8 daysActivity Level
ModerateOur moderate adventures are similar to our easy adventures, but you’ll spend more time on your feet.
6 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 6 dinners
Explore the mystique, enchantment and magic of the Scottish Highlands on this family vacation. As your family travels around some of the most gorgeous wilderness in the world, you’ll search national parks and meet reindeer, visit Brodie Castle and kayak in clear water off a white sand beach. This is an adventure your family will never forget!
Recommended Age: 8+
A Taste of Wizardry
Sip tea in the Elephant House, a cafe where an unknown JK Rowling wrote much of the first book. Visit the spired George Heriot school — or is it Hogwart’s School of Witchcraft and Wizardry? Walk the winding, cobblestoned Victoria Street – Harry Potter fans will know it is actually Diagon Alley, where wizards purchase their magical trappings.
Friends Across Borders – Scottish Style!
Not only will you meet local kids, you’ll learn to play their favorite game – Shinty! Known as the favored sport in the Scottish Highlands, you’ll learn the unique rules and features of this ball and stick game.
Meet and Feed a Herd of Reindeer
Take a mountain bike ride to Cairngorm Mountain, which is home to a vast population of friendly reindeer that you can cozy up to and feed by hand.
Explore the Lowes Wildlife Reserve
This 217 acre wildlife reserve is home to ospreys, otters, deer and woodland birds. Learn about their conservation efforts on a hike around the loch.
Travel Back in Time at the Highland Folk Museum
At this open-air museum, your family will experience what life was like in the highlands dating all the way back to the 1700s.
Fly to Inverness, Scotland
Visit Brodie Castle
Make a stop in Moray to visit the turreted Brodie Castle with its centuries-old family history.
Meet the Reindeer of Cairngorm Mountain
Take a leisurely hike to the hilltop location where free-ranging reindeer live. Standing in their midst, you can stroke their fur and hand feed them some of their favorite foods, while you learn about their history in the park.
Cycle along ancient woodland trails through magnificent Caledonian Pine forest looking for red squirrel and capercaillie birds.
Cycling Cairngorms National Park
Enjoy cycling in the national park, known for its easy and challenging trails.
Hiking Glen Nevis
Enjoy the ‘best short hike’ in Scotland on a 2.5-mile jaunt through wildflower strewn meadows and dramatic views to the Steall Waterfall, the second highest in Scotland.
Friends Across Borders: The Highland Game of Shinty
Watch a demonstration of a sport that is played passionately in the Highlands and Islands of Scotland – shinty. This is a Celtic game that is very similar to hurling in Ireland. Watch as the locals show you how it is done and then have a go yourself!
Fish and Chips Lunch
In the tiny, picturesque village of Mallaig, enjoy a traditional lunch and take in the stunning views.
Sea Kayaking with Seals
With its hundreds of islands and islets, and abundance of marine mammals, the Sound of Arisaig is a perfect place for sea-kayaking. Board your sturdy vessel and paddle through the sheltered waters of Arisaig Bay, a photogenic wonderland, and delight in the company of gregarious seals. Keep an eye out too, for otters, dolphins, and porpoises that frequent the area.
Beaches of Arisaig
Walk the ‘Old Road to the Isles’ to the beach of Airsaig with its large seal colony, and watch for porpoises and dolphins in the surf.
Discover Loch of the Lowes Wildlife Reserve
Set out for the beautiful Loch of the Lowes, a 217-acre wildlife reserve. Interactive displays at the reserve’s Visitor Center offer a window into the natural history of the Loch, and a hike around the lake provides opportunities to see ospreys, red squirrels, otters, deer, and woodland birds with the opportunity to learn about the extensive conservation efforts of the region.
The adventure continues today as we head to the dramatic Glencoe to hike around a beautiful lochan surrounded by North American trees, this restful woodland was planted in the 1890s by Lord Strathcona for his homesick Canadian wife.
Canoe Loch Tay
Take a short drive to Loch Tay this morning and board canoes to explore the shoreline of this narrow, 15-mile-long body of water nestled into an emerald valley. Dozens of small farming communities once rimmed the loch, and their remains are visible from your boat. As you follow the shore, you’ll also see ancient stone circles and standing stones that indicate much older settlements. Enjoy lunch on the shores of the loch.
Visit a Crannog in Loch Tay
An ancient dwelling built on stilts in a loch, the oldest crannog home dates back 5,000 years! Visit Loch Tay to see a reconstructed crannog from the Iron Age.
Discover Harry Potter
Meet up with your guide, a local expert. Spend the morning on a private walk to some of the sights that inspired the Harry Potter books – most of which were written in Edinburgh.
Say goodbye to your guide and fellow travelers over a farewell dinner.
Depart Edinburgh, Scotland
Dates & Prices
07/26-08/02Call for AvailabilityAdult $4490Teen $4490Child $4290
06/27-07/05Adult $4590Teen $4590Child $4390
08/01-08/09Adult $4590Teen $4590Child $4390
Smart Traveler Advantages
Book a trip 9 months ahead of the day that you want to leave and get a free GoPro and Travel Protection!
$200 for children under 12 sharing with 2 adults
Additional $690 for single accommodations
If you are a returning Thomson guest, please subtract $500 per family from these prices.
We strongly recommend purchasing travel insurance. We’ve received great feedback about Travel Insured – you can learn more about the benefits of travel insurance there.
All entrance fees, accommodations based on two to a room, land transportation, private bilingual guide throughout, all meals, bottled water & snacks in the vehicle.
Guaranteed departure. Surcharge applied to groups smaller than 4 guests.
Thomson Family Adventures will attempt to adhere to this itinerary and its hotels as much as possible. However, certain conditions (political, climatic, environmental, cultural, or availability) may necessitate changes in the accommodations.
- Why Thomson
Guaranteed DeparturesNo matter what happens, once your family books a trip you’re going.
GuidesBe accompanied for your entire trip by an expert local in-country guide who will know all of the ins and outs of the adventure and destination.
Small GroupsWith a small group you’ll have plenty of time for spontaneity and to develop a connection with your fellow travelers and guide.
Smart Traveler Advantages
Book your trip 9 months in advance and get access to all of the advantages that come with being a smart traveler; from Travel Protection to a brand new GoPro.
Friends Across Borders
Your child will have a cultural connection like no other by meeting kids the same age from the country you’re traveling by playing games, throwing a Frisbee, kicking a ball around, or just chatting. Ask us about our pen pal program.