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Good map recommendation for driving

Hi,

I will be driving from Edinburgh to Isle of Skye and then from Isle of Skye back to Edinburgh with a stop in Inverness. I have a Garmin but wanted to have a good driving map as back up. Can you recommend a good one to use.

Thanks,
Kathy

Posted by
1292 posts

My recommendation and the one living in the car, is the Collins Road Atlas of Britain. This would also have the advantage of covering England, Wales and Scotland for a future trip. The big sheet Ordinance Survey maps will cover greater detail, but not so sure of their use when driving.

Posted by
3091 posts

I like the Ordnance Survey Maps and use them ( so far ) in Cornwall , The Cotswolds , and Scotland . The type and level of detail are specific to their purpose . for you ( or any driver ) the silver and blue " Tour " version is the appropriate configuration . The detail includes , points of interest , picturesque towns and villages ( which you will be looking for as you drive , road coding ( A roads , B roads , dirt roads , etc. ) and much more useful information . Printed on a quality heavy duty stock , you can fold them and they hold up well . http://www.amazon.com/Scotland-Tour12-500K-Travel-Tour/dp/0319245365/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1425145617&sr=8-3&keywords=ordnance+survey+maps

Posted by
55 posts

Thanks so much for the feedback! I will check them out.

Posted by
1292 posts

OS maps are a work of art and possibly worth buying for that alone. I love OS maps, but my regular map for general driving is the Collins which has the breakdowns of roads Steven says and a scale of 1:200 000, 1 cm = 2 km, roughly in imperial of 3 miles to the inch. For a good paper map, it depends on what you need the map for. A map of Canada is useful if you want to see what Canada looks like, but not for getting from one side of Toronto to the other.

One thing about the OS maps, every other map derives its mapping from the OS.

Posted by
3091 posts

I would take MC's advice , I'm sure he has a better handle on this , I'm not familiar with the Collins , only the Ordnance Survey . I do like the Ordnance Survey , and often of an evening , my wife and I will spread it out on the coffee table while we watch photos on the TV , piped over from the computer , retracing our travels as we go !

Posted by
5563 posts

I bought an atlas a while ago, but I've never brought it with me to Scotland. Instead, I've tended to use Ordnance Survey Maps. But, there is a disclaimer, I love maps!

I have the "Official Tourist Map for Skye and Lochalsh. I suspect, it would work for you. The scale is 1: 130,000. It's better than my atlas which is 1: 250,000. Tourist maps are usually red.

The ordnance survey has maps at 1:50.000 (pink Landranger and 1.25 inches to a mile) and 1:25,000 (orange Explorer and 2.5 inches to a mile).

I went to the Ordnance Survey website and searched on Skye. Check here to see what's available. The Ordnance Survey maps have more info on them than my atlas.

You would need one Tourist Map, two Pink maps, or three Orange maps. It looks like you can get online access for free so you can look and see what might work for you. If you want to print them, you have to subscribe, but you can decide what you want.

Pam

Posted by
453 posts

Hi Kathy, we used the Collins map for our driving trip to Scotland and Skye in October, map was great. I still have the map and a few others for Skye that would be helpful. I sent you a private message with some information on maps I have and would be willing to part with. dave

Posted by
4998 posts

Looks like you have good resources described above, but I thought I'd throw this in: unlike other places in Europe, don't count on Scottish car rental companies giving you a complimentary, even rudimentary map. And your Garmin might wind up being very trustworthy, but GPS devices have been known to send people onto paths through sheep pastures rather than onto proper roads. Even some actual roads on Skye may seem too narrow for vehicles, but frequent "Passing Places" allow vehicles to get past one another. Happy motoring and navigating!

Posted by
5563 posts

Cyn brings up a good point about the size of the roads. I love the small roads as generally they are not crowded. But, I almost always have a small car. The one time I didn't, I wish I'd had one! So, this is one case where you don't necessarily want the upgrade to the bigger car. :)

Posted by
1292 posts

A good map should show the single track roads with passing places clearly, usually in clashing colours. Though you can safely assume if the road has a number prefaced with a B or does not have a printed number in the Highlands it will be single track.

Another reason for a smaller car, is on those roads they are fun to throw around, I think I got mine airborne briefly (too many) years ago.

Posted by
453 posts

I believe it bears repeating, the smallest car you can endure in the Highlands and on Skye will ALWAYS be the right choice. I have posted this numerous times after my trip in a car that was too big but was small by US standards. As I posted earlier I used the Collins map of Scotland for driving and it worked great to get from the Edinburgh airport to Ft. William via Glen Coe, and then out to Skye. On Skye the Ordnance Survey maps were absolutely what is needed as the small roads are on the maps. I used three of the ordinance maps for the areas were knew we were going to visit, they are a bit pricy but worth the money. You will need 5 or 6 for all of Skye but you wont be able to visit the whole isle for the time you are there so pic and choose and save a few bucks. My B&B folks also had the maps available for use. Shipment for the maps pushed the price up a bit for me. I also used Google earth and its ground level view to preview the roads, roundabouts, and travels in advance, very helpful. Also you might want to visit www.trafficscotland.org for live traffic cameras in areas you plan to visit...also very helpful in getting a feel for what you are taking on...if you clck on the traffic information map view you will be able to see a map of all of the traffic cameras in Scotland.

Posted by
1586 posts

For all of our trips to the British Isles (8 so far) we have used the AA road atlas and the orange Michelin regional maps (501 is the one for Scotland). I use the Michelin one primarily for planning, since it can be opened out to show a large area and have the AA one, usually on my lap, while DH drives. Both show scenic routes and historic attractions. The scale is about 4 miles to the inch. You can buy either from Amazon....I find it useful to take a couple of binder clips along for holding maps and atlases open to the desired page.