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Full-Day Trip to Loch Ness and the Scottish Highlands from Edinburgh

star-4.5666 Reviews
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Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Full-Day Trip to Loch Ness and the Scottish Highlands from Edinburgh

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Number of travelers
0 Adults1 Adult2 Adults3 Adults4 Adults5 Adults6 Adults7 Adults8 Adults9 Adults0 Seniors1 Senior2 Seniors3 Seniors4 Seniors5 Seniors6 Seniors7 Seniors8 Seniors9 Seniors0 Children1 Child2 Children3 Children4 Children5 Children6 Children7 Children8 Children9 Children
Free cancellation
Up to 24 hours in advance. Learn more
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Safety measures
icon12 hours  (Approx.)
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English and 7 more
Good for avoiding crowds

Overview

This full-day Scottish Highlands tour takes you on a scenic drive from Edinburgh to the fabled Loch Ness. The journey travels by coach across Rannoch Moor to Glen Coe and through the Great Glen to Fort Augustus, where you’re treated to a locally made picnic lunch. Take an optional boat ride on the legendary loch in search of ‘Nessie’ before the return trip over the Drumochter Pass and through the forests and rivers of Highland Perthshire, with views of the UNESCO-listed Forth Bridge.
  • Soak up the unspoiled scenery of the Great Glen and Rannoch Moor with your expert guide
  • Admire spectacular views of the Caledonian Canal, Perthshire, Glen Coe, and the Forth Bridge
  • Take an optional boat cruise on Loch Ness to catch a glimpse of the legendary monster Nessie
  • Enjoy a locally produced sandwich picnic lunch in the quaint village of Fort Augustus

Why Travelers Choose This Tour

This tour takes in the highlights of the Highlands and includes a picnic lunch with Scottish shortbread.
Saved to wishlist!
Local guide
Picnic lunch - roll, shortbread and crisps
Hotel pickup and drop-off
Food and drinks, unless specified
Optional boat cruise on Loch Ness (from £16.50 for an adult) - can be purchased at check-in.

Departure Point

60 High St, Edinburgh EH1 1TB, UK

Departure Time

8:00 AM

Return Details

Returns to original departure point
Tour the Scottish Highlands and enjoy an optional Loch Ness boat tour during this day trip, led by a knowledgeable guide who provides insightful commentary throughout the journey.

Start the excursion aboard your coach in central Edinburgh and travel north along the ramparts of Stirling Castle. Pass the Trossachs, cross Rannoch Moor and stop at Glen Coe—site of a legendary 17th-century massacre—before continuing on through the Great Glen via Fort William.

Arriving at the Highland village of Fort Augustus, situated on the banks of Loch Ness, you can opt for a leisurely walk or simply relax by the Caledonian Canal with your provided picnic lunch. Enjoy your choice of locally made sandwiches and shortbread washed down with bottled mineral water.

If you’d like, spend your free time aboard boat cruise on the loch (own expense). Go in search of the Loch Ness Monster named Nessie, a mythical creature said to inhabit these waters. The custom-built boat is equipped with underwater imaging technology, providing a fascinating view of the underwater terrain.

Afterward, re-board the coach for the return drive, passing Loch Laggan and motoring over Drumochter Pass, which connects the northern and southern Scottish Highlands. Your guide points out Perthshire and the lush forested landscapes of Big Tree Country. View the cantilever Forth Bridge, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, before your day trip concludes in Edinburgh in the evening.
Itinerary
Pass By:  
Stirling Castle
Pass the imposing ramparts of Stirling Castle and drive through the Trossachs National Park, Rob Roy country
Stop At:  
Callander
Enjoy a comfort stop in Callander, a small highland town
Duration: 30 minutes
Admission Ticket Free
Stop At:  
Glencoe
We cross the wilds of Rannoch Moor before stopping at dramatic Glencoe, the scene of the infamous massacre in 1692.
Duration: 15 minutes
Admission Ticket Free
Pass By:  
Ben Nevis
We drive through Fort William passing Ben Nevis, Britain’s highest mountain, before entering the Great Glen.
Stop At:  
Loch Ness Region
Once in Fort Augustus on the banks of Loch Ness, you have the chance to take a boat cruise on the loch, go for a walk or just relax by the Caledonian Canal in this charming Highland village.
Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
Admission Ticket Free
Pass By:  
Cairngorms National Park
We journey past shimmering Loch Laggan before climbing over the wild and lonely Drumochter Pass in the Cairngorms National Park.
Stop At:  
Pitlochry
Heading south, we enter Perthshire, a land of forests, rivers and mountains. We enjoy a stop in Pitlochry, or a similar town in the area.
Duration: 30 minutes
Admission Ticket Free
Pass By:  
Forth Bridge
Pass by the infamous Forth Bridge on our way back in to Edinburgh.
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking, unless booked within 23 hours of travel. In this case confirmation will be received as soon as possible, subject to availability
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Minimum age is 5 years
  • Near public transportation
  • Most travelers can participate
  • Not recommended for travellers with mobility difficulties
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 41 travelers
  • OPERATED BY Highland Explorer Tours Ltd
You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.
  • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
  • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
  • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
  • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.
  • This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund.

Learn more about cancellations.

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What is the policy on face masks and attendee health during Full-Day Trip to Loch Ness and the Scottish Highlands from Edinburgh?
A:The policies on face masks and attendee health are:

  • Face masks required for travelers in public areas
  • Face masks required for guides in public areas
  • Temperature checks for travelers upon arrival
See all safety measures taken by Full-Day Trip to Loch Ness and the Scottish Highlands from Edinburgh.
Q:
What is the policy on sanitization during Full-Day Trip to Loch Ness and the Scottish Highlands from Edinburgh?
A:The policies on sanitization are:

  • Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
  • Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
  • Gear/equipment sanitized between use
  • Transportation vehicles regularly sanitized
See all safety measures taken by Full-Day Trip to Loch Ness and the Scottish Highlands from Edinburgh.
Q:
What is the social distancing policy during Full-Day Trip to Loch Ness and the Scottish Highlands from Edinburgh?
A:The policies on social distancing are:

  • Social distancing enforced throughout experience
  • Contactless payments for gratuities and add-ons
See all safety measures taken by Full-Day Trip to Loch Ness and the Scottish Highlands from Edinburgh.
Q:
What measures are being taken to ensure staff health & safety during Full-Day Trip to Loch Ness and the Scottish Highlands from Edinburgh?
A:The policies on staff health & safety are:

  • Guides required to regularly wash hands
  • Regular temperature checks for staff
See all safety measures taken by Full-Day Trip to Loch Ness and the Scottish Highlands from Edinburgh.

Traveler Photos

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Traveler Tips


  • "Even though it's a long drive to Loch Ness, the beauty of the highlands and the nice (and funny) information from the guide are worth it." See review
  • "If you take the cruise, it may not offer a lot of time to walk around town and visit those cute shops." See review
  • "Despite the great Scottish weather (it's the Highlands after all), this is a great day excursion if you're looking into learning a bit about Scotland history and admire the beautiful landscapes of the Highlands!" See review

Reviews

4.5
star-4.5
666 Reviews

Reviews by Viator travelers

Showing 1-10 of 666 reviews
star-5
Lovely day out 👌Calum is a good guide, with a great sense of humour👌
Andreea_G
, Oct 2021
Lovely scenery all day round. From the Lowlands to the Highlands. Glen Coe is beautiful. Scotland is marvelous overall. Will definitely recommend and why not return 😉
star-4
Do the tour and bring a pillow for your derrière
Jerry_S
, Sep 2021
The landscape was beautiful and Calam was a very safe driver and very knowledgeable about the history of Scotland. The cruise on Loch Ness was memorable but entirely too short for the price. I think you should make it very clear that patrons will be on the bus for 75% of the tour. In addition, the seats are cramped and hard as a rock and the engine of the vehicle we were on was very noisy.
star-4
Fantastic trip with terrible music.
Brian_B
, Sep 2021
The trip was fantastic. However the "Scottish Music" was all of the "pished-party" type rather than the good-sober stuff (Annie Lennox, Bill Drummond etc)
star-5
Great Loch Ness Tour
Sue_S
, Sep 2021
Callum (driver) was super. Very friendly, well informed and gave us plenty of information. Great trip to give a good introduction to Scotland from Glencoe to Loch Ness
star-5
The driver Calum made the...
Vicky_K
, Sep 2021
The driver Calum made the experience better, so funny told us the history behind the highlands. Breathe taking views wish there wAs a maybe a walk involved but was amazing the highlands are absolutely beautiful
1 traveler found this review helpful
star-5
Brilliant trip
Geoffrey_M
, Sep 2021
Brilliant day out. Our driver Gregg was very knowledgable about Scottish history and kept us informed during the trip. Really enjoyed visiting Loch Ness and the boat trip. Good way to visit the Highlands and see the beautiful scenery. Well worth the money.
star-5
Well worth booking
Maureen_M
, Sep 2021
Our tour driver was very good he made the day long trip very interesting. We went on Wednesday 8th would highly recommend.
star-5
Highly recommended...
Teresa_G
, Sep 2021
Highly recommended experience, beautiful landscapes. Tom was a great guide, very knowledgeable and accommodating.
star-5
VIATOR IS RECOMMENDED FOR FIRST CHOICE
Randhir_s
, Aug 2021
Very exciting and memorable trip. The driver was experienced and very kind person. I can say this was my one of the best tour I had.
1 traveler found this review helpful
star-5
Amazing and well organised
Des
, Aug 2021
Amazing trip with great tour guide who couldn’t do enough for us. So knowledgeable and an exciting journey to the highlands.

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