555 Castlehill, Edinburgh, United Kingdom
www.timberbush-tours.co.uk - 0131 226 6066
Timberbush Tours Edinburgh Reviews
Bus Tour of the Highlands from Edinburgh Sep 29, 2012
Bus tours from Edinburgh are one way to see more of Scotland than just the city. The company Timbererbush Tours offers a variety of bus tours for travel outside of Edinburgh. The particular tour I went on was called "Loch Ness, Glencoe & The Highlands". It meets at the entrance to Edinburgh Castle at 8:00 am and returns at 8:30 pm. The tour highlights include: Stirling Castle, Kilmahog, Rob Roy Country, Rannoch Moor, Glencoe, Fort William, Ben Nevis, The Great Glen, Fort Augustus, Loch Ness, Urquhart Castle, Inverness, Pitlochry. It doesn't actually stop at all these places and some are just drive by "there it is, there it goes" variety. For a detailed itinerary and map of the route I include some screenshots from the brochure in my photos, but you can look at their website for more information.
The tour price was 40 pounds and an extra 12 pounds for the boat ride on Loch Ness. Lunch is at your own expense too. This is pretty standard in what other companies charge too. It's recommended to book ahead as they do fill up before the day of the tour. There were six stops altogether on the all day tour (1.Kilmahog, 2.Rannoch Moor, 3.Glencoe, 4.Fort William, 5.Loch Ness, and 6.Pitlochry) which lasted 12 hours. The 1st & 6th were really just pit stops for restroom facilities, and a bit of tourist shopping for a 1/2 hour each. The 4th stop was for lunch and an hour or so. The 2nd and 3rd at Rannoch Moor and Glencoe were 10 or 15 minutes at most and photo frenzies. The 5th stop at Loch Ness was 1.5 to 2 hours and there was a cruise on the Loch lasting an hour. Add it all up and it was 7-8 hours on the bus and 4-5 hours outside in total.
Yes, it was fun to see the Highlands and splendid country it is, but for a 50+ pound day ($75 USD) I'm not sure I can say it was all that $75 and 12 hour fantastic. Still, it is a unique experience to see this part of Scotland and the driver/guide did make it interesting and entertaining too. Price is often a personal choice regarding what you are willing to pay for what you get. For me, I was willing to pay the price for the experience because who knows when I'll be back to Scotland and the amount I payed seems small compared to the riches I got in the experience. Also the Mercedes Benz Torino tour bus was some kind of comfortable ride!
Part of the A Sense of Scotland (Sep. 21 - Oct. 2, 2012) travel blog
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