Self Guided Walking Holidays & Cycling Holidays


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Scone Palace
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Highlights

  • Visiting Scotland’s Blair Castle, Scotland’s finest.
  • Easy going cycling through the heather covered hills of the Highlands.
  • Enjoying a “wee dram” at Edradour Distillery.
  • Hand picked inns and B&Bs offering the warmest of welcomes.
  • Scone Palace, where 42 Scottish Kings were crowned.

Discover the castles, palaces and history of Scotland as you cycle through the heart of the Scottish Highlands. Cycle from inn to inn on easy going country roads and bike paths through the heather clad hills of Highland Perthshire. Visit the romantic castle of Blair Castle and historic Scone Palace, crowning place of 42 Scottish Kings.

From the historic city of Perth you head north along the Tay River Valley to historic Dunkeld and Birnam and then on to the Victorian Spa town of Pitlochry. Cycle the shoreline of Loch Tummel, take a tour of Blair Castle or take a wee dram at the Edradour Distillery overlooking the Perthshire Highlands.

Day 1: Arrive Perth

The City of Perth, on the banks of the River Tay, dates back 800 years and was originally called St John’s Town. An easy train journey from Glasgow (1h10) or Edinburgh (1h20) gives you time to explore St John’s Kirk, the Black Watch Museum or just stroll on the banks of the River Tay.


Overnight: Perth


Day 2: Scone Palace to Dunkeld

After your bike fitting, start your adventure at Scone Palace, the crowning place of 42 Scottish kings, including Robert the Bruce and Bonnie Prince Charlie.  Explore the palace, wander in the gardens and discover Scotland’s history. From Perth you then head north on the National Cycle Route 77 along the banks of the River Tay through the rolling countryside of Perthshire to Dunkeld. A Victorian Village on the banks of the River Tay where you will stay for the next 2 nights.


Cycle: 21 miles / 35 km, 210m ascent


Overnight: Dunkeld


Day 3: Dunkled 3 Lochs Cycle


Cycling east, an easy going loop links the small lochs of Drumellie, Clunie and Lowes where it is possible to view nesting Ospreys.    Alternatively (or even additionally), you may prefer to explore the charms of Dunkeld, revisiting childhood memories at the Beatrix Potter Exhibition, visit Dunkeld’s 13th century Cathedral or take a trip to the nearby Menzies Castle, seat of the Menzies clan for over 400 years (private transfers can be arranged).


Cycle: 19 miles / 33 km


Overnight: Dunkeld


Day 4: Cycle to Pitlochry


Cycle north on cycle route 77 through the glorious Perthshire countryside to Pitlochry. Following the River Tay, the route gently sweeps through the villages of Dalguise and Logierait. The last few km’s undulates through the pine forest of Ballechin Wood to the town of Pitlochry, nestled beneath the rugged Perthshire Highlands.

Cycle: 15 miles / 26km, 190m ascent

Overnight: Pitlochry


Day 5: Blair Castle & Pitlochry


The popular Victorian Spa town of Pitlochry is packed full of things to do. The loop ride around Loch Tummel leads to ‘Queens View’ one of Scotland’s most famous viewpoints. Before heading around the loch, take a cycle up to Blair Castle, which showcases 700 years of Scottish history across 30 rooms. On the way up you can also visit the battle site of Killicrankie and the delicious food hall at The House of Bruaur. If all this sounds a squeeze then we can easily arrange another night in Pitlochry to take a tour of the Edradour Distillery. Single malt as it’s best!


Cycle: 28 miles / 44 km, 190m ascent


Overnight: Pitlochry


Day 6: Onward Travel

Your trip ends after breakfast. Return to Edinburgh or Glasgow by train (approx. 2hrs) or head north to Inverness (1hr 45min).

Accommodation

5 Nights accommodation is included in hand-picked B&Bs or
guesthouses, of a 3 or 4 star standard. We carefully select small and
friendly accommodation that offers great value, food and welcomes. Here
you’ll see a selection of some of the properties we often book, however
they are subject to availability and therefore alternatives of an equal
standard may be offered.


You can add tailor-make your itinerary and add extra nights to suit your requirements —please contact us for details. 


Accommodation Upgrade


Featuring stylish inns and country house hotels our superior accommodation option is perfect if you prefer your adventure with added comfort. If you wish to upgrade a supplementary payment can be made at the time of booking. Listed below are example of our standard and superior accommodation.


Single Rooms

If you require single rooms within your party we will always try and accommodate you subject to availability. A single supplement is payable.


Meals

A local, traditional breakfast is included each morning. Lunch and dinner are not included. Most of your accommodation will be more than happy to provide a packed lunch on request. Dinner is available either at your accommodation or at nearby pubs or restaurants.



 

 

 



Pitcullen Guest House - Perth



Pitcullen Guesthouse - Perth

A friendly, relaxed guesthouse located on the east side of the River Tay. This quiet location provides a warm welcome to Scottish hospitality and stunning scenery.


 

 

 


 

 

 



The Bridge - Dunkeld



The Bridge - Dunkeld

Adjacent to the River Tay, The Bridge dates back to the Georgian period and is only a short walk from Dunkeld Cathedral.


 

 

 


 

 

 



Knockendarroch - Pitlochry



Knockendarroch - Pitlochry

A contemporary country house nestled in the Perthshire Highlands. The panoramic bedrooms offer far reach views across mountains and woodlands.


 

 

 


 

 

 

Availability

This trip is available to start on any day, from July to October in 2016 and April to October 2017.


Grade & Terrain

This trip is graded easy to moderate and
follows a combination of paved, well marked cycle routes, quiet country
roads, a few stretches of hills and some busier routes closer to towns,
so please do be mindful of other roads users.


Navigation, Route Notes & Maps


Our tried and tested detailed routes notes and maps are easy to follow during your self-guided adventure. Should you require assistance, local 24/7 telephone support will also be available throughout your trip.


Baggage Transfer

Daily door to door baggage transfer is included in the cost of your holiday. We ask you to limit your luggage to one bag of up to 20kg per person.


Bike Hire

GT Transeo, 24 gear hybrid bikes are available for hire. Rental bikes
come equipped with, 1 x pannier bag, basic repair kit, pump and helmet (though
we recommend using your own). Male and female frames are available. If you’d
like to hire a bike, please let us know your height and frame size you
currently ride.


If you’re only just getting into cycling or need a little assistance we
can also arrange e-bike rental.


If you would prefer to bring your own bicycle please ensure it is thoroughly serviced and is an appropriate bike for this trip such as Scott Sub, Trek 7200 or similar.


Bike bags/cases can easily be stored in Perth but please do pack an extra soft bag for your personal belongings as bike bags/cases are too large for the daily baggage transfers.


General Information

The distances and ascent/descents are approximations of the recommended routes. Please be prepared by packing all necessary items, for example, proper rain gear (jacket and pants), sun hat, sunscreen. Your information pack has a detailed equipment list which includes standard gear such as warm and waterproof clothes for the cooler months and lightweight clothing for summer, and a day pack.


Travel Insurance

It is a requirement of booking this tour with Macs Bike that you have suitable travel insurance which covers you for the activity and emergency evacuation and hospital care.

Getting to Perth / from Pitlochry

To Perth



Perth is an easy train journey from Edinburgh (1h20), Glasgow (1h10) or  Inverness (2h05), all of which have airports. Edinburgh and Glasgow airports are the best option if travelling from outside the UK.



Use the journey planner online at www.travelinescotland.com to plan journeys by public transport in Scotland.



Private transfers from Edinburgh or Glasgow can easily be arranged.


From Pitlochry



Pitlochry has a mainline train station connecting through to Perth, Edinburgh and Glasgow. Train times and tickets can be booked via Scot Rail.

Included

  • 5 Nights accommodation in either standard or superior accommodation
  • 5 Breakfasts (& 2 dinners if choosing superior accommodation)
  • Detailed route notes with maps
  • Baggage transfer throughout
  • 24/7 local telephone support

Excluded

  • Bike Hire
  • Travel to Perth / From Pitlochry
  • Lunches and Dinners (except 3 dinners on superior option)
  • Entrances to castles or attractions
  • Drinks and snacks
  • Personal equipment and expenditure
  • Travel insurance

Extras

  • Upgrade to Superior Accommodation
  • Additional nights
  • Bike hire

We are often asked the following questions and I hope that you will find the answers useful. Please don’t hesitate to contact us for more advice from our clients and team.

How far in advance do I need to book?

We suggest you book as soon as your plans are finalised as accommodation in the Perthshire Highlands gets very busy during the summer months. You will find up to date availability on our website and please give us a shout if you have a query.

How fit do I need to be?

This trip is graded easy to moderate. With minimum daily distances of 27 km—44 km and options to extend your ride on most days. There are plenty of sights, stops and villages to break up each day of cycling. This trip is perfectly suited for occasional to regular leisure cyclists who are comfortable with a few hills.

How do the baggage transfers work?

Your bags will be transferred from your accommodation as per your itinerary and moved on to your next overnight accommodation. We ask you to limit your luggage to one bag of up to 18kg per person.

What personal equipment do I need?

Our pre-departure information pack has detailed advice and a kit list on what to take. You’ll need to wear a helmet and bringing your own is always more comfy and hygienic than hiring one. If you have any questions about what to take then we’d be happy to share our own top tips and advice.

When is the best time of year?

April can still be quite cold and some attractions may be closed. May and June are ideal as the spring flowers are at their best. July and August can be busy in Scotland although the heather is at it’s best. In September and October the weather is turning cooler but the summer crowds will have left.

What are the midges like?

Midges are small biting insects (much like North American gnats) which are prevalent in the summer months. They are particularly bad on still, overcast days but do not bother you if you are moving, the wind is blowing, sun is shining, it’s raining, or you are inside so as long as you carry repellent for the odd occasion you may need it they shouldn’t have any impact on your experience.

What happens if I can't cycle a stage?

You can use public transport or local taxis to continue to your next overnight stop.

REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
macs adventureScotland's Castle Trail
 
4.0

(based on 2 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 4 Stars

     

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Reviewed by 2 customers

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5.0

Nice adventure

By KK

from Texas

About Me Avid Adventurer, World Traveller

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Fun
  • Great Accommodations
  • Once in a Lifetime Experience
  • Well Organised

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Holiday

    Comments about macs adventure Scotland's Castle Trail:

    Just about perfect- but map cues need updating outside of Perth due to road work.

     
    3.0

    Beautiful views, a little short,

    By Alec

    from Michigan

    About Me 35 tours, 71 years old, flatlander, but bicycle 2500 miles a year, Wife and I traveling

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Great Accommodations
    • outstanding views
    • pretty good roads
    • Very friendly Macs staff
    • wonderful breakfasts
    • wonderful people

    Cons

    • could have been a couple days longer
    • not many castles
    • terrible maps

    Best Uses

    • to see Scotland
    • Trying Something New

    Comments about macs adventure Scotland's Castle Trail:

    I might do this part again, if they redid their maps. Might recommend to a friend.

    Displaying reviews 1-2

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