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Scottish Highlands Rail tours

Our most recommended Scottish Highlands Rail tours

From Inverness: Jacobite Steam Train and Highlands Tour

1. From Inverness: Jacobite Steam Train and Highlands Tour

Immerse yourself in the natural wonders of the Scottish Highlands and board the Jacobite Steam Train on a day trip from Inverness. Cross the Glenfinnan Viaduct for a scenic tour of Loch Ness and in the fishing town of Mallaig. Begin your journey by bus and drive along the world-famous Loch Ness, stopping for photos above the ruins of Urquhart Castle. Continue south and visit the Commando Memorial, overlooking the Nevis Range—home to the UK’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis. Next, set your sights on the Jacobite Steam Train and hop on board at Fort William. Your journey through magnificent landscapes will end in the fishing port of Mallaig, where you can try fresh seafood for lunch (at your expense) or explore the town. Take the scenic ‘Road to the Isles’ to Glenfinnan viaduct for stunning views. Admire beautiful scenery as you ride to Fort Augustus, the Caledonian Canal, and Loch Ness. Finish your tour at Falls of Foyers and Dores Beach on the banks of Loch Ness.

From Edinburgh: Magical Highlands Tour with Hogwarts Express

2. From Edinburgh: Magical Highlands Tour with Hogwarts Express

Get first-hand experiences at some of the sets in the Harry Potter film series with your guide. Travel through Scotland on a bus to these locations, and conclude your tour with a visit to Glenfinnan Visitor Center. Pass some of the key film locations from all 8 Harry Potter movies as you lose yourself in the wilderness of Rannoch Moor. Discover the volcanic glen from "The Prisoner of Azkaban" en route to Fort William, where you will board the Hogwarts Express steam train. Cross the Victorian-era Glenfinnan Viaduct and get views of Loch Shiel from the "Chamber of Secrets." See the site of the Triwizard Tournament from "The Goblet of Fire" and continue to the fishing village of Mallaig to get some time for lunch.  You will board the coach from Mallaig where we will have a stop at the Glenfinnan Visitor Center for an excellent chance to photograph the steam train returning across the viaduct before you return to Edinburgh.

From Edinburgh: 2-Day Highlands Tour with Hogwarts Express

3. From Edinburgh: 2-Day Highlands Tour with Hogwarts Express

This 2-day guided tour takes you from Edinburgh to the gateway of the Highlands at Fort William, and on a world-famous steam train ride that passes Loch Ness, Ben Nevis, and other natural wonders of Scotland. Stay overnight in Fort Augustus at a B&B. Itinerary Day 1 Travel past the Forth Railway Bridge, then take a woodland walk in the Highlands at Dunkeld. Continue through the breathtaking Drumochter Pass, skirt the stunning peaks of the Cairngorm National Park, and visit Culloden, the last stand of the Jacobites against government forces. The first day ends in Fort Augustus, a quaint highland town. Overnight at a B&B in Fort Augustus.   Day 2 Take a steam train journey back in time. The Jacobite steam train route has been rated as one of the world's great train journeys. Travel past Britain's highest mountain, deepest loch, shortest river, and westernmost train station. Cross the viaduct featured in the Harry Potter movies and pass the Glenfinnan Monument, where Bonnie Prince Charlie raised his standard at the beginning of the 1745 Jacobite rising. Have lunch in the west coast town of Mallaig, where you can taste the best of Scottish seafood. Head back to Edinburgh via Glen Coe. Visit Glen Coe, where the MacDonalds were betrayed, and then experience the beauty of Rannoch Moor and Stirlingshire en route.

Edinburgh: Isle of Skye and Loch Ness 5-Day Highlands Tour

4. Edinburgh: Isle of Skye and Loch Ness 5-Day Highlands Tour

Make the most of your time in Scotland with a 5-day tour of the best of Loch Ness and the Isle of Skye. Ride on the Fort William viaduct featured in the Harry Potter movies, sample Scotch whiskey, and sail along the waters of Loch Ness. Accommodation and breakfast are included. Day 1:Leave Edinburgh and head to the iconic Kelpies. Travel north to Stirling and the towering Wallace Monument, taking in stunning views of the Castle along the way. Enter the Highlands heading through wild Rannoch Moor and Glencoe and on to the fishing port of Oban, where you'll stay overnight. Day 2: Take the steam train from Fort William, crossing the viaduct featured in the Harry Potter movies, where a monument to Bonnie Prince Charlie’s campaign now stands. Take the ferry to Skye where you can explore striking cliffs and mountains, before driving north to your overnight destination. Stay overnight in the Isle of Skye. Day 3:Explore more of the mysterious island that's full of awe-inspiring mountains, myths, and legends before returning to the mainland to view Eilean Donan Castle and wind your way along the Great Glen to the infamous Loch Ness. Stay overnight in Inverness. Day 4:Hunt for the elusive monster with a cruise on Loch Ness before turning northward and the stunning beauty of the northwest Highlands. Take in the beautiful town of Beauly with its Priory dating back to 1230. The day ends with a visit to Culloden Battlefield, where Bonnie Prince Charlie and the Jacobites were defeated in 1746. Stay overnight in Inverness. Day 5:Leaving Inverness, visit the Highland Folk Museum to get a real taste of Highland life from the past centuries. Next, head to a local Whisky Tasting of the so-called 'Water of Life'. For the final stop of the tour, visit Dunkeld and take a walk through the quaint village. Stroll along the River Tay and see the cathedral. Return back to Edinburgh in the evening.

From Glasgow: 2-Day Loch Ness, Inverness and Highlands Tour

5. From Glasgow: 2-Day Loch Ness, Inverness and Highlands Tour

Enjoy a glorious 2-day sightseeing tour of Loch Ness in the Scottish Highlands, with comfortable bed and breakfast accommodation. Your guide will show you all the stunning historical sights such as the towering mountain of Ben Nevis, the site of the Glencoe Massacre, Glenfinnan Viaduct, and Glen Coe. Day 1 Leaving Glasgow behind, the journey north takes you to the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park and the quaint village of Luss on the western banks of Loch Lomond, best known as a haven for wildlife and stunning flowers, so keep your eyes peeled. You can wander the shore, walk past pretty cottages and do a bit of shopping here if you like. As you travel further into the Highlands, visit Glen Coe, one of the most beautiful valleys in the world. Feel the past come to life as your guide tells you about the massacre of the MacDonald clan. Then depart Glen Coe towards the Great Glen, another one of Scotland's majestic valleys which stretches 62 miles from Inverness all the way to Fort William. Fort William, the second largest town in the Highlands, lies in the shadow of Ben Nevis, Britain's tallest mountain. Your driver-guide will decide the best spot for lunch depending on your group, weather, and local events. The journey will continue west to Glenfinnan, made famous by the 'Harry Potter' films, which features the iconic Viaduct. In the summer months, you may catch a glimpse of the magical Jacobite Steam Train crossing the Viaduct. Glenfinnan is also home to the impressive Glenfinnan Monument. Surrounded by spectacular Highland scenery at the head of Loch Shiel, the monument is a striking tribute to those who fought in the Jacobite Risings. Overnight: Near Loch Ness Day 2 Explore Loch Ness, Britain's largest body of water by volume. The size and depth of the loch make it a perfect hiding place for Nessie, the famous monster. Why not take a boat tour from Urquhart Castle, a ruined castle perched on the edge of Loch Ness, or monster hunt from the shore? Then drive through Inverness, the capital of the Highlands, to visit Culloden, the last stand of the Jacobites against the British government forces. A visit to the battlefield is a poignant experience; walk the earth where the battle took place and see the headstones that mark the graves of hundreds of clansmen who gave their lives for the Jacobite cause. Travel south and enjoy the stunning scenery as you pass through the unique wilderness of the Cairngorms, Scotland's largest National Park. Its mountain range has five of the UK's highest mountains within its limits. Before returning to Edinburgh, make one last stop at a beautiful Highland town chosen by your driver-guide. You may be provided with train tickets for returns to Glasgow.

From Edinburgh: 8-Day Skye, Orkney & North Coast 500 Tour

6. From Edinburgh: 8-Day Skye, Orkney & North Coast 500 Tour

DAY1: Edinburgh-Inverness Our first stop of the day is Dunkeld in the heart of Perthshire. Then we make our way to the Highland Folk Museum, Britain's first open-aired museum. Next, we stop at one of the most somber locations in Scotland, Culloden Battlefield, setting for the final Jacobite Uprising of 1746. Visit one of the inspirations behind Outlander - the Clava Cairns - known for being a bronze age burial ground. Arrive in Inverness in the evening for an overnight stay. DAY2: Inverness-Orkney The incredibly beautiful Dunrobin Castle traces its origins back to the 13th century, recognised as one of Britain's oldest inhabited houses. Experience the rugged charm of Scotland’s very own “route 66”. We head to Orkney by ferry for our last leg of the day. Upon arrival your guide drives you to Kirkwall, where you settle in for the night. DAY3: Orkney The breathtaking Italian Chapel was built during WWII using two Nissen huts. The Ring of Brodgar is a vast and mysterious archaeological gem, and the most iconic site in the Heart of Neolithic Orkney. Visit Skara Brae, an incredibly well-preserved neolithic village consisting of 10 houses. Next, we visit Stromness, the second largest settlement in Orkney. We spend the afternoon exploring Orkney. DAY4: Orkney-Ullapool We hop on a ferry back to the mainland. We continue our journey along the North Coast 500. Smoo Cave is one of the top natural attractions on the North Coast 500 and epic example of Scottish geology. We make a stop in Durness to visit Sango Sands beach. Marvel at the scenery and mild-blowing geology of the North-West Highlands with a walk through Knockan Crag Nature Reserve. DAY5: Ullapool-Portree Our first stop of the day is at Corrieshalloch Gorge. Next we stop at the most photographed castle in Scotland, Eilean Donan which has links to both clans MacKenzie and MacRae. We arrive in Skye for lunch, visiting Portree and the Old Man of Storr. Next we stop to admire Kilt Rock. Marvel at the breathtaking Mealt Waterfall. DAY6: Portree-Oban We arrive in Mallaig to board the Jacobite Steam Train. The West Highland Line between Mallaig and Ft. William is famous for its beautiful scenery and dreamy sands of the west coast. Glencoe is dominated by majestic mountains which completely contrast the vast and flat expanse of its neighbouring Rannoch Moor. Your guide will take you through Glencoe’s sad history; you will feel like you have been transported through time. DAY7: Oban-Oban Today is your free day to explore the charming fishing village of Oban! DAY8: Oban-Edinburgh We visit St. Conan’s Kirk sits at the heart of Dalmally’s local community. Kilchurn Castle was built in the mid-1400s by Sir Colin Campbell, the 1st Lord of Glenorchy, and sits dramatically on a rocky peninsula. We make a stop at the impressive Falls of Dochart which run through Killin. Our final stop is in Falkirk to see the Kelpies; a fantastic equine landmark. Our tour concludes in Edinburgh after an unforgettable 8 days.

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What people are saying about Scottish Highlands

Overall rating

4.9 / 5

based on 32 reviews

Have a great day in the Highlands! This was one of the highlights of our stay in Edinburgh. Nice, comfortable bus, very nice guide (thanks Willy!) And fun for everyone, even if you are not familiar with Harry Potter. Nice, various stops along the way and beautiful nature along the way.

I dreamed of it for a long time and this day was great! The guide was very nice with good advice. The train ride is magical! Too bad we had mist in the morning and at the end of the day we couldn't see the castle and the waterfall well. But what a day!

Inspiring, relaxing, enjoyable at that was just Willy the driver, we all loved the tour will return with friends and happy to book again another trip with your selves to loch Ness

Very nice tour with many stops. Good guide and driver. Train travel is recommended

It was a well structured trip. Very interesting everyday.