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Glasgow Castle & palace tours

Our most recommended Glasgow Castle & palace tours

From Glasgow: Oban, Glencoe, Highland Lochs & Castles Tour

1. From Glasgow: Oban, Glencoe, Highland Lochs & Castles Tour

Explore the stunning lochs and castles of the Western Highlands on this small-group tour from Glasgow. You'll see the superb ruins of Kilchurn on Loch Awe, the bustling west coast harbor town of Oban, and the dramatic beauty of Glencoe. Depart Glasgow at 8:30 AM and travel through gorgeous Glen Fruin, driving parallel with Loch Long. You'll then cross the Highland boundary, where the scenery changes quickly and dramatically–the flat plains of the Lowlands give way to shimmering lochs, rugged mountain tops and forest-filled glens. Continue your drive over the Rest and Be Thankful mountain pass before traveling through the Arrochar Alps. You'll then arrive at the picturesque harbor town of Inveraray on the shores of Loch Fyne. From here you will drive along the shore of Scotland’s longest loch, Loch Awe, where you'll stop to take photos of Kilchurn Castle, a magnificent ruin right in the middle of Loch Awe and the former home of the Campbells of Breadalbane. You will then continue to the harbor town of Oban, gateway to the Isles, where you will eat lunch. After lunch you'll travel north along the coast around Appin, passing imposing Castle Stalker, and into Scotland's most famous valley, Glencoe. This is Scotland's largest loch and it takes its name from the mountain Ben Lomond. The last stop of the day will be in Luss, an 18th-century conservation village with old workers' cottages, built for the laborers of the estate.

From Glasgow: Oban, Glencoe & West Highland Castles Day Tour

2. From Glasgow: Oban, Glencoe & West Highland Castles Day Tour

On this tour, you will experience the shimmering lochs, scenic mountain views, and romantic and historic castles of the western highlands. From Glasgow cross the Firth of Clyde, passing Dumbarton's famous and imposing rock fortress. The first stop is the pretty conservation village of Luss, on the 'Bonny, Bonny Banks' of Loch Lomond. Here you can walk along the shore or stay to admire the village. Pass several dramatic castles and lochs as the tour climb into the Highlands. Make a stop for lunch at the fishing town of Oban. Journey on a southern route that takes you past the spectacular Kilchurn Castle, majestically situated on Loch Awe. Our final stop is Inveraray, the historic seat of the Duke of Argyll, where you can choose to either visit Inveraray Castle (April-October only) or explore the town’s Georgian houses and wide streets. Return to Glasgow via the Rest and Be Thankful pass.

Outlander Adventure 1-Day Tour from Glasgow

3. Outlander Adventure 1-Day Tour from Glasgow

Enter the world of the 'Outlander' TV series on this day trip from Glasgow aboard a climate-controlled mini-coach. Stop at the town of Falkland and Culross. Step back in time as you take in views of the castles of Midhope*, Stirling, and Blackness.  Depart from your meeting point in Glasgow and journey past Stirling Castle and the Wallace Monument to Doune Castle, or as it’s called in Outlander, Castle Leoch. This formidable building gives insight into the life of a Scottish earl in the 14th-century.  Listen to an excellent audio guide about how this castle was used as a filming location for 'Monty Python and the Holy Grail.' Heading north, your next stop is the small town of Falkland to relive the first scenes of the show, its used as the 1940’s Inverness. See if you can recognize the familiar sights such as Mrs. Baird’s Guesthouses and the Bruce Fountain. Drive to Midhope Castle* where you can stop outside and get a picture of Jamie’s lovely Lallybroch home. Make your way to Blackness Castle, an impressive castle that’s known as the ‘ship that never sailed’ because it resembles a giant stone boat.  Travel to the charming village of Culross - the 'Outlander' village that posed as the fictional village of Cranesmuir, and the home of Geillis and Arthur Duncan. Feel like you're travelling back in time as you explore the town's cobbled streets. Look carefully to spot Claire’s herb garden behind the impressive, historic Culross Palace. From here listen to stories that inspired Outlander on the drive back to Glasgow where you'll arrive around 6:30 PM.

Greenock Shore Excursion: Stirling Castle and Loch Lomond

4. Greenock Shore Excursion: Stirling Castle and Loch Lomond

Explore the majestic scenery of the Trossachs National Park and discover where the Scottish Highlands meet the Lowlands. Learn more about some of the nation's heroes at historic castles and monuments. Following a pick-up from Greenock Port, travel northeast into the Trossachs, known as “Scotland in Miniature” for the craggy hills and sparkling lochs. Discover where writers such as Sir Walter Scott found their inspiration. Continue into “Braveheart” country to see the magnificent landscapes of Stirlingshire and Stirling Castle, the latter arguably one of the most important castles in Scotland. The Old Town of Stirling is still surrounded by its 16th-century walls, built to protect Mary Queen of Scots from Henry VIII. Enjoy some free time to tour the castle and learn about the exploits of Robert the Bruce. Then enjoy some refreshments at the café, before driving into the heart of the Trossachs and the home of the folk hero Rob Roy MacGregor and his “Children of the Mist.” Go to Kilmahog to get up-close to Highland cattle. Then journey to the village of Aberfoyle just below the Highland fault line. Stop for a bite to eat before traveling through Trossachs National Park to the bonnie banks of Loch Lomond. Marvel at one of the largest lochs in Scotland and see many of its islands. Enjoy spectacular views of the surrounding mountains before the return journey through Campsie Fells to Greenock Port and your drop off. 2023 May 5th, 10th, 14th, 24th, 26th, 28th June 1st, 7th, 19th, 28th July 1st, 13th, 14th, 20th, 22nd, 23rd, 25th, 26th, 29th August 5th, 18th, 20th, 27th, 29th, 30th September 9th, 11th, 23rd October 5th

Stirling Castle, Highland Lochs & Whisky Tour from Edinburgh

5. Stirling Castle, Highland Lochs & Whisky Tour from Edinburgh

Explore Scotland’s history on this unique tour. Start your day with a visit to Stirling Castle, home to the Scottish Royals until the early 17th century. You’ll have the opportunity to tour the castle itself or stroll around Old Stirling, the ancient capital of Scotland. On your way to Loch Lomond you’ll see the famous highland cows, and pass a stunning landscape of lochs and mountains, reaching Loch Lomond at lunchtime. After lunch by the "bonnie banks," you’ll have the choice of a boat trip on the Loch or a short nature walk to a superb viewpoint over Scotland’s largest lake. You’ll finish the day at Glengoyne Distillery, situated in a wooded valley in the southern Highlands. The distillery, which takes its name from ‘Glen Guin’ or Glen of the Wild Geese, has been producing high quality single malt for nearly 200 years. You will, of course, have the opportunity to tour this beautifully located distillery and sample the delicious 10-year-old product for yourself!

Stirling Castle, Kelpies, Loch Lomond Walk & Whisky Tour

6. Stirling Castle, Kelpies, Loch Lomond Walk & Whisky Tour

Embark on a guided day tour to Stirling Castle, Kelpies, Loch Lomond, and the Glengoyne Distillery, departing from Edinburgh. Get an overview of Scottish history and culture as you explore some of the country's most famous landmarks. Depart from Edinburgh and travel first to Stirling Castle. Discover the secrets of this historic castle, which was the childhood home of Mary Queen of Scots and James VI. It is situated overlooking the River Forth, at the meeting point between Lowlands and Highlands. Visit the Royal Palace of the castle and witness lavish decor from the 1500s. Visit the last Royal Scottish building at Stirling, The Chapel Royal, and learn how Stirling castle is linked to famous names like King Robert the Bruce, Bonnie Prince Charlie, and the Jacobite uprising. From Stirling Castle, you will then visit the banks of Loch Lomond. Take a short hike on the shores and hear all about local legends along with the history, wildlife, and culture of Trossachs National Park. Learn more about the Vikings that landed and colonized this area many years ago. After hiking the banks of Loch Lomond, head to Glengoyne Distillery where you’ll get the opportunity to take a tour to learn about the whisky-making process. Discover how they create the famous “water of life” you’ll even get the chance to taste a delicious dram or two. Continue to the Kelpies sculpture in Falkirk and marvel at the almost 100ft work created by Glaswegian Andy Scott. Learn about these mythical creatures that are said to be prevalent in Scottish waters, and who can cause a lot of havoc to unsuspecting locals with their shape-shifting abilities. Finally, relax on the journey back towards Edinburgh. Be dropped off in the city center and say your farewells as you enjoy the rest of your time in Scotland.

From Glasgow: Scotland Sightseeing Tour Shore Excursion

7. From Glasgow: Scotland Sightseeing Tour Shore Excursion

Meet your guide at the meeting point at the port of Greenock (Glasgow) and depart by bus over the Clyde River and onto the southern tip of the Scottish Highlands. Enjoy narration enhanced by Scottish music and movie sound bites setting the scene for the sights you are about to see. Your first stop is at An Ceann Mor with a vantage point overlooking Loch Lomond. This recent creation fits into the landscape due to its wooden composition and offers spectacular views of Scotland's most picturesque loch. As you travel onwards, make a brief stop at The Green Welly Stop for refreshments and a little souvenir hunting. Your next stop is at Kilchurn Castle, a ruin that was originally built on an island on Loch Awe in the 15th century. A short walk across a causeway gives you access to this magnificent former home of Sir Colin Campbell that has lain in ruin over the centuries. Spend time exploring the fantastic ruins and taking photographs before heading to your next destination. Arrive at Inveraray and visit the family seat of the Duke of Argyll where you can wander the halls and visit the castle armoury. While in Inveraray, take the opportunity to sample Scottish cuisine at one of the town's delicious eateries. With your appetite sated, head to a stunning viewpoint overlooking a magnificent Scottish glen at the Rest and be Thankful mountain pass where you can capture a picture-perfect image of Scotland. The final destination before heading back to your ship is at the small village of Luss. Take time for last-minute souvenir shopping and some light refreshments as you wander around this lovely little village. Visit the church built by Sir James Colquhoun of the Clan Colquhoun where you’ll find some early medieval graves and evidence of Viking presence in the area.

Glasgow: Standing Stones & Inveraray Castle Tour with Walks

8. Glasgow: Standing Stones & Inveraray Castle Tour with Walks

Take in the beauty of the Scottish Highlands on a guided day trip to locations steeped in fascinating folklore. Admire the stunning views of the landscape as you visit some historic locations which are deeply linked to Scottish history and heritage. Start your tour from Glasgow and take in the wonderful views looking out over the River Clyde and west towards the Clyde Estuary, where fresh water and saltwater meet. On a clear day, you may even be able to see where the Vikings moored their longboats over 1300 years ago. Pass through Trossachs National Park and all its scenic splendor. From Scotland’s first National Park, travel west towards Argyll for a visit to Inveraray Castle. Admire the collection of antique weaponry, used against the Jacobite soldiers and other historic artifacts. After your first historic Castle visit, travel along the shores of Loch Fyne, the longest saltwater Loch in Scotland. Keep a watchful eye on the water as there’s a good chance you will see some seals and other marine wildlife. Next, stop at Kilmartin Glen, where there are over 350 ancient monuments spread across the valley, making this one of the most historically important locations in the whole of Scotland. Explore a large finding of cup and ring marks, dating from thousands of years back. Continue towards the historical standing stones, stone circles, and burial cairns located within the area. Discover these mysterious ancient formations, believed to be over 5000 years old. Afterward, travel to Kilchurn Castle. Explore the abandoned 15th-century castle located at the head of Loch Awe, which was once home to the large and powerful Campbell Clan of Glenorchy. Leave Kilchurn and make your way further into the Highlands towards the mountainous Trossachs region. Stop along the banks of Loch Lomond to enjoy some of the magnificent Highland scenery, before returning to Glasgow.

Glasgow: Stirling Castle, Loch Lomond Walk & Whisky Tour

9. Glasgow: Stirling Castle, Loch Lomond Walk & Whisky Tour

See the highlights of Scotland including a historic castle, the Highland Whisky Distillery, and the Scottish Highlands. Learn all about the history of the area from your local guide. After departing Glasgow, Scotland’s largest city and one that’s full of character, a great music scene, and plenty of wonderful restaurants, your guide will take you north to the historic city of Stirling. This is your chance to visit Stirling Castle, a notably prominent feature on the skyline steeped in some of the most magnificent history in the country. It’s believed to have been besieged at least 16 times and changed hands many times during the Wars of Independence. Enjoy free time to explore the castle and even join one of their scheduled tours led by the expert Castle guides. Next, your guide will whisk you over to Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park to experience the magnificent Scottish Highlands. Witness the Highland boundary fault line, the area of Scotland where the Scottish Lowlands and Highlands crashed together millions of years ago. Go for a short walk and truly experience the breathtaking Highland landscape in all its glory. Your guide will regale you with some of the wonderful histories of the area, and introduce you to the wildlife and what makes Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park such a special place. Next, it's time for the tasty part of the tour, a deliciously smooth Highland Whisky Distillery. Your guide will take you over to Glengoyne Distillery where you will want to take a tour and learn all about “uisge beatha” Gaelic for “water of life”. Hear about the entire whisky-making process and even get to delight your taste buds with a wee dram or two, and you might even want to take home a bottle for a nightcap occasionally. So, after having a wonderful day tour and experiencing a diverse range of what Scotland has to offer, your guide will wish you farewell and take you back to Glasgow for you to continue your Great Scottish Adventure. The Stirling Castle, Whisky Distillery, and Loch Lomond guided day tour may be explored in reverse.

Frequently asked questions about Glasgow

What are the best day trips and excursions from Glasgow?

The best day trips and excursions from Glasgow are:

Glencoe

Other Sightseeing Options in Glasgow

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What people are saying about Glasgow

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 519 reviews

We saw a nice selection of the varied landscapes of this beautiful county. Guide John provided insightful background and clearly knows the areas well, and he has a nice sense of humor. The route was really well chosen to show a variety of places in a relatively short time. I was especially impressed that John found alternate routes to avoid traffic snarls without cutting back on the quality of the tour while getting us back to Glasgow in a timely fashion.

This tour was so picturesque in the snow. Bobby gave us loads of information and was quite comical. He stopped to let a passenger take a particular photo which was very kind. Would thoroughly recommend this tour.

It was a really pleasant day. The guide Fraser was expectional. I enjoyed the music during the trip, it enhanced the experience and the stories he told were funny and interesting.

Fantastic day trip. We were very lucky with the weather. The landscape is spectacular and you get to see so much in the day.

Ben was our guide. He was excellent. Seriously recommend to go for this tour.