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Rabbies Tour experience? (Highlands from Glasgow)

We're considering a Rabbies day Tour in Sept. (Oban, Glencoe, Highland Lochs & Castles), starting from Glasgow. Anyone experience this tour? It mentions highlights (Inveraray, Glencoe, Loch Awe, Res t& Thankful Pass, Oban, Loch Lomand Park), but I cannot tell from the descriptions, where you stop, and how much time you are allowed. I only found that it stops in Oban for lunch. 30 min? 1 hour? Do you have time in Glencoe to visit the museum or walk the village? Is there enough time to get out of the bus, and take short walks / photo opportunities? OR is the rest of the time spent just viewing from the bus & listening to the tour guide? It states entry fees are not included... but I did not see a list of any sites that would require entry fees, so am wondering if there are any additional stops besides lunch.

If not Rabbies, any other recommendations with a similar itinerary?

Also curious how far in advance you need to book these day tours. It appears they are still open, even for the crowded summer months. We have a 2-3 day window in Glasgow or Edinburgh, and it would be great to watch the general weather pattern the week before booking, but would hate to lose the opportunity if they fill in advance. Understood to always bring rain gear -- but general weather outlook might guide which day we choose.


Posted by
186 posts

Didn't take that tour specifically but we took a multi-day tour with Rabies which was excellent! Small group (15?) and it was full off-season so for that I'd be sure to book ahead. But I'd think day trips offered more often would have greater availability options. Like any bus tour it was a packed schedule (drive-tour-break / eat / sleep) but I never felt rushed. Considering the amount of ground we covered I think a good balance was struck between touring and driving - and the driver/guide made the driving time entertaining and informative.

Posted by
21334 posts

Rabbies has a very good reputation, but I remember reading a review of what I think was that very tour. The reviewer said he was basically on the bus all day. It sounds like they've created a tour that drives past a lot of the places foreign visitors have heard of but allows virtually no time at any of them.

Sometimes it's better to accept that you just don't have time to see your #1 sight (or, in this case, all of your top 5 in one day) and opt to have a nice day going to #2 or #3.

Note: The above is a philosophical comment, not advice based on experience. My first trip to Scotland begins five weeks from now.

Posted by
1381 posts

I have done one multi-day Rabbies tour, and was happy with the amount of time at stops.

I suspect Acraven's comments about the 1-day versions are pretty close to reality. They fill a need, but might not fill yours.

Posted by
5573 posts

I had thought about taking a Rabbies Day Tour a few years ago. I left the decision to the last moment (the day before) and the tours were completely booked. It turned out just fine for me, I simply went to St. Andrews on my own and had a great time. I did learn that last minute bookings may not always be possible.

Posted by
3262 posts

We took that tour last summer and loved it. Our guide was a native of the Highlands. The stop in Oban was long enough to eat lunch, so at least an hour. We did spend a lot of time on the bus, but it is a lot of territory to cover in a day. My 23 yr old daughter loved it and said that none of the stretches on the bus seemed that long. I don't remember anything about Glencoe, but we walked to a castle ruin and also walked to the castle at Inveraray but didn't have time to go in. There was another walk that was a little steep that the guide took people on, but I didn't go on that one. We did not go anywhere that required entrance fees. We booked prior to leaving for Europe, but I don't remember how far in advance. I would recommend this tour to people with a limited amount of time in Scotland.

Posted by
11469 posts

I took that tour two weeks ago. There is a lot of time on the bus because there is a lot of ground to cover.

Oban is a lunch stop. We had a little over an hour. The stop at Glencoe is not in the village but at two observation points. If I remember correctly, the stop at Inverary was about 45 minutes to one hour. But it's not that big of a town. There were other stops for photo opportunities.

There was no place I remember with entrance fees. We arrived back about 30 minutes late which no one complained about. How long each stop lasts depends on the weather. We had good weather.

EU driving laws are very strict and the driver must stop at regular intervals. Remember, the bus only holds 16 people.

Rabbies is the biggest and best known of the tour companies. I have taken two tours with them and enjoyed both. These tours do sell out. You can always cancel up to 48 hours ahead of time.