Spirit of Outlander - 16 Day Tour Spirit of Outlander 16 Day tour of Scotland
- Essential Information
- Meals as stated
- Entry fees where stated
Day 1 Arrive Glasgow (-/-/D)
Arrive in Glasgow, Scotland’s largest city, which oozes an arts and culture vibe and a cosmopolitan vitality. You will spend two nights at the Grand Central Hotel situated in the heart of the city. Enjoy free time exploring the city centre at your own pace today.
In the evening, you’ll finally get to meet your fellow Spirit of Outlander travellers at our group Welcome Dinner, when you’ll also learn more of what lies in store over the coming days.
Day 2 Day trip to Outlander Sites (B/-/-)
Your first day on the road takes us to some of the fabulous Outlander film location sites in and around Glasgow, including Glasgow Cathedral which was used as the setting for L’Hopital des Anges in Series 2, Dowanhill Street, Glasgow University , John Street and George Square, which all feature in Series 3.
Day 3 Journey from Glasgow to Mallaig via Fort William (B/-/-)
Leaving the bustle of the city behind us, we will start our journey north to the wild landscapes and charming villages of the Highlands, driving along the famous banks of Loch Lomond where we’ll stop off at the historic conservation village of Luss.
The afternoon journey takes us through some of Scotland’s most spectacular scenery as we continue north through the mountains of Glencoe – so make sure you’re camera battery is well charged today, as we plan to make a few photo stops en route! You’ll hear tales of massacres and murders, Jacobites and geology as you take in the spectacular landscape created by the remains of this ancient super volcano.
We join the Jacobite Steam Train in Fort William for a scenic journey through the beautiful landscape arriving in the seaside village of Mallaig for our overnight stay.
Day 4 Over the Sea to Skye (B/-/-)
Prepare yourself for a long, but thrilling day today!
We will board the ferry from the Scottish mainland bound for the romantic Isle of Skye, passing through some stunning scenery and learning about the island’s fascinating history and geology. We’ll take in sights including the Old Man of Storr and Kilt Rock, and pay a visit to Flora MacDonald’s grave, a heroine of the last Jacobite uprising. In the afternoon we take a ferry from Skye to Harris and travel north to Lewis where we stay 3 nights at the four-star lodges in the grounds of the recently renovated historic Lews Castle.
Day 5 Touring Lewis (B/-/-)
After breakfast, we begin touring. The Outer Hebrides is a stunning archipelago scattered with fresh water lochs, miles of rich wildflower moorland and pristine white sandy beaches.
Today we will learn more about the islands’ inspirational history and heritage, and where best to start than at the Callanish Standing Stones, the prehistoric stone cross and circle formation that fired the imagination of the Disney animators when drawing up the backdrops for their blockbuster Brave.
The islands’ land-based lifestyle is best seen at Gearrannan Blackhouse Village, which serves as an historical museum with demonstrations and an exhibition showcasing Hebridean heritage.
In the afternoon we’ll explore more of the stunning scenery on these wonderful islands, before returning to Stornoway.
Day 6 Tour of Harris (B/-/-)
This morning we travel south to the Island of Harris to our first visit of the day to the Harris Tweed shop where you will learn about the ancient custom of weaving Harris Tweed. Our next stop is at the Harris Gin Distillery where you can enjoy a tour of the distillery and have the opportunity to purchase a bottle of the world renowned Harris Gin. In the afternoon we will explore Harris and you are bound to be inspired by the stunning sea views and endless skyscapes as you soak up the amazing island atmosphere. You’ll definitely spot miles of white sandy beaches and pristine turquoise seas, and you may even be lucky enough to spot some of the islands’ wildlife, which includes golden eagles.
We’ll then effortlessly ‘hop’ from Harris to Lewis and return to Lews Castle for your last night in Lewis.
Day 7 Journey to Inverness (B/-/-)
This morning you have the option to take things easy and see the sights of Stornoway at your leisure.
After lunch we’ll board the afternoon ferry back to the Scottish mainland, arriving at the pretty harbour village of Ullapool. From here we head straight to our hotel in Inverness, the capital of the Highlands where we’ll be staying for three nights.
Day 8 Day trip to Outlander Sites (B/-/-)
Following breakfast, we’re heading into the heart of the historic territories once home to the Fraser and MacKenzie clans at the time of Culloden. In deepest Fraser lands we visit Wardlaw Mausoleum, resting place of Simon ‘the Fox’ Fraser, Jamie’s grandfather, known as the ‘most devious man in Scotland’ for his intrigue and double-dealing.
Our lunch stop is at the pretty Highland village of Beauly, which featured several times in the Outlander books. Our final stop of the day is at Castle Leod (Diana Gabaldon considers it a dead ringer for the Castle Leoch she envisaged in her books), which has been the seat of the Clan MacKenzie for over 500 years, and is still a family home today, the home of the Earl of Cromartie, Chief of the Clan MacKenzie and his family.
Day 9 Day trip to Outlander Sites (B/-/-)
Today’s itinerary takes us first to Clava Cairns, one of the best preserved Bronze Age burial sites in Scotland – three 4000 year old burial cairns, each enclosed by standing stone circles. Then we move forward in time to April 1746, as our next stop is at Culloden Battlefield and Visitor Centre where we will spend some time learning of the events which took place in the lead up to and after the battle, and on the battlefield itself.
After what is bound to be an emotional morning there will be some free time in the afternoon to walk – or shop – the streets of Inverness.
Day 10 Journey to Pitlochry (B/-/D)
Today we head south, with our first stop at the Highland Folk Museum. The open air museum comprises a collection of buildings which tell how Highland people lived worked and dressed, and how they produced and cooked food from the 1700s up to 1950.
The recreated 1700s village of Baile Gean, complete with thatched cottages, was used in the Outlander episode, The Rent, which includes the infamous waulking scene.
We’ll arrive at Pitlochry in time for a late lunch. Pitlochry is a charming Highland village renowned for its whisky distilleries, brewery, hydro electric dam, theatre, restaurants and bars – and, in particular, its great shopping!
If visiting distilleries or shopping isn’t your thing, there’s an optional tour today to visit the Outlander location used for Craigh na Dun – but please don’t expect to see any standing stones, as the replicas were removed to the studio warehouse several years ago!
You will be staying overnight in Pitlochry.
Day 11 Journey to Dunblane (B/-/D)
As we continue our journey south over the next few days, you will be able to indulge in some of the most recognisable of the Outlander film location sites, starting with the 17th century Tibbermore Church, the scene of Claire and Geillis’ witch trial.
After paying a visit to Tullibardine Chapel, where Jamie and his men hide from the Redcoats in ‘Vengence is Mine’, we head for the gorgeous Drummond Castle Gardens which doubled as the gardens of the Palace of Versailles. Our last stop today is at Doune Castle, aka Castle Leoch, the home of Colum MacKenzie, chief of Outlander’s MacKenzie clan.
We stay 2 nights in the town of Dunblane
Day 12 Visit Outlander sites B/-/D)
We start our day at the French chateau-like Callendar House. The house’s Georgian kitchen is used as part of Belhurst Manor and is where the Duke of Sandringham met his end in ‘Vengence is Mine’. It’s then on to the 15th century Blackness Castle which doubles as Black Jack Randall’s Fort William headquarters, Wentworth Prison, and where Jamie receives his near-death flogging.
In the afternoon we head to the magnificent Hopetoun House, which features as the Duke of Sandringham’s home, Belhurst Manor. And located on the same estate, you will want to savour the moment as you walk up the drive and through the arched gateway towards Lallybroch
Day 13 Journey to Edinburgh (B/-/-)
Our itinerary today takes us across the Firth of Forth to the Kingdom of Fife.
Our fist visit of the day is to the time capsule that is Culross and Culross Palace, giving you a very real feeling of what a 17th and 18th century Scottish town would have looked like. The town and palace featured regularly as Cranesmuir, Geillis Duncan’s hometown, and you’ll recognise many rooms, stairways, courtyards and herb gardens as you explore this unique and historic village. You might also like to take the short walk up to West Kirk, which appears as the Black Kirk in ‘The Way Out’.
In the afternoon we arrive at the historic village of Falkland and Falkland Palace, one of Scotland’s finest Renaissance palaces. The town doubles as 1940s and 1960s Inverness in the TV series, and you’ll easily recognise Mrs Baird’s Guesthouse overlooking the fountain in the square, Farrell’s Hardware & Furniture Shop and Campbell’s Coffee Shop.
We then head for Edinburgh, one of the most beautifully architectural cities in the world. You will stay here for three nights.
Day 14 Visit to Outlander Sites (B/-/-)
Today we will visit Craigmillar Castle which was the location for Ardsmuir Prison in season 3. Then we are off to visit charming Glencorse Kirk, which was chosen as the location for Claire and Jamie’s wedding, and where you’ll be privileged to get a very personal insight into the history of the Kirk and the Outlander filming which took place there. Later in the day we visit Roslin Glen Country Park which was used in a few difference episodes.
Day 15 Visit to Outlander Sites (B/-/D)
It had to happen! It’s our final day. We start today with our Outlander-themed guided walk down the Royal Mile which extends downhill to Holyrood Palace, the Queen’s official residence in Scotland.
En route you will hear about the history of this famous street and of the shaping of the city of Edinburgh over the centuries. Be prepared for some stories to make your hair stand on end, and others which will have you laughing or even crying. You’ll also hear about Jacobite connections and, of course, we’ll be stopping off at some of the key locations used in Series 3.
The rest of the day is free, but you might like to leave some time aside to prepare yourself for your Farewell Dinner.
Edinburgh Royal Mile Walk (Optional)
Day 16 Departure (B/-/-)
Depart for Home
More about Scotland
Outside the ancient and beautiful UNESCO World heritage capital city, Edinburgh, and other urban centres like Glasgow, once home to the largest shipping industry in the world but now a lively city of art, culture, great dining and bars, the visitor is entranced by mountains glistening with the silver threads of icy rivers and waterfalls tumbling from highlands to lowlands. Here you’ll find villages with stations where you need to put your hand out to request that a train stops and then suddenly, around the next mountain corner, a landscape peppered with gleaming lochs and expansive vistas.
Scotland has some of the last significant wilderness areas left in Western Europe. Here you can see golden eagles soar above the lochs and mountains of the northern Highlands, watch minke whales off the coast of Mull and spot otters tumbling in the kelp along the shores of the Outer Hebrides.
Scotland is also an adventure playground: you can tramp the sub-arctic tundra plateau of the Cairngorms, sea kayak among the seal-haunted mystic isles of the Outer Hebrides, mountain bike on world-class trails near Scotland’s highest mountain, trek along the valley or mountain trails and balance along tightrope narrow ridges between the peaks of the great Cuillins on Skye or take a speedboat ride into the legendary white water of the Corryvreckan whirlpool.
Scotland is a land with a rich and multilayered history. A place where every corner of the landscape is steeped in the past. A deserted croft on an island shore is a testament to generations past.
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