5 Day Highland Explorer - Skye & Far North Tour dep Edinburgh (RT)

Five days of Scotland’s breathtaking best, including the dramatic mountain scenery of Assynt. Experience the remote white sandy beaches of the Northern Highlands, walk through the ancient pine forests of the Cairngorm National Park and soak up the romantic beauty of the Isle of Skye. Departs twice a week during the summer months. 

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Tour Highlights

Cairngorm National Park ~ Ullapool and Assynt ~ Applecross & Torridon ~ Eilean Donan Castle ~ Isle of Skye ~ Glencoe ~ Five Sisters of Kintail

Stay 2 nights in the fishing village of Ullapool and 2 nights in the picturesque harbour town of Portree, on the Isle of Skye.


This tour operates on: Wednesday, Saturday

Day 1 takes you north over the Forth Road Bridge to the charming highland village of Dunkeld on the banks of the river Tay. From here you head into the Cairngorm national park and the ancient pine forests of the Rothiemurchus estate. Lunchtime will be spent on the beautiful shores of Loch Insh before a short forest walk takes you to the ruins of Loch an Eilean castle. Panoramic views of Loch Ness follow as you travel down to the banks of the famous loch and the village of Dores where you can do some “Nessie” spotting! Then it’s on to the shores of Loch Broom where you spend two nights at Ullapool. (*on some tours it may be necessary to stay in Inverness in which case the itinerary will be subject to slight changes).

Day 2 visits the far northwest highlands and the grandeur, expanse and wildness of the mountains of Assynt with its abundance of wildlife. This area is historically famous as being the first crofting area to be bought by the local crofters, the Assynt Crofters’ Trust.  You will be immersed in the history of the area and visit the 15th century ruins of Ardvreck Castle, once the stronghold of the MacLeods of Assynt. The day is full of amazing views of some of Europe’s oldest landscapes from the stunning white sand beach at Achmelvich Bay to the traditional fishing village of Lochinver. With the chance of seeing wildlife such as whales and red deer as well, this is sure to be a memorable day.

Day 3 leaves Ullapool heading south to take in the drama of the River Droma as it plunges 60m down into the Corrieshalloch Gorge. From here you travel past the mountains of the Beinn Eighe national nature reserve and along the picturesque coastline of Loch Torridon. The tranquil setting of Applecross is your destination for lunch before taking one of the highest roads in Scotland, Bealach nam Bo (meaning the Cattle Pass), with its jaw-dropping views, hairpin bends and precipitous cliffs. In the afternoon you stop in “tropical” Plockton where you can see palm trees growing alongside Loch Carron and take time to enjoy its sheltered serenity. Then it’s over the sea to Skye and the delightful harbour town of Portree with its friendly welcome.

Day 4 is a very flexible day on Skye. There are many possibilities depending on the weather and your driver/guide's knowledge will come to the fore in developing the best day out for you. For example you might travel north to the stunning Quiraing mountain pass and enjoy a spectacular walk through some of Skye's extraordinary geological scenery or visit the Kilt Rock, composed of basalt columns (reminiscent of the pleats in a kilt) with its waterfall cascading over the cliffs and down into the sea below. After lunch you can travel to Neist Point for a walk out to the lighthouse at the most westerly point on Skye. Alternatively a visit to Dunvegan Castle, ancient ancestral seat of the Clan McLeod, may be possible. Talisker Distillery is also on Skye, as are the famous Cuillin Hills. We return you to your accommodation in Portree in the late afternoon for you to enjoy a free evening in the village.

Day 5 takes us south from Skye stopping first at the famous stronghold Eilean Donan Castle, used in the film “Highlander”, set at the head of 3 lochs as protection against Viking raiders. Continuing east through the rugged mountains of Kintail including the splendour of the Five Sisters, you drive down through Glen Garry past Britain’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis, then onto Fort William for lunch. In the afternoon you will explore spectacular Glencoe, scene of the infamous massacre of the Clan Macdonald in 1692, before stopping in Killin for refreshments beside the Falls of Dochart, arriving into Edinburgh at 1900 approx.

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Transportation by top of the range Mercedes minicoach for a more personal experience with a maximum of 16 passengers on tour. 
Rabbies believe a small group tour with a maximum of 16 passengers really does make a big difference to your trip. It allows them to give you a more personal service and remain the only 5 Star operator to offer this personal guarantee. Touring with a maximum of 16 passengers you get more for your money, more personal attention, more time with the locals, more time off the bus, more time on the back-roads and just more of an authentic, friendly experience. The smaller groups allow you to meet people from all over the world and make friends for life. 
Air Conditioning as standard. 
Services of a professional Rabbie's driver/guide 
All ferry and bridge crossings. 


Meals and refreshments. 
Entrances to all Visitor Attractions. 

Your tour does not include accommodation in the price. By giving you a choice of accommodation it allows you to choose your budget, stay in smaller places and get closer to the local people. This also means you help to sustain the communities you visit in the long term. During the booking process, choose a hotel, B&B or a hostel and Rabbies will book it for you.

The Little Details

  • Minimum Age: Age 5+
  • Min Age: 5 years
  • Tour Vehicle Type: Mini Coach
  • Months of Operation: February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December
  • Duration of Tour: 5 days
  • Departure Point: Edinburgh
  • Departure Point: Rabbies Cafe, 6 Waterloo Place, Edinburgh EH1 3EG
  • Departure Time: 9.00 Hrs - please check in 15 minutes before departure
  • Expected return Time: 19:00 approx (day 5)
  • Duration of Tour: 5 days

Rates & Dates

Adult Prices:  £239 to £259
Discount Prices:  £199 to £239

Discount Price applies to students, seniors over 60 and Children between 5 and 16.
Rabbies regret they do not carry children under 5 years.

Departing: Saturdays (Mar - Nov, also 14/11/15, 28/11/15, 5/12/15, 19/12/15, 6/2/16, 20/2/16) and Wednesdays (Apr - Oct).

Booking Notes

Book Online Now

Click on the "Book Now" button to check availability and for immediate confirmed booking. Payment is required during the booking process. Choose the accommodation type you wish to stay in and Rabbies will book it for you.

Because we believe in time off the bus and give you opportunities to take nature walks we recommend you bring suitable clothing and footwear for your tour. Scotland can be a wet place!!

*NB On occasions, when villages you stay in have events on, accommodation can be scarce and expensive so they may use other locations for your accommodation on the tour. Rabbies will always inform you of this when this is necessary.

Some Places We Will Visit

  • Dunkeld

    The travel guide on Dunkled in Perthshire offers information travellers needed to know on Dunkled, which includes tourist information about Dunkled and Birnam, attractions and Self- Catering Cottages in Dunkled.

  • Ullapool

    The attractive little fishing port of Ullapool, on the shores of Loch Broom, is the largest settlement in Wester Ross.

  • Lochinver

    The road from Achiltibuie north to Lochinver is known locally as the 'wee mad road', and you'd be mad to miss this thrilling route which twists and winds its way through some the northwest's most stunning scenery.

  • Inverness

    The Highlands' largest town and enjoying a real renaissance over the past ten years as young professionals have moved to the city. The gateway to the far north and a fun night out if you stay.

  • Portree

    Skye's largest town and a charmingly friendly stop-off popular with all visitors.

  • Applecross

    One of the most scenic routes in Scotland lies across the Pass of the Cattle to Applecross which is one of Scotland's most ancient Christian centres a true escape from the world. The peninsula is a wonderful collection of ecological and archeological treasures.

  • Plockton

    If there were a poll taken of visitors' favourite Highland villages then you can bet your bottom dollar that Plockton would come top with most folk. If you look for a definition of picturesque in your dictionary, it'll say "see Plockton". Well, maybe not - but it should.

  • Glencoe

    Dramatic landscape with a dramatic history. Few who visit the glen are unmoved by its majesty and power.

Castle Visited