The number 1 weekend tour to Scotland from London and South East England
The best train times - giving you more time in Scotland
The best guides - many years of experience and knowledge
The best value central accommodation
More sightseeing options than all other weekend tours to Edinburgh
Extra - enjoy Edinburgh's nightlife with our guides
Hear the history of Holyrood Palace and the story of Mary Queen of Scots, walk along the Royal Mile, see Edinburgh Castle and the new Scottish Parliament building, experience the breathtaking scenery of the Scottish Highlands*and see if you can spot the mysterious Loch Ness*Monster.
* Highlands and Loch Ness day trip
Edinburgh is less than 5 hours away by high speed train from London. This tour gives you the chance to see Scotland's capital and even the Scottish Highlands and Loch Ness - all in a weekend. Feedback from our clients for this tour has been nothing short of outstanding. We have also noticed than many of the people who travel to Edinburgh with us, book because the tour was recommended by their friends. We promise that you will not be disappointed.
On arrival in Edinburgh the day begins with a two hour fully guided coach tour. Discover the adventure and misfortune of Scotland's tragic queen, Mary Queen of Scots, as we start our tour at Holyrood Palace. This 900 Year old Place was built on orders of King David after an encounter with mythical white Stag, and remains today as the official residence of the British monarchy in Scotland. After a brief stop at the Place it's on to one of Edinburgh's Highest points in Holyrood Park before continuing our tourof the "Old Town". The tour will include some of the cities most famous landmarks including Edinburgh Castle, National Museum of Scotland, Grassmarket, Greyfriars Bobby and the Elephant House coffe house where J.K. Rowling First penned Harry Potter.
You may wish to join us for some casual drinks close to your hotel in the evening - we promise you will enjoy our evenings just as much as the sightseeing! Coming away on a tour like this is also a great way of meeting people from all over the world.
Optional Ghosts & Gouls evening tour - 8pm - A spine tingling evening with ghoulish tales of torture and witchcraft as you learn of Edinburgh's ghostly past! The guided tour takes place in medieval closes and haunted Blair Street Underground vaults. Included in the tour is a shot od Dewar's super Scotch Whisky to keep you warm on this chilling tour!
If you have chosen our upgrade option to the Scottish Highlands and Loch Ness prepare to see some amazing scenery, with entry included to the stunning Urquhart Castle on the banks of Loch Ness (see image on right). We operate a full day out into Scotland’s wild and rugged landscape leaving city life far behind as we head into the mountains!
The coach will collect you from your accommodation and we head along the Forth Valley towards Stirling, entering William Wallace (Braveheart) country. We pass the famous battle site of Bannockburn (1314) then onto the land of Braveheart. Our guide will point out Stirling Castle and the National Wallace Monument where we will hear of his famous victory over the English at Stirling Bridge in 1297.
We follow the River Teith to Callander and the Highland Boundry Fault, rising up into the mountains to the land of Rob Roy. Entering the Trossachs National Park we pass the still waters of Loch Lubnaig, the crooked loch. Climbing even higher above Loch Earn towards Crianlarich we find ourselves on the windswept isolated desolate Rannoch Moor with nothing but marsh grass and distant mountains as far as the eye can see. After crossing one of Europe’s most sparsely populated areas we come across Glen Coe, the ‘weeping glen’ and learn of the bloody fate of the MacDonald clan at the hands of their bitter enemies, the Campbells.
Next, descend to the coast, to sea lochs with salt water and fishing boats and on to Fort William and Spean Bridge with a stop for lunch and a chance to buy souvenirs. We now enter the Great Glen and follow the Caledonian Canal in the shadow of Ben Nevis, Britain’s highest mountain. The huge fault line of the Great Glen is filled with deep lochs such as Loch Lochy, Loch Oich and the most famous of all, Loch Ness. We follow the banks of this huge body of water looking for a glimpse of the famous monster as your guide tells you tales of sightings and encounters of this elusive beast. Fact or fiction? You decide.
Next stop at historic Urquhart Castle on the banks of Loch Ness with entry included and time to explore. After the Castle we continue to our northernmost point, Inverness the Capital of the Highlands before turning south through the Cairngorms and our return to Edinburgh.
It is possible to have plenty of free time on this day or if you wish to learn more about Scotland, you can choose our optional upgrade tour on day three
Whisky Tasting upgrade - £20 A transfer and tour to Glenkinchie whisky distillery, the closest to Edinburgh.
Make sure you get the most out of the fantastic Scottish capital before returning to England late afternoon. Edinburgh is a city full of museums, galleries, traditional gift shops, Castles, cathedrals and more. Mid afternoon the coach will collect you from your accommodation and transfer you to the train station for the return journey to London.
City Centre Accommodation Options
All accommodation on this tour is based on staying in a centrally located traditional Scottish family run hotel/guest house in rooms with private shower, toilet, television and tea/coffee making facilities. Properties featured on this web page are with 20 minutes walking time of Princes Street.
Standard Package includes value Bed & Breakfast - Caravel Guest House (or similar) Guest House/small hotel - Bed & Continental Style Breakfast
Traditional family run accommodation close to the centre of Edinburgh. Our value accommodation offers single, twin, double and multi bedded room options. The basic price includes multi bedded accommodation but you can select an upgrade to single, twin or double. If you do not select an a room upgrade you will automatically be placed in a multi-bedded room with customers of the same sex. These rooms are exceptionally good value for money, especially for single travellers who do not want to pay for single room upgrades, and a great way to meet your fellow travellers.
Typical International Friends 3 Star Upgrade Guest House - Ecosse International - Bed & Continental Style Breakfast
This is a traditional family run guest house, which offers fantastic service and a great location. All rooms have private bathrooms are decorated to a high standard. This guest house has a lounge and free wifi.
Room types available
- Multi-bedded and family rooms - between 4 and 8 people per room
- Twin rooms - 2 beds for 2 people
- Double rooms - 1 large bed for 2 people
- Single rooms - 1 bed for 1 person
Travel to/from Edinburgh
Travel to/from Edinburgh by comfortable high-speed train from London.
|Northbound Train (first day)TBC||Southbound Train (last day)TBC|
|Depart London Kings Cross 07.00am||Depart Edinburgh Waverley 17.00pm|
|Arrive Edinburgh Waverley 11.32am|| Arrive London Kings Cross 21.50pm
We also offer minibus transport to join this tour from the following locations:
- Cambridge Parkside (outside Police Station) 04.15am
- Ramsgate Train Station 04.00am
- Canterbury East Train Station 04.25am
Return transport to the above locations is also provided and coincides with the return train.
This tour normally ends by 10pm in London. If you are travelling onwards to Cambridge, Ramsgate or Canterbury, the final arrival time will vary, as the feeder service that we provide links in with our other tours. If we are unable to transfer you by our own transportation, we will provide free rail or coach transfers to Cambridge, Canterbury or Ramsgate. In the event that public transport (rail or coach) does not offer a practical and convenient service, International Friends will provide travel by taxi, minibus or coach.
Option to make your own travel arrangements to Edinburgh - Save £30 per person
If you would like to make your own travel arrangements to Edinburgh but still join this tour, we offer a £30 per adult or child reduction for not taking the train that is otherwise included in this package. If you would like to take up this option, please contact our office by email or telephone.
Our tours to Scotland include:
Standard Tour Price (no upgrades selected)
- A two hour professionally guided tour of Edinburgh
- Traditional Scottish Guest house/hotel accommodation in muti bedded rooms in central Edinburgh with breakfast. If you require a twin/double or single you MUST select an upgrade in the Book this Tour box.
- Services of Tour Manager for entire duration of the tour
- Return travel in standard class from London Kings Cross to Edinburgh by train
Loch Ness & Highlands Upgrade - £46 extra
Same as above but also including a 1 day tour into the Scottish Highlands and Loch Ness with one of our day trip partners in Edinburgh, using local, professional driver/guides in an air-conditioned executive coach. Day trip includes entry to Urquhart Castle.
Whisky & Borders day tour - £36 extra
Same as Standard Tour but including a 1 day trip to Glenkinchie whisky distillery and the Scottish Borders
Our tours to Scotland don't include:
- Food, except breakfast at your hotel/guest house
- Entrance fees to attractions (unless otherwise stated)
No passport or visa required
You do not need a passport or visa to travel to Scotland from England, as Scotland is part of the UK.
What other people have recently commented about this tour:
This trip was really more than I expected. The driver is so nice, the city guide's dress was typically as a Scottish guy.The hotel was very well located and everything was perfect. I hope to see everybody again. Thanks, Aline Lazzarotto, from Brazil - Edinburgh and The Scottish Highlands