Your Scotland bus tour departs from 28 St Andrews Square, EH2 1AF, located in central Edinburgh and approximately 2 minutes' walk from Edinburgh Waverley Train Station and the Tourist Information Centre.
As our journey begins heading north out of the city, you will experience the elegant splendour and architecture of Edinburgh's Georgian New Town.
Heading into the countryside, we pass by the impressive ruins of Linlithgow Palace, birthplace of Mary, Queen of Scots, and the Kelpies: the largest equine sculptures in the world.
Standing with a commanding view of central Scotland is Stirling Castle, which has guarded the route to the Scottish Highlands for centuries.
Adjacent to Stirling Castle is the Wallace Monument which dominates another hill nearby, erected in 1869 in memory of 'Braveheart' himself, William Wallace.
As we pass over the River Teith, there's a fabulous glimpse of Doune Castle, familiar to many for its appearances in Monty Python and the Holy Grail and global hit Outlander.book tour
We visit the charming village of Callander for our first 45-minute stop. There’s time here to explore local attractions like Lady Kentmore's Curio's and Antiques, the Nutcracker Christmas Shop or discover the local fudge and food shops.
We continue our scottish tour through the Lomond and Trossachs National Park which presents a new photo opportunity at every turn, from sparkling lochs and brooding mountains to lush forests and glens. This is the area that the legendary outlaw Rob Roy robbed the gentry who passed by. (Fortunately for us he died in 1734!)
We make a 15-minute stop at Loch Lubnaig, a vast lake between mountainous Ben Ledi and Ben Vorlich, where you can take some wonderfully scenic photos.
We continue to follow the well-known West Highland Way deeper into the Highlands through Glen Orchy, one of the historic seats of Clan Gregor. We pause again for 15 minutes above Loch Tulla, a lake renowned for its salmon.
The beauty and majesty of Glencoe give no clue to the betrayal and massacre suffered here in the 17th century by the Clan MacDonald at the hands of the Campbells. When combined with its tragic history, the scenery takes on a haunting beauty and leaves a lasting impression on all who pass here.
The atmospheric setting of Glencoe has also inspired filmmakers to use it as a backdrop in Hollywood blockbusters such as Skyfall and Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. A 15-minute photo stop will let you capture your own big picture moment of this most evocative scene.
We cross the Ballachulish Bridge to follow the road alongside Loch Linnhe and the start of the Great Glen. As we pass Loch Lochy, keep your eyes peeled as this is the mythical home to the supernatural River Horse, said to overturn boats and lure mares from nearby pastures.
Loch Ness is arguably the best-known of all of Scotland’s lochs. It’s certainly an impressive size. At 36 kilometres in length and 2.7 kilometres wide, Loch Ness is the second deepest lake in Scotland and contains more fresh water than all the lakes of England and Wales combined. The perfect setting for whatever creatures may live beneath its surface. Keep your cameras poised just in case!
The town of Fort Augustus sits at the southernmost tip of Loch Ness where we break for 2 ½ hours to explore the town and the shores of Loch Ness, the main attraction of the day.
Here you can have a leisurely lunch, take a cruise on Loch Ness (Adult ticket is £14.50) and enjoy local attractions such as the Clansman Centre, Iceberg Glass, or the Caledonian Canal Visitor Centre.
We start our return journey south via Spean Bridge where you will have a photo opportunity at the Commando Memorial, unveiled in 1952 by the Queen Mother as a tribute to British Commandos killed in World War II. The memorial overlooks the training areas of the special forces at Achnacarry Castle, as well as impressive views of Aonach Mòr and Ben Nevis, the UK’s highest mountain.
Our route south continues through the magnificent Cairngorms National Park and we pass the whitewashed buildings and copper chimneys of the Dalwhinney Distillery, which produces its own distinctive famous Scotch whisky.
Our last stop of the day is for an hour in the delightful Victorian town of Pitlochry, a very popular tourist destination. Pitlochry sits beside the River Tay, famously known as one of the best salmon fishing rivers in the world. There’s plenty of time to explore the town and enjoy a bite to eat in one of the many local restaurants and café's.book tour
We continue our journey home towards Edinburgh, passing Blair Castle, home to the Duke of Atholl. The Atholl Highlanders is Europe's only 'private army' although it no longer plays any military role.
We pass by Perth, once the capital of Scotland, where Scottish Kings were crowned and which has been inhabited for over 6,000 years.
Our final river crossing is over the famous Forth Road Bridge, now sandwiched between the world-renowned Forth Rail Bridge and the new Queensferry Crossing, scheduled to open in May 2017: the only place in the world where three centuries of bridges sit side by side.
Our full-day Scottish day tour comes to an end as we return to Edinburgh City Centre.
We are sure the memories of your day will stay with you for ever.
“The care that the entire staff at Go Travel Scotland showed was outstanding! They made the long trip interesting and memorable for everyone in our party - my aging parents and young kids included. I couldn't be more pleased”book tour