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Return visit to Scotland

I am making my third visit to Scotland in mid-April. I will be accompanied by a friend who has never been, but she's ok with my making the itinerary. I have 2 nights in St Andrews (courtesy of a winning bid in an auction, so that's firm). I want to see Glasgow, and I want to see some of the coastal villages in the East Neuk. We will be going down to London at the end of our Scotland stay and returning to the States from there. What I can't seem to figure out is if St. Andrews/the East Neuk villages (and perhaps Falkland) and Glasgow are enough for 6 or 7 nights or should I try to add something else in without making things too hectic (and if so, what)? And is there a preferable route...start in Glasgow and wind up taking the train to London from Edinburgh, or fly into Edinburgh from the States and reverse the order. (I have been to Edinburgh twice before and don't mind giving it a miss this time around, but am wondering if we should stay a night there for my friend's sake--she doesn't really have a preference--or perhaps spend an extra night in St Andrews and do a day trip to Edinburgh). I have already been to Stirling, Jedburgh, Culross, the area around Peebles, and Loch Lomond. I had hoped to get to one of the islands and/or take a scenic train excursion, but it doesn't seem like there's time for that correct? Thanks so much for any suggestions!

Posted by
5563 posts

Hi Carol, You can easily see the East Neuk villages from St. Andrews base. So, if you want to to spend a couple of nights in Glasgow, you have about three other nights. Are you renting a car? That may make a difference. I am going to assume that that you will be.

I would suggest that you spend some time in Perthshire. From St. Andrew's you can go to Glamis. This is a wonderful castle and was the home of the Queen Mum. It is pronounced "glamms".

From Glamis you could go west to either Dunkeld, which is one of my favorite places--small village, lovely pub with music and nice walks and history. Or you can further west to Aberfeldy--home of the Birk's of Aberfeldy near Loch Tay and the Cranog Centre. Or, go a bit further north to Pitlochry--check to see if anything is playing at the Festival theatre. Also in Pitlochry is the Explorer's Garden and a distillery. You could spend a couple of days in any of of these places and explore Perthshire. Glen Lyon, the Queens's View, Blair Castle are all lovely. You could drive to the west from here toward Oban and then back to Glasgow.

Alternatively, you could go further north from Glamis and spend time in Aberdeenshire touring castles and checking out galleries.


Posted by
1292 posts

I second Pam's opinion of Glamis, it is well worth a visit, reputedly one of the most haunted castles in Scotland. Which is probably a list of all of them...

There is plenty in Fife and Angus to fill the time if that is where you want to spend the time. If you have a car Dunnottar at Stonehaven is also doable, combine with Glamis or Arbroath is a possibility. Don't ignore Dundee either, the Discovery centre about Earnest Shakleton and Antarctic exploration is worth the time, and you can also see the ruins of the first Tay Rail Bridge which inspired one of the most famous poems by William MacGonagle, a 'unique' talent in poetry.

Plus of course Glasgow has plenty to recommend it. St Andrews, Fife and area a car is virtually necessary, Glasgow it can easily be an inconvenience.