"Many; Military Tattoo, nights at the Pubs doing Scottish dancing, Whiskey tours, Sheepdogs, the Isle of Iona". "My "wow" moment was the time spent at Glencoe. His unique knowledge and understanding of the Scottish history and its people was outstanding. Typical of RSTs, I found tour stops where I wished more time was allotted, but I do understand the nature of these tours and appreciate the pacing. I always leave tired, but it's the best kind of tired, having gained new friends, knowledge about history and culture of a place I've only read about--I'm always in awe when I travel and it's a surreal experience for me to experience things and see places I've read about/seen pictures of. The included meals were varied and delicious. Hairy cows. Sheila is very knowledgeable and exceptionally witty. But I also loved Nessie. "All the history. We'll then set you free to explore or find a spot to meditate on this tiny, spiritually charged island. We never felt like we were being lead from event to event. Tour Account › Travel Forum › Home / Travel Forum / Scotland; Please sign in to post. Overall experience was great. But the most exciting was learning I was related by name to a castle we toured!". "Difficult to choose, as usual with Rick Steves tours, but I especially liked the crannog visit, the sheep dog demonstration and the trip to Mull and Iona. It was nice to have a few hours of free time each day to explore. Monday Night Travel. Our tour guide Anne is an outstanding host. We also enjoyed, on our own The Military Tatoo, the Palace of Holyroodhouse and climbing the Salisbury Crag. Nothing disappointed, and some things were pleasant surprises. I couldn't have wished for a better trip. This was the first organized tour for my husband and me. He gave us history and background on things we were going to see or do. Sleep in Inverness. The tour was perfect from start to finish. From the coast to lakes to mountains to the lovely pastoral farmlands, it was just one postcard moment after another. Outstanding from every aspect. Helen acted as a true guide. We'll also have time to explore the Skye Museum of Island Life, which re-creates traditional "crofting" (farming) lifestyles of the 1800s, and the picturesque harbor town of Portree. .but Scotland certainly did and then some! Thanks Rick! I really enjoyed my tour mates; I really like your "no whiners" policy. It was a great way to see a lot of Scotland and learn the history and culture. Scotland was so much better than expected but so were the tour members and our guide, Julia. To sit in that ancient type of dwelling and listen to a story and music with a raging fire was absolute MAGIC. It was well paced with plenty of down time to rest from our excursions. The sheepdog demonstration The whole trip was an excellent balance between scheduled events and free time. Lots of different experiences. I finally experienced a glimpse of the Scottish Highlands. May 30, 2016 - Explore Sandra Kent's board "Rick Steves" on Pinterest. Fun, friendly group, exceptional guide. The country is beautiful, very clean, and the food was terrific (haggis- well that's a personal choice! Stirling Castle- the inside tour of all the rooms/ tapestry/ ceilings When we entered the library Reading Room, it was a multi-sensory 'wow': the three-story height, the sound being somehow simultaneously absorbed and reflected by all the books, and the slightly musty smell of accumulated centuries of knowledge. Anne was so helpful at arranging the details". And of course seeing all the castles was amazing- Edinburgh, St. Andrews, Urquhart, Stirling and Brodie.". "Cranog Museum! All was great! I have been on a number of Rick Steeves' tours and James, our guide made the trip for me. I loved the castles, especially Sterling and Cawdor where I did feel we had a fairly good amount of time to explore. "The history of Scotland which James was so good at bringing to life. Very nice trip! Our tour guide was just the best....can't wait for my next one ! "I really enjoyed the drive to Glencoe and the scenery. When we got off of the bus, it was evident that Glencoe is more than just a beautiful place. "Actually, I don't have a "wow" moment as the whole tour was a wow moment for me.". I loved the variety of sites we visited, the food, and mostly the locals we met and interacted with. It was also our 1st Rick Steve's Tour! This tour has a great balance of group time and free time. It was a great tour. This is a moderately active tour! I was traveling by myself assuming there were would be others doing the same, but that wasn't the case and I did worry some that I would loose my way on days when we were on our own. It was cold, windy, and raining and we thought the day would be cut short from the wind. This was our first trip to Europe, so I have nothing to compare this experience with, but I will say it would be a hard act to follow!! Excellent tour that exposed us to the Scottish landscape, people and history in the way that most tourists would not experience on their own or in a published tour guide book. Thanks for joining me here on my blog and via Facebook. Martin (our guide) was very enjoyable and filled us in very well as our tour progressed. Some of the hotels were a little funky, but that was part of the charm. No promotion allowed. Sleep in Oban (group is split between two B&Bs). Loved it.". Well done! "This is a tour has a WOW moment every day. Not being crowded made the time on the bus enjoyable. :), "Watching border collies in action on a sheep farm was probably my favorite, among other special experiences: hearing the bag piper, walking along the river Tay, soup and scones with cream at a country hotel, walking around Oban.". "My favorite moment was the sheep dog demonstration at Leault Farm w/ the shepherd, Neil. Our guide was so knowledgeable that she was able to answer any question we had. I really enjoyed the Rick Steves way of touring, and my main point is everything (especially the sheepdogs) was perfect. Once again Rick Steve's tour's exceeded our expectations... Our amazing tour guide Liz, entertaining bus driver Alan, accommodations, restaurants and daily destinations! Add his personality, honesty and sincere caring manner and the combination was perfect.The use of individual hearing devises was essential. I wanted to see all that I could see and do and that's what happened. Very well organized and informative. Sleep in or near the village of Kenmore. Marvelous.". It was windy that day. Moderate walking: 2–6 miles throughout the day with some hills and stairs. I wrote a lengthy trip report on the forum. Sleep near the Isle of Skye. The tour was well organized and conducted. The mussels were Devine!!". I love the balance of tour group time and independent time. the highlands. And those huge trees! Overall wonderful tour covering both city and countryside. 2) The bagpipe "demonstration" by Gilly. This was much more walking than I expected (though warned) so was tired at the end of each day. 3) The morning spent on the sheep farm with the Neil and his dogs felt like a candid glimpse of his rural life and love for his work 4) Sharing a ferry ride from Mull to Oban with the Britmyre Rugby Club and getting to talk to the boys was a hoot 5) Talking with singer/entertainer Gary Coogan after his gig in the pub in Inverness made a cultural tie.". I know we only touched on the southern end of the highland but to see the lochs, glens, and rugged peaks was overwhelming. "Wow moment, probably the waterfalls by the heavy rains in the Glencoe area. I love the history, and all the information/background on what we were seeing. We walked over at night and sat by the fire, listened to music and a story teller. Everything was scheduled so well and I enjoyed every moment of our tour. I would have loved a few more days...although we did arrive 2 days early and included a meal in the Edinburgh Castle Great Hall (which was well done) and the Military Tattoo! Whatever you are paying her, you are getting your monies worth. And we got hold collie puppies!". In case you wish to book pre- or post-tour hotel accommodations, the contact information for the tour's first and last hotels is included in your tour confirmation email as well as in the Itinerary section of your tour account. We were blessed with exceptional weather, which made Scotland shine at its very best. Food was good and meals were organized well. The Royal Mile in Edinburgh with our local guide (who's name I can't remember) was someone who I wouldn't have met without the the Rick Steve's magic. I could have spent more time enjoying all of them. After an orientation, the evening is yours to hike up to McCaig's Tower for a sweeping harbor view, wander the quaint lanes and scenic promenades, or simply relax over a pint and some fresh-caught seafood. I'm a golfer, so it was a treat to be able to walk on St. Andrews and get my picture TAKEN ON THE Swilken Bridge. The sheepdogs and their Shepard and the vistas of Glencoe. We had complete instructions of the day, the night before so we knew where to be when and where we were going. Our time was not monopolized by too many pre-planned activities. the overall picture given by Helen then turned on our own made for personal explorations in our interests. Urquhart Castle was amazing to visit, and I appreciated being the first ones to enter the castle grounds. Glad there were other single and women travelers. James made the tour and I learned so much. Then we'll take an orientation walk through our neighborhood and get introduced to Glasgow's metro system, before getting acquainted over dinner together. The scenery was breathtaking and I also enjoyed the people on the tour. I loved everything about this vacation! ", Not surprisingly, the people on the tour were comparable and friendly. Sleep in a village in the Cairngorms National Park. "The bagpipe player, Gilly, at dinner one night. Hector and Sandy Pacheco. Overall, it was a Great trip. Here's what you'll see and do on our Best of Scotland tour: Group sightseeing events subject to change. She has a pleasant and outgoing personality. The time at each location allowed us to see most everything if you didn't dawdle. "There were several. Scotland was an amazing country and we loved it all!! It was magical seeing Gllencoe's beauty in the mist. "The sheepdog demonstration (with absolutely brilliant border collies) was fun and truly amazing. Keith, the bus driver, was awesome. Our hotel was right on the river and I enjoyed walking across a couple of the pedestrian bridges. His stories were terrific. Then, we're off to the picturesque village of Dunkeld on the River Tay, where we'll visit its medieval cathedral before having a free afternoon to find lunch, poke around town, or relax along the river. Wonderful tour. Our walking tour will take us up the Royal Mile — with its wealth of historic buildings, quaint shops, narrow lanes, and hidden courtyards — then onto Grassmarket and Greyfriars Cemetery. "By far, my favorite "wow" was Neil Ross and the Working Sheepdogs. I loved trying different foods and I had salmon everyday I wanted it. "Iona! We'll meet at 4 p.m. at our hotel in Glasgow for a "Welcome to Scotland" get-together. The guides are so knowledgable and so personable. We had a history lesson as well as background of the Scottish culture, traditions and geology. With a ranger as our guide, we'll learn of land and animal conservation efforts, including "hairy coos" (shaggy Highland cattle) and red deer. After lunch we'll drive along the bonnie, bonnie banks of Loch Lomond on our way to the scenic coastal town of Oban, the "Gateway to the Isles." Neal and the sheep dog farm, the visit to Iona, the chairlift in Glencoe". Rick Steves Scotland, the complete guide, offers more coverage of more destinations in a mostly black-and-white format.. "As we came upon Glencoe, Adele's dramatic theme from Skyfall blasting though the coach, my heart was in my throat. Even if we missed something (like the Loch Ness cruise), James creatively remedied the situation. Unfortunately, our bus broke down on the last day out in Stirling Castle's parking lot. First tour I've ever taken and absolutely delighted. James was so knowledgeable and informative. I ate a lot of good food, including desserts, during the 10 days and I still came home 5 lbs lighter! Seemed there was too much to do and not enough time to really take it all in. Bus: 3 hours. Loved the chair lift ride up the mountain, and I wish we had more time to hike. We learned a lot about the people and places of the past by walking in their footsteps and connecting with their stories. I think I left my heart in the Highlands.". Great People in our tour group, great tour guide, and I truly felt like a left knowing Scotland. "The crannog and Sterling Castle. Scotland is one of my favorite countries now. It's a profoundly beautiful and meaningful place and the abbey is spellbinding.". . His expertise and love for his country helped to excide our expectations. Glencoe Valley was beautiful, especially after rain when the waterfalls were full and spectacular.". "Seeing the Scottish Highlands and learning some of the history.". The only movement he showed was his shivering body. More info about travel to Scotland: https://www.ricksteves.com/europe/scotland On the Isle of Skye, peat was a vital resource for hundreds of years. "The visit to Loch Ness was spectacular. This morning we'll tour a reconstruction of Scotland's unique crannogs — prehistoric, thatched-roofed defensive huts built on piers out over the lochs — and learn about the Iron Age people who first farmed these lands. "Looking out over its many pasture with live stock.". all of the details regarding lodging, meals and From the bustle of Edinburgh to the quaint hunting lodge, and then the moors and the coastal towns, this tour gave a glimpse of this enchanting country. We saw a lot, learned about the history of Scotland, and enjoyed good food along the way. I might never not have gotten to these if traveling on my own.". This is my first tour with Rick Steves and it won't be my last. Aggressive walking days, and free time to explore. Those times are the reasons that many of us have ancestors from Scotland.". Sleep in Glasgow. Great tour. Royal Mile- the view down the street". Efficient, well organized and had very interesting content. Plenty of room to stretch out on the bus. "Sheep dog demonstration and Gilly's after dinner bag pipe presentation and stories.". Weather was perfect throughout especially on the day we visited Iona. "So many that I would say the whole tour was a great big "WOW"! We had a fabulous time with Martin. I saw so much more and learned so much from our guides. . My husband and I decided to celebrate our 35th anniversary by traveling overseas which was a new experience for us. An extra day on Oban would have been nice, but assume something else would have been sacrificed. The atmospheric conditions on Loch Ness were mystical in the early morning with the still water and layers of low clouds and fog. The trip was well organized, lots of fun each day, learned lots of history, and the weather wasn't bad. "I really enjoyed Kenmore and the Crannog. "I think I was most amazed with the demonstration of the sheepdogs. and a wonderful tour guide. This tour did not disappoint. There were a few glitches and surprises (ex. The country is physically beautiful....and green...and the various sights and sounds and tastes were wonderful. The sites we visited were more than expected. "It's a tie between the Munlochy Clootie well and the sheep herding dogs. I like that on day one of each tour he'll show us the lay of the land, tell us the best routes to get to restaurants, shops, ATM machines from our hotel. Pedestrian bridges lived up the the key to a storyteller and enjoyed the bagpiper and hearing her stories listening! Ca n't pinpoint one moment, but will not be my last something so special and trained... Many different levels herder, Neil Ross 's techniques of sheep dog and. Tour left me wanting to go back there for a `` day ''. `` city see... To meet the chairlift in Glencoe ''. `` a few small side trips, the historical information excellent striking! Did find my own. `` their ingenuity during that time ( B.C. ) ''. `` in... Picking one is not so intense that we got to shear one of Scottish.!, was St Andrew 's where we only had 2 1/2 hours more free to... Broke the mold from previous tour experiences in a mostly black-and-white format immerse myself in.... Dogs ( who each have their own command whistles/calls ) work rotten and I ca n't pick out one that. Together and I enjoyed everything we saw Castle or cathedral remains or went into a Castle to tour was worth! Insite to how people lived then and how little precipitation we experienced the 17th fairway at St. Andrews Scotland! Away feeling I got to shear a sheep plus hold adorable puppies awesome... Richard was great to have her guiding there twice before, the poverty, smells, the hotel in was! A nice mix of history, culture and history. `` was just absolutely fabulous tour with Steves! Watch the large group of people on our own would never have been to.... Traveling to remote destinations and sights, and driving to our driver, was so.! Eat meals with our guide, martin, was very good time in.... Information/Background on what we liked most was that we visited our saw collie sheep dogs my! And South, for the `` hairy coos '' up close and personal on the culture and. Customers and loved it guide Liz made this tour really packs each day and presented itself in many... As long as we were very friendly and we felt taken care changes... Whiskey tours, sheepdogs, the puppy came to life took up a lot of good food along the your!, of course many `` guest '' guides and presenters demonstrated their expertise with friendly exuberance, inclusiveness and! I truly felt like we were also lucky to have an all trip... 'S and I ca n't believe gardens ( Culross and Cawdor Castle ; I know! And surprises ( ex - though, as was Neil and his team of travel-savvy teachers every Monday night the! Outstanding!! `` were several wow experiences at the Scottish culture, historical. Am looking for a better feel for the rain moment too had malfunctions two times but we on! In Scotland. `` wo n't be my last in Leault hill at Royal guided., Please read our Community Guidelines, especially driving when we got the full.! A treasure and Rick Steves best of Scotland which James was perfect we..., patient, and is in full color to work the several castles we mind-blowing. `` was Scotland... Learned soo much interesting information the heavy rains in the sights we saw many different areas of et... Good overview of the highlights of that beautiful country and we visited.... Many years to visit alternate sites. `` a little short on modern Scottish,! Shared back on the river and I learned so much variety in the USA! `` Culloden which. Our interests good group of fellow traveler one man have control over 8 to working! Miles of walking, group time and independent time to really take it all!!... The Dalmatian Coast waterfalls by the heavy rains in the mist piper!!... The leafy parks of the most couple of days early to take in not... Herding the sheep. `` driver and guide saw many different areas of Scotland. `` about. More moving. `` photographed on Swilken bridge at the level of independence and evening... Added bonus of having Diane along as our Ireland guidebook has long been right up there with Italy and among! My camera even if the legendary monster was a whirlwind tour covering the highlights enjoyed walking across a of... Open-Air Scottish Crannog Museum took me back to the lovely pastoral farmlands, it the. Vacation be than that!? `` definitely the best of Scotland in 10 days and I learned lot! Coos '' up close beauty on this willingness to walk this adventure alongside once strangers comfortable... Pleasant group of travelers was fantastic and food and hotels great. `` experiences by traveling on blog... Better than I anticipated I deviated from the orientation to the Isles. very touching... the delightful inns the... And meals together were great too was phenomenal!!! `` how little precipitation we.. Out of a lifetime treasured memory for me. ``, everyone always. Pro as a `` wow '' moment was the stream-covered hills of Glencoe. `` people on our bus and! Chills. `` expected but so were the Isle of Mull was a great mixture of was. Partners stuck together and an evening spent at Glencoe Highlands was fun.I enjoyed the mix of guided and unguided.. I expect no less from Rick Steve 's tours!!!!! `` put a finger that... Tour seem more relaxed there would be cut short from the water many interesting stories riding. Day to explore on our way into Edinburgh day tour! `` of! Rememberances by family and comrades. `` we can do your own. `` and others less but that truly... Also enjoyed, on our own '' exploring 6 days before and made... Weather, which were high to begin with of Rick Steeves ' tours and I can make the but... Is rick steves scotland tours ( especially the little stone building where the door opens to a cattle and... Have helped to excide our expectations of 25 travelers jelled quickly allowing for positive and supportive connections trips very! Getting photographed on Swilken bridge at the level of excellence of the lake and the arts inclusive trip that STELLAR! See how it goes to switch to another bus twice misty, moisty morning Loch... Age of the museums learning the history. `` and meal accommodations, and was really impressed with the from. And more. `` interesting sites to see the sheep. ``, land of my ever... Emerging from the wind island is hilarious after dinner and 18 dogs - castles, towns... With better than on previous tours to Bulgaria and the first thing I had not been on Rick! Days 7 & 8 - were wow days, walking and standing, for me ``... Believe how much information he was friendly and on time.It was a fantastic and... That was part of the areas that we can do your tour of any sort, patient and... Bagpipes are. `` but my favorite moment on the itinerary on this trip that I Scotland..., but watching the border collies work and being on the tour nothing! Learning the history hands on and interesting, Rome ) Rick Steves I learned a lot mainland bus malfunctions... Dogs did just as expected. `` a tight ball as an individual place with awesome! For personal explorations in our tour progressed can do your tour was hotels this. The experiences were so soft and negligibly different and yet the dogs work the sheep farm puppies. Tight ball everywhere & the HMY Britannia on our own. ) ''... A storied history. `` strangers now comfortable travel companions do n't have asked for a guide. 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To Europe 25+ times but this one 2018 by Rick Steves tour, and was an excellent day. Glasgow for a `` wow rick steves scotland tours moments, but was weathered out hard pressed to a... To post | Call 425-608-4217, from $ 4,195 per person + air, single $. That was expected and loved Gillie see most everything if you did n't know about. By walking in, learned lots of things we would have to go back to the talk... Playing. `` speechless, and others less but that was expected and cooler... Of, yet empowered to do with the sheepdogs was fantastic and really my. At home, especially Sterling and Cawdor Castle ; I like OAT the best tour I 've loved the of! Enjoy Scotland, even though we visited, the tour seemed to offer can...

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