Outer Hebrides & the Scottish Highlands
5 day tour

  • Callanish Standing Stones
  • Outer Hebrides tours from Edinburgh
  • Whisky tours from Edinburgh
  • Cairngorms National Park
  • Beaches of Lewis and Harris

Experience the timeless traditions and brilliant beauty of the Outer Hebrides and the Highlands.

Tour map

Highlights

Ferry
Film Locations
Gaelic Culture
Lochs
Mountains
Beaches
Nessie

Places you explore


Cairngorms - Gaze in awe at Scotland’s most beautifully rounded peaks.

Lewis and Harris - These two areas with distinct landscapes make up the largest island in Scotland.

Callanish standing stones - This mysterious monument is even older than Stonehenge.

White sands of Luskentyre - Walk along this phenomenal beach and feel like you’re in the Scottish Maldives.

Inverness - The ‘Capital of the Highlands’ blends Victorian architecture with a lively modern lifestyle.

Braemar- this village has a strong association with the British royal family and the annual Highland Gathering.

Scone Palace- The original home of Scotland’s Stone of Destiny.

Royal Lochnagar Whisky Distillery – Discover a 150-year-old distillery in the famous Royal Deeside area.


Your journey


The stone walls and straw roof are stained with soot from the central fire. The children are sleeping amongst the cattle and sheep. And outside the door, you see a spectacle of sharp mountains and soft white sands.

This is what life was once like in the Outer Hebrides: wild, beautiful, and harmonious with the forces of nature.

On this tour, you journey to the edges of Scotland to experience the epic landscapes, wonderful traditions, and ancient relics of the Isle of Lewis and Harris.

You learn about the tweed weavers of Harris, you ponder over the purpose of gigantic Neolithic stone circles, and you step inside an ancient styled abode at the Arnol blackhouse.

What’s more is you also experience the classic Highland landscapes of the Cairngorms and venture to a quintessential whisky distillery.

Join this tour, step inside the world of clans and crofters, and experience the wild and rugged legends of the Hebrides.


Tour Details

Starts
Check-in closes at 08.45 (tour departs at 09:00) - Gate J and Gate K, Edinburgh Bus Station, St Andrew Square, Edinburgh, EH1 3DQ
Finishes (approx.)
18:30
Luggage
You’re restricted to 14kg (31lbs) of luggage per person. This should be one piece of luggage similar to an airline carry-on bag (approximately 55cm x 45cm x 25cm / 22in x 17in x 10in) and a small bag for onboard personal items.
Discounts

Students, seniors over 60, and children between 5 and 15 (unfortunately, we don't carry children under 5 years old).

Important information
  • Pack your waterproof clothing and walking shoes
Tour inclusions
  • Transport in a 16 seat Mercedes mini-coach
  • Air conditioning as standard
  • The stories and services of an English-speaking driver guide
Tour exclusions
  • Entry fees to visitor attractions

Itinerary

Day 1

  • Take in views of the softly rounded peaks of the Grampian Mountains
  • Look out for a beast lurking in the depths of Loch Ness

You depart the cosmopolitan city of Edinburgh, journey past the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Forth Rail Bridge, and travel into the Highlands.

Your first stop of the day is in the village of Dunkeld. You get time here to stretch your legs and admire the cathedral’s unusual mixture of architectural styles.

You then venture through the shadows of the great and gorgeous Grampian Mountains and stop for lunch at a Highland town in the Spey Valley. Perhaps it’s time for you to try haggis.

After you’ve satisfied your taste buds, you head to Loch Ness. Your driver-guide helps you attempt to catch a glimpse of Scotland’s most famous mythical monster.

Corrieshalloch Gorge is a lesser-known Scottish sight, but it’s one that you’ll love. It’s a short walk under forest canopies with a lovely view of a waterfall.

In the early evening, you arrive in the scenic fishing port of Ullapool for your overnight stay.

Day 2

  • Travel by ferry through the Summer Isles
  • Explore a lighthouse and the rugged coastline of Lewis

Wake up, enjoy your breakfast, and look out over Loch Broom as it glistens under the morning sky. First on the agenda today is a ferry journey across the sea.

This two and a half-hour boat trip takes you through the Summer Isles to Stornoway, the main town of the Western Isles. But don’t spend your time snoozing and reading as you sail across the ocean; because if you look out to sea, you may spot dolphins and whales.

Once you’ve arrived on Lewis and Harris, you head to the North West coast. Your driver-guide will make the most of what weather you’ve been blessed with and take you through traditional crofting towns and seaside ports.

You spend the evening in Stornoway; a bustling port town and the home of Scotland’s most delicious black pudding.

Day 3

  • Admire the landscapes that inspired Harris Tweed
  • Cast your eyes upon the slender, blonde curves of Luskentyre beach

It’s time for something a little more dramatic. It’s time to enter the region of Harris.

Harris boasts the highest mountains in the Outer Hebrides and one of the most beautiful white-sandy beaches in Britain, Luskentyre.

The area is also famous for Harris Tweed and myths that are as strange as they are poignant.

After a morning of exploring the dramatic landscapes, you stop for lunch. Depending on the weather, we may even go for a picnic on the beach – so don’t forget to pack your sunglasses.

Back onto the Isle of Lewis, you visit the Callanish Stone Circle. This prehistoric sight still mystifies archeologists today.

A little down the road, you visit the stone fort of Dun Carloway. This structure was built before 100AD and has experienced more battles than you’ve had hot dinners. It’s a wonderful location to ponder over the vast swathes of history that have come before you.

You head back to Stornoway in the late afternoon.

Day 4

  • Step inside an ancient Scottish home at Arnol Blackhouse
  • Spend the evening in Inverness, the ‘Capital of the Highlands’

Today, you travel through a landscape littered with crofting villages to Arnol Blackhouse. Here, you can experience what traditional farming life was like in these remote reaches without getting your hands too dirty.

Following lunch, you head back to Stornoway where we take the ferry back to the mainland. We head straight for Inverness, the Capital of the Highlands and our final overnight stop.

Day 5

  • Savour whisky at Royal Lochnagar distillery
  • Visit Scone Palace, the ancient crowning place of the Kings of Scots

This morning we leave Inverness and head for Tominoul, the highest village in the Highlands. Sitting on north side of the Cairngorm National Park, with its central square and 18th century buildings, Tomintoul is a fine example of a planned village.

Next we head into Royal Deeside, the great valley of the River Dee that runs all the way from the sweeping mountains to the Aberdeenshire coast. We pay a visit to the Royal Lochnagar Whisky Distillery, where you can witness the craftsmanship of the distillers who make one of Scotland’s finest 12 year old single malts.

Following our distillery visit it’s time to relax over a leisurely lunch in the charming village of Braemar in the heart of the Cairngorms National Park. This beautiful and remote village feels like the Highlands of a bygone era. Set amongst majestic mountains, peat coloured rivers and cool dark forests, it’s easy to see why the British Royal Family have made this area their favourite summer retreat.

From here the route south passes over Scotland’s highest mountain pass, through Highland Perthshire before stopping at Scone Palace, the home of Scotland’s legendary Coronation Stone, better known as the Stone of Destiny.

From here it’s a short journey back to Edinburgh.

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Accommodation

Where does this tour stay overnight?

You stay one night in Ullapool, two nights in Stornoway, and one night in Inverness.


How does the accommodation work?

Your tour excludes accommodation; but when you book, you can ask us to reserve local accommodation for you, or you can choose to reserve your own accommodation in the overnight locations.


I want Rabbie’s to book my accommodation, what happens now?

Once you've booked your tour, we'll reserve all your accommodation, and your driver will drop you off with your hosts. You’ll pay your accommodation directly. Most don’t accept credit cards, so be prepared to pay cash.


What if I want to change my accommodation booking with Rabbie’s?

Changes to accommodation cannot be guaranteed and are subject to availability. An amendment charge will apply.


I booked my own accommodation is there anything I need to do?

You’ll need to contact us with your accommodation details. Please only reserve accommodation within the overnight towns that your tour stops in. Your driver will drop you off at your chosen accommodation as long as it’s relatively central.


What if I cancel my tour at short notice?

You may be liable for the cost of your first nights’ accommodation for each separate accommodation booked. If you cancel less than three days before departure, you may be liable for all your accommodation costs.


What are the accommodation types?

We try to reserve accommodation that’s no more than a 20-minute walk from the town centre. We regularly check our accommodation suppliers to ensure they reach a certain standard. The prices below are for guidance only.

B&B (Bed and Breakfast) Standard

The toilet and showering facilities are shared with at least one other room in the house, and the price includes breakfast. The cost is £35 - £40 per person per night based on shared accommodation. A single standard room is £40 - £60 per night.

B&B En suite

The showering and toilet facilities are private, and breakfast is included in the price. The cost is £45 - £60 per person per night based on shared accommodation. A single en suite is £60 - £80 per night.

Hotels

Hotels have a bar or restaurant and provide evening meals. Breakfast is included in the price. The cost is £70 - £85 per person per night based on shared accommodation. A single is £85 - £130 per night.

Hostels

A hostel consists of dormitory rooms with 4 to 16 bunk beds. The bathroom facilities are a short distance from the dorm room. Kitchen facilities are equipped so you can make your own meals. The cost based on dorm beds is £19 - £27 per person per night.

Please note that SYHA hostels only offer same gender dorms. Some independent hostels will offer mixed rooms (males and females together).


I have more questions, who can help me?

If you have any more questions, you can read our FAQs, call us on +44(0)131 226 3133, or email rooms@rabbies.com.


FAQs

Do you offer hotel pickups in the departure cities?

The UK and Ireland's historic city centres are full of narrow streets and winding roads. So, to speed up your departure, we only pick up from our central meeting points. What's more is leaving the city using the most direct route also reduces the carbon footprint of our tours.

Is there parking close to the departure point?

We don't recommend bringing your car into the centre of our departure cities. It can be hard to find parking, and there are excellent public transportation services.

When should I get to the departure point?

Arrive 15 minutes before your departure time. Due to waiting restrictions, we can't wait for you if you're late.

What happens if I'm late or miss the tour?

If you're late for your tour, our cancellation policy applies.

What are your cancellation policies?

We have a cancellation period of three days for our one day tours, and 21 days for longer tours. If cancelled outside this period, we'll give you a full refund minus a 10% admin charge. If you cancel inside this period, refunds are at our discretion. Click here to view full terms and conditions.

What is a guaranteed departure?

It's simple: you book, you go. This means we'll never cancel your tour because of a minimum numbers policy.

Can I pre-book a specific seat?

Due to logistical reasons, we're unable to let you pre-book a seat on the bus. But our comfortable 16-seat mini-coaches have huge windows. So, you'll always get a good view.

Are there toilets on the bus?

Unfortunately, we have no on-board toilet facilities, but you'll have regular comfort breaks.

How do you cater for people with accessibility needs?

We aim to accommodate everyone. To read more information on how we do this, click here to go to our accessibility guide.

Do you take children on your tours?

We regret we don't carry children under the age of five on our scheduled tours.

You can ask us about the tours we recommend for younger children. And if your child is less than 1.35m tall, you should let us know, so we can provide them with a suitable booster seat.

How much time do I get off the bus?

We want you to enjoy Britain and Ireland. And we believe the best way to do this is to get you off the mini-coach and out exploring. So, we give you plenty of time to take photos, go walking, and explore ancient ruins.

Why do you exclude visitor attractions?

We exclude visitor attractions in your tour price because it lets you travel your way. It means you can pamper yourself with a luxury lunch or skip an attraction whenever you feel like it.

Do we need to bring our own lunch?

You don't need to. We stop in small towns, villages, and rural eateries where you can choose whatever meal pleases both your taste buds and your budget.

Should I tip the driver-guide?

Let's be honest, our driver-guides would never refuse a cheeky bonus. But it's up to you, and the amount is entirely at your discretion.

What about travel insurance?

We advise you take out travel insurance.

What is ABTOT?

You're protected by ABTOT when you chose to let us reserve your accommodation on a multi-day tour. This means you can claim back anything you've paid us if we become bankrupt. Read our terms and conditions for more information.

I have more questions, who can help me?

If you have any more questions, call us on +44(0)131 226 3133, email tours@rabbies.com , or check out our full FAQs .

4 reasons to choose Rabbie's

Travel the local way on small group tours of 16 people or fewer

You'll have a guaranteed experience, or your money back

Guaranteed departures: you book, you go

Our eco-friendly tours support local communities



BTA_2017.png Green Tourism Award Scottish Thistle Awards Winner 2015/2016 TC_2018_WHITE_LL_R-112x105.png queens-award.png Scottish Tourist Board 5 Stars
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