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itinerary question scotland 7 days with both glasgow and edinburgh

We have booked to go to England and Scotland starting Sept 30 this year. we are planning only a day or so in
london as we have been before, before heading up to scotland for 6-7 days..... we are Edinburgh and/or Glasgow for the art, highlands and a loch but not really sure then back to england through the lakes district....however we are really unsure and confused at present. We are from Sydney Australia so used to large distances and open roads so I am finding the distances confusing.
Or are we better staying in glasgow and training in over to or Edinburgh ? or visa versa
We are interested in beautiful countryside, art especially modern and contemporary but all art really, history, particularly roman and tudor, good food and getting away from the usual tourist traps.
We like bed and breakfast or pubs /small hotels or some self catering cottages or apartments and are on a moderate budget as the $A is not so good at the moment...about 75 pounds a night if possible.
we are also wondering the best route from heathrow or we might take a train to oxford or cambridge and hire a car from there...any suggestions for an overnight stop...or should we just drive straight up the motorway....i will be coming from france so should not be jet lagged...also used to driving on the left hand side so no issues there either
thanks in advance for any tips for an itinerary and or places to see and stay

Posted by
752 posts

It's been a long time since I was in England, so my memory of the route is a little foggy. In my mind, though, I think it would be easier to not pick up the car at Heathrow, and just get on the train and go to Edinburgh, but I'm a person who likes to minimize the time spent driving. For a stop along the way I would also consider York. The cathedral is beautiful, and getting lost in the 'shambles' is fun. You can easily get around Edinburgh sights without a car (finding a B&B near downtown with parking may be a problem), the castle, the art museum, Holyrood house etc. are all within walking distance. Then take the train to Glasgow (visit the Glasgow school of art), and hire the car from there. For Roman ruins there is Hadrian's wall and an old Roman fort nearby. Loch Lomand would be a nice day trip from Glasgow, and you could do a lake cruise, also. Stirling castle and some famous battle sights, if that's your interest, could also be done from Glasgow. I think it will really depend on when you decide to hire the car. There are bus tours from both Edinburgh and Glasgow that will get you to many of the sights, but it may not be what you want to see, and the stops may be too short. You might get a good idea of what can be done in a day trip by looking at the web sites for some of the companies that offer tours from both Edinburgh and Glasgow and figure out from that whether or not you want to have the car before you get to Scotland. Also look at the website Secret Scotland for some good suggestions.

Posted by
5677 posts

If you want to see Scotland, then I would recommend either connecting by air or taking the train to Edinburgh. I would stay in Edinburgh and then train to Glasgow. You won't need a car as long as you are in either of those two cities.

If you are interested in Tudor and Roman history then the Borders would be a good place for you to explore. If you want to get a glimpse of the Highlands, think of either exploring the Trossach or spending a day in Perthshire driving through the glens. You could go to Dunkeld which was the home of the Church in Scotland prior to St. Andrews. Hexham is in England has an interesting museum about the Borders during Queen Elizabeth's and earlier time. Hadrian's Wall is near. I like Housesteads. The many abbey's that Henry VIII destroyed are in the Borders--Jedburgh, Kelso, Melrose, Dryburgh....Hermitage Castle is amazingly stark and evocative of the Borders.


Posted by
1596 posts

Remember in Scotland, the Tudor period is the Stuart period! The Border abbeys were destroyed as part of the Rough Wooing, where Henry VIII tired to get Mary I to marry his young son the future Edward VI. The Regency would not permit it. The history of the Reivers is also an interesting one as the Reivers were more linked to each other on either side of the border than with their crowns distant in London or Edinburgh.