of the medieval Old Town of Edinburgh.

Day 2: We visit Melrose Abbey, the imposing ruins of a 12th century Cistercian foundation, and then drive on to Hawick where we can see an admirable exhibition illustrating the history of the famous Borders woolen industry. If time permits we can, in the afternoon, take some short walks in the idyllic Yarrow and Tweed valleys.

Day 3: Today there is the first specialist shop for quilters! Then the castles of Stirling and Blair Atholl await your discovery. The latter houses a fine collection of historic textiles. En route you will certainly
want to photograph the famous Forth Rail Bridge.

Day 4: Today we encounter the breathtaking landscapes of the Central Highlands. Optionally we can stop at a whisky distillery. Then on to one of Scotland's most significant prehistoric sites - Clava Cairns stone circles and tombs. In the afternoon, on a stroll in most beautiful surroundings, we will, with any luck, watch migrating salmon fearlessly leaping a raging waterfall. Finally we drive on to reach the west coast where we take ship for the Outer Hebrides.

Day 5: In the Outer Hebrides we find not only in one of the most intriguing landscapes of north-west Europe, but at the same time we are at the centre of the Harris Tweed industry. We explore the island of Lewis on a leisurely day's excursion. We will certainly see some rare species of seabirds.

Day 6: Today the islands of Harris and Skye feature in the program. At Tarbert in the island of Harris we pay a visit to the Harris Tweed Weaving and Knitting exhibition. With its lonely lochs in fairytale glens and the breathtaking Cuillin Hills, considered to be the most spectacular in Great Britain, the Isle of Skye constitutes another highlight of the tour.

Day 7: Today's eventful journey, with its many opportunities for stretching your legs and photography, takes us on through the Western Highlands. Later we reach Glencoe, the "glen of weeping", the scene in 1692 of one of Scottish history's most treacherous and bloody deeds. You will learn more of this horrific story on the spot. The route over the rolling expanse of wild, romantic Rannoch Moor promises unforgettable impressions of the highland landscape. And so on to our destination, Edinburgh.

Day 8: A day's outing brings us to Glasgow and its surroundings. In Paisley Museum and Art Galleries we admire a display of world famous Paisley shawls. Afterwards we explore Glasgow by bus and on foot. The evening in Edinburgh offers a wide choice of activities any one of which would perfectly round off your tour.

Day 9: In the morning there may be time for a shopping trip or for a wander around Edinburgh. Finally transfer to the airport.
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GUIDED WALKING TOURS
THE ROB ROY MUNROS TOUR


Guided Walking Tour of the Trossachs for Outdoor Enthusiasts.

A very varied walking tour in the most beautiful Highland scenery with the chance of climbing five Munros, A very attractively situated good small hotel with excellent food in the picturesque little Highland town of Killin, in the midst of the fascinating Trossachs landscape of mountains, waterfalls and lochs.

An interesting support program and many encounters with the countryside and people as well as with natural and cultural attractions.

One of Scotland's most beautiful areas for you to discover: Rob Roy country - the land of the MacGregors.

The high mountains, deep blue lochs and rushing waterfalls of the Trossachs and Breadalbane country are valued by Scotland connoisseurs as a walkers' paradise. The high summits of the Munros, lonely mountain passes, deserted meeting places of secret clan gatherings, as well as historic paths used by the Highlanders through idyllic fairy tale glens and over mountain ridges, bring the walker into intimate contact with the magical combination of enchanting landscape and turbulent clan history. Today one cannot disentangle the history of The Trossachs from Celtic myth, legend and song - together their distant music haunts the high mountains and echoes in the lonely glens.

For over two hundred years this has inspired romantic travellers and artists
- finding no historic episode more fascinating than the wild, untamed life of the hero, Rob Roy MacGregor, who is so closely linked to the Trossachs. Rob Roy runs like a colorful thread throughout our walking tour and pops up constantly in different places, on our walks and on our sightseeing visits too.

Your friendly guide will lead you through the heart of the unique world of bens, burns and lochs that is Rob Roy Country. He knows the area like the back of his hand and will be delighted to introduce you to the land, its people and their culture.

The Walks

Besides idyllic walks along wonderful paths among beautiful woods and lochs, you have the chance to climb five Munros over 3,000 feet high. We are not talking about mountain sport here. The summits will surely be reached, but speed is not important since, as with all Rob Roy Tours expeditions, what matters is enjoyment of the countryside. Days on the mountains will alternate with walks involving lesser ascents and an interesting support program.

Your tour guide can suggest pleasant alternatives to the more strenuous sections of the walks. You can also take a day out to experience some of the many and various leisure and cultural opportunities in the neighborhood.
Guests really hungry for extra action can extend the walks.

You should have the ability, enthusiasm and fitness for walks of up to 8 hours including breaks. Ascents on two of the planned days' outings exceed 1,000 meters. For this reason it helps if you are reasonably surefooted and have a head for heights so as to give the tour leader the best possible chance of completing the walks as planned - though he does also have the flexibility of a choice of alternative routes. These are, however, not preconditions for a making a booking, nor are technical mountaineering skills required.

You walk and travel in small groups. The minimum number is just 8 people. On the walks you need carry only a small day sack for your packed lunch, photo equipment and so on.

Our Hotel, Accommodation and Catering
Our hotel is attractively situated at the edge of the appealing little Highland resort of Killin. Beside the hotel runs the pretty River Lochay. From the hotel you have open views of the mountains of the Trossachs and the Ben Lawers massif. The pleasant, comfortably furnished, double and single rooms come with shower and WC, TV, hairdryer, and tea and coffee making facilities. You enjoy a full breakfast and very good three course dinner. The chef is happy to cater for vegetarians, prepares good packed lunches and is attentive to your wishes.

Killin
The charming little Highland town of Killin lies in the middle of the beautiful Trossachs and Breadalbane countryside on the banks of scenic Loch Tay. Killin is well known as a favorite destination, especially for the idyllic Falls of Dochart which fall in a series of cascades crossed by a historic bridge in the middle of the town. On a small island in the river lies the traditional burial ground of Clan MacNab. Fine views from Killin of the Breadalbane hills and high points of our mountain expeditions quicken the pulse of the keen hill walker. Killin has a post office, banks, and small shops as well as a tearoom and small galleries. In comfortable, traditional pubs you can discover much about the countryside and its people, to say nothing of whisky and proverbial Highland hospitality.

Loch Tay
In Killin the rivers Dochart and Lochay empty into famous Loch Tay. One can enjoy strolling on the shores of this beautiful loch and along the rivers Dochart and Lochay. Of course, on can also swim in Loch Tay or hire a boat.

Support and Evening Program
The sightseeing program presents a good choice of interesting attractions which are closely linked to the life and activities of Rob Roy: the clan seat of Clan MacNab, Castle Menzies; a trip on a historic steamer on delightful Loch Katrine, celebrated by Sir Walter Scott, as well as a literary walk on its banks. You also encounter possibly the oldest tree in the world, prehistoric and Celtic sites such as standing stones, and romantic ruins like Finlarig Castle, interesting museums and historic churches and pretty Highland villages with the possibility of meeting the locals. In the evenings you can experience the hospitality of rural pubs or learn more about Highland culture through a slide show or light-hearted ceilidh dancing led by your guide (optional).

Leisure Opportunities
Take advantage of the opportunities in the area which are included in the walking days, or branch out on your own for a day. The various sporting and creative activities on offer, as well as cultural attractions, make it hard to choose.

Sporting Activities (usually at additional cost) range from lengthy bike or mountain-bike expeditions, to swimming, sailing, rowing, canoeing or kayaking, organized boat trips on Loch Tay, golf, tennis, riding, fishing, climbing and much more.

Cultural Attractions include museums of the culture, history and traditions of the Trossachs and Breadalbane, interesting churches and prehistoric sites, as well as Scottish fortresses and country houses. The weekly market, the famous Killin folk festival, Killin Highland Games and other events at which you can engage the locals in conversation are rewarding experiences which bring you into closer contact with the land and people.

In the Breadalbane Folklore Centre you discover the lives and activities of Highland clans. Or you can relax over tea and scones in cozy tearooms or old fashioned hotels. Attractive small galleries and craft shops sell interesting and tasteful souvenirs, jewellery and works by local artists.

The Trossachs, an artist's paradise, offer ideal subjects for the landscape painter or for photographic expeditions. Queen Victoria herself recognized the area's beauty.
Interesting little shops in the area lend themselves to enjoyable browsing for shoppers.
Tour leaders
Most tours are led by Richard. He is a former English teacher and recently retired vice principal of a Scottish comprehensive school. Richard speaks a number of foreign languages, leads demanding walking and study tours and specializes in natural history tours.

Sometimes Klaus or another of our team of tour guides will lead the tour. Klaus has lived many years in his adopted country, Great Britain. He is self-employed as a language and economics lecturer, leads upmarket study tours, is a qualified mountain leader and Scotland specialist. Both guides will be delighted to introduce you to the culture, land and people.

DO YOU WANT TO EXTEND YOUR HOLIDAY?
You can combine this holiday perfectly with the following walking tours:
"Western Isles" (Lewis, Harris, Uists, Barra, Skye and north-west Scotland) "Northern Highlights" (Orkney and Shetland Islands and Sutherland) "Lake District" (English Lake District and Yorkshire Dales) "In the Heart of Scotland" (walking, culture and sport based on one center) "Scotland in Style - Railway Adventure" (self-guided walking tour) - or with tours of Scotland "Scotland - The Whisky Trail and More" (exclusive bus tour for connoisseurs) "Scotland in Style - Railway Adventure" (self-guided sightseeing tour).

INCLUDED IN THE PRICE:
Guided walks, sightseeing visits, entry fees, bus journeys, transfers as described in the program. Tour and walking guide, 7 nights in rooms with shower or bath and WC, hairdryer and TV, 7 full breakfasts, 7 good dinners, evening/support program as described, airport transfers, welcome drink.

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Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Edinburgh and Balquhidder Arrival, please, at Edinburgh Airport for 16.00h meeting. Welcome from your tour guide. You travel from Edinburgh through the Trossachs National Park to Killin. En route you visit picturesque Balquhidder and the grave of Rob Roy among the Celtic crosses of the beautifully situated kirkyard of the historic church. From there, if the mood takes us, a pleasant walk (1 to 2 hours) through Kirkton Glen to the view point of Creag an Tuirc, meeting place of Clan MacLaren, set amid ancient pines and with a superb outlook over Loch Voil. Evening in the hotel with welcome drink and introductions and dinner.

Day 2: The Rob Roy Way and Loch Tay - in the footsteps of the clans all day walking program. Short ascents and descents make this the ideal first day's walk. The route leads us through a delightful wooded landscape, beside lochs and rivers as well as through picturesque Killin. We explore a section of the famous Rob Roy Way, encountering the ruin of Finlarig Castle and the Falls of Dochart and in so doing get to know the locality of Killin and loch Tay. In the afternoon there is still some time to undertake further discovery on your own of your home for the next week. After dinner a relaxing conclusion to an eventful day in our first traditional pub. (First walk 16 to 20 km., 300 to 500 m. total ascent, 5 to 7 hours duration.)

Day 3: Tarmachan Horseshoe
All day walk on our first Munro, Meall nan Tarmachan (1044m.). We get into Munro bagging mood on this fine circular walk which follows a curving rounded ridge with open views, until we come to the high point of the day, the sharp crest (those who wish can avoid the edge) along Cam Chreag which leads from Meall nan Tarmachan. Over Creag an Lochan the route leads back to our starting point, which, in keeping with today's moderate walking ambitions, is already at 450 m above sea level. If the group feels inclined, we can make a further sortie during the walk to the high crags surrounding the top of Creag na Caillich. In the late afternoon there is still time for leisure activities. Alternatively, guests can extend the walk. Dinner and slide show, "The Scottish Munros". (Tarmachan Horseshoe: 12 km., 800 m. ascent, 5 hours duration).

Day 4: Trossachs Highlights - Loch Katrine and little Ben A'an. All day excursion with half-day walk. A real treat for Highland connoisseurs is the walk from Loch Achray over Ben A'n to Loch Katrine. Here Rob Roy grew up. Actually the real name of our goal is Am Binnein (the rocky peak), the beautiful mountain re-christened Ben A'an in the stories of Walter Scott, the name that has stuck ever since. The moderate effort required to climb the mere 400 meters to the 454 meter summit bears no relation to the stunning panorama which rewards us on the way up and especially from the peak. Having arrived on the banks of Loch Katrine, we walk among the scenes of many a literary effusion and discover more about Sir Walter Scott and the Romantic period. Finally, a one hour cruise in a historic steamship on Loch Katrine, a visit to the Scottish Wool Centre at Aberfoyle and back to Killin by way of the attractive little town of Callander. Evening meal and visit to a pub. (9 km., 400 m. ascent, 4 hours).

Day 5: Stob Binnein and Ben More A long day's walking. These Munros, Stob Binnein (1165 m.) and Ben More (1174 m.), are the inseparable heavenly twins of the Highlands and the highest Munros south of the Tay. Linked by a high pass, Bealach-eadar-dha Beinn, smoothly curving slopes rise to small summit plateaus. Literally a high point of our tour. There are marvellous extensive views. Depending on our choice of route, we reach Stob Binnein via the neighbouring peak of Stob Coire an Lochain (1066m.). The descent follows a beautiful route through Benmore Glen. Dinner. Light hearted instruction in Scottish ceilidh dancing.

Day 6: Breadalbane Highlights or Munro Fever All day excursion with a half-day walk. We drive along Loch Tay in the beautiful Central Highlands to Aberfeldy and tour imposing Castle Menzies (pronounced "Mingies"), seat of Clan MacNab. Take care! Anyone who betrayed a connection with Clan MacGregor and Rob Roy, was immediately dragged off to the dungeon as a spy and tortured there until he swore loyalty to the MacNabs - in short, the MacNabs were arch-enemies of the MacGregors. Further highlights are a leisurely walk of around 3 hours among the beautiful Birks of Aberfeldy, and a visit to what may be the oldest tree in the world at Fortingall. Depending on the level of interest other visits are possible.  Among them are the fascinating Glen Lyon Art Gallery and (entry cost) the small Aberfeldy whisky distillery, as well as the Scottish Crannog Centre built on the model of one of the artificial crannog island settlements of the iron age. In addition we round off an eventful day's program in a cozy tearoom and with a wander around Aberfeldy. By way of Glen Lyon, one of Scotland's finest glens, along narrow roads and over the high pass and single track road near Ben Lawers we get back to Loch Tay and Killin.

Alternative Day 6 for the Munro Hungry:
If seized after the first four days' walking by real Munro fever, you can today scale the huge Ben Lawers massif and, with Beinn Ghlas and Ben Lawers, add two more Munros to your personal list of conquests - which will mean seven Munros altogether in one week. Experienced walkers can undertake this walk on their own, or your tour guide will be happy to arrange a mountain guide for you at additional cost.

Day 7: Ben Vorlich and Stuc a' Chroin
A long day's walking and high point of the tour on the Munro, Ben Vorlich (985 m.) and then over the col, Bealach an Dubh Choirein, connecting the two peaks, to a second Munro, Stuc a' Chroin (975 m.). Finally back across lonely hillsides to the starting point of the walk. You experience one of Scotland's most pleasing mountain walks and some real Munro-bagging, since the ascent of Stuc a' Chroin is steep. In the event of bad weather or other adverse circumstances we may climb Ben Vorlich only. Dinner. (Ben Vorlich only: 13 km., 900 m. ascent, 5 hours), (Ben Vorlich and Stuc a' Chroin: depending on the return route, 16 - 20 km., 1100 - 1350 m. ascent, 8 - 10 hours).

Day 8: Transfer to Edinburgh Airport. Please do not arrange a return flight before 11.00 h. Connection to next tour or departure.
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