Iona | Scotland | United Kingdom
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FROM: R38,854 pp
Wild Scotland & Whisky Explorer - 8 days map

Take in some of Scotland's prettiest and wildest islands and indulge in whisky tasting at several famous distilleries on this 8-day escorted group tour. Enjoy distillery tours and several drams of Scotland's most iconic tipple and discover the wildlife and scenery of Islay, Iona, Mull and Skye. Search for 'Nessie' at Loch Ness, learn about the turbulent history of Glencoe and take in sweeping views of Ben Nevis.

Inclusions
Itinerary
Prices & Dates

Trip Highlights

Loch Lomond - Admire the incredible scenery surrounding one of Scotland's most famous lochs, and Great Britain's largest body of water
Isle of Islay - Uncover the dramatic scenery and highlights of one of the most beautiful Scottish islands, including Dunyvaig Castle
Glencoe - Soak up the stunning mountain views and learn about the tragic and famous massacre that took place here in 1692
Eilean Donan Castle - Admire this historic 13th Century castle, located on an island where three lochs meet
Whisky Coast - Visit four whisky distilleries with the chance to taste the produce, learn about the production process and tour the distilleries
Isle of Mull - Spot eagles and other wildlife on this pristine island, one of Scotland's wildest, and explore nearby Iona
Isle of Skye - Take in the highlights of this beautiful island, with plenty of hiking and sightseeing to enjoy
Loch Ness - Hunt for 'Nessie', the mythical beast believed to dwell in the dark waters of Scotland's most famous loch

Included

7 breakfasts & 2 lunches
Escorted by a local driver-guide
Transportation in 16 seat Mercedes mini-coach with air-conditioning
All road tolls
Note: This tour is operated in conjunction with our trusted partner and you will join travellers from different operators, not solely On The Go.
7 nights simple guesthouse - (3 nights self-service breakfast provided, 4 nights B&B)
Visits to four whiskey distilleries: Ardbeg, Ardnahoe, Bowmore, Laphroaig including tour & tasting (subject to change)
All necessary ferry journeys between Scottish Islands and the mainland
20kg luggage - see Trip Notes for details

Not Included

International flights & visas
Meals not specified in itinerary
Entry fees unless specified
Airport transfers (pick up and drop off information can be found in the Trip Notes)
Tipping - an entirely personal gesture!

Itinerary

Day 1

Loch Lomond, Oban & Islay ferry

Edinburgh - Trossnachs National Park - Oban - Islay. Departing Edinburgh this morning, we head west, first visiting Trossnachs National Park. Admire some of the country's famous scenery and perhaps taste some regional delicacies. We then make our way through the mountainous Western Highlands to Oban, a port town once the strategic heartland of great feuding clans.

Modern Oban is known for two things, seafood and whisky. We have the opportunity to taste both, including a dram of locally produced whisky and an optional seafood lunch.

We then make our way through the Kilmartin Glen, home to standing stones and historic fortified strongholds dating back more than 1,500 years. At Kennacraig, we catch the ferry to the island of Islay. The crossing takes around 2 hours, and you can see the Paps of Jura as we sail past the island of Jura. Landing at Islay, we make our way to our accommodation in Bowmore.

Please note: Check-in closes at 08:15 on day 1 (tour departs at 08:30) - Edinburgh Bus Station Pick Up, Gate J and Gate K, inside Edinburgh Bus Station, St Andrew Square, Edinburgh, EH1 3DQ.

Accommodation: Bowmore Cottages, The Bruce or similar
Overnight: Islay

Day 2

Whisky, whisky & whisky

Tuck into breakfast at the accommodation before we depart on a day of whisky adventures! We are visiting three distilleries today, starting with Bowmore, one of the oldest distilleries in the whole of Scotland. There's an included tour and whisky tasting before we continue to Ardnahoe Distillery, where we can try more whisky and enjoy an included lunch of Scottish specialities. We then travel through the beautiful countryside of Islay to our third distillery. This will either be Bruichladdich or Bunnahabhain, depending on the departure. Bruichladdich specializes in unpeated whisky, whilst Bunnahabhain is the most remote distillery on the island. Feeling slightly light-headed, we then head back to Bowmore, where the evening is at leisure.

Accommodation: Bowmore Cottages, The Bruce or similar
Overnight: Islay  |  Breakfast, Lunch

Day 3

Exploring Islay

Today we are exploring the southern half of Islay, one of the most beautiful of the Scottish Isles. First we visit the distillery at Ardbeg, owned by Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy! There's an included tour and tasting here, plus we enjoy lunch in the vibrant restaurant.

The final distillery of our tour is Laphroaig, a 200-year-old distiller known to be a favourite of the British Royal Family.

Throughout the day, we will also stop at some of the island's main highlights. See the historic ruins of Kildalton church and Dunyvaig Castle, which was once held by the chiefs of the Clan MacDonald of Dunnyveg. We then return to Bowmore for our last night on Islay.

Accommodation: Bowmore Cottages, The Bruce or similar
Overnight: Islay  |  Breakfast, Lunch

Day 4

Islay to Oban

Islay - Inveraray - Oban. This morning we take the return ferry back to the mainland and replace the smell of whisky with the crisp air of the Scottish Highlands. We pass through the pretty village of Inveraray on the shore of Loch Fyne. There's a stop here as we change minibuses and guide. Some of your group will be returning to Edinburgh, but we are continuing our Scottish adventure! Meet the rest of the group before we continue to Oban for the evening.

Accommodation: Kathmore, Altavona or similar
Overnight: Oban  |  Breakfast

Day 5

Mull & Iona

Oban - Mull - Iona - Oban. It's an early start this morning as we take the ferry to the Isle of Mull. Take in dramatic coastlines and wild natural beauty, and keep your eyes on the skies for majestic white-tailed eagles, the UK's largest bird of prey.

We then take another ferry to Iona, the birthplace of Celtic Christianity and home to the ancient burial grounds of famed Scottish kings. We can see the historic abbey and take in more of the windswept coastline of the Scottish Isles.

There's an optional small boat trip to the uninhabited island of Staffa to see the basalt columns of Fingal's Cave. We then return to Oban on the ferry.

Accommodation: Kathmore, Altavona or similar
Overnight: Oban  |  Breakfast

Day 6

Glencoe, Ben Nevis & Plockton

Oban - Glencoe - Fort William - Plockton. Driving north along the coast, we pass Castle Stalker and visit Glencoe, a truly beautiful location haunted by the 1692 Glencoe Massacre. Around 30 members of Clan MacDonald of Glencoe were slaughtered here for failing to pledge allegiance to King William III and Mary II.

We then pass through Fort William and past Ben Nevis, the highest peak in Great Britain. Continuing through the Great Glen, we arrive in Plockton, a small fishing village known for its palm trees! We overnight here.

Accommodation: Sabhal na Mara, Hillview, Haven Guest House or similar
Overnight: Plockton  |  Breakfast

Day 7

Exploring the Isle of Skye

Plockton - Skye - Plockton. Today we will be exploring the remote Isle of Skye, but there is no fixed itinerary for the day. The weather can be unpredictable, so your guide will choose the best highlights to show you in accordance with the conditions and any events that may be happening on the island during your visit. We are likely to be hiking, in order to enjoy the dramatic scenery of the island. Options include The Quiraing hill walk and the Old Man of Storr Walk, probably the most famous trail on the island. We can also see the Neist Point Lighthouse. Spend the day taking photos, sampling the view and enjoying everything this pristine environment has to offer. In the late afternoon, we return to our accommodation in Plockton.

Accommodation: Sabhal na Mara, Hillview, Haven Guest House or similar
Overnight: Plockton  |  Breakfast

Day 8

Loch Ness

Plockton - Loch Ness - Edinburgh. Today we visit Eilean Donan Castle, a 13th century fortress, located on an island. We then drive to Loch Duich and the Five Sisters of Kintail, taking in more of Scotland's dramatic scenery. There's a stop for lunch at Loch Ness, so keep your eyes peeled for 'Nessie', the Loch Ness monster!

We continue through the rugged Grampian Mountains and along Loch Laggan, passing Scotland's highest whisky distillery at Dalwhinnie. We make a short stop for refreshments before reaching Edinburgh, where our tour ends.

Please note: This tour ends at 19:00 - Edinburgh Bus Station Drop Off, Gate J and Gate K, Edinburgh Bus Station, St Andrew Square, Edinburgh, EH1 3DQ.
Breakfast

Prices & Dates

Departure dates are guaranteed with 2 travellers. 'Twin Share' prices are per person when there are 2 people sharing a room. 'Single Room' prices are applicable to all solo travellers, or if your booking party cannot reach the minimum of 2 persons in a room. Single Rooms can also be booked by any other person wanting the comfort and privacy of their own room.

2024
Twin Share
Single Room
26 Jul - 02 Aug 25% off
R63,475
R47,606
R74,995
R56,246
11 Oct - 18 Oct 25% off
R51,805
R38,854
R72,445
R54,334
18 Oct - 25 Oct 25% off
R51,805
R38,854
R72,445
R54,334
25 Oct - 01 Nov 25% off
R51,805
R38,854
R72,445
R54,334

At a Glance

Range
Trip Type
Starts
Edinburgh
Ends
Edinburgh
Departs
Fridays
Group Size
Min 2 / Max 16
Hotel Rating
Simple guesthouses
Tour Guide
Yes - escorted by a tour guide
Meals
Breakfast: 7, Lunch: 2
Countries
Minimum Age
18
Arr. Transfer
No
Dep. Transfer
No
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