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Scottish Highlands

Sightseeing Walking Tours

Our most recommended Scottish Highlands Sightseeing Walking Tours

From John O'Groats: Orkney Islands Day Trip

1. From John O'Groats: Orkney Islands Day Trip

Start the tour by boarding the ferry at John O'Groats. Depart 8.45am. Take the 40-minute ferry crossing, keeping a lookout for marine wildlife including puffins and orcas on the way. When you arrive on Orkney, board a luxury coach which will be waiting for you to begin your tour of the island. As you set off, enjoy the commentary from a local guide. First, see the Churchill Barriers built during the First World War. Stop in Kirkwall which is Orkney's capital city and discover St Magnus Cathedral, shops, the museum, and the scenic harbor.  Continue along the northern coast of Scapa Flow and admire the beautiful views of the Hoy hills. Then, arrive in Stromness, one of Britain's most picturesque towns. Stroll through the winding street, visit the museum, and find plenty of places to eat lunch.  Next, set off for the neolithic village of Skara Brae, established in around 2,500 BC and which has been hidden under sand dunes, perfectly preserved for thousands of years. Follow the route onwards along a narrow tongue of land between the lochs of Harray and Stenness, making a stop at the mystical Ring of Brodgar and the Standing Stones of Stenness. Finally, board the return ferry, and make a stop at the Italian Chapel which is beautifully decorated inside 2 Nissen huts. Return to John O'Groats 6.15pm with incredible memories of your excursion.

Edinburgh: Glenfinnan, Mallaig & Glencoe Adventure

2. Edinburgh: Glenfinnan, Mallaig & Glencoe Adventure

Depart Edinburgh and travel northwest, stopping for a coffee and refreshments at a small highland village. Traveling onwards, reach Glencoe, known to many as the location for the Massacre of the MacDonald clan in 1692. Take photos of this beautiful area whilst you learn about its turbulent past. After Glencoe, travel further north to Fort William. Stop for refreshments and perhaps a bite to eat before journeying down the Road to the Isles. Learn about the history of the area as you approach Mallaig, where you will spend time enjoying lunch and its sea views. From Mallaig, travel eastwards to the main attraction, Glenfinnan. Arrive right on time to see the Jacobite Steam Train (also known as the Hogwarts Express in the Harry Potter Films) cross the bridge. Not only will you enjoy this iconic view, but the site is also known as the setting for many Harry Potter scenes, including Loch Shiel. From Glenfinnan, travel southwards, stopping for refreshments at the small village of Pitlochry before returning to Edinburgh, where your tour ends.

From Edinburgh: Loch Ness, Glenoce & The Highlands Day Tour

3. From Edinburgh: Loch Ness, Glenoce & The Highlands Day Tour

Following pickup from central Edinburgh, you will head towards Stirling, catching views of the Castle and Wallace Monument as you venture to the Highlands. Visit Callander, and stop for morning coffee in this bustling town described as the gateway to the highlands. Head northwards over Rannoch Moor until you reach the dark, brooding Pass of Glencoe. Stop for lunch and free time nearby the Fort William area, then follow the Caledonian Canal up the Great Glen to Loch Ness. Here, you have some free time with the option to cruise on the Loch, or if you don't want to take the cruise you can relax in one of the bars or restaurants in the tranquil village or on the pier.  After Loch Ness you will head South East and take in magnificent views of Loch Laggan. On the way home, enjoy a refreshment stop in Pitlochry, a delightful Victorian resort town. Then, head south through Fife, and cross the Forth next to the amazing Forth Bridge, before arriving back in Edinburgh.

Edinburgh: Loch Ness & Scottish Highlands Tour with Lunch

4. Edinburgh: Loch Ness & Scottish Highlands Tour with Lunch

Embark on a full-day guided trip to Loch Ness from Edinburgh and tour the Scottish Highlands. See the UK's highest mountain, Ben Nevis, keep an eye out for Nessie on a boat cruise and enjoy a picnic lunch. Head north from Edinburgh and pass the imposing ramparts of Stirling Castle. Skirt the Trossachs Rob Roy country, and cross the wilds of Rannoch Moor before stopping at dramatic Glencoe; the scene of the infamous 1692 massacre.  Your journey takes you through Fort William. Pass Ben Nevis, Britain’s highest mountain, before entering the Great Glen. Arrive at the pretty Highland village of Fort Augustus on the banks of Loch Ness, and enjoy a lovely picnic with freshly made sandwiches, shortbread, and chips. If you fancy something more substantial, your guide will happily recommend some great local cafes.  Take an optional boat cruise on the loch, go for a scenic hike, or just relax by the Caledonian Canal. If you choose to sail along the waters of Loch Ness, it really is an unforgettable experience. Your boat is equipped with the latest hi-tech color, sonar, and underwater imaging system, giving you a fascinating view of the underwater terrain and life. You might even see Nessie! You can also relax with a coffee or beer in the onboard bar. Having seen the best of the Scottish Highlands, it's time to head back to Edinburgh via shimmering Loch Laggan and the wild and lonely Drumochter Pass. Head south and enter Perthshire, a land of forests, rivers, and mountains. See the spectacular Forth Bridge before arriving back in Edinburgh at around 20:00.

From Edinburgh: Isle of Skye & Highlands 3-Day Guided Tour

5. From Edinburgh: Isle of Skye & Highlands 3-Day Guided Tour

Tour the Scottish Highlands and explore the Isle of Skye on a 3-day guided tour from Edinburgh. You’ll see castles, craggy mountains, picturesque towns, and maybe even a monster on this excursion. Stay overnight in a bed and breakfast accommodation. Day 1: A Spectacular Route North Depart Edinburgh and travel north through the Trossachs National Park. Visit a lovely village and take in views of the UK’s largest expanse of freshwater, Loch Lomond. Continue across the brooding expanse of Rannoch Moor, and through Glen Coe. Learn the brutal story of the MacDonald Clan massacre and take in the weeping waterfalls that inhabit this incredible glen. The highland town of Fort William marks the end of Scotland’s oldest and most popular long-distance walks, The West Highland Way. Stay overnight in Inverness. Day 2: A Full Day on Skye You'll have the full day to explore the Isle of Skye. Highlights include the craggy Cuillin Mountains, the dramatic hills of the Quiraing, and the stunning Trotternish Peninsula.  You might see seals out in the waves as you walk along the coast, or a stag standing on a hillside. Visit the capital of Skye, Portree for lunch. Return to Inverness for your overnight stay. Day 3: Monster Spotting on Loch Ness Drive along the banks of Loch Ness where you can take a boat tour to Urquhart Castle or do a bit of monster hunting from the shore. As you head back to Edinburgh, your route will take you through Inverness, the Cairngorms, and Pitlochry. At the Culloden battlefield, the site of the defeat of the Jacobites, there is the option of taking a tour. Continue on through the stunning Cairngorm Mountains and stop to explore the picturesque town of Pitlochry.

Loch Ness, Inverness and Highlands 2-Day Tour from Edinburgh

6. Loch Ness, Inverness and Highlands 2-Day Tour from Edinburgh

Get back to nature in the Scottish Highlands and go for gentle walks. Spend the night in the city of Inverness and avail of a flexible itinerary on day 2. Day 1: Depart Edinburgh and head west to Glasgow before visiting the pretty village of Luss on the banks of Loch Lomond. Descend into Rannoch Moor and pass the Black Mount and Glencoe at the site of the 1692 massacre of the MacDonald Clan. Go for a leisurely walk to soak up the atmosphere. Head north towards Fort William and get stunning views of Ben Nevis before traveling around Loch Ness after lunch. Pass historic Urquhart Castle before arriving in Inverness, where you will spend the night. Day 2: Choose to visit the Culloden Battlefield, where Bonnie Prince Charlie was defeated by the Duke of Cumberland. Glimpse the ancient stones of Clava Cairns and taste the whisky at Dalwhinnie Distillery. Go to the old military garrison of Ruthven Barracks. Return via the Hermitage and stop for a gentle forest walk in idyllic woodlands (summer only) before crossing the Forth Bridge to arrive back in Edinburgh.

From Inverness: Glen Affric, Culloden and Clava Cairns Tour

7. From Inverness: Glen Affric, Culloden and Clava Cairns Tour

Leaving Inverness in the morning, this full-day tour begins with a trip to the ancient burial site of Clava Cairns. This Bronze-Age graveyard has survived four millennia, and is a great spot to take atmospheric photos. The location was perhaps the inspiration for the Craigh na Dun time portal in the Outlander books. Afterwards, you’ll head to Culloden, one of the most important sites in Scottish history. It was here that a 60-year series of uprisings finally ended in a tumultuous battle in 1745. Explore the visitor center and pay tribute to those who lost their lives at the last ever battle fought on British soil. Continue to Glen Affric and stop to walk among the indigenous Caledonian pine trees. Enjoy views over Loch Affric and the mountains beyond, with your expert guide taking you to the best waterfalls and photo spots. Afterwards, explore the historic ruins of Beauly Priory, a monastery dating back to the 13th century. To cap things off, you’ll head to the shores of Loch Ness, before ending up back in the center of Inverness in the early evening.

From Edinburgh: Loch Ness, Inverness, and Highlands Day Tour

8. From Edinburgh: Loch Ness, Inverness, and Highlands Day Tour

Embark on a tour of the natural wonders of Scotland, visiting three of its most beautiful places: Loch Ness, Inverness, and the Highlands. Enjoy a day of unparalleled scenery and views. Depart from Edinburgh, and begin your scenic journey through the Scottish Highlands. Head first to Callander, a charming village that is located next to the Trossachs National Park. Continue to the Glen Coe Valley. one of the most beautiful areas in the Highlands, considered part of the National Scenic Area and the place of passage of numerous routes through the area. Admire the views of the valley and its trails. Continue to Fort Augustus, where you can enjoy 2 hours of free time to explore this charming town of 700 inhabitants. Located on the shores of Loch Ness, take your time to snap some fantastic photos from different viewpoints. Finally, visit the capital of the Highland region, the city of Inverness. Take a tour of the city, before heading to the small village of Pitlochry for a coffee. After this, return to Edinburgh.

Isle of Skye & The Highlands: 3-Day Guided Tour from Glasgow

9. Isle of Skye & The Highlands: 3-Day Guided Tour from Glasgow

Escape the bustle of daily life and get back to nature on a 3-day tour of the Scottish Highlands and Isle of Skye, with bed and breakfast accommodations in Inverness. Hear of clan massacres, visit monuments associated with Scotland’s struggle against the English, and see location sites of the blockbuster movie “Highlander.” Day 1: Departing Glasgow take a spectacular route north through Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park. We will stop at a pretty village perched on the banks of Loch Lomond. Further north, we'll cross the brooding expanse of Rannoch Moor, and travel on through Glen Coe. Here, you'll learn of clan massacres as you stand amongst the eerie but beautiful glen. Overnight stay in Inverness. Day 2: We'll depart Inverness to set off on our day excursion to the Isle of Skye. We will stop for photographs at Loch Ness and Eilean Donan Castle before crossing the bridge to Skye. On the island we'll explore the craggy Cuillin Mountains, dramatic hills of the Quiraing and beautiful Trotternish Peninsula. Look for seals, peeking out of the waves as you walk along the coast, or spot stags silhouetted on hillsides. We will stop for lunch in the capital of the island, Portree. Day 3: Follow the banks of Loch Ness where you can take a boat tour to Urquhart Castle or do a bit of monster hunting from the shore. The route back to Glasgow takes you past the battlefield of Culloden, site of the defeat of the Jacobite forces. You will also drive through the Cairngorm Mountains, home of Britain’s highest mountain, and see the picturesque Victorian town of Pitlochry. Please note: Glasgow passengers may return to Edinburgh where they are issued with train tickets to Glasgow.

From Glasgow: Glencoe and Highlands Bus and Walking Tour

10. From Glasgow: Glencoe and Highlands Bus and Walking Tour

Embark on a true Scottish adventure on a bus and walking tour of the Highlands, Glencoe, Loch Lomond, and more from Glasgow. Learn about the region's rich history from your local guide and get a true essence of what Scotland's nature, history, and people are about. Travel from Glasgow in the comfort of your bus to reach Loch Lomond's calm shores and the Trossachs National Park. See panoramic views over Loch Lomond as you pass through the Highland Boundary Fault Line. This is where you officially enter the Scottish Highlands and gain a sense of what the rugged, mountainous landscape is really like. At the northern section of Loch Lomond, stop to see cascading waterfalls. After a good Scottish downpour, these falls really come to life and create a roaring noise that clashes off every rock and fills every part of the glen with a thunderous sound. Continue to Glencoe to see lush Caledonian Pine forests, a reminder of the ancient landscape which used to cover the majority of the Scottish mainland. Stretch your legs on a short hike along Scotland's premier walking route, the West Highland Way, as you make your way towards a small lochan (small lake). As you enter Glencoe, marvel at the grandeur of Buachaille Etive Mor, the iconic pyramid shaped mountain that forms the backdrop of the glen. The MacDonald’s of Glencoe, who were known as notorious cattle thieves, used the mountain to guide themselves back into Glencoe after a successful night raiding cattle from their neighbor’s lands. Experience the rugged and dramatic land of Glencoe. This alluring landscape captures the imagination of almost anyone who travels through it, and you’ve likely seen it before, as the beauty of Glencoe and the surrounding area has featured in many movies and TV shows. While in Glencoe, hear how the MacDonald Clan from these parts where made an example of by government soldiers in something called The Glencoe Massacre, proof that there’s also a dark side to Scotland’s turbulent history. After lunch, travel to multi-level waterfalls, which come to life after a little rainfall, found after a short walk through some woodland. Here, keep your eyes peeled for the endangered and rare red squirrels. From the roar of the waterfalls to the tranquil setting of Rannoch Moor, this area is one of the last remaining true wilderness locations left in Europe with vast peat bogs, calm lochs, and flat moorland for miles in all direction. A stunning contrast to the mountainous landscape nearby. Finally, travel south towards the lowlands, stopping for one final scenic break at Loch Lomond before heading back to Glasgow.

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What people are saying about Scottish Highlands

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 34 reviews

The tour was amazing with great sceneries. One suggestion is that when bus stops at the location for the train passing the bridge, I recommend walking quickly to the top of the hill where the bridge starts to get the best view of train when passing the bridge and see the curve on the bridge from top (just like in the movie). When we stopped in this location we were told to go up a hill near by which had a distance view of the bridge which was good but not as good as the view from the hill next to the bridge. The tour guide and driver (David and Adam) were both great and funny and made the experience even more fun :)

A great day tour seening the most beautiful parts of Scotland. Brendan was a fantastic guide, giving a lot of info about the places we visited. Plenty of stops along the way for coffee and food and to strech the legs The coach is comfortable, having a toilet on the bus there was quite handy too :) It's a long trip overall of course but with frequent stops and with commentary all the way the day passed quickly

Ronnie the bus driver and tour guide was amazing, very informative, super pleasant and very funny. His jokes made the trip so much more memorable thank you :)

Everything very well planned and organized. Magnificent, impressive landscapes! A wonderful experience. Absolutely to recommend!

It was a beautiful tour, the driver was so great. Only wish there were more photo stops