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Itinerary assistance

Hi this is my first foray into arranging a Scottish itinerary and am needing some help as my partner wants to do too much in a short space of time (we have an 8 year old) ! Any assistance with how to get to places would be great. Our itinerary so far is

18Jun Arrive Edinburgh from Blackpool at midday and want to do the Jacobite Train in the afternoon 2.30pm.
18-19Jun 1 nt in Edinburgh
19-23 June doing a Rabbies 5 day tour of Iona, Mull & ISle of Skye finishing in Edinburgh at 7pm
23-24 June 2 nt in Edinurgh
24 -25 June Highlands Experience tour that takes in Glencoe, Fort Augustus, Culloden arrives back 6pm
then thinking the overnight train to Inverness
26-27Jun 1 nt in Inverness
27 Jun we need to get to Kirkwall and am thinking the Orkney Bus is the best option??
27Jun-02Jul staying in Kirkwall - any suggestions?

I think we may be going back through Edinburgh too many times but am not sure how to include the Jacobite train if I dont?? Any assitance would be greatly appreciated. 
Janelle 



Comments

  • HorizonsHorizons Member, VisitScotland Ambassador ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 2017
    Hello @Janelle, you have a very exciting trip planned out!

    Lets go through your itinerary step-by-step starting with the fact that the Jacobite train (ie the Harry Potter train) does not leave from Edinburgh. Instead it leaves from Fort William in the Northwest of Scotland and goes to Mallaig. If you meant a different train (like the Borders railway), let us know.

    Your trip ends abruptly at Kirkwall, do you need to go to Edinburgh (or eventually Blackpool) from there? Kirkwall is very far from everywhere so it'd be good to plan a return now. But Orkney is just superb so you must go.

    As you're taking tours, I am assuming you will not be hiring a car which is fine as a lot of the country can be seen by public transport. It'd just mean a bit of constraints. You are travelling to Edinburgh a lot and that'll be tiring (most time will be spent transiting).

    Here are my suggestions:

    - Combine the 1+2 nights in Edinburgh to 2 or 3 nights up front. Return to Edinburgh / Glasgow at the end of the trip.
    - (23rd June) The Rabbies tour should be awesome! On the way from Skye to Edinburgh, ask them to drop you off at Fort William. This should be in time for you to catch the 2:30 PM Jacobite (call & ask). Buy a 1 way ticket.
    - (23rd June) Catch the 6:15 PM ScotRail train from Mallaig to Fort William. Pick up some supplies and catch the 8:40 PM bus 44 to Glencoe (it is a wonderful overnight stay). OR stay at Fort William overnight.
    - (24th June) Go to Inverness via Fort William by 2 buses. Use the Traveline website or Google Maps to see the times that suit you best. Stay overnight at Inverness. You can make an optional stop at Fort Augustus.
    - (25th June) Culloden + other things day trip from Inverness.
    - (26th June) Go to Kirkwall. If you want to go on 27th, consider staying a night at John O Groats (same Orkney bus). I'd recommend going a day earlier because you'll need a night on the way back from Kirkwall in Inverness.

    Things to do in Orkney : VisitScotland | My tips

    Take your time to read this and ask any followup questions as needed :smile:
    I'm Anirudh, an Indian travel blogger who has explored a lot of Scotland by public transport. My blog. Find me on Facebook | Instagram

    Best of Scotland in 1 week itinerary (fully by public transport)

    My Scotland travels (includes EdinburghSkye, HarrisMullArranOrkneyLoch Lomond, Islay, Oban, Speyside fest)

  • JanelleJanelle Member
    Thank you SO much for this advice. I shall re look at the itinerary and adjust where needed. We were looking at a day tour for the Jacobite that included transfers from Edinburgh but it is a long way so your suggestion is most welcome. Thank you :-) 
  • HorizonsHorizons Member, VisitScotland Ambassador ✭✭✭✭
    @Janelle It is my pleasure. I am surprised to read of a Jacobite tour day trip from Edinburgh considering Fort William is 3 hours away minimum. Also stringing together overnight stays in those areas will let you & your family enjoy the beautiful Scottish countryside.

    I would also highly recommend a day trip to the Isle of Hoy for the Orkney Island leg of your journey. I had an unforgettable day out there last summer :smile:


    I'm Anirudh, an Indian travel blogger who has explored a lot of Scotland by public transport. My blog. Find me on Facebook | Instagram

    Best of Scotland in 1 week itinerary (fully by public transport)

    My Scotland travels (includes EdinburghSkye, HarrisMullArranOrkneyLoch Lomond, Islay, Oban, Speyside fest)

  • YourScotlandTourYourScotlandTour Member ✭✭✭
    I'd suggest it almost impossible for the Jacobite to be a day trip from Edinburgh if you don't get there until midday! Especially at that time of year' the roads are very busy with slow going tourists ;-)
    Bespoke tours.
    Whisky, Castles and Food a speciality.
    yourscotlandtour.co.uk
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