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Edinburgh Tattoo and Stirling Castle

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Bagpipes play the soundtrack and magnificent stone strongholds set the scene on this Scotland rail tour featuring the annual Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo.

Travel among a group of like-minded travelers led by a professional tour manager

2023 Tour code: GR-ETEA-23

About the tour

Feel the hum in your chest as the bagpipes sound against the backdrop of an illuminated 900-year-old castle. There is nowhere else you could be but Scotland. This country is filled with legend and lore and is a place where tradition holds strong. These traditions set the tone for your roundtrip, escorted journey to three breathtaking cities: Glasgow, Edinburgh, and Stirling. Begin in Glasgow with an evening to independently get acquainted with the local culture after your arrival. From here, enjoy a trip through the Scottish countryside aboard a heritage railway, the Bo'ness and Kinneil Railway, toward Edinburgh. Scotland's capital city is fascinating in its own right, but you arrive in Tattoo season - one of the most highly anticipated seasons of the year. Since the 1940s, the Edinburgh Tattoo has been performed at Edinburgh Castle. Listen to traditional music played by pipes and drums and watch Highland dancers as they perform their art. Military formations, gasp-worthy stunts, fireworks, and more make this an event to remember. The tour proceeds to Stirling, home of Stirling Castle - the childhood home of Mary Queen of Scots - and then back to Glasgow, where we are treated to a traditional Scottish tea at the Mackintosh at the Willow tea rooms. Four days, three destinations, and endless chances to peer into the heart of Scotland: Your journey awaits.


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What’s included


Day 1 - Glasgow

Our tour begins in cosmopolitan Glasgow, where we meet at our hotel. Straddling the River Clyde, this sprawling metropolis is one of Europe's liveliest destinations, full of vitality and style and complemented by the backdrop of its rich history and outstanding Victorian architecture. Overnight Glasgow.

  • Dinner
Day 2 - The Bo’ness and Kinneil Railway & Edinburgh Tattoo

We set out by coach for the Bo'ness and Kinneil Railway for an atmospheric trip through the Scottish countryside in one of the lovingly restored locomotives. The line takes us past several quaint, preserved stations and along the shore of the Forth and before pulling into Birkhill, a picturesque town set on a wooded incline. Before transferring to Edinburgh this evening, we also enjoy a quick stop at the 'Kelpies,' 30-foot statues of mythical horses said to roam the Caledonian countryside. Settling into our seats for the Edinburgh Military Tattoo, we prepare for a musical spectacular featuring the massed pipes and drums of the Scottish regiments and set against the floodlit backdrop of Edinburgh Castle. The Tattoo is an incredible annual event combining music, entertainment, and ceremony, including the Massed Bands of Her Majesty's Royal Marines and a fantastic firework display. Overnight Glasgow. 

  • Breakfast
Day 3 - Stirling Castle & the Mackintosh Tea Rooms

We visit Stirling Castle, which sits perched on a dramatic hilltop overlooking the city. Once the childhood home of Mary Queen of Scots, this stunning fortress is one of the most impressive in Scotland and is a fine example of Renaissance architecture. You have time to explore the grand interiors, including the impressive Great Hall, pretty Chapel Royal, where Queen Mary was crowned in 1543, and the kitchens, which offer a striking contrast to the sumptuous decor of the rest of the castle. With replicas of traditional dishes and detailed, life-sized models recreating the atmosphere of a busy workspace, this immersive exhibit gives a true sense of the hustle and bustle of a royal kitchen during its heyday. You may also wish to take a stroll through the splendid gardens. Back in Glasgow, we make our way to the Mackintosh at the Willow tea rooms. Situated on the famous Sauchiehall Street and designed by the celebrated architect, Charles Rennie Mackintosh in 1903, soak in the glorious Art Nouveau atmosphere as we discover the 200-seat tea room, refurbished to look just as it would have in Mackintosh's time. Afterwards, we sit down to a traditional serving of sandwiches, cakes, scones and tea or coffee. Overnight Glasgow. 

  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 4 - Tour Conclusion

Our tour concludes after breakfast. You're free to depart Glasgow or stay longer to see the sights.

  • Breakfast

Additional information

Departure times

Departure times vary based on selected rail vacation. This information will be provided in your final documents. For more information please speak with your rail specialist.

Mobility information

Due to the nature of our tours they are generally unsuitable for those with restricted mobility. If you’d like to discuss any particular vacation with us in this respect, then please don’t hesitate to call us.

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