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Edinburgh - Day trip suggestion

Hello,
We will be in Edinburgh for 4 full days and would like to take the opportunity to do a day trip.
We typically like to travel on our own by public transport (love trains!) but I understand that might be a challenge if we want to get a taste of the Highlands. I have been thinking of doing a Rabbies tour but I am worried that we will be spending a long day in a bus.

Which Rabbies tour would you advise with a good balance of sights and time spent in the bus? Or alternatively anything doable by a train? I am looking for something scenic, not another city.

Thanks!

Posted by
681 posts

We just came back from Scotland and saw Rabbies tours all over the highlands. It will be a long day but well worth it? The Isle of Skye is beautiful.

Posted by
2904 posts

Definitely do the Rabbies Highlands Tour. There were 2 short hikes during the day and a stop in Inverary where we walked around.

Posted by
2904 posts

We did a different one, from Glascow, and it included Inverary but not Loch Ness.

Posted by
5574 posts

If what you want is a taste of the highlands, you can get it in Perthshire. It's not as far north as Loch Ness, but it has the hills and is definitely part of the Highlands. The Highlands basically start once you're past Stirling according to many accounts. :) You can take the train to Dunkeld and Birnam. Once there you can easily go for some short hikes along the Tay or a bit up into the hills. The town is lovely and has some great pubs including the Music Bar. Another option would be to look for day tours to the Trossachs. It's another beautiful area that gives you the feel for the highlands without the long bus ride. Rabbies does offer a possibility. Or you could rent a car for the day and drive to the Trossachs. Check out Loch Katrine and boat tours. It's Rob Roy country.

Posted by
519 posts

My mom and I went on the Rabbie’s Loch Ness day trip in April and really enjoyed it, as we really like the convenience of bus tours.

Posted by
1784 posts

Besides Rabbies, there’s the Heart of Scotland Tours you might consider. We aren’t tour people ( this was the third In 50 years of travel ) but it was very nice. It was called The Best of Scotland in a Day. Well paced, pleasant driver and commentary, not crowded and I felt ample time on the ground without too much time in the Wee Red Bus. I’m not certain this would qualify as the highlands, but there are several options. Safe travels.

Posted by
161 posts

I would also consider a visit to Rosslyn Chapel if you are into that sort of thing. It is spectacular !! If you visit there, the grounds surrounding the chapel have great trails into the countryside and also to the ruins of Rosslyn castle. The day of our visit we did a tour of Edinburgh castle, then made our way to Rosslyn. It was very easy to get there. Our party of 5 took a 20 minute Uber that cost about $20. To get back we walked 5 minutes into the town of Roslin, hit a local pub, then took the bus back into Edinburgh (about 35 mins). It was a snap.
Good Luck

BT

Posted by
25 posts

William, thanks. Rosslyn sounds like a great add on

Posted by
38 posts

You might consider hiring a guide/car. More expensive, but they will allow you to customize your day out, hit only what you want to see, and also potentially expose you to those sights the locals know about that are off the bus/tour routes. You also won't have to worry about driving on narrow country roads. I spent my first money on hiring a guide this year and boy was it worth it.

I didn't end up using her, but I was in touch with this woman about doing a day trip from Edinburgh.

Helen Fraser info@afternoonteatours.co.uk

You just have to confirm that the car they have is sizeable enough for your group, price is in your range, etc.

Bob

Posted by
32 posts

I would recommend a Rabbies tour. We enjoyed our day tour from Glasgow with a small group of tourists. Our guide was very informative and kept us listening through the day. We visited Stirling Castle, Loch Lomond which included a hike if you wished, and a Whisky distillery. Several more stops were included..
The drive was almost all in the countryside and very scenic. The day whisked by.

Posted by
25 posts

I ended up doin the Rabbies tour to Glencoe/ Loch Ness and I quite enjoyed it It was a long day though but the drive was scenic and comfortable the guide was very good.
Thanks everyone for the suggestions

Posted by
19 posts

I'm staying in Glasgow for 4 days and struggling with the same question. We usually rent a car and stay in different places every night, but, since we have a home base in Glasgow , I thought it might finally be time to try day tripping. However, once we took a hard look at the cost of the tours, we decided it just made more sense to rent a car. Good luck! Please let us know what you decide.