This splendid palace is integral to Scottish history as it was here that legendary kings of Scotland, Macbeth and Robert the Bruce, were crowned. Catch the 58 bus from Perth bus station, just a 10-minute ride followed by a 10-minute walk up the drive.
Loch Ness © VisitBritain / Andrew Pickett
Scottish Highlands adventure
Explore the Scottish Highlands, including the famous Loch Ness and discover the beauty of Scotland by train. With a BritRail Spirit of Scotland Pass you have unlimited train travel throughout Scotland for a single cost-effective fixed price, so book now!
An unspoilt wilderness of mountains, glens, lochs and rivers, the Scottish East Highlands have to be seen to be believed. In this magical part of the world, the possibilities for adventure abound and with a BritRail train ticket, exploring the countryside couldn’t be easier.
With so many things to see and do, we suggest taking 5 days out to experience the area's unique attractions, but for shorter trips, it's easy to book your individual rail tickets in advance through the trainline, ACP Rail, International Rail and Rail Europe.
Start your journey
Begin your Highland holiday in Scotland’s capital, Edinburgh - a city bound to leave a lasting impression with its fairytale architecture and vibrant cultural life. From Edinburgh it’s a quick 1-hour 15-minute train journey to Perth but if you are starting out from London, you could use your BritRail pass to take the overnight Caledonian Sleeper train to Perth or Inverness.
Day 1-2: Perth
There are hundreds of years of history to uncover here as this city on the banks of the River Tay was once the capital of Scotland. Today Perth is known for its fantastic food scene, offering everything from pop-up experiences to fine dining feasts. Picturesquely positioned in the heart of the country, it’s also an ideal place from which to see the surrounding countryside.
Check www.traveline.info for times to Scone Palace.
Things to do in Perth
This great free museum tells the story of Perth and its people, as well as featuring engaging art exhibitions of local and international significance. It’s a 10-minute walk from the city centre.
Balhousie Castle is home to the treasures of Scotland’s oldest Highland regiment, The Black Watch, and hosts arresting exhibitions exploring different aspects of military history. A 15-minute walk from the city centre.
Day 3-5: Inverness & Loch Ness
Get an early start for your 2-hour 5-minute journey to Inverness. Some of Scotland’s most iconic attractions are to be found here, from the pretty pink Inverness Castle to the legendary waters of Loch Ness.
The small city is also a great base for adventure lovers, with plenty of opportunities for hiking, climbing and watersports in the mountains and lochs around.
If you can, stay here for 3 nights so you can fully immerse yourself in all the activities on offer.
Things to do around Inverness & Loch Ness
Just west of Inverness you can take a tour of this famous Scottish distillery, and sample its distinctively sweet, malty whisky. To get there, catch the train from Inverness to Muir of Ord (20 mins), then it’s a breezy 15-minute walk.
Experience the beauty of Scotland’s most mystical and legendary lake on a cruise of Loch Ness. As part of the tour you can see the crumbling romantic ruins of Urquhart Castle. Get the 19 or 919 bus to Clansman Harbour (20min).
If you’ve come to enjoy Scotland’s great outdoors then the stunning Falls of Foyers is a great starting point, easily combined with a walk along the South Loch Ness Trail. Get the 16 Stagecoach bus (50min) from Inverness.
If you’re up for a big challenge, why not take on coast-to-coast walking trail, the Great Glen Way? You can start in Inverness or pick up the Affric Kintail Way, named after the exceptionally scenic Glen Affric at Drumnadrochit. Take the 17 Stagecoach or 917, 919 Citylink bus to get there (30 min).
Nature lovers will leap at the chance to take this boat trip: if you’re lucky you’ll get to see the resident bottlenose dolphins frolicking in the Moray Firth. To get there take the 26A or 26C bus from Inverness Bus Station to Cromarty. Between April-October. Advance booking is highly recommended.
We’ve all heard the legend of Loch Ness, but if you want to see evidence of sightings for yourself this is the place to come. You can also learn more about the wider area’s 500 million years of history through fun exhibits. From Inverness catch the 17 or 19 Stagecoach or 917, 919 Citylink bus (30 min).