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6 days 5 nights in Scotland by Public Transport

DesmondFidoDesmondFido Member
edited October 2016 in Planning and Practicalities
Hi People :smiley:

My friends and I will be travelling to Scotland this December from 18th of December to 24th of December (6 days in total). All of us are below 21 therefore we probably have to rely on public transport.

We are planning to spend 2.5days max in Edinburgh and Glasgow and spend the rest 3.5 days in the highlands or Skye. I have read through the Itinerary "Skye and Fort William by public transport" but we aren't really interested in going to museums and whiskey distillers. Just wondering if anyone has any good suggestions or itineraries? Besides that, what are the cheapest transport options to go around these places? We will definitely appreciate visiting more castles and scenic destinations compared to museums.

Some of the places that we are interested:
Inverness
Skye
Oban
Glanceo
Fort William

PS: How's the weather will be like at that time? 

Thank you in advance and have a lovely day!

Comments

  • FofomaFofoma Member ✭✭✭
    Hi @DesmondFido

    Personally for such a short time and looking at your wish list - have you considered a bus tour starting from Edinburgh. Don't worry they are generally taken by young people not your normal image of a coach tour!  :) For instance I've found a three day trip to Skye leaving from Edinburgh on the 21st for £139/£129 if you are a student not including accommodation but you would have to pay for that even if you were using public transport. The itinerary takes in a lot of where you wish to go. 
    If you are set on the public transport option you can get the train from Glasgow to Mallaig - this goes over the famous Glenfinnan Viaduct (think Harry Potter) then ferry to Skye and then a bus to Portree(1 night) from there. You can then get a Stagecoach bus to Fort William(2nd night) and then another bus from there to inverness(3rd night) and from here train or bus to Edinburgh or you could do it the other way around? Sorry managing Oban as well is just too much of a tall order!

    As to the weather....if I knew the answer to that I'd also know the lottery numbers LOL

    All I can say is...expect everything and perhaps a wee bit of snow thrown in for good measure. Remember the day length in December is quite short so you may be travelling in the dark if you travel later in the day.

    Dress accordingly...good waterproof boots, a waterproof jacket and warm jumper or fleece with a tee shirt or base layer underneath.
  • DesmondFidoDesmondFido Member
    edited October 2016
    Fofoma said:
    Hi @DesmondFido

    Personally for such a short time and looking at your wish list - have you considered a bus tour starting from Edinburgh. Don't worry they are generally taken by young people not your normal image of a coach tour!  :) For instance I've found a three day trip to Skye leaving from Edinburgh on the 21st for £139/£129 if you are a student not including accommodation but you would have to pay for that even if you were using public transport. The itinerary takes in a lot of where you wish to go. 
    If you are set on the public transport option you can get the train from Glasgow to Mallaig - this goes over the famous Glenfinnan Viaduct (think Harry Potter) then ferry to Skye and then a bus to Portree(1 night) from there. You can then get a Stagecoach bus to Fort William(2nd night) and then another bus from there to inverness(3rd night) and from here train or bus to Edinburgh or you could do it the other way around? Sorry managing Oban as well is just too much of a tall order!

    As to the weather....if I knew the answer to that I'd also know the lottery numbers LOL

    All I can say is...expect everything and perhaps a wee bit of snow thrown in for good measure. Remember the day length in December is quite short so you may be travelling in the dark if you travel later in the day.

    Dress accordingly...good waterproof boots, a waterproof jacket and warm jumper or fleece with a tee shirt or base layer underneath.
    Hi Fofoma,

    Thank you so much for your suggestions. The coach tour actually sounds pretty reasonable. I have just searched it up and manage to find it. :)


    Besides that, I really appreciate your recommendations on the Public transport too!

    Thanks again tho! Have a lovely weekend!
  • VisitScotlandSarahWVisitScotlandSarahW Member, Moderator, VisitScotland Staff
    Hi @DesmondFido. You should have a wee look at Rabbies Tours. Small groups (a mini-bus) with personalized tours conducted by young knowledgeable guides!  :)
  • HorizonsHorizons VisitScotland Contributor ✭✭✭
    Hey @DesmondFido

    I have written up an itinerary for 7 days that covers you wishlist here (replace Mull with Oban). I have done this route myself twice. I'll try to summarize it below. Also I did it both times in summer, the winter timings may be slightly different from what's written.

    Bus tickets: http://www.citylink.co.uk/
    Train tickets: https://www.scotrail.co.uk/

    - Day highlands tour from Edinburgh/Glasgow - Callander - Glencoe - Loch Ness + Urqhuart Castle - Inverness (get off here, talk to the tour company before hand, they let you)
    - Morning train from Inverness to Kyle of Lochalsh. Short taxi from Kyle to Eilean Donan castle. Bus from Dornie to Portree
    - Do a Skye day tour or buy a day ticket to do Old Man of Storr, Sligachan & Dunvegan. Due to the bus frequency, I really recommend the former.
    - Direct bus from Portree to Fort William (non-scenic route but much faster) or bus to Armadale - ferry to Mallaig - train to Fort William (scenic route)
    - Bus from Fort William to Oban (non-scenic route) or train from Fort William - Crianlarich - Oban
    - Train from Oban to Glasgow

    There you have it, 6 days public transit covering your interests (hopefully). Buy train & bus tickets in advance for the best prices but you'll have to stick to their schedule. Please let me know if you have any other questions on specifics.
    We're a globetrotting travel blogger couple. Find us on Facebook | Instagram

    Best of Scotland in 1 Week

    See Scotland with us (incl: SkyeMullArranOrkneyLoch Lomond, Islay, Oban)
  • Sarah, Thank You so much for the link!

    Anyway, I just realised that I have 1 day extra to spare. How do you guys think i should spend it?

    At the moment my plan will be:
    18/12 - Edinburgh
    19/12 - pending - can be both glasgow or edinburgh or maybe i can go to Oban? if it's worth
    20/12 - Glasgow
    21/12 - 3 days coach tour - depart Glasgow
    22/12 - 3 days coach tour - depart Glasgow
    23/12 - 3 days coach tour - depart Glasgow
    24/12 - Edinburgh
  • Thank you so much! Really appreciate everyone's help over here. It really helped me a lot in making the entire trip easier! :smiley:
  • FofomaFofoma Member ✭✭✭
    Personally I would spend your extra day in Edinburgh - there is so much to see and do! By the time you got to Oban it would be time to come back again!
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