• Dusk in Edinburgh, Scotland
    Edinburgh
  • Culross Palace, Culross, Scotland
    Culross
  • Cathedral ruins, St. Andrews, Scotland
    St. Andrews Cathedral
  • Whisky tasting, Edinburgh, Scotland
    Scottish Whisky Tasting
  • Hermitage woodlands, Dunkeld, Scotland
    The Hermitage Woodlands
  • Sheep Dog Demonstration
  • Cawdor Castle, Cawdor, Scotland
    Cawdor Castle near Inverness
  • Glencoe, Scotland
    Scottish Highlands
  • Picnic at Clava Cairns
  • Highland Cattle (aka Hairy Coo)
  • Isle of Iona, Scotland
    Isle of Iona

Tour Questions? See our FAQ | Call 425-608-4217

Best of Scotland in 10 Days Tour

from $3,095 per person + air

Optional Single Supplement $575

See Tour Dates

On this bonnie journey that starts and ends in royal Edinburgh, your Rick Steves guide will immerse you in the rich culture and history of Scotland. You'll walk the Royal Mile; study the fairways at St. Andrews; shake paws with a sheepdog; try a wee dram at a whisky distillery; explore the Highlands; ponder Lochs Ness, Garry, and Lomond; wander over the Isles of Mull and Iona; and time-travel about the craggy castles of Edinburgh, Stirling, and Urquhart. Join us for the Best of Scotland in 10 Days!

Dates & Prices

2019

    • Apr 22–May 1 (Mo–We)
    • $3,095 + Air

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    • Apr 29–May 8 (Mo–We)
    • $3,095 + Air

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    • May 1–May 10 (We–Fr)
    • $3,095 + Air

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    • May 6–May 15 (Mo–We)
    • $3,295 + Air

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    • May 8–May 17 (We–Fr)
    • $3,295 + Air

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    • May 13–May 22 (Mo–We)
    • $3,495 + Air

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    • Jun 3–Jun 12 (Mo–We)
    • $3,295 + Air

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    • Jun 17–Jun 26 (Mo–We)
    • $3,295 + Air

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    • Jul 1–Jul 10 (Mo–We)
    • $3,295 + Air

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What's Included

  • A small, friendly group of 2428 people — half the size of most tour groups
  • Full-time services of a professional Rick Steves guide and local experts who will make the fascinating history, art, and culture of Scotland come alive for you
  • All tours and admissions — at no extra cost — covering at least 21 group sightseeing events • Georgian Edinburgh orientation • Edinburgh's Royal Mile walking tour • Edinburgh Castle • National Museum of Scotland • Culross Palace • St. Andrews • Scottish musical evening • Scottish Crannogs • Hermitage walk • Dunkeld Cathedral • Whisky distillery tour and tasting • Sheepdog demonstration • Culloden Battlefield • Inverness orientation walk • Loch Ness cruise • Urquhart Castle • Clava Cairns • Cawdor Castle • Glencoe Valley • Isle of Iona walking tour • Stirling Castle…and more
  • All group transportation from Edinburgh to Edinburgh
  • 9 nights' accommodations in memorable, centrally located hotels and B&Bs
  • All breakfasts and half your dinners
  • All tips for guides and driver
  • A tour kit including a guidebook (or books) and a moneybelt
  • Guaranteed tour price, locked in the moment you make your deposit
  • Optional single supplements — this tour has a limited number of private rooms for solo travelers for an additional fee
  • Tour alum discount of $50 for each tour you've taken prior to 2019
  • 50% discount on a consulting appointment with our in-house experts to assist with your pre- or post-tour travel plans
  • Flexibility should you need to transfer or cancel your tour

Fine print: You are responsible for the cost of your drinks and free-time sightseeing. See our Tour Conditions for important details regarding everything listed above.

Itinerary

Daily Activity Key
  • Light = 2–4 miles of mostly level walking throughout the day.
  • Moderate = 2–6 miles walking throughout the day with some hills and stairs.
  • Strenuous = 2–8 miles of walking throughout the day with lots of hills, stairs, and uneven terrain.

Day 1: Welcome to Scotland

We'll meet at 4 p.m. at our hotel in Edinburgh for a "Welcome to Scotland" get-together. We'll then take a neighborhood walk and tour of Georgian Edinburgh before getting acquainted over dinner. Sleep in Edinburgh (2 nights). No bus. Walking: light.

Day 2: Conquering Edinburgh Castle

Today we'll see the best of Edinburgh on foot, starting with a walking tour of the Royal Mile and its wealth of historic buildings, quaint shops, narrow lanes, and hidden courtyards. We'll climb up to imposing Edinburgh Castle to tour this historic military stronghold, the birthplace of the city, and soak up the dramatic views. Then we'll wind our way through the medieval streets, stopping at Grassmarket and Greyfriar's Cemetery before ending at the impressive National Museum of Scotland. The afternoon is free for your own explorations. Tonight, join your guide and fellow tour members for a pint at a local pub to share the stories of your Scottish experiences. No bus. Walking: strenuous.

Day 3: Culross and St. Andrews

We cross the famous Firth of Forth this morning as we head into the Scottish countryside. Our first stop is in the picturesque burgh of Culross, where we'll learn about long-ago lifestyles as we tour a 17th-century "palace." Then we're off to St. Andrews, Scotland's oldest university town and mecca for golfers worldwide. You'll have time to explore the ruins of St. Andrews' medieval cathedral, watch duffers playing the Old Course, and enjoy lunch. This evening we'll enjoy dinner together, and then listen to the history of bagpipes and a real Scottish piper. Sleep in or near the village of Kenmore (2 nights). Bus: 5 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 4: Crannogs and Whisky

This morning we'll tour a reconstruction of Scotland's unique crannogs: prehistoric, defensive homesteads built on piers out over the lochs. We'll also learn about the first people to farm in this part of the world, millennia ago. Then we'll head to the Hermitage, where we'll hear about Scottish Romanticism amidst Black Linn Falls and towering forest. Next, we are onto the charming town of Dunkeld, where we'll tour its medieval cathedral. After lunch, we're off to Aberfeldy, where we'll tour a whisky distillery and enjoy a wee dram while learning about this iconic Scottish industry. This evening you can relax riverside before dinner together. Bus: 2 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 5: Sheepdogs and the Highlands

We're off to the Highlands today! We'll start off by learning about the nitty-gritty of Scotland's wool industry at a working sheep farm and watch a demonstration by talented sheepdogs. After a quintessential Scottish lunch together, we'll tour evocative Culloden Battlefield where, in 1746, Bonnie Prince Charlie's defeat ended decades of Scottish rebellion against the British government. We'll end the day of striking scenery with an orientation walk of Inverness where we'll sleep. (2 nights). Bus: 3 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 6: Castles and Cairns

Today we'll explore the Highlands and enjoy a panoramic cruise of Loch Ness (monster sightings possible) before the boat drops us at the shore to explore the dramatic ruins of Urquhart Castle. Then we'll stop for a look at the Clava Cairns, an impressive collection of prehistoric burial chambers, and enjoy a picnic in this serene setting. On our way back to Inverness, we'll visit the turreted Cawdor Castle and its magnificent gardens. The remainder of the afternoon is yours to explore Inverness or stroll along the banks of the river before dinner together. Tonight is a great night to enjoy some traditional music in one of the many pubs. Boat: ½ hour. Bus: 2 hours. Walking: strenuous.

Day 7: Glencoe and Seaside Oban

This morning we'll head toward the coast, stopping at haunting Glencoe, site of Scotland's most infamous massacre (Campbells and MacDonalds, keep your daggers on the bus). We'll finish our day in the scenic coastal town of Oban, also known as the "Gateway to the Isles." This evening is yours to climb up to McCaigs' Tower, wander the quaint lanes and alleys, or simply relax over a pint while taking in the views of the harbor. Sleep in Oban (2 nights; group is split between two B&Bs). Bus: 4 hours. Walking: light.

Day 8: Inspiring Isle of Iona

Today we'll board a ferry and hop on a local bus for an entertaining ride across the island of Mull to our destination: the windswept Isle of Iona, the birthplace of Christianity in Scotland. We'll tour the village with a local guide, and visit the 800-year-old abbey, where monks created the remarkable Book of Kells, one of the sparks of creativity that pulled Europe out of the Dark Ages. We'll then set you free to explore or find a spot to meditate on this tiny, spiritually charged island. We'll return to Oban, and our own century, in time for dinner. Boat: 2 hours. Bus: 2 hours. Walking: light.

Day 9: Loch Lomond and Stirling Castle

We'll drive along the bonnie, bonnie banks of Loch Lomond and through central Scotland on our way back to Edinburgh. En route we'll visit the famous castle of the Stuart kings, Stirling, including the newly restored Renaissance Palace. Tonight we'll share memories of Scotland and toast new friends at our final dinner together. Slàinte! Sleep in Edinburgh (1 night). Bus: 4 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 10: Tour Over After Breakfast

Breakfast is provided, but there are no group activities today. Edinburgh's airport and train station are easy connections from our neighborhood. Glasgow is one hour away by train; London is 90 minutes by air. For those tempted to continue their trip, Edinburgh is a great jumping off point to Paris, Dublin, Amsterdam, and many other exciting destinations. Cheerio!

Itinerary specifics subject to change.

Physical Demands

Our tours are physically active! It's an essential part of the Rick Steves tour experience. On our Best of Scotland in 10 Days tour — among other things — you'll need to happily…

  1. Carry/roll your luggage over uneven pavement (possibly several blocks) and up stairways to reach your hotel, then up several flights of stairs to reach your room.
  2. Be on your feet, walking and standing, for up to three hours, indoors and outdoors, in all weather conditions.
  3. Sleep with street noise and no (or weak) air conditioning.
  4. After orientation and transportation lessons, be able to navigate towns and cities on your own.
  5. Walk up steep hills in Edinburgh and at Urquhart Castle.

Reviews

Robin

Memphis, TN

Tour: 09/26/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We have already recommended the tour to many of our friends. We felt like we experienced so much of the beautiful country of Scotland due to the outstanding planning of all aspects of the tour! Thank you !!! PS- I just spent about 45 minutes providing some details within each category and then clicked something that resulted in me losing all of those responses. So Sorry, but the redo will be brief!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Iona Neil and his sheepdogs"

Valerie

Guthrie, OK

Tour: 09/26/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was my first tour and my first trip to Europe. My expectations were very high and I wasn't disappointed. I so enjoyed this tour that I'm already planning the next one.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many 'wow' moments that it is hard to pinpoint just one. Our guide, James, was extremely knowledgeable, personable and entertaining. I enjoyed all the sites and demonstrations but especially enjoyed the discussions on local politics, history and culture."

Lisaann

New Plymouth, ID

Tour: 09/26/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

James, our tour guide was outstanding. He shared all of Scotland with us. His personal experiences, which were special and inspiring, as well as general history, current issues, and hopes for Scotland's future. His knowledge of Scotland was wonderful. He used humor to entertain us and keep the mood light and fun. He also shared wonderful Scottish music with us. The other thing that made this trip wonderful was our group. I cannot imagine a more pleasant, fun, kind, and sincere group.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There are two favorites. One was a special dinner at the hotel in Kenmore, with a visiting musician. Fully, the bagpiper. She was incredible. And she let me play her bagpipes, which is something I've always wanted to do! My other favorite was the visit to Neil, at the sheep farm. He and his Border Collies were incredible. Definitely a highlight."

Barbara

Saint Paul, MN

Tour: 09/24/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was the varied and educational experience I had expected, especially with our wonderful guide Anne. She made the Scottish history come alive. We had great weather, lucky us. Hotels were great as usual in good locations in town.Meals were over the top. I am a confirmed RS tour regular, with more to come I hope.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The boat ride and visit to Urquart Castle . And maybe the sheep dog demo?"

Andi

Franktown, CO

Tour: 09/24/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

With every tour I take, the experience just gets better and better. My husband and I drove this same itinerary several years ago but with Anne leading the way, educating and guiding me for the entire trip, the experience was an entirely different one. Besides which, no driving and/or trying to figure out how to manage the (new-to-us then) scary traffic circles! It was a wonderful tour with an awesome guide; great food experiences and lovely hotel accommodations. Thank you again, Rick and Co.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to choose just one as I felt the entire country is one WOW moment after another. Have I proposed the idea of expanding the length of the tour so I can find more WOW moments? If not, you'll get to that...."

Jude

Everett, WA

Tour: 09/24/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wow, It was my 5th tour with your company and it was even more that I expected. Anne is the perfect guide. She saw to all our needs and more. Her love of her country showed thru every single day. Thank you Anne.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved Kenmore and learning about the Crannog settlement. The time and effort to re-create the lives of the iron age people and their way of life making and using tools was amazing."

Paul

Seattle, WA

Tour: 09/24/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I really enjoyed the tour. It had great variety, was well paced, and very educational. I was amazed at how beautiful Scotland was. While Edinburgh is an interesting city, it paled in comparison with the beauty of the rest of the tour. Of course that opinion just reflects my own personal biases. I wish we could have spent more time in the Glencoe area rather than just drive through it with one bus stop. However, that said, I realize the trails are difficult and parking is a problem for a bus.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I really didn't have any "wow" moments. It was all very spectacular."

Virginia

Edmonds, WA

Tour: 09/24/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As it was our first trip abroad I was nervous. However the combination of organized time and free time was a perfect balance for a first time traveler. I feel like we got a good over view of Scotland in our 10 day tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Oban. From the B&B, to the ferry rides, to the peace of Iona and the fish and chips it was an amazing experience."

Robyn

Pensacola, FL

Tour: 09/24/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Best part? Our professional, respected guide. Anne Doig briefed us on the country's history, its heralded & haunted rulers, clans & castles & crannogs, its incredibly educated folk through the centuries. She remarkably handled our group's varying personalities and quickly solved any room issues (i.e., hot water or one bed for two singles). She suggested great places to eat. She knew where to do laundry. She was simply superb.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I knew the Culloden Battlefield story and how the British crushed the Highlanders in about an hour. I did NOT know my ancestors were on the Brits' front line. Right there on the museum wall--Cholmondeleys. (Our last name is Chumley.) I'm still stunned."

Robert

San Tan Valley, AZ

Tour: 09/24/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Good seating on the buses, lots of room for everyone, being a smaller tour group, sit anywhere. walking tours ok, couple were starting to get a little long, first full day tour,ediinburgh, probably could have ended before the national museum of Scotland, maybe reverse the day ending on the royal mile, the castle being last? its downhill from there. all the fellow travelers pleasant, thanks for the "no grumps" pre tour must have and do information

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Loved st Andrews, the views and free time was just right. the sheepdog farm my favorite, could have spent more time there. loch ness boat ride outstanding, ending at Urquhart castle. local fish and chips in oban on our free time, one of our guide anne doig's favorite places. I noticed a lot of fellow tour members there. Iona a must see part of the tour, brings "isolated" into new meaning. sheepdogs win the "wow" moment"

Antoinette

Mount Laurel, NJ

Tour: 09/24/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I had a very good experience on this, my first Rick Steves tour. Our guide, Anne, was outstanding. Her knowledge and insights added so much to my enjoyment of the tour and my understanding of Scottish culture and history. The accommodations were comfortable and in some instances also quirky. But nothing that I did not expect or found objectionable with the exception of one Inn, and that was remedied when I was moved to another room by the very gracious manager of the Inn.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I really enjoyed visiting and learning about the Crannog settlements. I was completely unaware of these pre-historic people and their way of life. This is the kind of learning experience I look for in a tour. A close second was the sheep herding demonstration. Awesome doggies!"

Carol

Seattle, WA

Tour: 09/24/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was my first Rick Steves tour, and it did NOT disappoint! Our guide was OUTSTANDING, accommodations and meals were excellent, and traveling companions were friendly--some are new best friends.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Gillie bagpipe playing and her recitation of Robert Burns' Address to the Haggis were impressive and delightful. I also thoroughly enjoyed the sheepdog demonstration with Neil."

Suzanne

Eastham, MA

Tour: 09/22/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Helen was wonderful and gave us so much info. Helen gave us so many extras, the toast on top of the Highlands, The shellfish tasting , goodies on the bus! Very special stories! Loved the places we visited. The hotels were good except for Kenmore. I just wish we had more time to hike a bit in the Highlands!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the Highlands! The landscape was so different. Wish we could have hiked a little there. We just drove through! Loved the tour guides, bus driver and other guides! That was the best part of the trip!"

Carol

Madison, WI

Tour: 09/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Scotland Tour exceeded my expectations! My favorite aspect was the amount of time spent in the highlands and out in the country. Helen Houston was an amazing, knowledgeable, FUN and gracious host! I was impressed by her grasp of Scottish history and her abilities to render it understandable to many. This was my second Rick Steves tour and I'm consistently awed by the local guides (e.g. Rita in Edinburgh, the crannog site interpreters) and talent like Gillie (the piper in Kenmore).

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I can't limit it to one - driving through the Highlands (more beautiful than I imagined, even with the brown heathers), the crannog settlement, staying at the Kenmore Inn, the sheep herding demonstration and touring Stirling Castle."

Grace

Corbett, OR

Tour: 09/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Had a fantastic time with a great group of people. The only thing need was more time to enjoy the great trip!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Getting to meet Neal the sheep herder and watching him work with his dogs. It was amazing!"

James

Brea, CA

Tour: 09/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Helen was our outstanding tour guide. Each day,because of my age,I somewhat worried about the day and how I would do(easy to strenuous). And each day I ended amazed, entertained and yes"educated". I'm 83 in December and was made nervous by my lovely wife(80)who kept telling me I was going to have"strenuous days" and implied that I'd better keep up. I did and then some.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Helen: as I told the group at our last dinner,Helen made the tour and not to be left out the several additional guides that accompanied us. Rita at Edinburgh Castle:wonderfully entertaining as well as educational. But at Culross, George's Palace, Linda was a magnificent docent and I know of which I speak ( I was a docent at Bower's Museum for 19 years until I "got A-fib"). Rick someone is doing a very good job of emploement"

Jane

Tacoma, WA

Tour: 09/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour provided an overview of the entire country with stops a interesting and entertaining locations. I wish it was longer to experience more in each location.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"All the castles were interesting, but Stirling castle stands out because of the restoration/recreation. The displays left less to the imagination and brought the past to present day."

Michael

Delanco, NJ

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour provided a variety of activities for all interests. We kept a very active schedule, each event was informative and enjoyed greatly.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I enjoyed seeing the Highlands, with it's mountains, waterfalls, and varied autumn colors. Also, I was very happy that we had a break in the weather, permitting our group to ferry to Mull and Iona."

Virginia

Tulsa, OK

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Our first group tour so it is hard to compare. We were very satisfied and happy we chose this tour. We usually travel with family or on our own so it was quite a change not being able to stop when and where we wanted.

James

Bellingham, WA

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful mixture of urban and rural sites, brought to life by varied and intelligent commentary from a variety of local guides. The wild, wet, windy weather only accentuated our sense of experiencing Scotland in its natural state. Eating was great -- a happy mixture of tour-provided and self-provided meals. Hotel accommodations all worked very well, with each providing memorable features.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting, learning about, and gaining a sense of the prehistoric past in the Crannogs."

Rhonda

Delanco, NJ

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my 3rd Rick Steves' tour. The tours are very well structured and fast paced. The tour guides, in my experience, have been top-notch and the bus drivers are nothing short of amazing. The "philosophy" of the Rick Steves' tours, makes for a very efficient travel experience in a short amount of time. I learned, saw and enjoyed so much of beautiful Scotland in just 10 days, unbelievable!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Without a doubt, the majestic Highlands!"

Merry

Bellingham, WA

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour provided a broad scope of this beautiful country. Its history began with the iconic Edinburgh castle, and reached out into the countryside with glimpses into truly ancient settlements (crannochs) to St. Andrews' golf and university culture and on to the highly trained shepherd whose life is his border collies. The rich forest lands and rivers, the lochs, castles and the highlands themselves spoke of the land and its people, clarifying Scotland.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's impossible to choose just one wow moment. The shepherd Neil working his border collies and the opportunity to hold a fluffy new pup in my arms, as well as witness a 12-week old puppy try to herd the flock. Gilly and her bagpipe were great and a personal wow when my partner tried his hand at playing. Sitting around a campfire in a 2,000-year-old crannog. The sight of Urquhart Castle from Loch Ness as a shaft of sunlight lit its face. Picnicing amongst the ancient Clavern cairns!"

Bonnie

Monkton, MD

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a variety of activities that helped us familiarize ourselves with Scotland and its culture, the travel pace felt right, and there was a good balance between travelers' organized/free time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Eating haggis! Gilly Mc Nab, Piper Neil the shepherd"

Bernice

Tacoma, WA

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We started out with an airline challenge when our flight from Amsterdam to Edinburgh was cancelled due to weather and we missed the first day and a half of the tour but we thoroughly enjoyed the rest of the Scotland adventure. The guides were exceptional and Brian took great care throughout our adventures. This was my son's first international journey and he was in awe of everything he experienced and truly impressed with all of the historical knowledge and choices of tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Crannog history was remarkable. But I can't leave out the shepherd adventure with the sheep herding and his story."

Lorelei

Glen Rock, NJ

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Scotland is a beautiful, interesting, historical, and romantic place. I really enjoyed the time I spent with the Rick Steves Tour. I learned a lot about the country and its people. The tour was well-organized, the tour group was just the right size, the people on the tour were just lovely to travel with and the balance between riding on the bus, walking and over night stays at hotels was just about perfect. The places we visited were interesting, the food was very good, & the hotels-great!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Dunkeld! The location of that hotel was just gorgeous. Other wow moments were, Sterling Castle, Cawdor Castle, Loch Ness, the Highland country side, Neal the Shepherd and the spectacular view from Edinburgh Castle! When the sun was out almost everything was WOW!!"

Julia

Cupertino, CA

Tour: 09/17/18

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

I was disappointed. We spent too much time on the bus. The guide was not approachable and his talks were very hard to follow.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the highland landscapes."

David

Windsor, CA

Tour: 09/17/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first Rick Steves' tour and it was outstanding. I had been to Scotland before on business and have always loved interacting with the people. This tour added the element of getting to see the country as well. The bus rides were comfortable and the bus drivers very skilled. The hotel room ranged from small and comfortable to very nice. The guide provided a generous amount of information in a very palatable way, making the information easy to understand and follow.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The boat trip on Loch Ness was very enjoyable. The cold crisp morning seem to add to the exhilaration of the boat ride. Our trip to the Highlands to visit a working sheep farm was amazing. Watching the owner work with his boarder-collies brought open-mouth stares to all of us. It was very memorable to partake in sheering a sheep."

Thomas

Cold Spring, MN

Tour: 09/17/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Fun tour with an outstanding group. We enjoyed all of the tours and experiences. However, we would have enjoyed a little more free time to explore on our own. Unfortunately, we only had 40 minutes on Iona due to the Ferry Boat being repaired...but c'est la vie. We could have easily spent an extra hour at St. Andrews.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Sheep Dog Demonstration was amazing!"

George

Port Moody, BC

Tour: 09/17/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a great tour. The itinerary was interesting and gave us a First Look at Scotland wetting our appetite to visit again. Martin made the trip very interesting with his vast knowledge of history, archeology and architecture. The hotels was lovely but we got stuck with the stairs a few times due to the draw. If I was to suggest I would allow more time in Inverness and skip Chair Lift at Glencoe. Iona visit was very short due to ferry problems but Martin did his best to improvise.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The most impressive was the Sheep Dog farm visit. The trainer really put the dogs thru their paces."

Charlene

Santa Rosa, CA

Tour: 09/17/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I loved my time in Scotland, from the big city of Edinburgh to the smaller towns in the Highlands. I especially liked Oban and our bed and breakfast inn, where our view was the bay. Another highlight was the sheep dog demonstration where my husband got to shear a sheep and I got to bottle feed a baby sheep and hold a three week old puppy. The owner was so passionate about his animals and what he did for a living. I wish we could have had more free time in the towns we stopped in.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I really enjoyed our day in Kenmore that began by walking to the crannogs . We were greeted with a lovely rainbow over the water and then had a tour and demonstration of how life used to be. It was like living history to see how they started fire, and carved items out of wood. That evening we were entertained by Gilly, one of the first female bagpipers in Scotland. She explained her instrument, and all the items in her wardrobe and then showed some volunteers from our tour group how to play."

Richard

Calgary, AB

Tour: 09/17/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

As expected the Rick Steves tour was first class. Everything from the quality of the hotels, the group meals and the guide, Martin, was excellent. And as an added bonus fellow travellers were fun to be around. We could have dropped a few castles from the tour and a little more free time would have been nice, but in 10 days you have to pack each day with sights to get the full experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite wow moment was seeing the crannog display. Seeing how people lived 2500 years ago was eye opening. A close second was the bag pipe player who entertained us after a group dinner. She was priceless, not just as a pipes player but as a story teller."

Janet

Rutland, VT

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour was wonderful! We thoroughly enjoyed our guide. Liz was warm and welcoming and we learned so much about the history, culture and general economy of Scotland. Our accommodations were excellent. Traveling with a small group is great as it allowed us to get to know people much better. We arrived in Scotland a few days ahead of the tour and felt very comfortable with getting out and seeing sites ourselves after reading the Rick Steve's guidebook.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many moments where I said "wow" but I love the countryside and the Glencoe Valley was a wow. The weather was nice when we were there and it would have been nice to hike a bit and soak in the beauty of the area. The Isle of Mull was also beautiful countryside."

Virginia

Damascus, OR

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Much more wonderful than I could have hoped. Hotels were topnotch; tour guide was terrific; bus was comfortable and easy to see out the windows; places we visited all added to the excellence of the tour. I would, and do, highly recommend this tour to my family and friends.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The beauty of Scotland. All the mountains, rivers, lochs, etc., and historic places."

Emily

Duluth, MN

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my third Rick Steve's tour and it did not disappoint. Liz was an extremely knowledgeable guide with a great sense of humor. I can honestly say I enjoyed every minute of it!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had several - I loved arriving at the Urquhart Castle by boat and having time to explore the castle ruins. What started as a rainy morning on Loch Ness turned into a gorgeous sunny day with beautiful views. I'm also a sucker for animals so being able to stop to see the hairy coos, and to visit the working sheep farm made my heart so happy!"

Lanny

Jamestown, IN

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fantastic, first time tour traveler. The Best of Scotland was perfect. Our guide Liz was the best, started off as our guide ended up as our friend. The extras were appreciated (the treats, the whiskey sampling, even the costume picture toward the end) Thank you Liz. The tour covered the beautiful Country magnificently!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I wasn"t to sure about the sheep dog demnstration, but it ended up as entertaining and amazing. Then to beautiful Country, the Castles and History. The whole trip was a wow moment."

Cathy

Tigard, OR

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first trip to Europe. I loved it. The jet lag was worth it. So much history shared by our wonderful tour guide (Liz) and contemporary issues. Singalongs, picnics, castles and cathedrals....not to mention the crowning glory at Brannock Burn. Everything was good. The food, the drink, the group, the guide, our sweet bus driver.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Stirling Castle was amazing. The restoration was wonderful and the tapestry reproductions amazing. I also loved Oban"

Suzanne

Anacortes, WA

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I really enjoyed this tour. Our guide, Liz, was exceptional. She was very well informed and knowledgeable, and just a delight to be with. She shared her vast knowledge with us and gave us many insights about the culture and history of Scotland, and what it is like to live there. I would like to have had more free time to explore on my own. The free time was limited to one or two hours at the end of one or two days. Way too fast paced.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite wow moment was the mountains around Glencoe. I had no idea Scotland was so beautiful and vast. I particularly like the Highlands part of the tour."

Deborah

Bartlesville, OK

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was my first Rick Steve's tour and my first experience doing a guided tour of any kind and I was very happy with the whole experience. I felt the tour was very well organized and very informative and I really felt like I had experienced Scotland.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment would be seeing the scenery around Glencoe -it was my idea about what Scotland would look like. I would also have to say the trip to Iona and the views from on top of the mountain from a hike we took where very spectacular."

Akemi

Spooner, WI

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our guide Liz was exceptional and she made our tour outstanding. This is our 4th Rick Steves' tour and we know guides can make such a difference. Liz was so knowledgeable and also explained things so well that we feel like we got the best Scottish history lesson. She also cared about each one of us. Thank you very much, Liz.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"When I got to see the "Stone of Scone"."

Kevin

Colchester, VT

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The weather was very changeable - sun, rain, mist, clouds, high winds all in the space of a relatively short time. It was great! We loved the history, music, culture and art work discussed by our guide, Liz. Would definitely take another tour with Liz. Food was good to excellent at all venues. Liz & R.S. books had very good suggestions and local hotel & B and B's were very convenient to all our interests.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many 'wow' moments, but I would have to say the breathtaking scenery and the effect of different light on the landscape was extraordinary. I also was 'wow-ed' by the historical castles and Iona. We felt bad for the shepherd and his family at the sheep dog demonstration - it was pouring rain! But he kept his sense of humor. The ski area at Ben Nevis reminded us of home."

Trent

Reno, NV

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Enjoyed the many facets of the tour. The sights, the history and activities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I feel the wow moments were around every bend, every place the tour took me."

Robert

Bartlesville, OK

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful overview of Scotland, having never been there before. Liz was a fantastic guide and was EXTREMELY knowledgeable about everything, from history to natural science to current affairs. The accommodations were generally good, and we enjoyed all of our tour companions. The weather was a bit rainy the first few days, but did not really slow us down. Liz was able to juggle items around so we missed nothing. My only regret was that we were not able to spend more time in the highlands.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It is difficult to pick out one moment. The boat tour on Loch Ness and the visit to Urquhart Castle were great and very scenic. The lochs were very beautiful, and I was happy we got to stay along Loch Tay and cruise on Loch Ness."

Deborah

Redmond, WA

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was everything I had hoped for in a Rick Steves tour and even more! Even though it was our first Rick Steves tour, having used his materials before and having heard so many good things about the tours, I fully expected it to be good. But I had no idea how valuable it would be to have such a knowledgeable guide and to have so many details taken care of for us. The whole experience just felt so "right."

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Even though it was cut short due to rain and wind my favorite thing was probably the sheep dog demonstration. I could have watched that for hours. What I enjoy most about travel is learning about and seeing how people live in different places. This was one of those opportunities."

Charlotte

Portland, OR

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our guide Liz was outstanding. Can't say enough about her knowledge, humor, kindness to all. The food and lodging was outstanding. No complaints. I would of liked to hike a little more but knew that we were in a group and didn't always have time to go off and explore on our own. The coach driver Marcin was wonderful. So courteous and did a fanstatic job driving.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The island of Iona. Climbed to the highest point on the island and had an amazing 360 degree view."

Marcia

Tulsa, OK

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a great tour. We had a wonderful guide and interesting group of fellow travelers. I really enjoyed learning all about the History of Scotland. I really want to come back and stay longer in several places.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think the prehistoric crannogs were the most unexpected "wow" moment. But I was also '"wowed" by Stirling Castle and Cawdor Castle. I think my very most favorite was Gillie McNabb's playing of the bagpipes in Kenmore. She was awesome!"

Richard

Rutland, VT

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had a wonderful experience with Rick Steves in Scotland. Loved the country, the people, the tour, accommodations, pace and schedule.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Actually the Ferries between Oban and Iona gave me my favorite scenic thrill, followed closely by Glen Coe and the Ben Nevis area."

Gary

Redmond, WA

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first Rick Steves tour and we thoroughly enjoyed it. Liz is an excellent guide and a delightful storyteller. Her vast knowledge, obvious love of Scotland, and wonderful presentation was one of the best parts of the tour. There's lots of interesting stuff in Scotland, but the way Liz tied it together with history and stories made it an exceptionally enjoyable experience. The weather wasn't great all the time, but being from the Northwest, we kind of expected that. We loved the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to choose: I guess I would say the Loch Ness cruise (didn't see the monster, dang!) followed by Urquhart castle. I also really liked the Culloden battle field and wish we could have spent more time there, but I might be in the minority on that. I also have to mention Gilley (not sure on the name?) the bagpiper at Loch Tay. I love bagpipe music and she was amazing. Also, everything else on the tour."

Erin

Gig Harbor, WA

Tour: 09/12/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved this tour! It was a great overview of Scotland.The only thing I would do different is make it longer & include more of the northern area & the Orkneys. I would also love to see James lead a tour of the Hebrides Islands.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Castles in general & the history behind them. I loved the Highlands around Glenco. Absolutely stunning scenery!"

Tom

Picton, ON

Tour: 09/12/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great guide, great group, well designed itinerary....it was a very enjoyable experience, despite the weather. The well designed itinerary, plus James's insights, (and singing!), brought Scottish history and culture alive.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Culloden battlefield, with its excellent indoor displays, and especially the guided tour of the actual field of combat, was my tour highlight. James had prepared us well with his advance commentary, and then the story of Bonny Prince Charlie was brought to life by the displays and the local guide on the battlefield. Neil and his sheep dogs would be my second choice."

Lynne

San Francisco, CA

Tour: 09/12/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a wonderful tour where we saw many memorable sights. The food was very good and the smaller group was nice. The other tour members were great. The hotels were lovely. Our tour guide, James, was not to be beat with his knowledge of all facets of Scotland and kindness.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I particularly loved the sheep dog demonstrations and Cawdor Castle and it's beautiful gardens. But all the sights were very interesting."

Suzanne

Picton, ON

Tour: 09/12/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The only thing keeping this experience from being perfect was the tail end of Storm Ali. Unfortunately this weather cancelled our trip to the Isle of Mull, and Iona. Very disappointed as Mull is the ancestral home of my clan. Alternate options were arranged for the day but we stayed in our snug room and watched the drama of the storm unfolding outside our window. Awe-some!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The walk to see the ancient trees and waterfalls in The Hermitage. Again, filled me with awe."

Teresa

Sequim, WA

Tour: 09/12/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Just what we have come to expect from a Rick Steves tour. History recent and past, culture, and a fantastic tour guide, James. I would recommend him to anyone interested in Scotland.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many, but meeting Dale and his border collies was very interesting and so different from the demonstrations on the Ireland and England/Wales trips. Loved his directness and his family of dogs was really fun to watch. Also, the lady who played the bagpipes for us. Oh my, was she funny, down to earth, and so so very talented!! Both were true highlights."

Bill

Saint Louis, MO

Tour: 09/12/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Scotland is our ancestral home and has been on my bucket list for a long time. We have been on three prior RS tours so we were familiar with with to expect. This tour did not disappoint despite the weather. The countryside is beautiful, the people friendly with a great sense of humor. The beer is excellent and fine scotch whiskey. The food was good but not great except for the Fish n Chips in Oban. Our guide, James, was knowledgeable, considerate, helpful, and funny. Also a talented guy

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting Glencoe without a doubt. The natural landscape is exceptional in its raw beauty and was awe inspiring."

Geri

Madison, WI

Tour: 09/10/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Brian Hay was fabulous. After people realized what an understated Scottish sense of humor was, we fell into delight with his comments. Everything you thought of was Scottish, you got a sampling of it: how to make scones, pub experience, sheepdogs, bagpipe music, medieval cathedrals and castles. There was a good balance between tour time and your own exploring, dinners with the group and on your own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We were not able to go to Iona because of the sea water alert. Brian always seemed to come up with plan B (sometimes, plan C). He took us to Ardalanish, Isle of Mull weaving workshop. I thought that I was in heaven! I bought several skeins of Aran yarn. While I am knitting my cable-design scarf, I will be remembering the wonderful time that I had in Scotland."

Frank

Charleston, SC

Tour: 09/10/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We had a very good time on our first RS tour (and multi-day tour of any kind). The 10-day Scotland tour was a good introduction to a country neither my wife or I had visited before because it showed us places it would have taken much longer to discover on our own. I liked the group, and the tour guide was outstanding. The earliest part of the tour was the strongest, with a nice combination of activities/walking. The hotels were fine, nicely idiosyncratic yet comfortable. Meals were good.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I thought Day 3 was a WOW moment in it's entirety. Starting the day at Culross palace and village was wonderful, enhanced by being there "before opening" and getting to talk to the guide/manager. The village of Kenmore was delightful as was the Kenmore Inn and being led by Brian on an impromptu walk/tour of the abandoned Kenmore Castle before dinner. The bagpipe demo was great, enhanced by my wife's playing...."

Dennis

Woodbury, MN

Tour: 09/10/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I had anticipated doing this trip for a long time. Scotland has always held a mystique for me. It was great. I had no idea that Scotland was so wooded or had so many waterfalls. The people on the tour were wonderful and Brian was extremely knowledgeable with a great sense of timing and humor. The schedule was a bit full and there were times I wished we had more downtime or time to spend on our own especially at Kenmore.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Not sure that I had one major wow moment. I really enjoyed the Crannog and the shepherd dog performances, but probably the hit was the valley in the Highlands where we were surrounded by waterfalls about every 300 yards. Urquhart castle was fascinating and the view was wonderful of Loch Ness. The view across the channel to Iona was especially memorable as the book of Kells is a fascination to me. As a golfer the visit to St Andrews was also special."

Herb

Tallahassee, FL

Tour: 09/10/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our second RS tour and it was every bit as wonderful as our first delightful experience in Rome. The people we met and enjoyed on the tour were great, seasoned travelers and our guide, Brian, was was knowledgeable, hospitable, and had a great sense of humor. He was the perfect guide for the trip!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We had a bunch, but the biggest surprise for me was the stop at the impressive Kelpie horse statues."

Charles

North Bend, WA

Tour: 09/10/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I have done other traveling but this was the best. You get a laid out plan with a well educated guide. Any issues come up the guide can help solve them. I learned so much about the places we went. I cant wait to do this again.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Touching places that my ancestors touched."

Carol

Tallahassee, FL

Tour: 09/10/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We were fortunate to have THE best group and guide we could have possibly hoped for. Extremely compatible traveling companions and we feel that was due, in large part, to the tour expectations that Rick Steve's puts forward -- no complainers, adventurous people who are good striking out on their own, who are flexible when plans change (due to weather, etc.) and have good mobility. Loved the sheepdog day and the weaving demonstration on Mull.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Glencoe - totally WOW. It was not what I was expecting and it was just majestic and impressive. It was a drab, drizzly day and I don't think anybody minded."

Francis

Fresno, CA

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Martin was our tour guide and it his knowledge of the history of Scotland that had me hooked for the trip. Also his wonderful sense of humor made the trip great fun. He was a constant source of information even when we were walking from one place to another. Also it was interesting to see the information on the Eriskin family name that is associated with the Earl of Marr.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Dont have one it was all great."

Tony

Brunswick, GA

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had high expectations (having been on a RS tour before) and they were completely met.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"As a golfer, it was hands down St. Andrews. We went early to play the course and really enjoyed returning with the tour, being with Mark as he drove the bus right through the course and having time to have lunch at the clubhouse of the most famous golf course in the world. Our wives enjoyed the cathedral ruins and the shopping there-what a beautiful and unique little university town!"

Lynda

Brunswick, GA

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

First of all, let me say it is hard to mess up Scotland! It is an awesomely beautiful, historic place. I felt the tour allowed us to experience its many facets. Could we have spent longer in certain places? Of course, but then we would have missed others. We were blessed with a congenial mixed-age group which brought more value to the tour. Edinburgh was enchanting. As with many RS tours, there was a mix of city and countryside. Our guide Martin, was a delightful gentleman and scholar.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Scotland's charm quietly invaded my soul. I never tired of seeing the rock walls and the sheep. However, my wow moment centers round ruins. This way I can have two wow moments: the ruins of the Cathedral at St. Andrews and the ruins of Urquhart Castle. So beautiful. A shout out to Gilly the bagpipe player and Neil the Shepherd. The crannogs were a nice surprise, I didn't expect much there and was really impressed by the Center."

Lawrence

Reno, NV

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

This tour follows on the heels of our tour in Switzerland.I found it difficult to rate this tour; good or very good? I thought the itinerary was good for the time allotted.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The dramatic views of the ancient castles."

Barbara

Coupeville, WA

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

Enjoyed Scotland, but wished we had a more personable guide.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I really was wowed by the Prehistoric Cannogs. The on-site guide was so informative and realistic. Great learning about how the people survived in the homesteads. Totally unexpected."

Caroline

Fresno, CA

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was an excellent itinerary. There was a good balance of things to see inter spaced with free time. It had interesting local education along with history. Enjoyed the history offered by our guide Martin. He presented with a great deal of humor. The driver was courteous and patient, the bus clean and well taken care of. The hotels were outstanding. Loved that they were small B & B type hotels. This made it much more personable. We had a friendly group of fellow travelers.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I'm not sure there was a true WOW moment. Overall loved the highlands and the local flavor. The favorite B & B had to be in Kenmore - a beautiful setting and hotel. Enjoyed the bagpipes and sheep dogs. Loved Urquart and Stirling Castle."

Kathleen

Reno, NV

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

It's very difficult to rate this tour. I would put it between very good and good. The tour experience depends a lot on the guide. I did like the itinerary, the castles and the overall scenic drives and countryside.

David

Olympia, WA

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Every day was packed with great sights and experience. Zero boredom factor.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Castles, lakes and the sea and I loved the sheep farm/border collie stop, Oban & Iona."

Donald

Brunswick, GA

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We loved the Scotland tour. We had such a great group of people on our tour and cant say enough about our guide. We would definitely consider another Rick Steves tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing St Andrews would have to be favorite wow moment. Walking on the Old Course where so many legends in golf have walked and also getting in 18 holes of golf was great. Pictures taken on the famous Swilken Bridge was also very special."

Clifford

Santa Rosa, CA

Tour: 09/05/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Though we've followed the RS travel philosophy for many years of overseas travel, this was our first participation in an organized tour of any kind. Our guide Anne was personable and very knowledgeable, setting a comfortable pace with lots of freedom to do our own thing. We certainly got more out of our travels with Anne than if we free-formed on our own, making for a memorable and enlightening trip through Scotland and its history.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Overall, Scotland was an unexpected WOW moment. Really enjoyed the visit to the Leault Farm and marveling at shepherd Neil and his amazing sheep herding border collies. Conquering (and enjoying) haggis and tasting through some amazing whiskies was great, too."

Susan

Santa Rosa, CA

Tour: 09/05/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My first experience with traveling in a tour group was a very pleasant surprise. It was a great history lesson as well as an inspirational experience. I enjoyed getting to know all of my fellow travelers and felt comfortable with all of the places we visited.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Neil with the sheepdogs. His relationship with his dogs and sheep was amazing."

Robert

Palmyra, VA

Tour: 09/05/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first Rick Steves tour and we honestly weren't sure. It exceeded our expectations to the extent we are looking at other tours for this next year. We had a outstnading guide, Anne, who was incredibly knowledgeable, tuned to the needs and interests of her travelers, and constantly looking forward, planning to ensure all went well. And...we totally bought into the company philosophy which seemed to fit well...hitting the big things but experiencing things off the "beaten path."

Favorite "WOW" moment

"`Playing golf in Scotland. It wasn't scheduled, but our guide, Anne made it happen for three of us."

Sandra

Jefferson, MD

Tour: 09/05/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a wonderful time in Scotland. The trip was just as described. Well organized. Great group of travelers. I highly recommend it.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The "Palace" at Culross was a wonderful surprise. Though not a palace, it was unique and amazing. I have never seen a place like it. Well worth the visit. And of course the sheep and dog show! What incredible dogs. I was just mesmerized watching them work. I would not have believed that dogs could be trained like that if I had not seen it. No idea how the dogs know which one he is talking to but they do and they sure know the commands."

Laura

Livermore, CA

Tour: 09/05/18

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

It was good. I liked our start in Edinburgh but felt some of the days out didn't have enough experiences. We weren't able to do the gondola ride and nothing was substituted which would have been nice to have an alternative plan. We also weren't able to go to Iona but there was a back up plan but it still felt like a lot of driving that day for not much

Marion

Palmyra, VA

Tour: 09/05/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was pleasantly surprised with this coach tour...I was afraid there would be so much time on the bus, but, it was really broken up with plenty of stops. I loved the free time we had. The hotels (B&Bs) were fabulous. I loved going to recommended pubs and restaurants.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Definitely meeting the shepherd with his working sheep dogs. It was an "off the beaten path" spot and the gentleman was no nonsense, but friendly and really cared that we understood what he and his dogs accomplished."

Cheryl

San Diego, CA

Tour: 09/03/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Tour was jammed full morning till evening. Good historical information about Scotland. The our needed much more free time or time on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Sheep herding demo Bagpipe demo."

Tamar

Issaquah, WA

Tour: 09/03/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

All the activities were wonderful, especially the Sheep Dog Sheep Herding at Neil's. Helen did an excellent job of telling us about the history of Scotland and the places we visited When we could not take the ferry to Iona due to weather she got us to great native activities, the Ardalanish Isle of Mull Weavers and Duart Castle. John our driver was very friendly and shared his knowledge about the places we visited. We felt safe and comfortable all the time we were on the bus.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Sheep Dog Sheep Herding and the Gondola ride to the Nevis Range ski area with a hike to the view point."

Steve

Woodinville, WA

Tour: 09/03/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

the best.first rs tour.really fun.well planned.helen is the best guide.smart,fun,informative,runs things on time.very very smart.great people in group.back up visits were also great when plan was not possible-closed ferry. great way to travel.being handled is great.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"many wow moments border collies roundup crannogs both incredible!!! loves country and history and i don't know or interested in history until this trip.again helen made it al interesting. all hotels were good. Bonham awesome,kenmore great,inverness and oban also were perfect"

James

Niwot, CO

Tour: 09/03/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Every Rick Steves' tour never disappoints. The days are comfortably packed with fantastic sights and experiences. I have learned so much and Helen was a gem. The tour group was wonderful. What I noticed about the couples was that each couple was very loving and caring to one another. A great atmosphere for enjoying the tour. I hope we can do another tour next year. Rick Steves' tours are my favorite addiction!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My Husband loved Sterling Castle and my moment was when I became aware of the thrill of the highlands of Scotland. From the invigorating weather, the primal scenery, the lovely people, the Scottish spirit, etc. gee I wish I was Scottish."

Barbara

Kingston, WA

Tour: 09/03/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Normally, we plan our own travel and tours, but decided for our 20th Anniversary to let Rick Steves do all of the planning for us. It was a very good decision, as we had a wonderful time. From the introductory meeting to the final goodbyes, all went smoothly and we enjoyed the many experiences. Our tour guide, Helen, was exceptional! She was very personable and knowledgable about all things Scotland, being from Scotland, she shared many wonderful historical stories with us each day.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Just sitting in the front of the bus, watching the beautiful landscapes go by with castles, sheep, cows, mountains and valleys was especially enjoyable. My favorite moments were the visit to the crannog, shearing and feeding the sheep at Neil's sheepdog demo, and the beautiful Isle of Mull."

Jodie

San Diego, CA

Tour: 09/03/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Best of Scotland tour was wonderful. I have always wanted to go to the Edinburgh and to the Highlands and this tour offered both. Scotland delivered all its best. We were lucky that we did not encounter bad weather for most of the trip, except at Oban and the Isle of Mull. But it never daunted the spirit of the group in my estimation. I loved learning about Scottish history.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite wow moment was arriving at Glencoe after some rain and seeing all the waterfalls that had appeared and were flowing down the peaks. For me it was quintessential Scotland."

Robert

Kingston, WA

Tour: 09/03/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had never been to Scotland before. Helen was a great tour guide and all my fellow travelers were wonderful. Scotland was an interesting place to visit. So much history!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Crannogs Centre was the most unusual highlight. Didn't know anything about the Iron Age."

Janet

Woodinville, WA

Tour: 09/03/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first Rick Steve's tour and will not be the last. Everything was perfect.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the sheep dog experience and the Scottish folk music at the pub in Inverness"

Elizabeth

Oxford, MI

Tour: 09/03/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great trip! Great guide and bus driver; they were an excellent team. Bad weather kept us from taking the ferry to Iona, but Helen put plan B in place and we had a great day anyway. I loved the frequent short stops for photo ops that also allowed us to stretch our legs a bit. I love your tours!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The surprise picnic at the Cava Cairns. I knew a picnic was scheduled that day, but having seen no food on the bus, I wasn't sure what was to happen. But we came out of the cairns and there it was: two picnic tables of delicious meats, cheeses, etc, beverages and desserts. What a lovely place to have a picnic. Also, we took our group picture right there after the picnic. And imagine our surprise when at our group dinner that night, Helen passed out a copy of the photo to each of us!!"

Orest

North Vancouver, BC

Tour: 09/03/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Scotland exceeded all of my expectations. I love the Scots, their accents, their wellcome. It is a very green, fresh air country. Their Highlands history is wild. Overwhelming key to our tour success was our guide ,Helen. Her enthusiasm was infectious and with the usual excellent demographics of Rick clients, the result was an A + tour. The comfort, space of our bus and the excellence of our Weegie driver. The Bonham hotel in Edinburgh.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Neil's border collie shepherding extravaganza. Wow! Neck in neck, the Crannog at Kenmore, especially the fire making demo. Such enthusiastic hosts. The rain coming at us sideways at Oban on the way to an excellent fish restaurant. The misty morning walk to Edinburgh Castle. The starting and ending hotel, the Bonham, wanted to stay on just for their breakfasts and single malt advice."

Leonard

Edwardsville, IL

Tour: 09/03/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our Scotland trip experience was what keeps Rick Steves people signing up for more tours. We learned a lot while having fun. We returned amazed at how much we had seen and done without feeling rushed or hurried. We grew very fond of our guide and admired her energy level. We made friends among our fellow travelers. A great trip!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to the crannog was at the time my favorite because I was fascinated how well the story of these ancient people and their way of life is told by the reconstruction and the guides. But, on reflection, I think the visit to Stirling Castle had an even greater impact. I was impressed by the amount of effort and the care in the work to rebuild the castle and you don't have to tax your imagination to be awed."

Eileen

Lake Forest Park, WA

Tour: 09/03/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Enjoyed the trip immensely: found Edinburgh charming with a lot of history to check into with its architecture, beautiful gardens, Museum of Scotland, & coffee houses. I found Inverness quite urban & Oban very much like Seattle & Bergen. Our guide, Helen, was quite knowledgeable, friendly, surprisingly spry, & full of tidbits of Scottish history, the characters that peopled them, & national policies today. A worthy excursion!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Probably visiting Inverness, walking the streets, & stopping in Leakey's Bookshop to see all they had to offer & strolling hback to the hotel after dinner hearing K. T. Turnstall singing in concert across the River Ness."

Eileen

Davis, CA

Tour: 09/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was an exceptionally wonderful experience. Scotland is a beautiful country with a very sad history. First of all we had a wonderful guide who was extremely informative about culture, history, current politics, sharing music, song and poetry. The variety of experiences was great!! Walking to the restaurant the first day was invigorating after feeling so tired from traveling and a wonderful introduction to the area in which we stayed. Having the "strenuous" walk up to Edinburgh Castl

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I absolutely loved going to see the working sheepdogs and learning about the shepherd life and how he trains and treats his dogs and sheep. This was a highlight of the trip for me. Secondly, the visit to the Crannog Visitor Center and learning about life there."

Neyla

San Jose, CA

Tour: 09/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had a wonderful first time Rick Steves experience! I think I attribute this mostly because of our amazing tour guide James. His passion for his country was contagious. His knowledge of history, politics & sociology invaluable! His ability to paint the landscapes of hundreds of years ago thru song and tale simply unforgetable. (Don't loose him Rick Steves!)

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many moments! But one in particular (though this might seem simplistic it was different from most of we did) was the stop to the sheep dog ranch. I'm not an animal lover particularly but I was so impressed with these dogs and their love of master! Again educational for someone like me who still appreciates learning."

Mary Anne

Spring Hill, TN

Tour: 09/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was the first tour from Rick Steeves that we took. An excellent experience. Made 23 friends that made my experience in my mind better.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The landscape was beautiful."

Jeffrey

Spring Hill, TN

Tour: 09/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was beyond my expectations and my expectations were high. From the daily destinations to the hotel accommodations and, especially, the tour guide. I couldn't have asked for a better experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The whole experience of Edinburgh. From the castle to the memorials spread around the city to the Royal Mile and whisky tasting ventures. We definitely could have spent a few more days in the city and not exhausted all of its possibilities."

Deborah

Silver Lake, OH

Tour: 09/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As our first-ever group tour, this far exceeded every expectation. Our tour guide was outstanding, helping to understand the history, culture and current politics in Scotland. Our group was so much fun and every person was a pleasure to get to know. The creation of our closed Facebook group was a unanimous decision and it is great to be able to share pictures and stay in touch. It was a personally enriching experience for me.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It is difficult to pick one experience but I was "wow'ed" by the trip to the sheep farm and the demonstration of the dog's skills. The shepherd was amazing as he sheared allowed me to help shear a sheep. I was also "wow'ed" but a visit from the piper, Gillie. She was funny and entertaining and so easy to get to know. My husband volunteered to try to play the bagpipe and developed a new understanding of the strength and skill needed."

Judy

Bellevue, WA

Tour: 09/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour lived up to the Rick Steves reputation. Hotels were gracious, comfortable and had wonderful character- especially in Kenmore and Oban. I don't just mean they were old but managed with pride and in lovely locations. Edinburgh is such a walkable and gracious city. I had forgotten how fascinating it is. In contrast the countryside, especially the highlands had a different beauty. The hills, the forests, the lochs, and the seaside were such a combination of color and weather.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"This hard to pick as there were many. The visit to Oban and ferries to Mull and Iona, especially Iona, are definitely at the top of the list."

Amy

Vernon Hills, IL

Tour: 08/29/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The itinerary was jam packed, but excellent. I sometimes felt like I wanted more free time or more time in some stops, but there isn't anything on the tour I would take out. Our guide Brian was exceptional and provided a great history lesson on Scotland and answered all of our questions.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting Aonach Mor and hiking around the mountains for the gorgeous views of the valley and Ben Nevis. Glencoe and Culloden were hauntingly beautiful."

Alan

Collegeville, PA

Tour: 08/29/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was excellent. It was filled with so much interesting history, sights to visit, beautiful scenery and great stories by our tour guide, Brian Hay.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to the Crannog center on Loch Tay. Although this site was a recreation, it provided an important insight into how people lived there 2500 years ago. To me, it was amazing how resourceful they were, given the conditions and environment of that period of time."

Martha

Seattle, WA

Tour: 08/29/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

No negatives except not enough free time. It was a fun and good learning experience. Good to get away from home. Also it was important to experience another culture.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Trip to Iona was memorable--rain included."

Mollie

Lynnwood, WA

Tour: 08/29/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was great - a nice mix of cities and countryside. The landscape is absolutely stunning in Scotland. I really enjoyed some of the drives, especially through Glencoe. We also enjoyed the scotch tasting. We are not big scotch drinkers, but it was interesting to learn about how it is made and how to "taste" the scotch.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think one of our wow moments was enjoying Oban."

Judith

Seattle, WA

Tour: 08/29/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As always the Rick Steves Tours were very informative and packed full of interesting things to see and do, with plenty of time to explore on our own. Our excellent guide, Brian, made the tour a pleasure.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's hard to pick one moment or event, but the morning spent at the Crannog Center stands out as particularly interesting and opened my eyes to the high level of technical skill the Bronze Age peoples had developed."

Jayne

Avondale, PA

Tour: 08/29/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

For a 10-day tour, it was well-paced, friendly, well-organized and fun. It hit nearly all the must-see sites & included several diverse/smaller interesting spots & "Rick Steves" experiences that were pleasant surprises. The group size was perfect & fellow travelers were interesting, friendly and great company (Definitely no grumps in our group!) We really enjoyed having free-time to explore on our own, but found the group travel time just right, too. A great value & experience!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"@ Cava Cairns, discovered stones placed nearly @ major compass points and 30 degrees apart. Fascinating for pre-history culture! @ Crannogs was stunned by intelligence & creativity of ancient people who lived there."

Sandra

Deer Park, WA

Tour: 08/29/18

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

This tour hit the Main Tourist stops of Scotland, Food was good, Hotels were unique and Brian hit the high points of Modern Scotland. He also gave a brief history of Scotland and its wars with England.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The wow moments for me were at Culloden and on Iona & Oban. Our Stay at Glenburnie was delightful. I was pleased to have a short visit with Neil Ross, the shepherd, about everyday life for a Scot not just dealing with those selling something for the tourist industry (most of whom were European not even British). The hikes to the Hermitage and Ben Nevis were also exhilarating."

Bernadette

Lakewood, CO

Tour: 08/27/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first Rick Steves tour. I thought the tour was excellent, like a very well run machine. I especially liked the the way we could bypass getting tickets to sites. I did not like using the vox, mainly the earplugs were poor. I used the ones I got on the city bus tour in Edinburgh. Didn't think the Black Linn Falls was that special. More time in Dunkeld. Would have liked to see a parade of bag pipers.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I especially liked the the day on Iona. I am a history buff. It was a very spiritual and peaceful place. We hiked to the beach and would have loved to spend more time there. I collected shells on the beach. I also liked the visit to St. Andrews and we walked the golf course and walked along the beach. I enjoyed all the sites in Edinburgh. We spent extra days there and got to see a lot of the city."

Bruce

Lakewood, CO

Tour: 08/27/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first group tour and glad it was a Rick Steve's Tour. I realize that it was special. Although, when I received the list of fellow travelers I was shocked that the group size was 27. I was expecting around 20. As it turns out 27 people take longer to get on and off the bus (a negative). People in the back of the bus are too far from the action in the front. Responses to questions from Colin were answered by the people in the front-he couldn't hear us from the back.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We walked to the north shore on Iona and arriving at the beach was that special find."

Judith

Morrison, CO

Tour: 08/27/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I loved the diversity of experiences and scenery of glorious Scotland. Each day brought a new adventure and learning. I initially struggled with the Rick Steves philosophy and restraints of group travel, but I adjusted and went with the flow. This was my first RS tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I experienced so many wows, but our pilgrimage to Iona clearly stands out at the top of my favorites. The weather was glorious, the local guide was exemplary, and the raw beauty took my breath away. I intend to return!"

Harvey

Mandeville, LA

Tour: 08/27/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our second tour (the first was with Amanda in Spain in 2016). Colin was outstanding . The hotels were in great locations although the Parliament House was a bit too small and congested. Also, there was one staff member at the Parliament House ( a young lady with glasses from the Dublin area) who went above and beyond the call of duty. Overall, we enjoyed the tour. The other travelers were all great people.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The most "wow" moment for me was the sheep herding exhibition with the Shelter Collies. Truly amazing and something we may not have experienced but for this tour."

Roberta

Vancouver, WA

Tour: 08/27/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Colin was very knowledgeable and had a good sense of humor. Enjoyed seeing Scotland with him.

Beverly

Sevierville, TN

Tour: 08/27/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was everything I hoped for. I hate we didn't have more time to spend in some places, but it's hard when there are so many things to see you can't spend all day or you'd never get anywhere. I would do it again and again.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I have to say I have thought about this for a while and I loved the highlands. I enjoyed everything but the highlands just took my breath away. I just can't imagine anything else being as beautiful. I did truly enjoy the sheepherding too, those dogs sure are smart! I enjoyed looking for Nessie too, the scenery was just beautiful."

Lana

Mesa, AZ

Tour: 08/27/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I don't think we could have done and seen what we did had we not been on a Rick Steves' Tour - sheer sheep, feed baby lambs, play a bag pipe, dip our feet in Loch Lomond, cruise across Loch Mess, and get to the isles of Mull and Iona. There was so much to do. On this Rick Steves' Tour we saw the beauty and variety of The Scottish countryside, learned the meaning of Gaelic words and visited many important places from Scotland's history.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing fireworks accompanied by classical music eminate from the Edinburgh castle."

John

Conyers, GA

Tour: 08/27/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great guide! Great destination. Bus driver was great as well, as were all the accommodations. We actually had great sunny weather for the most part as well. All good.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Iona. I for one wasn't even aware of it. Completely unique and unexpected."

Lynn

Gig Harbor, WA

Tour: 08/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As this was my wife and I first tour experience I was a little apprehensive, but it turned out exceeding my expectations. The tour was Fun! I loved having someone else do the driving and all the planning and activity coordination. It allowed me to relax and enjoy. The hotels had lots of character and were in great locations to explore the local areas. The dinners were good and varied and in fun locations. The sightseeing tours were both educational and great fun.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many. I loved Edinburgh. I need to go back and spend some more time there. Also,being a golfer, I loved going to St Andrews and watching the golfers play the 1st and 18th holes on the "Old" course."

Deborah

Gig Harbor, WA

Tour: 08/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

One of the best trips of my life! I learned so much about the history, the people and the beauty that makes Scotland so special. This trip surpassed my expectations and fulfilled so many things on my bucket list.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Every where we went had a "WOW" facter but my favorites were fulfilling a few bucket list whishes. Getting a chance to play a bagpipe was amazing. The sheepdog demonstration was unbelievable and to actually take part of shearing a sheep was awesome. Attending the Highland Games in Kenmore was a wish come true. Loch Ness was so beautiful eventhough we didn't see Nessie. Urquhart Castle was breathtaking. Oban and the Isles charming."

John

Columbus, OH

Tour: 08/22/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The only problem, as with all conducted tours - when you find a spot/place that one would like to linger at, well...

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Iona"

Sharon

Mill Creek, WA

Tour: 08/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very well organized. Good balance of activities and free time. Julia was a fabulous tour guide. Very informative, personable. Looked out for everyone's needs. Able to attend Highland games one afternoon which was a unigue experience as well as a "fiddle" session in an Inverness Pub. Julia even showed off some of her dance moves. Our group was very cohesive.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Really enjoyed the trip to Iona. Would be great to spend a night there. Not enough time to really explore the island with current ferry times/constraints."

Feliza

Seal Beach, CA

Tour: 08/22/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Julia did a very good job as our guide. She set a nice pace for the group. She made it clear we needed to be on time but didn't threaten us with consequences. I like the smaller group size. I think we get into more places because we're not a huge group and there's room to spread out in the bus. I appreciated the scope of the trip, the big city, the country, the seaside. Accommodations were nice, bathrooms were tight. Very nice group of travelers.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I have been to Edinburgh Castle on a previous tour. I enjoyed the National Museum of Scotland; the Culross country mansion; the Dunkeld country hotel; Rachel the guide at the crannogs was excellent; Dewars distillery tour; the sheep farm & border collie demonstration was great; Julia took us to MacGregor's Pub for a great night of local music and she danced!; visit to Iona and the ferry ride home when Julia played the fiddle; and Cawdor Castle because it is a home."

Mary Ann

Santa Fe, NM

Tour: 08/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Julia was knowledgeable, organized, and most importantly she was great fun. Her love of Scotland was contagious and I caught it. I thought the itinerary was a good mix of urban and rural and had enough free time for exploring.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"This question is always difficult. Watching the sheepdogs work was definitely a highlight. However, just having the opportunity to see the dramatic landscapes of the highlands was awe inspiring. On just an interesting note, no pun intended, the bagpipe demonstration was such fun."

Patti

Chilliwack, BC

Tour: 08/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour began with a lively group of travellers who quickly became friends. We saw, discovered and heard history and local folklore. We mingled with local people at local pubs and establishments. The 10 days were definitely jam-packed with activities, but there was still some free time to explore on our own,

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The local guide in Edinburgh taking us to unique neighbourhoods."

Melinda

Carlsbad, CA

Tour: 08/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a wonderful trip and Julia was a wonderful tour guide.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the sheepdog demonstration with Neal. We also enjoyed the Crannog Centre on Lock Tay. Also, the music at McGregor's was great fun!"

Patricia

Ankeny, IA

Tour: 08/22/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Another excellent tour experience with RS! In combination with the touring we did on our own in Scotland, we felt like we got a very good taste of what the country is like. Our biggest disappointment was that we didn't have more time in Oban. While it was interesting to visit the Isle of Iona, I'm not sure it was worth the overhead of getting there. We would have preferred to spend more time along the west coastline.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My personal favorite was the time we spent in Dunkeld when we could mix with the locals at the local Highland Games and walk along the river. Most of my favorite trip experiences were things we did on our own in Edinburgh, like attending the Tattoo and visiting the Palace of Holyrood and the RMS Britannia."

Clayton

Kansas City, MO

Tour: 08/22/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I was pleased with variety of experiences and the leadership of our guide, Julia. Liked the balance of walking and riding the bus, the expected sights and unexpected.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The sheep dog demonstration."

Allan

Ankeny, IA

Tour: 08/22/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Great mix of activities. The locations we visited fit my interests well. Would like to have spent more time in Oban. The trip to Iona took a lot of time. More to do in Oban than time allowed.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Highland Games and walk along the river back to the hotel in Dunkeld. A great glimpse into local culture followed by a scenic walk!!"

Margaret

Columbus, Ohio

Tour: 08/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall, this tour was five-star! The local guides were knowledgeable and friendly, and Julia was so helpful and knowledgeable. I'm looking forward to my next tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I really enjoyed the sheep herding experience and the visits to Stirling Castle and St.Andrews were memorable. This tour was designed to maximize our learning experiences!!"

Jayne

Bothell, WA

Tour: 08/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

What a wonderful adventure! Now I know why this has become such a popular destination. The country is filled with such a variety of history and beauty. It was great that tips for the guides,drivers, etc. were included in the price of the tour and we didn't have to mettle with that during the tour. Enjoyed having the headsets/wireless units as that made is much easier to hear what the guide was saying. It is obvious that Rick Steves holds to his vision of everyone having a wonderful experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Loved the ferry and bus ride to get to the Isle of Iona. Iona was beautiful and filled with such history. Would have loved more time there to get to visit more of the Isle."

Steve

Chilliwack, BC

Tour: 08/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

At the meet and greet our tour group met as strangers and left as friends. Our tour leader, Julia, set the tone for the tour and made us all feel welcome. The tour was busy but there was some down time where we were able to relax and enjoy Scotland on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Free time at the Highland Games in Dunkeld, mingling with the locals, walking back along the river back to our hotel and then the lady piper playing after dinner. Excellent day"

Mary

Ellicott City, MD

Tour: 08/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall tour experience was just as I expect from a RS tour: Great guide, roomy bus, comfortable hotels, WONDERFUL local guides and experiences.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment was the visit to the crannog. We had a lovely guide who was passionate about her work. It showed through her presentation and her interaction with the group."

Kelly

Cumming, GA

Tour: 08/20/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour guide was very personable and extremely knowledgeable, which enhanced our trip greatly. The hotels we stayed in were wonderful!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting Iona! Such a unique community with such warm people."

Sharon

Boise, ID

Tour: 08/20/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We thoroughly enjoyed the whole trip, from exciting Edinburgh during Festival to picturesque seaside Oban. Our travel group was a great mix, with no clinkers and all the inter communication we wanted.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment was more like an "ahhhhhh". For some reason I loved Oban. Our room was in the gabled garret of the hotel with a cozy view of the busy harbor and intermittent peeks at the many islands beyond. I thought at one point I might have been transported back in time to old Seattle, or somewhere in the San Juan's."

David

Eldridge, IA

Tour: 08/20/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a great trip. Martin was a fantastic tour leader. He was very knowledgeable, and was very good at making sure all of us were on time and were we needed to be at the appropriate time. He did a great job making adjustments to our plan for the day depending on the weather. If I would think about going on this trip again I would find out what week Martin would lead the trip, and I would book it for that week. You need to keep him as a tour leader. He is that good at what he does.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The trip to the island of Staffa. 3 of of us on the trip went on our own to the Island of Staffa and it was amazing. When we left Oban in the morning it was raining and the weather was bad. Martin thought we were crazy for wanting to got to Staffa. The weather cleared and we went to Staffa. We only had and hour on the island, but it was 1000% better than what I expected. Being a golfer I expected the trip to St Andrews would be my highlight, but Staffa was equal to my expectations"

Regina

King George, VA

Tour: 08/20/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

A wonderful, amazing, educational trip around a beautiful country.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My WOW moment was visiting Mull and Iona."

Randall

Cumming, GA

Tour: 08/20/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Martin provide many extra surprises that were appreciated. One small negative. We were promised laundry service at Inverness and packed accordingly. On arrival late afternoon, the laundry service they could not guarantee our laundry would be completed by the time we were to leave the following day (36 hours later). We were left scrambling. Only choice left was at the hotel but cost of small bag of laundry was 80 pounds.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to have just one. Crannog Center was exciting to me. Inverness and River Tae was beautiful. If course Edinburgh castle is overwhelming."

Elaine

Bluffton, IN

Tour: 08/20/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed the tour and learned a lot. Our bus driver, John, was great. He added to the success of the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The isle of Iona."

David

Bluffton, IN

Tour: 08/20/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was well organized-hotels, group meals, and descriptions of tour sites and narration along the road course. The radio receivers were great and allowed everyone to hear. The coach had a good audio system while en route that added to understanding the history and culture.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I enjoyed the history of Scotland and the landscapes. The Culloden battle made sense after seeing the field and the museum. The repercussions of the battle were more impressive than the battle."

Thomas

Pawling, NY

Tour: 08/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Everything about our tour was great. My wife and my sister, who traveled with us, cannot say enough about our tour guide Brian Hay and Colin , our bus driver who made the trip for us. Brian was incredibly well informed, organized and his knowledge of history about every location we visited added another dimension that we would not have had if we had not been on a tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Touring the castle and viewing the Highlands"

Janice

Bend, OR

Tour: 08/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I've never taken a tour before and wasn't sure what to expect. My tour guide and group was outstanding!! I had the best time and learned so much about Scotland too. We got to experience so many wonderful things. We had fun drinking whiskey, laughing a lot, and doing so many fun things together. Touring the island of Scotland has been a lifetime dream for me. I've heard stories from my Grandparents about Scotland, but to walk where they had walked was so emotional.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Going to the Castle Stirling. My Grandfather John Ritchie was a piper for the Princess Patricia's Brigade. He use to pipe his pipes up to the castle. To be where he use to be was a thrill. I never got to meet my Grandfather as he died before I was born. But I've heard stories all my life about him and this place was very special to me."

Sheila

Bend, OR

Tour: 08/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had a fantastic tour of Scotland. I had been before and some of the tour stops were the same but they were still exciting to see again. There were a lot of places that we visited that I hadn't even heard about. Some of these places turned out to be my most memorable. The food was exceptional and the lodging was either exceptional or typical to the area. Great, great trip!!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My most "wow" moment was the day we visited the sheepherder, Neil. He was amazing with all his working dogs and they way they were so well trained. He either whistled or said a short command and they knew exactly what to do. He also had some of us shear the sheep and some of us were able to bottle feed the sheep. He was great fun to talk to about a lot of things about his way of life. Very enjoyable stop!!"

Deborah

Beaufort, NC

Tour: 08/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This trip to Scotland was amazing and even better than we had hoped. Our guide, Brian, was funny, organized, and encyclopedic about Scottish history, culture, and things to do. Our bus driver, Cullen, was a rock star in navigating our big bus through traffic, sheep, and one lane roads. The many places we visited - castles, ruins, museums, gardens, churches, sheep herding demonstration, whiskey distillery, etc. were wonderful! I can't wait to go back to Scotland!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"While the whole trip was one big WOW, I really loved our time at Iona since it really is a "thin" place - where the veil between man and God is thin. I also loved our drive through the Isle of Mull and our time in Kenmore, Dunkeld, Culloden, and Oban. Actually, it is hard to pick just one or a few WOW moments, because every thing on this tour was so terrific and memorable!"

Caroline

San Diego, CA

Tour: 08/18/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

My overall experience was very positive. I appreciated our tour guide's knowledge and advice. The tour gave a very good sample of the sights of Scotland. I was very pleased that we got to see a lot of castles but also the nature sights as well, such as The Hermitage.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Favorite "wow" moment was Glencoe. It was probably the most beautiful place we saw in Scotland. Unfortunately it was raining that day and we were not able to take many photos. I wish we could have stayed there longer. My suggestion is to allow more time there for future tours."

Ida

Pittsboro, NC

Tour: 08/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Scotland is a wonderful country. Tour leader was outstanding in every way. I would have preferred not to go to the brewery. It was loud, smelly and since I do not drink alcohol not of any interest. My preference would have been to spend more time at the Hemitage or another local nature area with a Master Gardner giving the names of trees, ferns, and other native plants.

Myra

Newberg, OR

Tour: 08/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We enjoyed the tour immensely. Brian was a great guide, and we were impressed with coach driver Colin's navigation ability on the narrow roads. Although we were initially a little concerned about keeping up, it was fine. We also gained some confidence going on our own, and were able to travel to Skye via train, bus and ferry with ease.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Iona was so beautiful and serene. The beautiful weather that day helped. After visiting Skye post tour on our own, I can see why the tour goes to Iona. Skye was great, but the popular places were quite overrun. Not part of the tour, but the absolute best was the Royal Military Tattoo."

Phillip

El Dorado, CA

Tour: 08/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Learned about Scotish history from Brian our very knowledgeable guide.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Island tour on fairy's."

William

Beaufort, NC

Tour: 08/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It is the only trip or tour I have ever been that when it was over I did not want to be over. The comraderie of the group and Scotland made it a great trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"How do you have a "wow" moment when every day is one. I will say Culloden was poignant because of the likely hood some of my ancestry were there. We ordered some purchases in Dunkeld which came in today. We had a flood of emotion and would go back tomorrow. Don't tell my dogs and my cat!"

Annette

Spokane Valley, WA

Tour: 08/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Brian brought Scotland to life. I felt I had read up on the places we'd be visiting and the history, etc...from the recommended reading list but Brian took the trip to a new level.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to pick just one."

Meganne

Bristol, WI

Tour: 08/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved it! Every detail was planned perfectly and most days the weather cooperated so the times we had to be walking around sites could really be enjoyed. Great group of travelers, and my husband and I just had a great time seeing Scotland and embracing my Scottish heritage.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We went a day early to see the Military Tatoo at Edinburgh Castle - one word spectacular! But that wasn't technically part of the tour so the next best moment for me was an impromptu concert in the city square we came across in Oban by the Oban High School drum and bagpipe band. Bagpipes and music just speak to my soul! Also, the landscape and nature of the Highlands was just beautiful."

Rickie

Lewisville, TX

Tour: 08/15/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The great things I heard about the RS travel guides had not been my experience in Ireland. However Nigel totally lived up to the RS guides reputation. He was knowledge, organized, and treated everyone with kindness and respect. I cannot express how impressed I was. We would love to have him as our guide again. The Itinerary was great and varied. We really got a flavor for all Scotland, the cities, lowlands, highlands, and islands. Our group was really a good group, and bus driver.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The scenery in the highlands, the mountains were beautiful."

Nancy

Lewisville, TX

Tour: 08/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great experience. Every one was punctual for all activities. We met some very nice people that like to travel like we do. Our bus driver was outstanding. I don't think anyone was grumpy. It was a great tour - especially since we didn't have to drive .

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's hard to pick a favorite. I love waterfalls, so the Hermitage was a favorite. However, I loved the sheepdog experience. They were amazing. We saw one in Ireland & that was amazing, but I enjoyed this more, maybe because it wasn't pouring down rain."

Jim

Mckinney, TX

Tour: 08/15/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Wonderful trip to Scotland. We were blown away by the local's hospitality, as well as the sights. Nigel was very knowledgeable about Scottish history and the lore surrounding the events of the past. I would recommend this trip to those travelers considering a visit there.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Had to be St Andrews...a true wow moment for a golf fanatic like me. My only negative was the time allotted to our stay, NOT long enough. Suggest you stretch the visit from approx. 4 hrs to 6 or 8. Also, wanted to tour the town and cathedral ruins, ran out of time. A close 2nd was Dunkeld and our lodge accommodations. What a pristine setting on the river Tay and the lodge was magnificent."

Karla

East Lansing, MI

Tour: 08/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed the itinerary. Overall, the tour was jam-packed with stops. Each day, our schedule was full from the time we boarded the bus to the end of the afternoon. That said, while this gives the impression of "getting your money's worth" (not as important to me as it might be to others), it also seemed more busy than the other two Rick Steves tours we've been on (Heart of Italy; Heart of France). I liked the more leisurely pace of the other tours. I was ok with this one, but others were not.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"In no particular order: The Hermitage walk--much needed R&R in nature; Clava Cairns; the Crannog Center; Loch Lomond and the sad song that goes with it; Glencoe chair lift; the bagpipe demonstration; hairy coos; sheep dog demonstration. So many highlights, I can't list them all."

Robert

Greenbank, WA

Tour: 08/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was beyond my expectations. The guide, Nigel, was so knowledgeable and helpful, and he kept us moving along without being overbearing. We benefitted so much from services provided by RST: getting tickets without waiting in line, getting there ahead of the crowds and the luxurious bus service. The special group dinners provided by RST were exceptional and very much appreciated. I had a wonderful time!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Military Tattoo in Edinburgh."

Gary

Oracle, AZ

Tour: 08/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Tattoo"

Denise

Oracle, AZ

Tour: 08/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a very enjoyable trip. Scotland is a beautiful country. Our Guide Nigel was wonderful,So knowledgeable and prepared every day. The hotels were charming.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I especially enjoyed the experience with Niel and his incredible sheep dogs. I could have stayed there ALL day. I was amazed with the castles everywhere. Beautiful stone work & locations. Oh yes The HAIRY COOS,Such beautiful animals"

Myron

Tallahassee, FL

Tour: 08/15/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

It was a very good tour, but not outstanding. It was the weakest of the other Rick Steve's tours we have taken. There are no complaints.

R. Gregory

Hockessin, DE

Tour: 08/13/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Scotland is a wonderful land and this tour touched on many aspects - the lochs, the ancient stones, castles, shepherds and bagpipes.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were several, but Neil's dogs were definitely a big hit."

Penelope

Hockessin, DE

Tour: 08/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our second RS tour and it was as great as the first! Our guide Anne was the best! The tour had a nice balance of sights. Castles, churches, highlands and lowlands. The tour length was just right at 10 days. We did opt to stay an extra night in Edinburgh after the tour so we could attend the military tatoo. The military tatoo was fabulous, not part of the RS tour. The downside of doing the tour during this timeframe is that its very crowded in Edinburgh.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"For me, I loved the highland sheep dog demonstration. But having said that all of the RS tour was a wow moment. I loved it all!"

Kathleen

San Jose, CA

Tour: 08/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This is my 5th tour. Every tour is special and different, but I especially enjoyed Scotland, as we didn't stay too long in the larger cities, but appreciated smaller towns also! We planned the trip to include the Royal Tattoo show in Edenborough which was excellent! Our guide Anne always listened to each person's needs and helped to get cabs, or give directions, or tell us about the best fish and chips in Scotland! (Oban fish and chips! A family owned and run place).

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Singing "Amazing Grace" in the chapel on Iona. I started the song, and everyone joined in. It was a priceless memory for me. Being on the Island of Iona was amazingly spiritual and beautiful. I also really enjoyed learning about the CRANOG near Kenmore. The docents were knowledgeable and I was able to teach my friends about how it was made and used."

Kevin

San Jose, CA

Tour: 08/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great experience from start to finish. I loved the trip. This was my first Rick Steves Tour, and based on this experience I will do more.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many. I loved all of the sites and the variety of historical and cultural visits."

Richard

Meridian, ID

Tour: 08/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My answers will be brief as using personal device. First European trip so doing a guided tour really worked well. Everything went very smoothly. Our tour guide Ann was outstanding and added to the Scotish feel of the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Getting off the Tram in Edinburgh and seeing the castle and old town was amazing."

Rebecca

Zephyr Cove, NV

Tour: 08/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first visit to Scotland, a country I have wanted to travel to since I was young. I told my husband that Scotland was all I hoped it would be and more. Our guide, Anne, brought the country and its history to life with her knowledge, humor and love of Scotland. Our tour group members were compatible, fun and participative. I am already thinking about where I want to go next!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I cannot limit to 1 my favorite"wow" moment(s). Scenically the Glencoe Valley was spectacular & dramatic while the Isle of Iona had a tranquil, idyllic quality about it. I was drawn to the Highlands landscape and the sea the most."

Jim

Granger, IN

Tour: 08/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was great like always. The people on the trip were a pleasure and will become friends for a lifetime. Thanks

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Tattoo and Edinburgh was on fire at this time."

Sally

Jackson, MI

Tour: 08/11/18

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

The people we traveled with were very nice. I really liked our guide, Julia. There was not enough time in some places and too much in others. Our first day of touring, Edinburgh, was miserable. It rained so hard all of our clothing was soaked, even with rain coats on. And it was very cold. Our local guide was excellent, but how were we expected to absorb what she was saying when we felt so miserable? I believe it should have been rescheduled.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Julia singing in Gaelic, in the chapel in Iona, was beautiful and inspiring."

James

Marietta, GA

Tour: 08/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had an excellent time touring Scotland and learning about its history and its links to America. It was a trip to remember and we definitely recommend it. But we would never go again during the Fringe Festival and Military Tattoo in Edinburgh. The Festival and its visual pollution (flyers, tents, posters, temporary fences, crowds) detracted from the old and new Edinburgh. We feel like we did not really experience Edinburgh. We wish we had 2 more days there.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing Urquhart Castle from the Jacobite tour boat on Loch Ness."

Diane

Saxonburg, PA

Tour: 08/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a great time with Julia as our tour guide. Julia's authenticity and hard work made the tour much more special. We had a challenge with a traffic accident which caused some rerouting but with Julia and John they were able to work it out with minimal challenges. The tour covers so many different experiences within the 10 days. The intensity of the tour was challenging at times and the weather was a bit cold, windy and rainy for our trip. But the people and the experiences were great.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Julia singing a Scottish tune in the small chapel from the 11th century outside the Abbey in Iona. She also humbly played the "fiddle" on the ferry back and everyone on the ferry clapped enthusiastically."

Lori

Airdrie, AB

Tour: 08/11/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The Tour met all our expectations- and it was great!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were a few: 1. Julia singing in the Abbey in Iona- she has a wonderful voice, and the setting was perfect! 2. The Sheepdog experience- it was fun, educational, and I got to hold a puppy!! 3.The Crannogs- It was a wonderful learning experience! 4. The unexpected stop at the Kelpies! Yay!!!"

Martha

Niskayuna, NY

Tour: 08/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We are still talking about our excellent Scottish adventure. We loved every aspect of this tour from the rich and stimulating beginning in Edinburgh to the beautiful mountains, glens, forests and coastal venues in the rural areas of Scotland. Julia, our tour guide, was exceptional. In addition to the fascinating information that she gave us, Julia also helped us to understand and appreciate the soul of Scotland. We also enjoyed our kind and interesting fellow travelers.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I wasn't sure how I was going to answer this question until we reached "The Weeping Glen". It was a rainy, misty day when we drove through the glen and the weather and Scottish music that Julia played in Glencoe were perfect backdrops for the story of the massacre that she related to us. Another "wow" moment was when Julia sang to us in the chapel on Iona. We will always remember these moments."

Barbara

Vancouver, WA

Tour: 08/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

How is it possible to do so much in a single day and yet never feel rushed? Every day for 10 days was filled with new sites, new experiences, new reasons to feel connected to Scotland's past and present -- and new friends!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our guide, Julia, brought music to our excursions. When she quietly sang the mermaid song in the ancient abbey, I was transported back hundreds and hundreds of years. When she played her violin on the ferry boat, I felt like I was traveling to the heart of Scotland. When she played Scottish folk music CDs as we traveled on our tour bus, I contemplated the scenery and my heart's experiences of the day."

Gary

Sequim, WA

Tour: 08/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tour guide, Julia, simply great. Size of group, composition of group very nice. Timing of tour great. Really enjoyed variety of experiences and locales. Kenmore and region fun and educational as well as St. Andrews and the university. And, driver John was not only a good driver but also nearl a co guide. And Stirling Castle, although last day visit, was really an insightful experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"First of all...MANY, but the really surprising moment was the crannogs near Kenmore[INVALID]just simply incredible and really somewhat hard to truly grasp[INVALID]a very great educational insight into history and the people's of the region."

Joseph

Hanover, MA

Tour: 08/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We were amazed at how much we were able to experience in only 10 days. We were greatly impressed by our tour guide, Julia. her depth of knowledge about language and customs, and her willingness to share that with us was extraordinary. i cannot imagine anyone better as a guide for that tour. You are lucky to have such an eager and helpful person on your staff.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wife and I were hoping to catch a glimpse of the Kelpies, and were planning ways we could do that after the tour. On our way back to Edinburgh, Julia had discussed making the side trip with John, our bus driver. She then announced that we were running ahead of schedule and would be able to stop at the Kelpies."

Lynne

Silver Spring, MD

Tour: 08/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour is filled with Scottish grandeur & history around every corner. With a home base in Edinburgh it was easy to attend events at the International and Fringe August festivals... definitely a must-do if you enjoy the arts. Then we were off to explore on the comfy coach with a highly entertaining guide Liz whose every other phrase was highly lyrical and enchanting. We wandered the battlefields of Culloden, admired the skills of a single shepherd with his sheep, enjoyed group camraderie.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Staying in seaside Oban & watching the ferries come & go from the Hebrides Isles."

John

Calgary, AB

Tour: 08/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall experience was great, just the right blend of history, travel and some unique cultural experience but still with some free time available to do your own thing. This was the first Rick Steves tour for my wife and I and we weren't sure what to expect. The most present surprise was the size of the bus used and the extra space everyone had. The knowledge of the guide was excellent and by the end of the tour I had a good overview and understanding of Scotland's history.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to Gellions pub in Inverness. That was a fun night and you got to hear some local music. The trip to Iona was a close second."

Robert

Mount Vernon, WA

Tour: 08/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

A wonderful combination of the history and beauty of Scotland.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing a preserved Robert Burns poem written in pencil in his own hand on the plaster flume of the fireplace in Kenmore."

Barbara

Mount Vernon, WA

Tour: 08/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a wonderful tour, rating among the best we've taken. With Liz's guidance the places we visited all enchanted and educated us in the history of this charming and whimsical country. Our fellow travelers seemed to enjoy our experiences as much as we did. The setting was personal for us as Scotland was my husband's ancestral home. He had been asked by his Dad's widow to scatter his ashes as we traveled to iconic sites,resulting in a fine video production to share with family.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"This is really difficult as each site visited had different, but powerful emotional appeal. The views at the old hotel by the beautiful River Tey, the lovely Cawdor gardens, the community feel of the Highland Games, the fun of seeing the shepard and the collies at work, actually standing at Culloden...each experience resulted in an appreciation of the depth of culture and history we were experiencing."

Donna

South Bend, IN

Tour: 08/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I loved the tour sites, especially those that our guide was able to add for us, e.g., stop at a Highlands Game, pub in Inverness, and stop at a quaint restaurant for lunch. The accommodations were good (I was lucky to get the first floor or one floor down) and centrally located to a lot of sites and restaurants. The Rick Steves' book was especially helpful. Our guide, Liz, was superb -- informative and knowledgeable, accessible, fun and funny, full of helpful information, generous.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the Highland shepherd's (Dean?) demonstration of herding his sheep with his trained dogs the most but there were so many favorites: Edinburgh Castle, Culross, the Crannog, Urquhart Castle, Cawdor Castle, Glencoe's valleys and hills, the ski lift and views at Mt. Ben Nevis, the hairy coos, Culloden battlefield and museum and Stirling Castle."

Diane

Poulsbo, WA

Tour: 08/08/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Enjoyed Liz's encyclopedic memory; she's able to make history come alive! The sheep herding demonstration was terrific and different from others I've seen. I was surprised how much I enjoyed the crannog visit - wow! It is a very fast paced tour with less free time than on other tours but still great fun. Gilly, the bag piper, was enchanting! For the first time ever, I stepped out of my comfort zone and gave an attempt at playing the bagpipes! Sounded like I was squeezing a cat-but so fun!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Driving through the Scottish highlands and seeing their pristine beauty: deep freshwater lochs, breathtaking waterfalls, lofty mountains and rugged cliffs, purple heather patches and bright rosebay willow herbs coloring the landscape, dramatic cloud formations in the skies... Wow! Only matched by the surprise trip to the Aberfeldy Highland Games! What a delight! We were able to rub shoulders with the locals; their excitement and exuberance for the festivities was infectious!"

Michelle

Spring, TX

Tour: 08/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was wonderful! Liz, our tour guide was absolutely amazing! We could not have asked for more. So many people have asked how it was possible to see so much on our trip!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The town of Oban, and traveling on the isles. Absolutely wonderful town! There was so much though, it truly is hard to pick."

Ruth

Sherwood, OR

Tour: 08/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour of Scotland was amazing. Liz was such an awesome Tour Guide. We loved all the history she gave us, and how she made each stop come alive. We even like the bus ride. It gave us time to relax and hear more about Scotland. We totally magically feel in love with Scotland. We can't wait to go back. Thanks to Liz for making this trip so special.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many "wow" moments...but I have to say spending time in the Highlands and meeting Neil the Shepard and watching him with his dogs was fantastic. Loved it. pretty much the trip was a WOW experience"

William

Scituate, MA

Tour: 08/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Liz was excellent, the group was interesting, the sites were great.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Sheep dogs, Edinburgh Castle, Stirling Castle, Culloden, Bonnackburn."

Kara

South Bend, IN

Tour: 08/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was so well-balanced in terms of personal vs "tour group" time. I especially appreciated the DIVERSITY of activities. All kinds of experiences from historical walks along the Royal Mile to castles, sheepdogs, pub music, whisky tasting, Highland Games, and crannogs to the incredible scenery around Kenmore/Loch Ness and the Glencoe Valley. While we could have used more time in some of the locations/experiences, overall the time was pretty well thought-out.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There was not just one moment due to the great diversity of such interesting sights. I loved the architecture in Edinburgh and in the small villages. I really studied the guide book and re-watched Seasons 1 & 2 of Outlander* so it was great to see in person the beautiful Scottish landscape and 18th-19th century houses and buildings. Liz is a great story-teller and explained Scotland's history in such a memorable way."

Leslie

San Diego, CA

Tour: 08/06/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first Rick Steves tour. Overall, an outstanding, well-run itinerary. All of our accommodations were excellent and centrally located. All dinner venues provided by the tour were excellent, especially our farewell dinner in Edinburgh the last night. The full size touring bus allowed everyone to spread out and be comfortable while traveling between regions. Our tour guide Martin was extremely knowledgeable on all aspects of Scottish history and culture and was very entertaining.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I can't think of one specific "wow" moment that stood out from all others; however, I did find the whole trip very enjoyable and well-balanced. The Kenmore segment with the Crainog Center was very interesting; I also loved the sheepdog demonstration and traditional Scottish lunch of scotch broth and fully-loaded scones. The natural beauty of Glencoe and Iona was breathtaking; and the view from our room at Glenburnie House overlooking the Oban harbor was lovely."

David

Marlton, NJ

Tour: 08/06/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The family lore has always been that we are of Scottish descent. Ancestry.com proved that point valid. I have waited 40 years to take this trip. It was nothing short of the fulfillment of a dream. While there were a couple spots that we missed, the itinerary was complete enough to satisfy me in terms of what I wanted from my first visit.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many! The castles, the other historic landmarks (I'm a history teacher/history geek, so I get excited about almost everything in that category), etc. I think our visit to Glencoe would be way up there on the list. The day started out rainy and foggy, but that only added to the beauty of the place. And the weather broke during our visit, which was magical. Our time at Culloden was also deeply moving."

Linda

Marlton, NJ

Tour: 08/06/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first Rick Steves' tour and I couldn't be happier with the experience. I was a little apprehensive about touring with a group, but we got to see and do things we never would have found on our own and shared the experience with some very nice people. It was a good balance between group activities and independent time. I learned a lot about Scotland - from Edinburgh to the highlands to the west coast.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were quite a few "wow" moments - the crannog center was fascinating, the sheep dog demonstration a hoot and Iona was awe inspiring. The bagpipe demonstration had some surprises - including a German visitor to the hotel who could also play. But, the pure joy of running around St. Andrews with some other golf enthusiasts and new friends may have been my favorite. Being able to add the Edinburgh Military Tattoo to the visit was a huge bonus."

Douglas

Washougal, WA

Tour: 08/04/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Nigel was the perfect guide for Scotland. We loved his local knowledge as well as his grasp of Scottish history. We had a nice mix of couples, singles and families. We would have liked to have had a full afternoon free sometime near the middle of the tour. We had some evenings free but could have used a full afternoon to relax and get reenergized. We felt like we were going nonstop for nine days.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"For me it was standing on the eighteenth fairway at St. Andrews. For my wife, it was the Robbie Burns poem on the wall and in the Kenmore Hotel."

Judy

Williamsburg, VA

Tour: 08/04/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was wonderful and I would recommend it and learn more about Scotland. All the scheduled group dinners were delicious and a wonderful time to get to know your fellow travelers.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were a number of "wow" moments each day, however, several moments stay in my mind. 1. Culloden Battlefield 2. The working sheep farm with the demonstration of the sheepdogs. 2. Scotland's unique crannogs and tour of a whisky distillery for a "wee dram". 3. The prehistoric burial chambers at Clara Cairns and beautiful gardens at Cawdor Castle. 4. Isle of Iona"

Barbara

Holly Ridge, NC

Tour: 08/04/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was magical from start to finish. So organized and planned out. Even on bus travel days there were special surprises and a relaxing pace enabling us to see as much as possible. Really enjoyed the commradory of the group. Nigel was extremely knowledgeable and always found ways to immerse us in the culture. Accommodations were beyond expectations as was the food.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Cuddling the puppies and feeding bottles to the lambs ranked at the top. The amazing beauty of Scotland, the history and dancing the night away with fellow tour mates."

Christine

Treasure Island, FL

Tour: 08/04/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Great tour. Excellent variety of things to see and experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Honestly, it was the Military Tattoo which was not part of the tour, just something we did on our own. But I did enjoy all the stops and things we saw and did on this tour."

Judy

San Diego, CA

Tour: 08/04/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We saw beautiful country under the leadership of a highly knowledgeable, friendly, helpful guide, along with a group of very nice, friendly, funny, delightful people.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Looking out the window of our hotel room in Oban at the bay, with boats crossing and islands in the near distance."

Eddy

Encinitas, CA

Tour: 08/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This is now our third tour. We have to come to expect that our experience would be incredible and it was. From the moment the tour started, we knew we were in for a non stop, highly informative and entertaining trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Probably Dunkel (the lovely restored hunting lodge) along the River Tay. Also, sunset in Oban."

Elizabeth

Media, PA

Tour: 08/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

For the most part, the accommodations, meals included, site visits included, bus and ferry transportation and tour guide were excellent. We had been on a previous tour with Rick Steves and were concerned that this tour (which we decided to bring our teen and young adult children on as well), would not be as good as the first. Fortunately, that was not the case! We felt that this tour provided us with a very thorough introduction to Scotland and we are anxious to return in the future.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite 'wow' moment was probably watching Neil Ross work with his border collies and sheep. Although I certainly had some awareness of how it took place, I did not realize that each dog had his/her own 'whistle' and that these dogs were capable of understanding so many different commands over such great distances. Of course, shearing the sheep, feeding the lambs and visiting with the puppies-in-training were icing on the cake. Neil is truly an icon of a fast-disappearing way of life!"

David

Media, PA

Tour: 08/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had a great experience with my family on the tour in Scotland. The tour covered a great mix of Scottish history, culture, food, music, geography, politics and current events. We were exposed to a good overview of what makes Scotland special, and it was extremely enlightening and informative for someone like myself who was not very knowledgeable about it previously.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had a number of favorite wow moments: the bagpipe demonstration (I'm partial to music), the sheepdog demonstration and sheep shearing, the bus ride on Mull to the ferry. Loved the mussel shack at the ferry terminal in Oban! Very much enjoyed the Clava Cairns and the picnic!"

Ronald

Carrollton, GA

Tour: 08/01/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I loved the tour overall. It was done very well. It would have been nicer to have a little more free time in the small towns. My wife and I hope to do another Rick Steves tour.

Elizabeth

Pasadena, CA

Tour: 08/01/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was a nice tour. The participants were varied and everyone got along. I was probably one of the older members. The activities were interesting and enjoyable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The boat trip on Loch Ness and the visit to the sheep farm."

Harriet

Corinth, TX

Tour: 08/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our second Rick Steve's Tour. It was wonderful. Our singing guide, Colin, truly shared his love for his country with us. We heard poetry and learned about Scottish history from Colin and the knowledgeable local guides. Scotland is beautiful. I loved the Hermitage walk, and the trip thru Mull and the island of Iona. Would love to to see more of the Hebrides islands.They were beautiful. I will never forget watching Neil Ross, his border collies, feeding the lambs and the puppies.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many. I especially loved Iona and Mull, and will never forget the sheepdog demonstration. I did like the bagpipe demonstration , Gilley was a treat."

Sidney

Oviedo, FL

Tour: 08/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour of Scotland really was an amazing experience. We traveled from Edinburgh to The Highlands and then across the Isle of Mull to Iona. It truly was the best of Scotland in 10 days. Our guide was charming and knowledgeable. Our bus driver was incredible. It was well-planned and executed without a noticeable hitch.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many it's hard to pick one. Perhaps the quite walk at the Hermitage, seeing a true forest cathedral and incredible waterfalls and experiencing the natural quiet. It was a surprising joy amid many incredible experiences."

Kay

Traverse City, MI

Tour: 08/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was interesting it was the first four I had been on so was not sure what to expect. Did enjoy the tour the info that was given. Would have enjoyed spending more time in the smaller towns.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Just the beauty of Scotland could have stay for ever and enjoy the people small towns. The history"

Perry

Pasadena, CA

Tour: 08/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Excellent itinerary, well executed. Wd were ably led by Colin. He is a great credit to your organization due to his leadership skills, knowledge, rapport and care for all of his tour members.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Tbere are many: walking tours, castle visits, immersion in the history of Scotland, scenic vistas throughout, and tbe connection with the past and present culture. Colin Mairs' poetry recitations and singing were quite special. And then the sheepdogs.... My partner and I stayed an extra day in Edinburgh for Tattoo. That really should be part of the tour."

Robert

Champaign, IL

Tour: 08/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had a fantastic time on my Best of Scotland tour led by phenomenal Colin. I appreciated the variety of the tour in terms of hitting all the well known sights, but also having the opportunity to enjoy more personal experiences such as visiting a sheep farm and hearing from an expert bagpiper. The pace was excellent as we stayed in big city, small and medium towns, and even a lodge to keep the adventure fresh and new.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many great experiences that it's hard to pin down a favorite. Traveling through the scenic Glencoe area was truly stunning and a highlight for me, but watching the skill of the border collies on the sheep farm was a true eye opener. I enjoyed both, but they were completely different experiences."

Margaret

Mcgregor, MN

Tour: 07/30/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our 4th Rick Steves' tour and we really enjoyed it. I think it was a perfect blend of all that makes a tour great; the sights, the people, the food and beverages, the hotels, the free time, the language, the music, our bus driver, and of course, our guide, Anne Doig, who really made the tour for us!!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"In the three other tours we have been on, I couldn't pick out one wow moment and this one isn't any different. I enjoyed the Royal Mile, the architecture, and learning about the crannogs. I loved seeing the men in kilts and the castle ruins and no, you can never see too many! I loved the spirituality and sense of community on the Isle of Iona. I appreciated learning about the history. As always I thoroughly loved the group dinners; the tasty food, beverages, conversations, and laughter."

Brian

Needham, MA

Tour: 07/30/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tremendous experience on our first Rick Steves tour. We usually plan our own trips and make our own arrangements, so this was a novelty. The stops were all great, and provided a diversity of experiences, and good mixture of on and "off the beaten path" moments. The mixture of organized and free time felt just right, giving us opportunities to do our own exploring. I felt that we were exposed to a number of experiences that I do not think we would have easily discovered on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Where to start... The scenery in Scotland is amazing, particularly the Highlands, Glencoe, and the islands of Mull and Iona. It was like traveling back in time. We traveled with our 11 and 14 year old sons, by far the youngest travelers in our group. They are pretty mature and deal well with adults. They had a great time as well. I think they would say meeting the shepherd and sheepdogs. They were in love with the puppies and amazed by the way they could herd the sheep (as were we all)."

Ellen

Basking Ridge, NJ

Tour: 07/30/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Joyous, interesting, marvelous immersion in Scotland's historic and current culture. Invigorating views, superb guide. Could not have asked for more. Exceeded all expectations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Glencoe mountains, awe inspiring. Urquart castle, magical highlands."

Jon

Mill Creek, WA

Tour: 07/30/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Enjoyed the tour very much. Ann was a great guide, especially liked her caring nature for the tour participants, her wealth of knowledge imparted, and her music sharing during the bus rides.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Impossible to come up with just one. I love castles, so Edinburg, Stirling, Urquhart were great. Isle of Iona was interesting, wanted to spend the night there. Inverness was wonderful, needed more time exploring there."

Everal

Berkeley, CA

Tour: 07/30/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour covered a lot of ground but I would have liked an even longer tour that took in northern Scotland (the Orkneys). I also liked staying in each hotel two nights. It takes some of the rush out of a trip and lets you enjoy each place a little more. It was an interesting group of people, as usual with Rick Steves Tours, which adds to the experience. The guide, Anne, was fantastic for organization, information and imbuing a real sense of what Scotland is about.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the sheep dog trials, the owners comments, and all the puppies. The visit to Culloden battlefield was information and very touching."

John

Aiken, SC

Tour: 07/30/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The "Best of Scotland" was probably the best tour that we have taken. The group that we were touring with was exceptional with all members being able to get along and show timeliness as well as curiosity in the sites we visited.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My personal favorite was our visit to the sheep farm and the crannogs."

Helen

Mercer Island, WA

Tour: 07/30/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great historical cultural and contemporary introduction to Scotland. Wonderful tour members Outstanding tour guide

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Glencoe"

Chuck

Burnaby, BC

Tour: 07/25/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Great trip, meeting many interesting people. The individual guides were excellent and Robert was very knowledgeable as we travel around Scotland.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Watching the shepherd working with his dog's herding the sheep."

Karen

Bluffton, SC

Tour: 07/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was so well organized and the timing of all the activities was well planned. The hotels were lovely and were well situated for all the activities. It was great to have room on the bus to stretch out. Plenty of window seats! Our guide, Robert, was very knowledgeable and filled us in on lots of Scottish history and interesting facts about each place we visited. Our traveling companions were A+ and the meals we shared were excellent!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved all the scenery through the bus windows! So many WOW moments! A special highlight was the visit to the shepherd and watching all the sheep dogs herd the sheep. Not on the tour but highly recommended is the Royal Military Tatoo in August. We stayed an extra few days after the tour and were able to experience this wonderful event. Don't miss it if you have the chance!"

Daniel

Westlake, OH

Tour: 07/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We were not treated as "tourists". Robert brought a level of sophistication to the group. In plain English, he gave us an understanding of the complex Brexit issues, as well as Scotland's consideration for independence. His ability improvise the schedule due to weather-rain, was incredible. We had Drambuie atop a ski lift. We are always amazed at the skill of the bus drivers maneuvering through busy streets, parking lots, and dirt roads. To say nothing of their humorous personalities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The sheep dogs and the shepherd's dedication to his profession was an display of Scottish culture. The dogs were cute and trained beyond belief. The dogs, when almost out of sight, responded to commands and brought sheep into a circle next to us. Explanation of training dogs not follow cars was amazing."

Carol

Hilton Head Island, SC

Tour: 07/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our trip was fabulous! Every day was full of a different adventure. Our wonderful guide Robert explained the historical background of each castle and king. There was wonderful food each evening and an excellent group of new friends to share adventures with. We have visited Scotland on our own but having our guides to narrate our journey made this wonderful, wild country come alive.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the visit to the gorgeous Dunkeld House Hotel was by far my favorite place we stayed. The setting is so lovely and I would to think of hiking and fishing there! The crannogs were fascinating and I am truly grateful not to live in one! Our visit to the Highlands sheep farm was perfect. The dogs are fascinating and I am proud to add bottle feeding a baby and shearing a youngster to my resume! My favorite Highlands by far, however, are the hairy coos! The Isle of Iona was perfect!"

Linda

Gales Creek, OR

Tour: 07/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Rick Steves guides and tours do not disappoint. All 10 days were packed full of beautiful sites, history, exhilarating experiences (the chairlift at Glencoe), good food, and wonderful new acquaintances. At each stop, the people demonstrating life at Crannogs, the castle tours, the bus drivers, the additional tour guides selected by Rick Steves gave and our own guide, Robert, were superb, passionate, and funny.. It was clear they care about what they do.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Stirling Castle. It was Day 9 of our 10-day tour, and we were getting tired. I knew little of Stirling Castle, but it was a wonderful way to end the tour. Rich in history, amazing views, and amazing tour guides, the Castle was a wonderful surprise. The fortress has been restored to represent life as it was during its heyday."

Barbara

Copper Canyon, TX

Tour: 07/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour could not have been planned and executed any better. Our guide, Robert, shared so much of the history and culture of Scotland that we would not have gotten had we traveled on our own. He made sure all of us were fully engaged and enjoying the trip to the fullest. The travelers all perfectly meshed with each other and were so nice to meet and spend time with.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"This is impossible. Every bend in the roadways brought another "wow" view. Scotland is a beautiful country, and each stop had its own special, but not "best" appeal."

Gordon

Mount Pleasant, SC

Tour: 07/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I've spent some time traveling in Europe and Great Britain. I realize that we would never have seen the volume, the breadth, or experienced the sights with the level of information and education that we enjoyed with your tour. The hotels and Inns far exceeded my expectations and the group meals were all excellent!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So Many, But the Church at the Tay River Confluence seems to stand out."

Thomas

Annandale, VA

Tour: 07/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

What a wonderful tour. We really hit it off with everyone in our group. The guide was very organized and made the experience wonderful.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Watching the sheep dogs work."

Candy

Sarasota, FL

Tour: 07/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Best of Scotland tour was outstanding. Each day was filled with wonderful activities and sites. Liz was an excellent guide, who prepared us well for all the days' adventures. Though we spent a lot of time on the bus, there was really no better way to see the beautiful countryside. We stopped every hour or so which helped immensely. I loved the pacing of this trip and the fact we had a balance of group time and on your own time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There is no way this trip has one "wow" moment! Among my favorite moments was the visit to the crannogs. It was hard to top the visit to the highlands to see the shepherd and his sheep dogs herd sheep. Holding the pups was a delight. Also, I loved the coastal town of Oban and the food there."

Kelly

Erving, MA

Tour: 07/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Best trip ever, I feel spoiled now? I can't imagine doing another tour with anyone else but Rick Steve's. From the ease of everything being coordinated to the actual group. Really spectacular people and the size of the group made all the difference.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Surprisingly it the Sheep dog excursion, I thought this world be my least favorite but I was wrong. Neil's expertise and skill and willingness to be honest about life as a Shepard was truly inspirational. And 5 week old puppies didn't hurt either !"

Max

San Marcos, TX

Tour: 07/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Now that my heart rate and goose bumps have settled down from from all the extraordinary things we saw and did every day, I can look back fondly on this trip as one of the best we have ever taken. In the past, we have been mostly cruise ship travelers, but the Rick Steves style of travel suits us as well or better. The independent travel skills we learned enabled us to enjoy the following week exploring London with only the Rick Steves guidebook. We missed Liz more than a few times though! :)

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite moment snuck up on me: The bagpiper. Her musical talents were wonderful, and her verbal presentation was very amusing. For example, I remember her offhand remark that she and her husband had three children, then they bought a TV. But the big moment for me was when, out of the blue, she launched unexpectedly into a rousing performance of Robert Burn's Address to a Haggis, using his original, untranslated words. My jaw hit the floor - she is an amazing and versatile performer."

Martha

Annandale, VA

Tour: 07/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was so nice to sit back and let Marcin do the driving! The tour was well planned to include a little bit of everything from castles to Crannogs to personal experiences such as sheep shearing. I like how expectations for the tour were set in the beginning. We had fun getting to know everyone and Liz was awesome at facilitating that in the beginning. I loved the picture she took in the beginning with everyone's name attached. We would do it all again!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Crannogs were my "wow" experience because I didn't know they existed. It was fun learning about something new. I thought it was fascinating how they built the house and would "repair" the house with new stilts. I was able to recognize the remains of a crannog when we went to the Isle of Mull."

Joy

Greenfield, MA

Tour: 07/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed the tour very much. I was not sure what to expect but it was better than I had imagined. The number of members on the tour was small enough to make it enjoyable and not overwhelming. Every Hotel we stayed in was comfortable, clean and inviting with excellent staff. The food every where we ate was very good. The buddy system was a quick and easy way to keep us all on track.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our trip to Edinburgh Castle was near the beginning and the tour guide Rita Adam made the walk very interesting with lots of added side stories. Also the Bonham Hotel was a lovely start and end to the tour, it was wonderful, comfortable with good food. Daniel at the Cranog and Neil Dross with his sheep dogs were also amazing."

Dianne

Tempe, AZ

Tour: 07/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very enjoyable tour. Great group of traveling companions. Lots of special moments, foods, sights, people. Scotland is beautiful, lots of history.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hands down, it was the music and the people at the Inverness Scottish bar. It was Liz's suggestion we meet up there for her favorite musician/singer. There had been a rally that day and people gathered at a local pub. Place was packed with locals, members of our tour group. There was a guy with a flag from the rally. Everyone was dancing, singing along. Great fun!"

Elaine

Dallas, TX

Tour: 07/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Rick Steves's Tours never disappoint! This was my 4th RS trip. Liz was fantastic. All of my tour guides have been awesome. Bus driver was very nice as well. He kept us safe and on time to our destinations. It was nice meeting all of my tour-mates. I would definitely recommend this tour!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Simply looking at the view from my first hotel room was my first WOW moment! Edinburgh was easy to get around in. Marveling at castles, historic sites, cathedrals, ruins, and cemeteries were surreal. I was captivated by the Isle of Iona. I really enjoyed the sheep herding demonstration."

Theresa

Huntsville, AL

Tour: 07/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I really enjoyed the variety of experiences we had and that everything was coordinated for us. The walking was mostly not too strenuous, but got sore feet and legs especially the first few days. I need to remember to walk more to "train" for my next trip! Scotland is beautiful, very photogenic! I enjoyed the historical context and our guides' explanations enriched the experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Of course I enjoy museums and castles, but I liked the departure from the city tours. I was very impressed by the Crannog centre experience. I was previously unaware of what they were, and the guides there demonstrating how things were done in the iron age were very interesting to me. The sheepherding was wonderful too! All the little extras, like our special concert and teaching experience about bagpipes by Gilly and her grandson were wonderful!"

Timothy

Huntsville, AL

Tour: 07/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We very much enjoyed this trip. The lodgings, the food, the entertainment / educational features were all most satisfactory. We enjoyed the company of the other travelers in the group. Our guide Brian made us all feel comfortable and secure, as well as well-informed about the sites that we visited.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It was not a moment, but rather an enjoyable ongoing experience, and that is the bus transportation. I enjoyed watching the scenery as we drove through the Scottish countryside. And we were all amazed at the skill and courtesy of our driver, Sean."

R Ellen

Denver, CO

Tour: 07/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was so educational. I expected to see beautiful places but didn't know what a wonderful education I would receive from the guides' information.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I believe my best wow moment was the morning at the sheep farm. It was wonderful seeing the sheep dogs manage the sheep and then getting to participate in the shearing of the ewe and bottle feeding a lamb."

Selma

Chandler, AZ

Tour: 07/18/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I found the tour to be a good mix of structured activities and free time. The walking tours we did prepared us for what we might want to see during our free time. The further away we got from the hustle and bustle of Edinburgh, the more relaxed the experience became. Beautiful scenery! We enjoyed the other members of our tour. We had some interesting conversations with the locals as well! The recommendation to arrive a few days early is a good one, if you can do it.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to Iona. It is such a unique island. Our local guide gave really good insight not only into the past religious history, but the current residents' commitment to keeping the economy viable so they can continue to raise their families there."

Alfred

River Forest, IL

Tour: 07/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very good. As we have found from prior tours, the group members all got along well. Brian Hay's leadership and knowledge and concern for tour participants were outstanding. There was a good balance between structured and free time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many, it is difficult to pick just one. Edinburgh, the Highlands, sheepdogs, the scones at lunch, Oban, and the Isle of Iona."

Jacqueline

Buckhannon, WV

Tour: 07/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Incredible trip. Saw many places and things. Tour director knowledgeable and pleasant.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were several. Just seeing the different landscapes and the cities."

Steven

Los Altos, CA

Tour: 07/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour of Scotland was outstanding in every respect. It probably helped that we toured with a nice and very responsible group of people. We also had exceptional weather throughout -- only ~30 minutes of rain interfered with our activities. Those circumstances aside, the fundamentals of the trip -- the itinerary, the logistics, the communications, and the tour guide -- were all superb. I was very impressed with how well thought-out everything was, and how well the tour was executed.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many great moments from the tour, so it is hard to choose one. I'll point to the inclusion of a stop that was not on the planned itinerary an afternoon stop at a ski area adjacent to Ben the highest mountain in the British Isles. We took a gondola to a place where we hiked to some spectacular vistas. The great weather made this option possible, and the flexibility of the tour guide to include this stop was a wonderful surprise that was much appreciated."

Irmgard

River Forest, IL

Tour: 07/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed this tour very much. It was our fourth one with the Rick Steves organization and they keep getting better and better. Scotland was on our second "bucket list", but I had no strong motive for going other than I thought it would be interesting. My image beforehand was that I would see craggy terrain, and that was about all. BUT, ease of exploring the cities, the beauty of the Highlands, the friendliness of the locals, and the history really opened my eyes. It was enlightening!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I didn't have a "wow" moment, rather a number of "wow" days. The beauty of the Highlands was so amazing. Despite seeing mountain after mountain of tall trees and other greenery, the landscape seemed to be more lovely with each mile. It was all truly beautiful."

Judy

Norwood, NC

Tour: 07/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip was absolutely amazing! It surpassed all expectations. Many people had told me that Scotland was a beautiful place, but until I saw it for myself those words just didn't do it justice. Scotland was simply breathtaking. Our guide, Brian Hay, was superb in taking care of all our needs, updating us on bits of history throughout our trip, and giving us tips of things to do at each location. Everyone in our group came together so warmly for such a pleasant trip. Can't wait to go back!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Each new place seemed to be the new "wow" moment. If I had to narrow it down I would choose the rugged beauty of the Highlands, and the picture-postcard town of Oban on the west coast. From Oban you take the ferry to the Isle of Mull and Iona which I would love to go back and spend more time there, and some of the other isles. I also have to give a shout out to our bus driver Shawn for a "wow" moment. He had driving and backing skills with our behemoth bus that were nothing short of miraculous!"

Sharon

Los Altos, CA

Tour: 07/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was an excellent tour and overview of the Scotland's Highlands. Our guide was excellent, the others on the tour were friendly, reliable and fun to travel with. The bus was perfects and not overcrowded and the driver was as nice as anyone could be.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The scenery and the history was fantastic. I enjoyed the tour more as we left Edinburgh as I had been there twice in the past and the WOW moments came as we traveled north to new interesting and beautiful places."

John

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA

Tour: 07/16/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Since we had never been to Scotland, we thought that a Rick Steves' tour would be the best way to get a real taste of the country. I have to admit that we were concerned about some of the lengthy bus rides; however, they were handled very professionally. We never stayed on the bus for more than an hour or two before stopping and taking a break at pre-determined rest stops. When the tour was over, I have to admit that we got a true flavor of the country - urban, rural, coastal & forest environs!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Undoubtedly, our very favorite moment was when we stopped at a Highlands' sheep farm. Watching all the border collies carefully listen to their individual and specific whistle commmands in order to herd the sheep was quite miraculous! Before leaving, puppies that were only a few weeks old, were brought out for our enjoyment. It was a fantastic experience!"

Roxanne

Mc Kees Rocks, PA

Tour: 07/16/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had a wonderful ten days exploring Scotland. This was my first time abroad and I can't believe it could have been any better. Nigel was considerate, a very good story teller and his vast wealth of knowledge was unbelievable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Isle of Mull was wonderful but visiting the sheep ranch was the highlight."

Laura

Silverdale, WA

Tour: 07/16/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was indeed an outstanding experience to view the natural beauty of Scotland, learn about the complex history, and meet so many kind residents there. The tour was well-planned throughout in terms of accommodation, activities and transportation. Our guide, Nigel, provided keen insight and readily answered any questions coming his way. It was a comfortable pace with sufficient pit stops. I especially appreciated the diversity of time spent in the cities, towns and countryside.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Every day on the tour brought a new "wow" moment[INVALID]-looking out over the ancient fortifications of Edinburgh Castle, walking along the 18th fairway of the Old Course at St. Andrew's, taking an after dinner stroll to Taymouth Castle, watching Neil communicate with his border collies at the farm, eating delicious scones and learning how to prepare them, riding the ferries to Mull and Iona, and chatting with the groundskeeper about the exquisite garden at Stirling Castle."

Carol

Campbell, CA

Tour: 07/16/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It exceeded my expectations. Nigel was fantastic. The hotels, coach and driver,food,education, pace,.... Everything was SO GREAT!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had such an overwhelming emotional response to visiting Glencoe. It stirred my soul. It made me breathless, heart-poundy, and teary eyed. I wished we could have stayed longer! I've never had that kind of response to a landscape before."

Brian

Silverdale, WA

Tour: 07/16/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The sites were great and so inspiring. We mostly enjoy the peaceful sites so rich with history and this tour gave us a great mix ofthe hustle and bustle of a city as well as the more peaceful and beautiful historical venues. We did take a side trip from Inverness up to Orkney and that was a beautiful diversion! Nigel (our tour guide) was awesome! Great background to the areas we visited and valuable advice when we broke out on our own for a day

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many! The bridge on the 18th fairway at St Andrews, our side trip to Orkney, Iona (where we met you Rick!!), Glencoe, Stirling. There really wasn't a downside to our time on the tour"

Dawn

Amarillo, TX

Tour: 07/16/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall the tour was great.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Watching my husband play the bagpipes and then trying to talk him out of buying a set to bring home! He loved it and I loved watching him!"

Melba

The Woodlands, TX

Tour: 07/16/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Best of Scotland Tour was my first organized tour, but I have traveled much of Europe with Rick Steves' travel books in hand. I worried that an organized tour would mean little free time. When you are with a group of people, you have fewer opportunities to interact with local people. The idea of spending the whole vacation trying to stay close enough to the guide to hear what was said was also not appealing. My worries were unfounded with a Rick Steves' tour. Nigel, our guide, got us

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Way too many wow moments to choose one."

Patrick

The Woodlands, TX

Tour: 07/16/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We loved our guide !! We loved the head sets so we could hear all the information.. We got to see Rick Steves ..Bonus ! The song says it all.....I liked it, I loved it, I want some more of it.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It was WOW from the fist day to the last day. wow PS, the bus was great and lots of room..thank you."

Sharon

Vancouver, WA

Tour: 07/14/18

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

Hotels: 50% of the nights were spent in substandard hotels: See details below in other sections. The remainder were good. Free time: We often had to choose to see the sights or have lunch. There really wasn't time for both so we had to rush and neither one was accomplished adequately. We were almost left behind by the bus one day when only being one minute late. The "buddy system" doesn't work if you are with your buddies......

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our favorite moment was seeing The Three Sisters in the Highlands. We were awed and humbled by the spectacular and mysterious mountains.The weather was perfect that day with clouds hovering over the very top of the mountains. Neither my husband nor I have ever felt quite the same about any other view we have ever seen."

Elizabeth

Shoreline, WA

Tour: 07/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had a wonderful experience. The tour was well-planned and the guide was terrific.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I especially enjoyed our time in the Highlands. Driving up to the observation point was great."

Erica

St Cloud, MN

Tour: 07/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our Scotland tour was packed with a wide variety of adventures. I appreciate how much I learned about the history of Scotland and her people and how the Scottish people live today. I enjoyed learning what made each city and village we visited unique and I loved our opportunities to get out into nature! Our tour guide and coach driver did a fabulous job, and the food and accommodations were top rate. Each day was better than the next!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were multiple "WOW" moments! The Crannog site, the Clara Cairns, sailing Loch Ness, the sheepdog demonstration, climbing St. Rules tower, the bagpipe demonstration, the Perthshire Woods, Cawdor Castle, visiting the Isles of Mull and Iona, Glencoe, and Stirling castle!!! Basically the entire trip was a Wow moment for me!"

Sara

Gainesville, VA

Tour: 07/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was awesome!!!! from start to finish....Helen was easily the best tour guide we have ever had :).....and the driver was great!!! The knowledge that Helen shared with us about Scotland was amazing....we did not want the tour to end!!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"our 'wow' moment would have to be the sheep herding dogs !!!"

John

Benton Harbor, MI

Tour: 07/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our 3rd Rick Steves Tour and exceeded our expectations. Helen was a great guide and a wealth of knowledge. I enjoy history, Cathedrals, castles and gardens. During our free time we visited Rosslyn Chapel, Calton Hill, Waters of Leith, Royal Botanical Garden, Museum of Childhood, Palace of Holyrood in Edinburgh. Hiked the island of Kerarra while in Oban. Watched an outdoor Scottish Concert in Inverness and visited amazing churches in Inverness and Sterling the stained glass was amazing.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Glencoe and the "Thee Sisters" were amazing. Everyday presented a new WOW moment. Experiencing Scotland with the family was a special WOW moment"

Michael

Baltimore, MD

Tour: 07/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I thought the tour was fantastic. I have said to people that at every juncture in planning the tour where they had to make a decision, the company made the right one. First the tour guide, Liz, was fantastic. It was smart that it could be organized in such a way that we spent two nights at each hotel, so it didn't feel like we were constantly packing. I also thought that the balance between meals together and separately was very good.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"In some ways it the last place we visited, Bannockburn. Not because it was so fantastic but the way it tied the whole tour together thematically. I had read a large general history of Scotland right before we came. I knew the BASIC history of many of the places we went to (I'd only seen the first season of Outlander). So, for me, there was something poetic about ending the tour in the place where, in a sense, it all began when Scotland freed itself from England for the next 400 years."

Jonathan

Keizer, OR

Tour: 07/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved the tour, the history, the country and our wonderful guide.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I really loved the architecture in Edinburgh."

Daniel

Mount Holly, NC

Tour: 07/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great. Our guide Liz worried out loud about to much commentary, but I wish she had spoken even more. We got a lot of good down time but, I would have traded some of it for more time at the sites we visited.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Glen Coe for the beautiful mountain scenery, and the chair lift ride up the mountain."

James

Evanston, IL

Tour: 07/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Thorough, efficient, informative, personal and fun

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Urquart castle and loch ness, colladen battlefield"

Martha

Brookhaven, GA

Tour: 07/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The group was the right size and interesting. Liz was a superb guide with help from Alan who was our trusty driver. I was pleasantly surprised at the quality of the places we stayed since I had expected something a little more sparse. The only room that was what I had expected was in Inverness and it was fine and in a great location. Others were extremely comfortable. I wish that I had know about our stay in Dunkeld since I would have loved to arrange for a seaweed foot treatment.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Drinking Drambuie at the top of the ski lift. Stirling Castle because it gave a chance to see what the places actually looked like -- particularly the colors of the Stirling heads."

Brian

Ventura, CA

Tour: 07/11/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Really good introduction to Scotland. Excellent guide. Probably one or two too many castles. Overall food quality for group meals was not so good.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting Iona was really cool."

Julia

Evanston, IL

Tour: 07/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Had a lovely time - Liz was a phenomenal guide. I really feel like I learned about Scotland's past and present! The sights were magnificent and I found each activity on the trip to be meaningful and fun.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"the ski lift!"

Kim

Mount Holly, NC

Tour: 07/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Traveled to many places on my bucket list for Scotland.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Taking the boat ride on Loch Ness."

Mary

Evanston, IL

Tour: 07/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We truly did not know what to expect, as this was our first RS tour, and our first trip to Scotland. As an overview of the country, we were well educated and presented with a representative variety of opportunities to become familiar with Scotland, its history, its contemporary way of life, and the people who live there. Our guide, Liz Lister, demonstrated easy-going but absolute professional demeanor at all times, giving both warmth and stability to the personal experience of tour members.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Experiences were varied and often enlightening, but I would say the overall "wow" was the precision, the comprehensive completeness of the tour's organization. As for surprise factor, while the sheepdog exhibition was hands-on fun, I'd never even heard of the existence of Crannog's, much less go inside one! The isolation of Iona and Mull, in contrast with the sophistication of Edinburgh and St Andrews, were all "WOW" experiences for me."

Gary

Lodi, CA

Tour: 07/09/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall experience was very good. The group was friendly and like minded. The selected tour sites were appropriate although one gets a bit tired of seeing buildings. I enjoyed the smaller towns/remote locations more than I did the city. Like other RS tours it might have been nice to begin and end the tour in different locations (other than both in Edinburgh). I think a bus tour around Edinburgh might have been nice to get acquainted to the city instead of just a walking tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I most enjoyed the sheep herder outing. It was amazing. Also the side trip to Iona was relaxing and great. The bus driver across the Isle of Mull was special - I hope he continues to service RS tours. I also like the pub experience although not officially part of the tour."

Connie

Surrey, BC

Tour: 07/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our first ever tour experience is one we will never forget! From Day 1 we knew that we were in good hands. Our knowledgeable and very personable tour guide, Anne Doig, set the tone the first evening. We loved travelling through Scotland and sharing the experience with our travel companions. Anne's knowledge of the history made each destination and the countryside we travelled through both meaningful and memorable. Edinburgh was a great place to start and end. Outstanding!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So hard to pick... the imposing Edinburgh Castle and the Royal Mile? Eating haggis and neeps and tatties that looked like a 5 star dessert - which really helped with the taste. Oban and the ferry rides to Mull and Iona were certainly a highlight and seeing the blue water off Iona was definitely a 'wow' moment. Seeing my family's castle (Duart Castle) had to be one of the most special moments! The historic buildings were amazing."

Joe

Seneca, SC

Tour: 07/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Another well done tour. We covered a lot of territory and I learned a lot and took a lot of notes to research later. I have usually been a"Lone Ranger" type of traveler, but my three Rick Steve's tours have been very relaxing because most of the tough stuff is done for you. This ten day tour didn't have as much free time than my other two, but we planned to stay in Edinburgh for four days after the tour to make up for it.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Highlands, Glencoe, and mountains around Ben Nevis. Or maybe the bus ride across Mull."

Susan

Lodi, CA

Tour: 07/09/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Great weather and beautiful scenery!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The sheepherding demo at Neil's ranch. Those dogs are so smart and friendly!"

Ieva

San Jose, CA

Tour: 07/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour of Scotland exceeded our expectations. Beyond the pure beauty of the landscape and history of the oldest towns and castles, the people were awesome everywhere we went. We had never done a tour before and sharing the experience with a group of nice travelers was extra special. Our tour guide, Anne and our driver Mark were the beyond great. True gems! The bus was exceptionally comfortable, roomy and clean. Most of the hotels were very nice. And the food was great too!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Upon our arrival we walked aimlessly around medieval Edinburgh and looked up to see Edinburgh castle looming high above us on its volcanic craggy peak. We had definitely arrived in Scotland."

Weather

Scotland / Edinburgh

Hotels & Flights

Tour Hotels

In case you wish to book pre- or post-tour hotel accommodations, the contact information for the tour's first and last hotels is included in your tour confirmation email, as well as in your online customer account. About one month prior to the tour departure, in your customer account you'll find the directions to your first tour hotel and a complete list of hotels where we'll be staying while on tour. 

Please note: There are no triple rooms available on this tour.

Flights

Our tours don't include airfare, so your flight arrangements are completely up to you.

Most tour members arrange to fly in and out of Edinburgh Airport.

We suggest arriving a day or two before your tour begins to allow ample time to get over jet lag and be well-rested for the first few days of your tour. For more information about transportation options for getting to and from your tour, see your Rick Steves Scotland guidebook.