Well...this has gotten away from me and I think we may book Scotland in late summer for 9 days. We have one in college and one headed to college. I am looking at Google Flights and having a hard time wrapping my mind around the best way to book tickets. Fly from PDX to Glasgow and we would like to see Isle of Skye and possibly do part of the North Coast 500 with rental of a rover or 4 wheel drive. One of our best vacation experiences was staying in a remote part of Ireland (pre-pandemic) in a remote beach cottage and doing some day trips but also simply enjoying the location and hiking. I will be checking for lodging next. Another option would be to fly to Iceland and stay there for a few days with the Iceland Air stay over program and then go on to Scotland and only be in Scotland for 6 days. Suggestions appreciated. What am I missing? Areas to avoid due to crowds in late summer in Scotland? Due to college schedules, summer it must be. We know inland midges might be an issue.
When you say "late summer" what do you mean?
The Edinburgh Fringe Festival takes place in much of August and hotels in Edinburgh will be expensive.
I agree with what Frank said, and also if you plan on staying on Skye, you need to start looking now for accommodations - and they may not be available. I'm on Skye right now and the woman who owns the B&B I'm at said that everyone she knows is booked solid through September at least.
If late summer means mid September onwards the midges should not be a problem. With a rental car you can't really do part of the NC500.
If doing a split centre trip the NC500 will take up most if not all your 6 days, especially as your flight from Iceland would be into ED I or GLA, not INV.
If you mean late August/early September the NC500 will be very busy, both in traffic terms, and scarcity of lodgings. A camper van/RV would be far preferable then.
Iceland would be far better as a stand alone ring road self drive trip.
Skye in August, booking now, you'll be very lucky to find lodgings.