This seven-day adventure combines Scotland's most memorable tourist destinations with a tour of the countryside in the magnificent Scottish highlands. You will start your trip by exploring Edinburgh's galleries, castles, and pubs before heading to the spectacular castles in Inverness. You'll spend two nights in Portree, where you'll visit castles and famous geological sites and tour the hiking routes before traveling to Glencoe, which is home to spectacular scenery.


  • Take a tour inside the Edinburgh Castle and walk the Royal Mile
  • Eat fresh seafood at the Isle of Skye
  • Visit the geological site featured in Sci-Fi movies at Old Man of Storr
  • Walk on the soil where the MacDonald clan was once massacred at Glencoe

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Edinburgh Edinburgh
Day 2 Explore Edinburgh Castle Edinburgh
Day 3 Stirling and Blair Castle Inverness
Day 4 Eilean Donan Castle - Isle of Skye Portree
Day 5 Northern Skye Exploration Portree
Day 6 Glencoe Glencoe
Day 7 Depart Scotland  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Edinburgh

Edinburgh's castle-like architecture
Edinburgh's castle-like architecture

Welcome to Scotland! The best way to explore Edinburgh is by foot (as the locals do). While there are many great museums and galleries to see in Edinburgh, a visit to the Scottish National Portrait Gallery is highly recommended. It is only a 10-minute walk from the center and free to enter. At the Portrait Gallery, you can head upstairs and check out the historical figures of Scotland that are depicted in its glittering friezes and evocative murals that adorn the walls and the interior of the balcony.

In the afternoon, if you're up for more exercise, climb up Arthur's Seat. This extinct volcano offers spectacular views over the city.

Day 2: Explore Edinburgh Castle

Edinburgh Castle
Edinburgh Castle

In the morning, prepare for a walk up the hill to the very impressive Edinburgh Castle where you'll get the chance to tour inside. Afterward, you can walk down the famous Royal Mile to Holyrood Palace and explore this exquisite historical building. You can also take a private tour to Rosslyn Chapel which is around 45 minutes away from Edinburgh.

In the evening, you can choose between visiting a historical Scottish pub or one of the many great restaurants Edinburgh has to offer. Since Edinburgh has more restaurants per head of the population than any other UK city, you definitely won't be short of options.

Plan your trip to Scotland
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Day 3: Stirling and Blair Castle

Stirling Castle
Stirling Castle

You will start your tour day by visiting the famous Stirling Castle. Even from afar, Stirling Castle looks imminently undefeatable and impressive. During the tour, you'll learn about the castle's interesting history and the origins of the saying, "He who holds Stirling holds Scotland." After the visit, you will travel a little further north for a tour of Blair Castle. You can also visit the lovely nearby town Pitlochry.

In the evening, you will stay at a historic hotel in Culloden.

Day 4: Eilean Donan Castle, Isle of Skye

View from the Old Man of Storr
View from the Old Man of Storr

Today, we'll head east across the country, and you'll witness how not only the scenery changes but also the customs and people. To start your day of exploration, you'll head to the most photograph-worthy castle in Scotland, Eilean Donan Castle. This famous castle has featured in many films and series including "Highlander."

After you've explored Eilean Donan Castle, you can take a stroll along the mile-long bridge to the Isle of Skye, where you'll discover spectacular views. At the Isle of Skye, you will find an abundance of lovely restaurants that range from seafood shacks with fresh catches to Michelin-starred restaurants.

Day 5: Northern Skye Exploration

The Quirang
The Quirang

This morning, if you're up to it, you can visit the Old Man of Storr. Be prepared to feel like you've been transported to another planet as you explore this impressive geological site that is often featured in sci-fi movies. Also on the Trotternish Peninsula, is the Quirang, which is a fantastic place to walk around to enjoy the surrounding natural beauty and enjoy its own, unique, otherworld feel. You can also visit Neist Point, which is famous for its spectacular views of the ocean looming below, and its lighthouse today. 

This afternoon, you can visit Dunvegan Castle. The castle has been the home of the clan chief of the MacLeods since the 13th century and has impressively restored interiors and splendid gardens. From here, you can do a short boat trip to see the local seals. Alternatively, you can request a private after-hours tour of the castle with a whisky for sundowners.

Day 6: Glencoe

Natural scenery at Glencoe
Natural scenery at Glencoe

You will have the day to explore Glencoe, which has some of the most dramatic and beautiful scenes in Scotland, as well as a rather dark history. It was here at Glencoe that members of the MacDonald clan were massacred in their sleep by their guests from Clan Campbell. The area is famous for its natural beauty, walking, and mountaineering.

In the evening, you can choose to either dine in the suite of your beautiful hotel or in a local pub.

Day 7: Depart Scotland

Haste ye back to Scotland
Haste ye back to Scotland

Your week in Scotland has come to an end. As you head toward the airport, keep your eye out for the majestic Loch Lomond.

More Great Scotland Itineraries

Looking for more inspiration for your trip to Scotland? Check out these other Scotland itineraries, with outdoor adventures, castle visits, and best-of tours to hit the highlights or explore different ways to spend a week in Scotland.


Map of Best of Scotland: Edinburgh & the Highlands - 7 Days
Map of Best of Scotland: Edinburgh & the Highlands - 7 Days