Day 8 - Three Isles Tour
It's an early start this morning as you leave the mainland behind to visit 3 of Scotland’s picturesque Isles in the Inner Hebrides. Take the ferry across to the Isle of Mull enjoying the views of the coastline along the way. Once you arrive on Mull enjoy a scenic coach tour across the island via Glen More taking in the landscape as you go. Your destination is Fionnphort where you’ll board the ferry to take you to the Isle of Staffa, possibly the highlight of the tour. The contrast with Mull couldn’t be more obvious as you near the small island. You might first spot the many seabirds that live on the isle's cliffs or it might be the hexagonal columns that form the cliffs of the isle. Similar to those found on the Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland, the columns were formed through volcanic activity and the subsequent cooling of the rock. The columns are a stunning sight to behold and culminate in the unique Fingal’s Cave, a 70m high cavern, the walls of which are formed from the hexagonal columns.
After being amazed by Staffa, the 3rd isle you’ll visit is the Isle of Iona, another contrast from Mull despite only being a short hop over the water from its larger neighbour. Once you land on Iona you’ll visit the Isle’s Abbey, which dates back to medieval times, as well as Reilig Oran - the burial place of kings - an ancient burial ground. Then it's time to return back to Mull and onto the mainland after a long but enjoyable day.
Day 9 - Free day to enjoy at your leisure
After a busy day yesterday, spend a relaxing day enjoying the view out over the loch. Fort William is close by if you’d like to do some shopping or perhaps you’ll want to return to Glencoe to have a second chance to admire its beauty.
Day 10 - Ben Nevis and Glenfinnan
Travel by coach along the shore of Loch Eil today towards Fort William and Britain's tallest mountain Ben Nevis. You won’t set foot on the mountain itself, it's a long way to the top! Instead, we’re including a trip on the Nevis Gondola, an enclosed cable car that whisks you up the nearby mountain of Aonach Mor. Once at the top you can enjoy views across to Ben Nevis and out across the Scottish countryside. Head outside of the gondola station to walk across the mountain top or enjoy the views from inside the cafe. Afterwards we take you further along Loch Eil to Neptune’s Staircase, a series of 7 locks that takes the boats and barges down from the Caledonian Canal to the loch.
Then it's onto Glenfinnan as you enjoy the views along the edge of the loch. Glenfinnan is famous for the curving viaduct which carries trains across the valley and was featured in the Harry Potter films with the Hogwarts express passing over. A few minutes' walk takes you right up to the viaduct to enjoy a close up view of this feat of engineering. Turning round from the views of the viaduct your eye will be drawn to the views down to picturesque Loch Shiel and the Glenfinnan monument, erected in tribute to the Jacobite clansmen who fought for Bonnie Prince Charlie. The nearby visitor centre explains the story of the prince and the battle, giving you an insight into one of Scotland's most famous sons.
Day 11 - Onto your next site
Travel further north across Scotland towards Inverness and Culloden Moor Club Campsite. Be sure to take the A82 towards Inverness as it follows the shore of Loch Ness, giving you a chance to keep an eye out for the infamous ‘Nessie’.