Touring Scotland

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Last Post This thread is marked as being about Scotland
1. Posted by abigails (Budding Member 2 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Can someone help.

Planning to tour Scotland from mid-January and looking for tips on the best way to do it. Ideally not looking to drive co it kinda scares me, so any pointers, or info would be greatly appreciated.


2. Posted by georgeboyd (Budding Member 12 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!


Good day to you from Inverness in the Scottish highlands.

Abigail, we welcome everyone to our country, but Scotland in January and February? You are very brave! It can be quite cold, with snow, sleet and travelling interruptions.

Perhaps for that reason you should not over-plan your visit; the advantage is two fold – first, you can change plans if the weather is really bad (eg, go shopping or indoors to museums, castles, etc) and secondly, you will not have too much difficulty with accommodation at that time of the year, so advance booking will not be essential unless you want somewhere specific and special.

If the weather is fine, driving is okay, but I can understand your concerns and if you wish public transport, that’s fine. Rail services are thinner on the ground away from the Edinburgh-Glasgow area but you can check them all out at:


Buses travel widely and form a good service – much better than USA and totally and utterly safe. Details at;

Get back with any specific issue, but my advice again is not to venture too far into the north and north-west, where bad weather could interrupt your plans (you don’t want to be stuck in Ullapool on the Friday when you flight home is the Saturday!) or, at best, become several days of riving rain.

I don’t want to over-stress the weather – we have great days and with global climate change we are getting less and less cold and snow, but it’s the unpredictability of it which can be a nuisance for travellers like yourself.

Kindest regards



3. Posted by bob flinn (Full Member 173 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Hi Abigail,
George has covered the key issues of how welcome you will be and to be prepared of the infinite changes to the weather even on a daily basis, there is an old story on how we do weather forecasting, if you can see the mountains it is going to rain, if you can't see them it is raining or snowing.....

To help with your planning request there are a number of web sites that have been around for some time, they will provide a source of information of what is on, where to go and how to get there; the feedback I get is good although most of their guidance is understandably for the summer season.

Do ask local people for advice and information they will be really happy to help.
Whatever you decide I am sure that you will want to come back again and see the countryside in all it's glory.
If you feel I can help further please do get back to me.
Best wishes
Bob Flinn

4. Posted by coldwarspy (Travel Guru 1108 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

ahh, I pity anyone who is forced, like myself, to use First Scotrail. But I guess its the best of your options.

Depends where you wish to go. Im heading to Shetland in January and have found the cheapest and easiest route is to fly.

But most likely you will be heading to the Highlands. My flatmate runs tours north to Inverness overnight - guided and well managed with stop overs around the west coast. Might consider something like that?

5. Posted by scotsman (Respected Member 128 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

There's a company called MacBackpackers, based in Edinburgh, that can whizz you around the country in exchange for some pennies! Check them out


6. Posted by Oz2Asia (Budding Member 14 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

I am roadtripping it to Scotland, leaving 17th Jan from Bristol, UK, if you wanna hitch a ride. I already have one other passenger. Let me know what you think