About your trip
This seven-day tour kicks off in the historic highland town of Fort William, on the shore of Loch Linnhe, and in the shadow of the mighty Ben Nevis. From Fort William, we’ll take the iconic Jacobite steam train to Mallaig, passing over the Glenfinnan Viaduct, made famous by the Harry Potter film series. From Mallaig we’ll adventure on, via ferry, to the Isle of Skye – before rejoining the railway the following day to Inverness. After a generous dose of art and culture, it’s south along the tracks to Aviemore, for a walk in the Cairngorms. Edinburgh – Scotland’s muscular, medieval capital – is our final stop, where we’ll tour the castle and raise a toast to an adventure to remember.
- Travel to Scotland in style on the overnight Highland Caledonian Sleeper
- Get into the Scottish spirit with a whisky tasting session at Ben Nevis Distillery
- Ride the iconic Jacobite steam train over the Glenfinnan Viaduct
- Explore the isle of Skye by boat and on a guided hike
- Visit one of Scotland’s most spectacularly beautiful castles
- Dive into Inverness’s art scene
- Strike out on a scenic hike in the Cairngorms
- Receive the royal treatment in Edinburgh
For a train trip in the Scottish Highlands, there’s only one way to arrive: The Highland Caledonian Sleeper. Running overnight from London Euston to Fort William, this bonafide classic British train journey is the perfect way to kick-off this week-long adventure. Let the clickety-clack of the track lull you to sleep as you thunder up the West Coast main line to Scotland.
Our first stop in Scotland is Fort William station. We’ll guide you to your hotel, where we can drop off everyone’s luggage before grabbing a locally-sourced welcome lunch. Bellies full, we’ll head to the Ben Nevis Distillery, on the banks of the River Lochy, where we’ll take part in a whisky tasting – a warming introduction to this part of the world.
Today is an epic adventure in itself. After breakfast, we’ll make our way to Fort William station to board the Jacobite steam train. Unarguably one of the world’s greatest train journeys, this 42-mile stretch of track takes you past lochs, mountains and over the soaring Glenfinnan Viaduct, made famous by the Harry Potter films, to the small fishing town of Mallaig. From here, we’ll ferry across the glassy waters of Loch Nevis to the Isle of Skye before transferring to the remote waterside hamlet of Elgol where we’ll meet the Mackinnon family, who’ve lived and worked in Elgol since the 1300s. Today, their business is in showing people the jaw-dropping beauty of this slice of Scotland, with a boat trip (plus a brief hike) to Loch Coruisk. Keep your eyes peeled for dolphins along the way. We’ll end the day with a transfer to our accommodation in Kyle of Lochalsh, stopping off en route at Eilean Donan Castle – one of Scotland’s most famous, and spectacular, castles.
After yesterday’s cross-country expedition, we’re taking things a little easier. Around midday we’ll head to Plockton station for the train to Inverness – a leisurely clop across the width of the Highlands, with plenty of gorgeous scenery thrown in. Once in the city we’ll head to the Inverness Museum and Art Gallery for an expert-led tour of its all-thing-Highlands collection. You’ll then have the rest of the day free to explore the city at your own pace – check out the castle, for city-wide views, and take a walk along the River Ness.
We’re getting back on track today, as we take the train south from Inverness to Aviemore. This small town offers easy access to the ski slopes, glassy lochs and ancient woodland that make up the extraordinary Cairngorms National Park. We’ll spend the rest of the morning and the first half of the afternoon exploring on foot with a guided walk, before we hop back on the train to our final destination: Edinburgh. After checking into your hotel in the capital, you’ll have the evening to yourself.
Today is the last full day of this trip, so we’re going out on a high – literally, with an Insider-led tour of the Royal Mile and Edinburgh Castle, which overlooks the city from its lofty position on Castle Rock. The views are stupendous, and it’s not hard to see why this imposing fortress – one of the oldest in Europe – has remained standing, despite being the most besieged place in Britain. Tour over, you’ll have the rest of the day to see Edinburgh at your own pace – take a stroll in Princes Street Gardens, browse the Edinburgh Farmers Market and dip into the National Museum of Scotland. Just make sure you’re available to meet back up with the rest of the group in the evening for a farewell dinner – where we’ll swap highlights, and toast to what we hope has been a rail-y good time!
Enjoy a final breakfast in the Scottish capital before checking out and making your way home, or on to other adventures.
- Six nights accommodation (including a night on the Highland Caledonian Sleeper)
- Five breakfasts
- One lunch
- One dinner
- Whiskey tasting at Ben Nevis Distillery
- Jacobite steam train to Mallaig
- Boat trip to Loch Coruisk on the Isle of Skye
- Private tour of the Inverness Museum and Art Gallery
- Guided walk in the Cairngorms National Park
- Guided tour of the Royal Mile and Edinburgh Castle
- Trains between Plockton, Inverness, Aviemore and Edinburgh
What's Not Included
- Travel insurance
Highland Caledonian Sleeper
Dimmable lights, temperature controls, wi-fi and handcrafted Glencraft mattresses as standard – the Caledonian Sleeper’s cabins feel more like a compact boutique hotel than a train carriage. Should you need to stretch your legs, head to the club car for a nibble and a glass of Scottish Malt Whisky.
This handsome hotel, just a couple of minutes walk away from Fort William train station, has everything you’d want from a stay in the Scottish highlands. Rooms are classically furnished, yet brought up to date with contemporary fittings and stylish bathrooms, while the restaurant serves elegant plates of food using local ingredients.
This characterful family-run pub with rooms on the edge of Loch Carron epitomises Scottish hospitality. Rooms are simple but homely, with a nautical theme to the decor. Downstairs, the pub bar hums softly with local chit-chat, while the kitchen serves up fresh, locally-caught seafood.
Glen Mhor Hotel
This is the place to stay in all of Inverness, with its series of gorgeous old Victorian townhouses overlooking the River Ness. Rooms feature traditional Scottish textiles and luxurious fabrics, while communal areas include the excellent, sustainable Waterside Restaurant. This is actually the only hotel in all of Scotland with its own on-site brewery and distillery, the products of which you can enjoy from the glorious riverbank beer garden.
This Victorian townhouse, found down a cobbled street in the historic Haymarket area of Edinburgh, is the perfect setting to call home in the heart of this storied old city. Its central location places you perfectly to see the sites, while cosy Logan’s bar is the ideal spot for wee dram at the end of a long day of exploring. You can even follow it up in the morning with a hearty Scottish breakfast, such as porridge, fresh kippers or even a full Scottish breakfast, including haggis, MacSween’s black pudding and tattie scones. If the local cuisine isn’t for you, there’s still a healthy continental spread to fuel you up for the day.
The safety and wellbeing of all travellers is our top priority. To help us ensure this, please refer to this checklist:
- Please check the entry requirements for the destination you are travelling to. Our travel experts can assist you in finding this information.
- We recommend you confirm all guidance on official government sites and check that you are able to travel with your travel insurance issuer. Your travel insurance may be invalidated if you travel against government advice. Our travel experts can assist you in finding this information.
- You must be aged 18 years or over to join this trip.
- A non-refundable prepayment of £200/€250/$250 is required for this trip. This is necessary in order to secure a spot on the Caledonian Sleeper train and the Jacobite steam train, both of which have limited spaces and are in extremely high demand.
- Please be sure to check whether or not you need a visa to enter the country you're travelling to. Please refer to our Booking Terms & Conditions for further information.
- If you have any pre-existing medical conditions or accessibility requirements, please notify our Customer Support team as soon as possible.
- To upgrade to a private room, or book pre- and post-trip accommodation and/or airport transfers, please contact our Customer Support team.
- Please be aware that travel insurance is compulsory for all travellers.
- Please be aware that the itinerary, activities and hotels are subject to change. While unlikely, these changes can happen due to circumstances beyond our control. We will always do our best to ensure minimal impact on your experience.
- Please be aware images on this page are for illustrative purposes and may not reflect your itinerary exactly.
- Private room upgrade does not include the first night in the sleeper train, this will be in a twin cabin.
If you cancel 56 days or more before your scheduled departure date, you will receive a 100% refund. Otherwise, the total cost of your trip is:
- 100% payable if you cancel 29 days or less before your departure date.
- 50% payable if you cancel between 30 - 55 days before your departure date.
Please note you can only book this trip in advance up to 14 days before the departure date. After this time the trip may be booked on request.
Terms & Conditions
Please refer to our Booking Terms & Conditions.