We'd like to take some tours in late October to Skye and Lock Ness. Need some leads on which companies might be still open? Any other interesting tour suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Personally, I dislike tours, as I like to do things at my own pace, but Rabbies is highly recommended by others. They still run then.
Loch Ness is a tacky tourist trap that is best avoided unless you have young children with you hoping to spot Nessie! Try Loch Etive instead. Skye needs at least 3 days. The clocks change in the third week of October, so it will be dark by c 5 pm.
I believe that many of the historic sites outside of the cities start to close in October. Be sure to check . Expect "weather" and dress in layers. I would not go to Loch Ness that time of year. If you are interested in Castles I would check Scottish Heritage site.
I know many people on these forums say to avoid Loch Ness like the plague but I want to put in my 2 cents worth. I was in Inverness in November 2009 and took a boat ride on Loch Ness out to Urquhart Castle. It was a chilly ride but the lake was not rough and the clouds parted exposing scenery that was quite lovely. I enjoyed walking around the grounds of the castle and some of my favorite photos are from Urquhart as the sky and lighting were wonderful. Yes, there was a big sculpture of Nessie near where we caught the boat and for funzies took some photos. I grew up hearing about Loch Ness and Nessie so seeing this area was important to me. Like others have said, Scotland is a beautiful place and Loch Ness and Urquhart castle should be included in that observation as that's how I found them. We had a rental car and I found the boat ride info online - no tour company (although the boat captain did say a few things). Hope you have a wonderful journey.
I would never say to avoid Loch Ness! It's beautiful. You can decide how much Nessie Tat you want. It's mostly in the town of Drumnadrochit. You can do a day tour to Skye. Or you can take the train to Kyle of Lochalsh and pick up a tour there. You can take public transit to Culloden. I would also recommend a visit to Fort George. Cawdor Castle is easy to get to as well. A taxi would not be outrageous. Just check the websites for opening times.