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Glen Shiel

Glen Shiel: Our most recommended tours and activities

From Edinburgh: 3-Day Isle of Skye and The Highlands Tour

1. From Edinburgh: 3-Day Isle of Skye and The Highlands Tour

Embark on a 3-day guided tour of the Scottish Highlands and visit highlights, including Loch Ness and the Isle of Skye. Learn the history of this lush region from your guide and spend two nights in Inverness. Day 1: Departing Edinburgh, we will take our first short drive heading north and stop at the mysterious Kelpies. Scotland’s largest piece of outdoor art depicting mythical creatures of Scotland’s folklore that your driver will tell you all about. We’ll then continue on our journey and pass Stirling Castle. Be inspired by tales from your guide of William Wallace and Robert the Bruce. Continuing north, into the Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park, admire the scenery as your tour guide explains the remarkable tribal clan history of the Highlands. Discover beautiful Glencoe, the most famous valley in Scotland, and hear of its tragic history. Admire the spectacular Glenfinnan Viaduct then head north and arrive on the southern banks of Loch Ness to get photos of the infamous monster Nessie! Stop for photos of Urquhart Castle before arriving in Inverness, the Capital of the Highlands, where you'll stay for 2 nights, choosing from a local guesthouse, hostel, or hotel. Day 2: After breakfast, depart Inverness and drive across the Kessock Bridge to the Black Isle and marvel at the spectacular scenery of Achnasheen and Loch Carron. Arriving on the Isle of Skye, venture north to explore the highlights of the island, including; the Cuillin Mountains, Trotternish Peninsula, Portree, the Old Man Storr, Kilt Rock and the famous Quiraing. In late afternoon, stop for photographs of the most beautiful castle in Scotland, "Eilean Donan Castle." Backdrop to many famous films, such as 'Highlander' and 'Made of Honor', this castle is another must-see iconic landmark! A scenic drive through stunning Glen Shiel follows, returning to Inverness to stay your final night. In the evening, visit a local Highland Pub to drink some Scotch whisky or beer and eat some traditional Scottish food, whilst listening to some local musicians perform. Day 3: Visit Culloden Battlefield, site of the last Jacobite Rising, then 'Clava Cairns', incredible 4,000-year-old, Bronze-Age standing stones. Travelling south, stop at the Highland Folk Museum. Here you'll experience highland life in the 17th century. See the buildings, the clothes and weapons, and how people lived 300 years ago. Then, drive through the dramatic Cairngorm National Park. You will have the chance to experience a Scotch Whiskey tasting before you visit the historic village of Dunkeld on the banks of the mighty River Tay. Your journey back to Edinburgh takes you across the famous Forth Bridges. The expected arrival time back in Edinburgh is around 6:30 PM.

Isle of Skye and West Highlands: 4-Day Tour from Edinburgh

2. Isle of Skye and West Highlands: 4-Day Tour from Edinburgh

Embark on a breathtaking 4-day journey through the Scottish countryside, enjoying the grandeur of the Scottish glens, mountains and coastlines at a relaxed pace. Spend some time exploring the beautiful Isle of Skye and stop to take in the dramatic views of untouched nature as you pass the dramatic Glencoe and Glenfinnan. Day 1: Edinburgh - The Kelpies - Glencoe - Fort William Depart Edinburgh at 9:15 AM and travel northwest to visit the Kelpies, the largest pair of horse sculptures in the world and one of Scotland's most fascinating modern marvels. For lunch, stop in either of the small towns of Killin or Callander, passing through beautiful lochs and castles. After enjoying beautiful views of rivers, lochs, and forests, cross the wild and remote Rannoch Moor, a beautiful location for photographers and nature lovers. You then travel to Glencoe, one of Scotland's most famous landscapes, before heading towards Fort William, where the tour stays for the first night. Day 2: Fort William - Mallaig – Skye After breakfast, get picked up from your accommodation and travel by Glenfinnan Viaduct. It's one of the most spectacular railway bends in Britain and featured in the Harry Potter movies. There is also an iconic monument that commemorates the Jacobites who fought for Scottish independence. After arriving in Mallaig, take the ferry with your group to the southern area of the Isle of Skye. Spend your afternoon exploring the incredible landscapes of the Sleat Peninsula, with potential stops at the waterfalls of Glenbrittle or Cuillin Mountains in Elgol. The tour then heads towards the Lochalsh/Skye area, the base for the next two nights. Day 3: Travel through Skye's most iconic scenery Today the tour offers great opportunities to enjoy some of the most famous wonders of Skye, such as Quiraing, Old Man of Storr, Neist Point, etc. This day's itinerary is quite flexible, depending on the weather and the group's interests. Your experienced guide will choose a unique itinerary and will ensure you get a chance to get off the beaten track and discover what the Isle of Skye has to offer. Day 4: Skye - Dunkeld - Edinburgh This morning you say farewell to Skye and travel south through Glen Shiel towards the Central Highlands. Stop at the historic village of Dunkeld, and have the opportunity to visit the ruins of the old cathedral. The tour then heads through the Lowlands, over the Firth of Forth, and gets back to Edinburgh at approximately 6:30 PM.

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

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

This 3-day tour takes you on a discovery of the beautiful mountain scenery and fascinating sights of the Scottish Highlands and the Isle of Skye. Visit numerous glens, lochs and castles in some the most dramatic landscapes in the country, including Eilean Donan Castle, the Fairy Glen, Loch Ness and Glen Coe. You will be transported from Edinburgh through the highlands and the Isle of Skye in a comfortable minibus. Learn about the long and violent history of the Scottish Highlands with your tour guide, from the bloody massacre of the Macdonalds at Glen Coe to Scotland’s great patriot William Wallace, whose name has resounded through British history for 700 years. Detailed itinerary Day 1 The tour first stops off at the delightful village of Dunkeld where you can explore the ancient cathedral grounds and walk through the mature woodland alongside the mighty River Tay. Continue north to the wild mountain scenery and misty locks of the Pass of Killiecrankie, Cairngorm National Park and Laggan. Admire Scotland’s highest mountain Ben Nevis along the Great Glen to Invergarry before travelling onwards through the stunning Glen Shiel (Five Sisters of Kintail) to Eilean Donan Castle. Enjoy the great views from the Skye Bridge as you drive onto the island under the shadow of the Cuillin Mountains to Portree where you will be dropped off at your accommodation. Please let the tour provider know your preferred accommodation choices when booking. The accommodation is reserved for you and should be paid for on arrival. Day 2 Today is spent touring the Isle of Skye, a flexible itinerary at the discretion of your driver/guide * (see below). Enjoy a half-day scenic drive along the dramatic Trotternish Ridge with its spectacular cliffs and rock formations. Stops can include Lealt Waterfall, Kilt Rock sea cliffs, the Old Man of Storr rock pinnacle and a walk at the Quiraing mountain pass. Another popular stop is the Fairy Glen, a delightful miniature Highland landscape and legendary home of the 'wee people'! The second half of the day explores the stunning southern part of the island which includes well-known sights and some hidden gems discovered over the years. Nestled under the Cuillin mountains is beautiful Glen Brittle. Rugged scenery surrounds you and there are several fantastic options for this section of the tour, including a short walk in the iconic mountain landscape. Another popular excursion is the drive to Neist Point lighthouse for spectacular views to the Western Isles. The 13th century home of the famous Clan McLeod, Dunvegan Castle offers guided tours, a useful wet-weather option because of Skye's famously changeable weather. It's not called the 'Misty Isle' for nothing! Day 3 After returning to the mainland you drive past the Five Sisters of Kintail before stopping at the world-famous Loch Ness. Enjoy lunch in Fort Augustus at the southerly tip of Loch Ness before continuing on through Fort William to Glencoe. Learn about the bloody history of the famous glen and admire the wild scenery before heading on to Tyndrum for a break. Return through the Lowlands and Stirling to Edinburgh in the evening.

Inverness: Day Tour to Glenelg, Plockton, and Applecross

4. Inverness: Day Tour to Glenelg, Plockton, and Applecross

Partake in a search for the Loch Ness Monster, known affectionately as "Nessie". You will stop for a short walk down to the shores of Loch Ness, where you can take some photos of the fantastic scenery and maybe even catch the monster out for an early morning swim. Next, you will venture onto the magnificently situated Urquhart Castle, on the shore of Loch Ness. Traveling on, you will heard to Cluanie Dam, where in 1957 the glen of Cluanie was flooded as part of the North Scotland Hydro-Electric Board's Glenmoriston project, to generate hydro electricity onto the dramatic Glen Shiel. Following this, you will visit the pictish brochs at Glenelg, along with the Bernera Barracks Fort. You will then venture forth to Eilean Donan Castle, which is recognized as one of the most iconic Scottish images all over the world. The picturesque village of Plockton will be your next stop, which sits on a sheltered bay with stunning views overlooking Loch Carron. Often referred to as the “Jewel of the Highlands”, it offers everything breathtaking scenery and landscapes, secluded bays, coral beaches, islands, panoramic views, and the possibility of seeing an array of marine life at close quarters. Your tour will then encounter Lochcarron, pretty village of white-washed cottages, before advancing towards Applecross. Next on your tour, you will head onward to Torridon, which boasts a dramatic and desolate setting beneath the mountains, on the shore of Upper Loch Torridon in Wester Ross. You will finally pass through the picturesque village of Garve, which is situated along the Black Water River and lies five miles northwest of Contin.

Other Sightseeing Options in Glen Shiel

Want to discover all there is to do in Glen Shiel? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Glen Shiel

Overall rating

4.8 / 5

based on 218 reviews

It was FANTASTIC! Wear comfortable shoes (I bought sneakers with memory foam and it was a BLESSING) and dress warm (bring a sweater and a jacket; Isle of Skye is pretty chilly and you will see some FANTASTIC scenery throughout the trip, but a lot of it is at the top of hills and the wind isn't very forgiving) and you will enjoy yourself immensely! And if you can, request Brian Smith as your guide; you will NOT regret it. He will keep you so entertained that you will be sad when the trip is over. Genuinely friendly and hilarious; a perfect example of what I was hoping for in a Scottish man/guide =) As a proud lover of warm weather (and the U.S....most days), only Brian could have me strongly considering moving to Scotland. (I hope you are reading this Brian! It's Princess, and I wrote that last part just for you. =) )

This tour was nothing short of magical! James was an amazing tour guide and a wonderful story teller. You can feel the love of Scotland he has in every story he tells. Tours can be tough and sometimes feel rushed but this did not at all. We had adequate time in each location, spending the most in Skye which is exactly what I’d hope for. Cannot recommend this tour enough and if you’re lucky enough to have James as your guide, you’re in for a treat!

A little girl's dream come true... set foot in Scotland, thanks to our guide Steve, a really great guide, friendly, funny, passionate and proud of his origins! It was a pleasure to be with him and the whole group. The group was really great thanks to them, great atmosphere. Sublime places, a road trip worthy of Scotland which is a summary in 3 days of this magnificent country. Thank you and see you soon, I highly recommend it! #thehairycoo

The tour guide Scott was very friendly and accommodating. He knew everything about the places we visited. He also took good care of everyone and kept us entertained throughout the three days. Unfortunately, we only saw some of the stations on photo stops, but we also visited many extraordinary places that you probably don't normally see.

better than expected, splendid nature and super guide, Brian Smith, well prepared, funny and caring, made us fall in love with Scotland