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Edinburgh to St Andrews Scotrail

Hi all,

We are planning to go to St Andrews for a day trip from Edinburgh. Our thought is to leaves Waverly about 9 am, make the 11:00 am guided tour of the Old Course, have a 12:30 reservation at the Clubhouse for lunch, walk into town, see the Cathedral ruins and be back in Edinburgh by 6pm.

Does this schedule sound feasible?
Train tickets seem expensive; 81 pounds for 5 of us (is this as low as I should expect? Plus bus tickets. How much are they?

This is turning out to be an expensive day...

Posted by
3024 posts

If you buy a train ticket to St Andrews, it includes to the bus from Leuchars.

Or you can take the bus. Stagecoach X59 runs frequently between Edinburgh and St Andrews, and is a lot cheaper (£11.50 for a day ticket).

Posted by
92 posts

I think your itinerary is reasonably feasible, although I'd leave Edinburgh a bit earlier to be sure of getting to the old course for 11am.

  • St Andrews is about 50miles from Edinburgh, it's a fair distance so the rail fares are not that cheap. The price you quote sounds about right. Bear in mind that it's generally cheaper to travel on "off-peak" trains that depart after 9:15am.

  • From Leuchars station you get the number 99 bus to Start Andrews. The return fare is £6 per adult. The bus runs every 7-9mins over most of the day. Buying the bus ticket together with the train ticket is possible as mentioned, but it might be more expensive than separates! Just buy it on the bus - just make sure you've got plenty cash!

  • As mentioned, the X59 bus from Edinburgh to Start Andrews is cheaper, but its also markedly slower - over 2 hours each way. Other than cheapness the advantage is that it takes you there with no changes. I guess it depends on your preferences and time constraints.

  • You don't mention the make up of your party, but if there are any under 16s then they travel for £1 on off peak trains and generally get half fare on the bus.

  • There are a number of tour companies that offer day tours to St Andrews from Edinburgh. However, they take in other sites along the way which means they may not suit if you want to focus on St Andrews exclusively.

  • The cheapest option is probably to hire a car for the day. However, in peak summer it can be a hassle to park in St Andrews and you'd also have to hire the car in central Edinburgh and thus drive in the city centre - I wouldn't recommend that for the uninitiated!!

Posted by
4739 posts

I took the bus to St. Andrews. Very Convenient. Leave time in your schedule to play the Himalayas Putting Course. It is a blast!

Posted by
3024 posts

I've travelled between Edinburgh and St Andrews many times. Sometimes by train, sometimes by bus. They both have their advantages and disadvantages. The main advantage of the train is that it is fast, the main advantages of the bus that it is direct and cheap.

Which one I choose in the end depends on what is important for the moment, if I'm in a hurry, it's the train. If the weather is bad, I prefer the coach as the change in Leuchars involves a bit of walking outdoors. If I feel that I've overspent my trip budget, it's the coach.

Posted by
651 posts

Carol, do I need to make a reservation to play the Himalayas Putting Course?

Posted by
7 posts

Sorry to but in Calimom,
I was just wondering if Carol, or someone else knows approx time to putt the 18 hole Himalayas course?

Posted by
2919 posts

We played the Himalayas and yes, it was a blast. In answer to UncleTom's question, I think it took my husband and me about an hour and a half. (We tend to play "ready golf" and pick up the ball after x number of unsuccessful tries, and we're rather lax about keeping score.) There was nobody ahead of us, and one foursome that started behind us and finished way behind us.

The clubhouse has a big "Members Only" sign on the front, which made us think we'd gone to the wrong building, but there's a small window around the left side where you pay and get your putting club, ball, and score card.

Note there are no lockers or other facilities to leave your belongings, so if you're wearing a backpack guess what -- you'll be playing wearing it.

The geology of the Himalayas is basically grass-covered sand dunes, i.e. you are right by the North Sea, so dress for wind and rain.

You do not have to wear golf shoes. Sneakers, oxfords, or basically any shoes/boots with flat/low heels are fine. Just no high heels or spiky ("kitten") heels.