Rabbie's Trail Burners Tour

Edinburgh Travel Blog

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Thanks to Mar setting her travel alarm clock, we woke up around 7 am. While I was getting ready, Mar made an excellent egg breakfast which provided much needed energy for the long day of travel ahead of us. I was so excited...for today we were setting off on a 3-day guided tour of the Isle of Skye and the Highlands. Out of the many guided tours throughout Scotland, I chose Rabbie's Trail Burners Tours because their tour group size was small (16 passengers max) and their 3-day tour fit the time frame of our vacation itinerary. (Review to follow)

The tour meetup point was on the Royal Mile so it didn't take us very long to walk over to Old Town. We were the first ones there...in fact the tour office wasn't even open yet! We waited patiently. Soon enough more people started to show and crowd around the tour office. Once they opened we checked in and loaded our bags onto the coach. We boarded the mini coach first and had our choice of seats. We sat in the front row so we had an unobstructed view of our road trip.

Before starting the engine of our mini coach, our driver and guide Alex gave an introduction about himself and about our driving route. We, the passengers, all introduced ourselves. Mar and I were the only Americans on the tour. Well to be exact, I said I was from California and my cousin from Hawaii...didn't want to ruffle any political feathers while on vacation...hahaha! Helen was from UK, London I think. Oude and her father Bernard were from France. There was a mother and daughter duo from New Zealand. The rest of the passengers (I don't remember if there were 6 or 8) were originally from India but were now living in the UK. They were all coworkers/friends and going on vacation together which I thought was really cool!

Soon after the greetings and salutations, Alex revved the engine and we were off! The mini coach was big...think of it as the size of THE small bus but a Mercedes Benz. I mean there were at least one empty row of seats between each group of passengers which really didn't foster any commaraderie amongst us travelers but then again we just met and it was early in the morning!



Full Details & Itinerary

Day 1 Depart Edinburgh at 09.00 and travel west passing Linlithgow Palace and Stirling with its imposing castle and views of the Wallace Monument. We pass Doune Castle, set of Monty Python's "Holy Grail" before stopping in Callander for refreshments. Crossing into the Highlands we head north towards the glorious scenery surrounding Loch Luibnaig then through Breadalbane (meaning the ‘high country of Scotland’) and up to the wild desolation of Rannoch Moor. We continue through the spectacular mountain pass of Glencoe, scene of the great massacre of the Clan Macdonald in 1692. Leaving Fort William after lunch we drive past Britain’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis, and into the Great Glen. Travelling west on the "Road to the Isles" we head through the splendour of the Five Sisters of Kintail, the mountains guarding the pass on the way to the Isle of Skye. We stop to visit the famous Eilean Donan Castle, one of Scotland’s most photographed castles, set at the junction of 3 lochs and completely surrounded by water. Crossing over the bridge to Skye, we follow the dramatic coastline north towards the island’s capital, Portree. You are then dropped off at your accommodation in the early evening where you are free to go out and explore the town.

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photo by: vances