My partner and I are lucky enough to be able to go on a month-long trip for our honeymoon (so long as he can get a little remote work done along the way), and we're spending 13 of the nights in Scotland in early-mid July. It's our first trip there, and I'd love feedback on our itinerary. Thank you so much in advance!
We travel regularly and prefer to take it slow--we'd rather miss a few things but be able to really enjoy the journey. We've already booked our sleeping accommodations, but we can change most of them if we really need to, and we haven't booked the flight in or the car, so could change the Edinburgh arrival. As far as interests go, we both love food and are excited about beautiful Scottish summer produce. I love books and the outdoors, and he's a fan of politics and history. I hike, but he has a medical condition that can result in significant joint pain, so I'm trying to make sure we have time for breaks during the day (he's a trooper and we can do a full day of walking, but then it's best to take the next morning off, for instance).
With that in mind, here's our plan:
Day 1*: Fly into Edinburgh, arriving 11am. Pick up a rental at the airport and drive to Loch Ness. Stay at a B&B near Foyers.
- We're planning to drive through Cairngorms--is there anything in particular worth stopping off for on the west side of the park? It looks like not, but I could be wrong.
Day 2: Rent canoes and paddle the Loch. Is it worth adding a drive up to Culloden and the Cava Cairns, given they're an hour away? Otherwise, I'd probably take a solo hike after lunch and let him get some work done at the B&B.
Day 3: Drive to Isle of Skye, stopping at Eilean Donan. Get dinner/breakfast supplies in town, then check into rental on the Duirinish peninsula. Do some remote work before heading to see the sunset at Neist Point.
Day 4: Hike Fairy Glen & Quairang, picnic lunch, return home to make dinner there.
Day 5: Hike at Neist Point (worth going back during the day?), see Duvegan castle. Three Chimneys for dinner.
Day 6: Work from home in morning. Talisker Tour and Fairy Pools.
Day 7: Kilt Rock/Mealt Falls, Old Man of Storr, Brother's Point.
Highlands pt 2/Edinburgh
Day 8: Drive to Loch Lamond, stay at B&B near there. Possibly stop off at Ben Nevis--but is it worth a drive-by if we won't have time to hike it? Are there trails around the base that would be worth it?
Day 9: Spend afternoon at a Highland games on way back to Edinburgh (I've found a town that has one on that day, and is the perfect distance for us to arrive around noon. Return rental at Edinburgh airport. Check into hotel in New Town.
Day 10: Self-tour of Dean Village, Edinburgh Castle, Greyfrier's Kirk/Kirkyard; Elephant House (I'm a Potter fan); Might try to fit in one of Gladstone's Land, Museum of Childhood, Georgian House...
Day 11: Join a walking tour in morning; tour parliament; Scottish National Gallery or Camera Obscura; ghost tour in evening
Day 12: Vault tour in morning; hike Arthur's Seat (bring picnic); tour Holyrood Palace; explore Victoria Street/do any final shopping
Day 13: Head over to Leith and visit the Royal Yacht Britannia
Day 14: Depart
*we're from the US but are spending the two weeks prior elsewhere in Europe, so shouldn't be jet-lagged.
Should we try to fit in more on Skye? I keep feeling like we should do a boat trip or otherwise add something, but I've heard Skye can be deceiving and it'll take longer to get places than I think. On the flip side, are we packing in too much in Edinburgh, especially if we want to spend 2-3 hours a day at a coffee shop working (and resting his joints)?
Any advice deeply appreciated!!