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9 Day Scotland Itinerary Review Request

Looking for comments and suggestions on our Scotland itinerary for my wife and I in May. We have already reserved our lodging at a combination of B&B's and hotels.

Days 1 -3 - Arrive Edinburgh mid-day from Dublin for 3 nights--likely visit Edinburgh Castle, the Royal Mile, The National Museum, Palace of Holyroodhouse, Royal Yacht Britannia, and do a walking tour

Day 4 - Pick up rental car from Arnold Clark's at EDI, drive to Inverness, visit Culloden Battlefield, maybe Cawdor Castle

Days 5&6 - Drive to Isle of Skye via northern route (A9, A835, A890, etc.) for 2 nights in Portree- spend afternoon and next day touring Skye. Tour Eilean Donan Castle could be either enroute to or leaving from Skye.

Day 7 - Drive to Glencoe via A87, A82, etc. for 1 overnight

Day 8 - Drive to Maidens (south of Ayr) for 1 overnight at Culzean Castle

Day 9 - Meander through Ayrshire viewing ancestry towns, overnight near Edinburgh airport

Day 10 - Fly out

Looking for feedback and suggestions.


Posted by
2774 posts

You will have a long drive on Day 8 down to Maidens, and ditto the next day up to Edinburgh. But, if getting to see that area of Ayrshire is important to you, go for it.

If it's really not a high priority, I would say to drive from Glencoe via Inveraray on Day 8, and stay overnight somewhere along the western shore of Loch Lomond. You could make your way back to Edinburgh via Stirling, Falkirk, Linlithgow.

If you were flying home from Glasgow then the Ayrshire loop might make more sense.

Posted by
29 posts

Day 4 will be a very busy day. At first blush we thought maybe an hour to an hour and a half at Culloden but it is so interesting that it can easily consume half a day and you may not have time for Cawdor Castle - we didn't

Posted by
2774 posts

If you drive onto the grounds at Cawdor Castle, you can park for free, walk around a bit, and see the herd of highland cows without taking the time for a tour. (I realize they need the entry fee income for upkeep, but just saying if you're short on time and still want a glimpse, you can do so -- which is not the case with some other castles.)

Posted by
6 posts

Thanks epltd. We're somewhat commited to the Ayrshire meander. We pondered the Loch Lomond route early on, but realized it wouldn't work on this trip.
And thanks bvowles and epltd for your advice on Cawdor Castle. Right now it's on the tossaway list if we run out of time due to stops enroute from Edinburgh.


Posted by
360 posts

For Day 4, it just depends on how fast you are at touring. We did Colloden and Cawdor Castle in about three hours, but we might be faster than average (we also hit the Clava Cairns in the area too). However, I thought spending two full days in Skye was probably worth that one day in Inverness, so I wouldn't short-change the time in Skye, unless you are a history buff and really want to see Colloden (we started on the West Coast and went clock-wise, so we'd already had a lot of Colloden history by that point).