Historic Scotland

Our Historic Scotland tour itinerary is designed for people who like to stop in an area for several days to explore at a slower pace.

It gives you a mix of famous Scottish landmarks and quiet places where you can escape the crowds and touch the past.

Allow a minimum of 7 days to drive this tour route.
The guide contains extra day trip suggestions for extending the tour to 14 days

PLEASE NOTE: The Guides come in the format of PDF files. After payment, you will receive an automated email that enables you to access your Scotland Tour Itinerary.

Historic Scotland

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Tour Stats :

Guide Updated - 23 December 2023

Core Route Mileage:

Approximately 423 miles / 680 Km

Tour Duration:

7 to 14 Days

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Tour Summary

  • Explore Edinburgh -

    Edinburgh is a compact city and easy to explore on foot. We provide directions for 3 walking routes that show you different sides of the Capital city; a walk down the historical Royal Mile, a leafy riverside path to the Botanic Gardens for an escape from the city buzz and a more energetic hike to Arthur’s Seat with the option to continue to an old Inn with lots of history.

    Edinburgh boasts a great range of atmospheric old pubs and we steer you to a selection of our favourites.

    The guide also includes options for day trips around the surrounding area by car, bus or train.

    The day trips by car are short routes that allow you to explore;

    • East Lothian where you can visit some spectacular castle ruins on a cliff top, a whisky distillery, pretty villages and embark on boat trips to Bass Rock.
    • West Lothian where you can visit Linlithgow Palace, Blackness Castle, Hopetoun House and some of the other sites used in the filming of “Outlander”.

    Stopover in Edinburgh.

  • Edinburgh to Pitlochry -

    Two route options are provided for this drive:

    The longer route takes you west, via Stirling, and then into the Trossachs National Park. Fans of “Outlander” can stop to explore Doune Castle (“Castle Leoch” in the TV show), and further along the route we guide you to stone circles where you can try to travel through time. After a photo stop at the Falls of Dochart, you travel along the shores of Loch Tay towards Aberfeldy and Pitlochry, where you may wish to end the day with a distillery tour.

    Driving Distance: ~111 miles

    The shorter route allows time to spend a full afternoon in Pitlochry. Heading north from Edinburgh, you cross the Forth estuary with views of the famous Forth Rail Bridge. You then speed north to Perth, but can extend the drive with a visit to the pretty village of Falkland where Mary Queen of Scots had her favourite palace. Falkland village might look familiar as it has appeared in the filming of some early episodes of "Outlander". From Perth to Pitlochry, we suggest a back road route that visits Scone Palace, the ancient crowning place of Scottish Kings, and the romantic ruins of Dunkeld Cathedral beside the River Tay.

    Driving Distance: ~81 miles

    Short tours around Pitlochry - If you arrive early in Pitlochry, or wish to stay for several nights, you will enjoy the 2 short tour options supplied in this guide. These tours cover the grand Blair castle as well as many lesser known places such as a deserted Blackhouse village, a 2000 year old tree and a stone circle that is easily missed.

    Stopover in Pitlochry Area.

  • Pitlochry to Inverness -

    Whilst other tourists are shuffling along  the busy main road to Inverness, we guide you on a more scenic journey through the Cairngorms National Park  where you can explore the Rothiemurchus forest. Pack a picnic as this is a day where we’ll show you lots of idyllic places to chill out beside a loch or river.

    Whilst in the Cairngorms, you might wish to allow time for visits to the popular Highland Folk Museum and Strathspey Steam Railway. 

    Heading north from Grantown on Spey, you cross over moorlands as you head towards the fertile farmland of the North East. The main tourist attractions on this section of the journey are Cawdor Castle, Clava Cairns and Culloden battlefield. But there’s a lot more to be discovered in our guides.

    Driving Distance: ~115 miles

    Stopover in Inverness Area.

  • Day Trips from Inverness -

    Inverness is a great touring base for exploring the Highlands and we supply you with directions for a range of day trips:

    • Black Isle - A short tour of the Black Isle where you can visit a carefully preserved 18th century village and embark on boat trips to see wild dolphins.
    • Moray Coast - A historical tour of Moray with its historical attractions and scenic coastline. This day trip features the highlights of Culloden, Benromach Distillery, Brodie Castle, Elgin Cathedral and Fort George.
    • Glen Affric - A scenic drive into Glen Affric where you can see the last remains of the Ancient Caledonian Forest. This route includes options to explore a Neolithic burial chamber, a hidden Clan graveyard and a 150 foot high waterfall in a lovely woodland setting.
    • Dunrobin Castle - A day trip up the coast to the spectacular Dunrobin Castle, which has all the opulence of a French chateau. From Dunrobin, you can follow a longer route that includes a visit to cascade where you might see salmon leaping upstream if you visit in late Summer / Autumn.

    Stopover in Inverness area

  • Inverness to Oban -

    From Inverness, we provide a choice of routes along Loch Ness so you can either; follow the mainstream tourist trail past all the “Nessie” attractions and Urquhart Castle, or drive a quieter road on the south shore of Loch Ness.

    You then have a second set of route options so you can extend the day to include a visit to Glenfinnan, or take a more direct route to allow more time around the Fort William / Glen Coe area. After a photo stop at Glen Coe, you pick up a great coastal road that carries you south through the lovely scenery of Argyll to your stopover in the Oban area.

    Oban is a lively seaside town with a great range of Seafood restaurants. We give you a list of our favourite places to eat so you can book a table for a meal to remember.

    Driving Distance: ~110 miles to 141 miles depending on routes options followed.

    Stopover in Oban Area.

  • Oban Day Trips -

    Oban is a great touring base and the guide provides you with a choice of day trips for exploring the wider area.

    • Jacobite Steam Train – With an early start, you can get to Fort William in time to catch the morning steam train service to Mallaig. A must for “Harry Potter” fans, but a popular attraction so you need to book early (April – October).
    • Day Trip To Mull, Iona & Staffa – You can either take a day off driving and join an organised boat / coach trip to Iona & Staffa, OR you can follow our directions for exploring the island by car. If taking the car across, we recommend that you stay on Mull for 2 or more nights and we provide information to help you adapt the tour plan for a stopover on Mull.
    • Day Trip to Inveraray via Kilmartin Glen – This route guides you along a road that we rate as one of the best scenic drives in Scotland. History fans will enjoy the ancient standing stones and burial chambers of Kilmartin Glen. The return leg travels north to the pretty 18th century village of Inveraray with its ornate castle that is still home to the Duke of Argyll.
    • Lorn Islands – Within a short distance of Oban you can visit a choice of small islands with unique characters. Our itinerary gives you details of each island’s highlights and the best ways that you can explore them.

    Stopover in Oban Area.

  • Oban to Glasgow / Edinburgh -

    For the first journey leg, from Oban to Crianlarich, we provide 2 route options:

    • The direct route option heads inland via the shores of Loch Awe, Scotland’s longest loch. Along the way, we guide you to the footpath that leads to the photogenic ruins of Kilchurn castle which guards the east end of the loch.
    • The longer route takes you through Glen Coe with its dramatic scenery and tragic history of the massacre of the MacDonalds. After Glen Coe, you cross the wild and timeless expanse of Rannoch Moor.

    Crianlarich translates from the Gaelic for “Low Pass” and it is at this village that you choose between the road to Loch Lomond and Glasgow, or the road that heads east through the Trossachs to Stirling and Edinburgh. If going to Glasgow, can stop for a drink in a haunted 18th century inn, or join a loch cruise.

    If returning to Edinburgh you could take journey breaks at Doune or Stirling castle.

    Driving Distance: ~90 miles to Glasgow via direct route

    Driving Distance: ~117 miles to Edinburgh via direct route

    Stopover in Glasgow or Edinburgh.

Tour Gallery


To help you book the best places to stay, we offer a guide to Recommended Accommodation along the route of this tour.

We personally visit all the accommodation featured in the guides and only select places where we would wish to stay ourselves. Read More...

When you "Checkout", you will have the option to buy the Accommodation Guide.

Preview Accommodation Guide

Car Hire - How to Save Money

When you buy a Secret Scotland Tour Itinerary you will receive a Discount Code that gets you a 10% reduction on the cost of Car Hire from Arnold Clark Rental.

Simply use the Secret Scotland code when you book via the Arnold Clark website and your car hire discount will automatically apply.


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