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Town for a night or two, max?

I'm thinking about a new itinerary to replace last year's trip that I'm hoping will happen in September know. I'll be doing a week hike in the Highlands with a tour starting and ending in Inverness. The original plan was to do Glasgow, the hiking tour, and Edinburgh. There are things I want to see in both cities and I like art and architecture, and they have places to go outside of town if I somehow got bored (esp. Falkirk for the Kelpies and the wheel).

I may be able to add on a couple more days to this trip. Is there anywhere in between either of these cities and Inverness that might be worth looking in to for a stay? Not that staying put would be bad, but I was thinking an area with distilleries that might offer scotch tastings? (Not a big fan of whisky- prefer gin- but when in Rome) Or would Stirling or Falkirk be worth staying in for a night or 2? (Usually don't like one night stops but could consider). Pitlochry was on the train line, if I remember right and it appears to have distilleries, but is it worth a stop? Charming little towns without much else to see or do don't really appeal and I won't have a car so it'd have to be on a transit line. No plans have yet been made because this will all be contingent on being allowed to do anything, but I'm ready to start planning something, even if just in my head.

Posted by
1386 posts

Any chance you can share what type of hiking trip you are planning. This is something I am interested in so would love to get an idea from what you are planning.

Sorry I can't help with your actual questions.

Posted by
5539 posts

A bit west of the line between Glasgow and Inverness is Fort William, which would be a worthwhile 2 day stay. If your hike prompted some additional exercise, you could even summit the highest peak in the U.K., Ben Nevis, at over 4,400 feet high, just outside of town.

There’s even a Ben Nevis whisky distillery (I haven’t been), and Neptune’s Staircase, a long series of canal locks that would be a nice accompaniment to seeing the Falkirk Wheel on your trip. And the Jacobite Steam Train, regardless whether you’re a Harry Potter fan or not.

Posted by
20857 posts

I don't know how much time you're allotting to Glasgow. That city offers quite a lot, architecture-wise, as long as you're interested in late-19th century/early-20th century design. In addition, Helensburgh is a worthwhile day-trip for the Hill House. There's rail service, but Helensburgh isn't on the way in from Inverness.

Posted by
1767 posts

You can take a direct train from Inverness to Stirling (3h) and from Stirling a direct train to Edinburgh / Glasgow (45m). After you finish touring Stirling Castle you can do some scotch tasting at the castle.

Posted by
442 posts

Both Stirling and Falkirk are easily accessible by public transport for the day from either Edinburgh or Glasgow. There is no real benefit to relocate to either for an overnight stay.

Pitlochry would make a good choice and would be very different scenically to Glasgow and Edinburgh. Have a look here.

It has a good train service from Edinburgh and a reasonable choice of accommodation.

It also has two distilleries. Blair Atholl is in the centre of town and is one of Scotlands oldest distilleries. It is popular for tours and is a bit of a 'commercial experience'. Information here.

There is aslso Eradour Distillery which is smaller and more of a 'niche' distillery. It is a very different experience. This is on the outskirts of the town and you would need to take a taxi to reach it. Feedback from visitors is very positive and they have enjoyed the less commercial approach. Information here:

If you like beer, there is also the Moulin Micro Brewery. You could also stop in the attached hotel...

If you do get to Moulin, you might also want to call in at the Kirk (church) which is the home of a small heritage centre on the soci=al history of the area.

A short walk from the town centre is Loch Faskally and its famous fish ladder, which is a popular tourist attraction. There may still be salmon running the ladder in September. They are fascinating to watch. There is a visitor centre and cafe by the dam.

There are ideas for other walks from Pitlochry here.

Posted by
291 posts

Thanks for the options! But that means I actually have to plan. Want to make sure I get two full days minimum for Glasgow, but the other places sound interesting. The hike is through REI, although I’m sure there are others. So I can think about the possibilities while getting into shape. :)

Posted by
578 posts

We spent one night in Pitlochry on our way from Skye to Edinburgh and enjoyed it. We walked from our B&B to the Edradour distillery for a tour and tasting. It is a lovely setting, the tour guide was the best of the 4 distilleries we visited, and my sister and I appreciated the Cream Scotch!

Posted by
5668 posts

Get off at Dunkeld and Birnam for a break. You can do some short walk, check out the Dunkeld's Cathedral and town square and then, and end the day at the pub with some music sessions. There is the Music Bar but other places often have music. This all pending Covid being done I expect. Except of course, the walk in the woods. There are lots of good walk. Google Perthshire Walks.