Glencoe Loch, Scotland
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A MAGICAL 8-Day Scotland Itinerary – Everything You Need To Know

Looking for an awesome Scottish road trip adventure? Discover the best of Scotland with this 8-day Scotland Itinerary

Scotland, a rich and majestic country that often leaves you feeling that you’ve stepped out of reality and into a Harry Potter-esque world, is, in my opinion, the most beautiful country in the UK

Scotland is home to mystical forests, jaw-dropping lochs, hidden Isles, challenging trails, pristine beaches and some very strong whiskey. 

Whilst this 8-day Scottish road trip adventure will get you seeing some of the best bits of the country, I’m convinced that getting just a small taste of Scotland will leave you wanting more, so don’t expect this to be your last trip to this magical part of the British Isles

Scotland is now one of my favourite places in the world, and I am honestly annoyed that it took me this long to go on a Scottish road trip, considering I live in England. 

So, what exactly is included in this 8-day Scotland Itinerary

Read on below to find out! 

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Contents show

Prepare for Your Trip To Scotland

🛏️Accommodation: When you’re hunting for great deals, make sure to check out different sites like Booking.com and Hotels.com! If you’re on a budget then make sure to check out Hostelworld.

🚆Transport: Need to book a bus, plane or train whilst travelling? Check out your options on Trip.com, 12goasia.com, Bookaway.com and thetrainline.com.

🚗Rental Cars: Looking to rent a car for your adventures? Check out prices on Rentalcars.com and Discovercars.com.

🐘Activities: Check out Get Your Guide and Viator for 100’s of activities whilst travelling.

🦋Insurance: Make sure you’re covered against any incidents during your trip. Get affordable and flexible insurance with Safety Wings.

📱Download an eSIM: Avoid roaming fees, and have peace of mind that you have internet access when WiFi isn’t available. Download sims from either Airalo or Holafly for your time abroad.

About this 8-day Scotland Itinerary

This 8-day Scotland Itinerary was formed from the exact route I took on my own trip to Scotland. 

This itinerary is filled with adventure to ensure you see Scotland’s very best bits. 

This one-week Scotland Itinerary starts in Glasgow and looks like this: 

  • Day 1 – Glasgow > Loch Lomond 
  • Day 2 – Loch Lomond > Glencoe (& Fort William)
  • Day 3 – Glencoe (& Fort William) > Isle of Skye
  • Day 4 – Isle of Skye 
  • Day 5 – Isle of Skye > Isle of Lewis and Harris 
  • Day 6 – Isle of Lewis and Harris 
  • Day 7 – Isle of Lewis and Harris > Cairngorms National Park 
  • Day 8 – Cairngorms National Park

Getting to Scotland

This 8-day Scotland Itinerary begins in Glasgow, although you won’t be staying here. 

Glasgow is simply the gateway to the real first stop on this itinerary, Loch Lomond. 

Driving

If you are driving to Scotland from elsewhere in the UK, you can skip out of Glasgow and head straight to the area of Loch Lomond. 

Flying

You can fly directly into Glasgow airport from all major UK cities and most European cities.

Train

You can catch the train to Glasgow Central Station from many cities in the UK. 

You can book your train tickets here

Coach

You can catch the coach to Glasgow Central Station from many cities in the UK. 

You can book your coach tickets here.

How to get around Scotland

This is a Scotland road trip itinerary, so you must have a car for this. 

This is because many locations included in this itinerary are not accessible by public transport. 

If you have flown in or caught the train to Glasgow, pick up a rental car from Glasgow Airport or the town centre. 

You can book a rental car here.

Day 1 – Glasgow >  Loch Lomond 

If possible, I would recommend not staying in Glasgow and heading straight for Loch Lomond. 

This itinerary focuses on immersing yourself in some of Scotland’s finest natural beauty spots, so it is best to spend as little time in the city as possible. 

The drive from Glasgow to Loch Lomond is 1 hour and approximately 45 KM.

Where to stay in Loch Lomond  

Budget 
Mid Range 
Luxury 

Day 2 – Loch Lomond > Glencoe (& Fort William)

On day 2 of this 8-day Scotland itinerary, you will spend the morning exploring Loch Lomond. 

Loch Lomond is the largest loch in Scotland and is home to some pretty impressive scenery.

What to do in Loch Lomond 

Hike Conic Hill 

On this itinerary, I highly recommend that you spend your morning hiking Conic Hill. 

It’s a relatively easy hike, with some impressive views out over Loch Lomond. 

Other things to do in Loch Lomond 

If hiking isn’t your favourite pastime, here are some other things you can do in Loch Lomond:

Driving to Glencoe

Following your morning in Loch Lomond, you must drive to Glencoe.

The drive from Loch Lomond to Glencoe is approximately 1 hour, 20 minutes, and 98 KM. 

There are lots of scenic viewpoints you can stop off at on your way from Loch Lomond to the centre of Glencoe, of which I have recommended some below: 

Of course, the stop-offs will make your drive a little longer, but they’re oh-so worth it. 

Where to stay in Glencoe 

Budget 
Mid-Range 
Luxury
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Day 3 Glen Coe (& Fort William) > Isle of Skye 

On day 3 of this 8-day Scotland itinerary, you will spend the morning exploring Glencoe and Fort William (which are a short distance from each other)  before heading to the Isle of Skye. 

Glencoe is Scotland’s most scenic highland glen and, as a result, one of the most popular spots in Scotland and rightly so. 

It has to be one of my favourite places in Scotland; it’s utterly stunning! 

What to do in Glencoe (& Fort William)

On this 8-day Scotland Itinerary, I recommend spending your morning first going for a leisurely stroll around the stunning Loch Leven, which is located in the centre of Glencoe Village, before setting off for Fort William. 

Steall Falls Hike

Once you have arrived in Fort William, you HAVE TO do the Steall Falls hike. 

This is the second-largest fall in Scotland and was also the set and backdrop for some of Harry Potter’s most famous quidditch scenes. 

The Steall Falls walk is a 3.5km trip and will take you roughly 2 hours to walk. This hike has a difficulty rating of easy to moderate. 

Read more about the Steall Falls hike here.

Other things to do in Glencoe (& Fort William)
  • Visit Loch Etive and Skyfall Road (featured in James Bonds Skyfall) 
  • Visit Glenfinnan Viaduct (The Famous Viaduct featured in Harry Potter) 

Driving to the Isle of Skye 

Following your morning in Glencoe and Fort William, you will need to head to the next stop on this 8-day Scotland Itinerary, the epic Isle of Skye. 

The drive from Fort William to the Isle of Skye is approximately 2 hours, 40 minutes, and 168 km. 

There is a bridge connecting the Isle of Skye with the mainland, so you don’t have to worry about ferries just yet.  

Where to stay on the Isle of Skye 

For this 8-day Scotland road trip Itinerary, I recommend staying in the areas of either Portree or Uig. 

Budget 
Mid-Range 
Luxury

Day 4  – Isle of Skye

The Isle of Skye is like a wild painting, full of rugged landscapes, ancient stories, and jaw-dropping beauty and simply cannot be missed if you’re doing a Scotland road trip

What to do on the Isle of Skye

On day 4 of this Itinerary, you have a full day to explore the Isle of Skye, and I recommend visiting these top stops.

Portree 

Portree is a charming coastal village that looks like a colourful postcard come to life.

Down at the harbour, you can enjoy the freshest seafood or just soak up the lively vibes. 

Wander around, and you’ll find cosy pubs, quirky shops, and cafes where you can grab a warm cup of tea. 

Portree’s got that friendly small-town vibe mixed with breathtaking scenery.

Old Man of Storr 

The Old Man of Storr is an iconic rock formation located on the Isle of Skye.

Standing at 165 feet tall it is one of Skye’s most famous landmarks that draws visitors with its mysterious allure and breathtaking vistas. 

Legend has it that it is the petrified thumb of a giant. 

The hike to the Old Man of Storr offers adventurers panoramic views of the Isle of Skye’s dramatic coastline.

Fairy Glen 

A trip to Fairy Glen is like stepping straight into a fairy tale with its lush green hills, quirky rock formations, and winding trails. 

Locals say it’s where fairies dance under the moonlight, adding to its mystical charm. 

You can explore the mini landscapes, climb up to Castle Ewen for epic views, or just chill and soak in the enchanting vibes. 

Other things to do on the Isle of Skye 
  • Visit Kilt Rock and  Mealt Falls 
  • Hike the Quiraing 
  • Dip in the Fairy Pools 
  • See the dinosaur footprint at Corran Beach

Day 5 – Isle of Skye >  Isle of Lewis and Harris 

Day 5 of this Itinerary will see you make the journey from the Isle of Skye to the Isle of Harris and Lewis.

You will need to catch a ferry from Skye to the Isle of Harris and Lewis which can be booked directly through Caledonian MacBrayne (Calmac) ferries.

The ferry departs from Uig Port on Skye and arrives at Tarbert Port on Harris. 

The journey is approximately 1 hour 30 minutes and ticket prices start from £7.45. 

Where to Stay on the Isle of Lewis and Harris 

The Isles of Harris and Lewis are given two separate names although they are connected by a narrow strip of land, making them a part of the same landmass.

The Isle of Lewis is in the north, and the Isle of Harris is in the south. 

It doesn’t matter too much where you base yourself as it’s easy to get around the island with a car. 

Some of the best hotels are listed below: 

Budget 
Mid-Range
Luxury

Day 6 – Isle of Lewis and Harris

The Isle of Lewis and Harris is a windswept paradise, with its stunning beaches, rugged cliffs, and rich Gaelic heritage and has to be my favourite spot on this 8-day Scotland Itinerary. 

What to do on the Isle of Lewis and Harris 

Visit Luskentyre Beach

It’s hard to believe that Scotland of all places would have beaches that resemble something you might find in Australia or the Caribbean.

But Luskentyre Beach offers you exactly that with its clear turquoise seas and bright white sands. 

This is rated as one of the top beaches in Scotland (and the world) so do not skip this from your itinerary. 

Luskentyre Beach- Isle of Lewis and Harris
Explore the Gearrannan Blackhouse Village

Gearrannan Blackhouse Village is an impressive coastal crofting village located on the west coast of Lewis that was built in the 1800s.

The original inhabitants of the village left in the 1970s and from the late ’80s the local community restored the cottages using traditional methods. 

Walk around the Calanais Standing Stones

Placed here over 5,000 years ago (making them older than Stonehenge), the Calanais Standing Stones are an impressive collection of cross-shaped stones. 

For over 2000 years, they have been an important place for rituals. 

Although no one officially knows why the stones are there, people believe that it is an astronomical observatory.

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Other things to do on the Isle of Lewis and Harris
  • Go on a boat trip to St Kilda
  • Wander around Stornoway Harbour
  • Seal spotting at Finsbay

Read my ultimate guide to the Isle of Lewis and Harris here.

Day 7 – Isle of Harris and Lewis > Cairngorms 

Day 7 of this 8-day Scotland Itinerary will see you heading back to the mainland to Cairngorms National Park. 

You will have to catch the ferry from Stornoway Harbour in Lewis to the port town of Ullapool. 

You can book ferries directly through Caledonian MacBrayne (Calmac) ferries. 

The ferry takes approximately 2 hours 40 minutes and tickets start from £11.15. 

I recommend taking the afternoon ferry so that you get another full morning on the Isle of Lewis and Harris. 

From Ullapool, the drive to the town of Aviemore in Cairngorms National Park is approximately 1 hour 40 minutes. 

Where to stay in Cairngorms National Park 

For this itinerary, you’ll want to stay in the town of Aviemore. 

Budget 
Mid-Range 
Luxury 

Day 8 – Cairngorms National Park

On your last day of this 8-day Scotland itinerary, you’ll be exploring the beautiful Cairngorms National Park. 

Cairngorms National Park is a lush green wonderland packed with towering mountains, ancient woodlands, and plenty of wildlife to discover.

What to do in the Cairngorms 

Visit Loch Uaine 

In Cairngorms National Park, you’ll find Loch Uaine, known as the “Green Loch” for its emerald waters. 

It’s hugged by old forests and tall mountains, making it a peaceful spot for hikers and nature fans. 

Loch Uaine’s calming vibe and natural charm make it a lovely secret spot to explore.

Stroll around Loch an Eilein

Loch an Eilein is a peaceful lake surrounded by thick forests and with a castle ruin on a little island, it’s a lovely place for walks, picnics, and spotting animals. 

Go there to enjoy nature and relax by the water.

Other Things To Do In the Cairngorms 
  • Visit Balmoral Castle 
  • Explore Loch Morlich 
  • Admire the Falls of Bruar

Leaving Scotland

If you have flown in or caught the train to Scotland, you do not have to go all the way back to Glasgow from the Cairngorms. 

The closest city to the Cairngorms is Inverness, and you can catch a flight or train home from Inverness Airport or Inverness Central Station. 

However, if you plan to leave from Inverness, make sure your rental car can be dropped off at a different location and does not have to be returned back to Glasgow. 

Scotland Itinerary FAQ’s 

How many days do you need for Scotland?

To see the best bits of Scotland and the highlands I would recommend at least a week. 

However, if you’re just planning a city break to Edinburgh for example then you’ll only need 2-3 days. 

Is 8 days enough for Scotland?

Yes, as you will see from this itinerary you can explore a great deal of the country in just 8 days. 

How much would an 8-day trip to Scotland cost?

The cost of an 8-day trip to Scotland can vary widely depending on factors like accommodation, transportation, dining preferences, activities, and season of travel. 

On average, a mid-range budget for accommodation, meals, transportation, and activities could cost you around £700-£1000 per person. 

Is Scotland expensive to visit?

Scotland’s cost can vary, but it’s generally moderate. Cities like Edinburgh and Glasgow are pricier, especially during peak seasons. 

Staying in budget accommodations, eating at local spots, and enjoying free attractions can help manage expenses.

Exploring natural areas and less touristy spots can also be more affordable.

What is the cheapest month to go to Scotland?

Avoid visiting Scotland during the UK summer holidays (end of July & August) and major holidays such as Christmas and Easter to get the cheapest rates on hotels and transport etc.

Happy Exploring

I hope this 8-day Scotland Itinerary has helped you plan the perfect Scotland road trip.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to reach out.

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