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One Saturday in the Highlands

I'm headed to Edinburgh for a week in early June, traveling alone for work. I have the Saturday (before flying out Sunday AM) to spend doing something outdoorsy and am looking for recommendations. Having watched all of the Rick Steves Scotland videos and having read through virtually this entire forum (!!), I thought I might: take the 1 day Rabbie's Highland Tour (to Loch Ness, etc), OR rent a car for one day and drive around the Highlands (to Balmoral?), OR take the train to Dunkeld then a taxi/ Uber to the Hermitage for a walk. Are there walks and views from Stirling, if I were to just take the train there?

I am susceptible to getting car sick if I'm not driving, and taking a train far away the night before I fly out gives me the worries. I'm looking for sweeping Highland views and the ability to do a little walking. Safety is a concern because I'm by myself. Are Highland views the day before leaving not really feasible? Any recs or help?
Thank you! Love reading all your travel wisdom.

Posted by
2940 posts

Greetings from a fellow motion sickness sufferer. I understand your concerns.

According to Rome2Rio, you can take a train from Edinburgh to Pitlochry in under 2 hours and there are several trains per day on Saturdays. The route is also served by bus, so in the unlikely event of some snafu with the railway you would still be able to get back to Edinburgh.

You will see highland views in Pitlochry.

Posted by
5669 posts

Another alternative is to to go to Birnam / Dunkeld on the train. It's a bit south of Pitlochry and had some great walks. It's a smaller town than Pitlochry, but has some good pubs and some really good walks.

If you go up to Pitlochry, check out the Explorer's Garden. All those lovely flowers and plants in the English gardens were found by Scottish explorers. :). Well, maybe not all, but a heck a lot of them and this garden helps you explore their explorations.

So check out the time tables on the scotrail site and see what makes sense for you.


Posted by
1345 posts

Given your timescale if you are intending to head to the Highlands, you are probably not going to get much beyond Perth as the others have said. An alternative would be from Edinburgh going south into the Borders. It is often over looked but has the landscapes and a lot of history.