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Scotland/England Honeymoon Itinerary Help

My fiance and I are in the process of planning our May 2018 honeymoon to Scotland and England (I've posted this in the England forum, too) and I was hoping to get some feedback on our tentative itinerary. We already have our plane tickets, so we can't add or subtract any days from the total time in the UK (20 nights), but most of the itinerary is flexible! Our goal was to see a lot (since the fiance has never been to Europe and I haven't been to the UK since I was 12), but also not feel like we're rushing too much. We're not huge city people, so we definitely want some relaxing/countryside time, too. So our current plan is:

  • Fly to London - stay by airport (I have health problems and don't feel well right after flying)
  • Bus/Drive to Oxford - 2 nights
  • Drive to Cotswolds (Chipping Campden or Stow-on-the-Wold) - 2 nights
  • Drive to Lake District (Keswick) - 2 nights
  • Drive to Oban/somewhere else in the Scottish Highlands (haven't researched this as much) - 2 nights
  • Drive to Edinburgh (return car) - 3 nights
  • Train to York - 1 or 2 nights
  • Train to London - 6 nights

I'm a bit worried we have too many places, but I just don't know what to cut! The one thing we already have booked is the 6 nights in London (we have tickets to the Harry Potter play, and plan to spend another day at the Studio Tour). If we only stay 1 night in York (which I'm leaning against right now), then we'd have another night to move elsewhere. Finally, the one place I've been besides London is Bath, so I think we'd like to leave that off the itinerary this time.

Thanks so much in advance :)

Posted by
5738 posts

Consider changing your flights or, al least, do this in th future for European trips. Due to your night flight issues, consider a daytime flight to London from NY airports or shorter , from Boston. It will reduce jet lag too. We prefer to this no matter we are going on Europe.

Posted by
29 posts

Oh, sorry if that was unclear (I've updated the post now) - it's not so much a problem with night flights - I have a motion disorder so unfortunately I don't feel great right after I fly no matter what time of day. I've been able to manage by not planning anything the day I arrive and allowing myself to get a good nights sleep though :)

Posted by
2567 posts

As I just posted in the England forum, I think your overall plan is realistic for 20 days.

You might want to spend your 2 Scottish highlands nights someplace not as far out as Oban. The drive to Oban from the Lake District would be awfully long; ditto Oban to Edinburgh. You mentioned that you're prone to motion sickness, and the roads in the Scottish highlands are very windy and steep, so you'll want to take that into consideration.

Inveraray is about 2 hours' drive from Glasgow if you drive straight through, and it's a charming town with plenty to see, including a lovely castle. (The RS guide characterizes the interior as boring, but I disagree, and the grounds are spectacular in May -- I've been there twice in that month of the year.)

Or, you could stay someplace in the Trossachs or Cairngorms which would not be so far from Edinburgh.

Posted by
12 posts

Hello - we are heading there this December - for our honeymoon. we both haven't been but after advise from friends and reading up. isle of Skye is a must do. and the Jacobite train in fort William.

Posted by
29 posts

@anniehorner So funny, everything I read (and many friends of ours) are constantly recommending Skye! I REALLY want to see it, but I'm worried if it's just too far away for everything we're trying to see. The more and more people talk it up, the more I want to try to see if there's a way to make it work!

If we were coming from the Lake District in the UK, do you think that would just be way too far to go in one day to get to the Isle of Skye? Perhaps we could stop somewhere in the middle (I had initially thought of Glasgow, but we'd prefer not to drive into the city center if possible).

Otherwise, I'll definitely check out Inveraray and other locations. I've read the RS England book, but am just starting the Scotland one now. I work in a study abroad office, so I talk about Glasgow and Edinburgh a fair amount, but am not as familiar with the places outside the cities.

Thanks again!

Posted by
2963 posts

Take some time at Oban. We found the town delightful and the ferry trip out the Islands great. We took the Three Isles tour through West Coast Motors. You walk on the ferry and go to Mull. A bus meets you which drives you across the island where you join a boat tour to Staffa where you see Caves and Puffins, lots of Puffins! Back to Iona for time to walk and explore. Short ferry to Mull, bus back to ferry and ferry back to Oban. It makes for a full, but fun day.

http://www.westcoasttours.co.uk/

Posted by
9421 posts

I would not go to Skye unless you have 3 nights. It is a long way from Edinburgh and with all of your other stops, you don't have time to do it justice. One thing to bear in mind, weather is fickle and if you hit a place like Skye and the only day you have there it is raining, well, it is not the best situation.

Posted by
29 posts

Thanks for the Oban tip! My health issues are actually motion related, so very sadly, I don't know if we do could all the boat outings, but that sounds really neat. And good to note about Skye. We're now thinking of cutting York, which would give us a day to add to the Lake District and a day to add to Oban or Skye or Fort William or wherever we end up. We're big Harry Potter fans, so we might try and find some related locations, including seeing the "Hogwarts Express" train in the Fort William area. Hopefully with 3 nights we'll have two full days after the long drive, wherever we end up. I'm just starting to read the RS Scotland book (tackled the England one first) so I think I'll get more clarity soon.