You’re planning a roadtrip in Scotland and you have a lot of questions: which cities to visit? Where to sleep? How to go from one point to another one? If so, you’re at the right place! I’ve been to Scotland in November 2018, alone with my backpack, for 11 days. It was one of my best trips! This is an amazing place and I would love to go back and discover more. Here are a few tips to help you prepare your trip.
Where to go?
If you should choose one place to visit in Scotland, I would say Edinburgh, the capital. Other main cities are Glasgow, Aberdeen, Perth, Dundee and Stirling. For the nature lovers, Scotland is a great place with all its lakes and mountains: Ben Nevis, Loch Lomond, Loch Ness… The islands seem also very nice, especially Skye. Scotland is quite a big place so you probably won’t see everything during 1 trip.
How to get around?
Renting a car is probably the best way to move in Scotland. But I don’t like to drive, and I was alone. So I chose another option: the trains and the buses. It was a bit long, but there are lots of things you can do to pass the time: watch a movie, write postcards, read a book or enjoy the landscape. On my way from Glasgow to Fort William (4 hours), I didn’t see the time passing by. I was always watching through the window, the landscapes were beautiful!
Tip: buying your ticket on the spot might be super expensive. Also, some connections outside big cities are not regular. It’s better to plan your moves ahead as much as you can. I used the Scotrail website to book my tickets.
Where to sleep?
Hotels in Scotland are quite expensive, so I decided to sleep in hostels, Airbnb or guest houses. Here is the list of places I’ve stayed in:
- City Break Guest House Edinburgh: nice people, good breakfast.
- Budget Backpacker Edinburgh: very nice hostel in a good location close from the city center.
- Euro Hostel Glasgow: huge hostel in the city center, quite good, but too big for me.
- Fort William Backpacker: definitely the best place where I’ve stayed in! This hostel is small and comfy, there are only a few rooms so it’s easier to talk with other travelers. I felt like home!
Where to eat?
As I stayed in Scotland for 11 days, I didn’t want to eat outside every day because it was going to be super expensive! I’ve been a few times to the supermarket to buy sandwiches, salads or prepared meals to put in the microwave. But I tried some restaurants and bars and here are 2 good places I recommend you:
What I did
I spent a few days in Edinburgh, working for my job and visit the city at the same time. Here is what I did/the main things that I saw in this city: Scottish National Museum, Royal Mile, Arthur’s Seat, Calton Hill, Dean Village, Harry Potter Tour, Circus Lane, Victoria Street…
I’ve been to Glasgow as well. To be honest, I didn’t really like it. But it’s personal, it’s not my type of city. I didn’t visit a lot at the end: I walked on the main street and on the area around and I’ve visited the modern art museum. When I was there, I’ve been to Luss and Balloch, on the shores of the Loch Lomond. I had a nice walk in the woods in Balloch, and I really liked Luss! It was designed the loveliest village of Scotland.
Even thought I read on blogs and Facebook travel groups that it was not worth it to go to Glenfinnan, I’ve been there to see the “Harry Potter viaduct”. I don’t regret it at all, it was the best day of my trip! Right after I’ve been to Fort William for the rest of the weekend. This city was not on my planning at the beginning but I’m glad I stopped there. It’s a city located between mountains and lakes. You can imagine how beautiful it was!
Finally, I booked a 1 day trip to go to the Loch Ness and I visited the Urquart Castle as well. On the way, we stopped at Glen Coe.
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