Splendour of Scotland
Sir Walter Scott (1771-1832) This great writer, through his books and poems, re-invented the lost Scotland of the Stuarts, clans, and wild romance. Some of his best known works are Ivanhoe, Rob Roy and Red Gauntlet. This day Tour takes you through the countryside that inspired Scott throughout his life. Firstly to Sir Walter Scott's Courtroom where he was Sheriff of the county from 1799 until 1832; "the man himself" reminisces about his life and work. Travelling on to Abbotsford, the Border home of Sir Walter Scott and still lived in today by his descendants. He was a great collector and the house contains many beautiful paintings, armour, weaponry and historical artifacts. The house is in a beautiful location on the banks of the River Tweed. We journey to the nearby town of Melrose, a delightful place, ideal for a stroll or to shop. The little town has much to offer – the ruined Abbey dates from 1136; Priorwood Garden specialises in dried flowers; the Trimontium Exhibition gives an insight into the Roman occupation of the Borders and Melrose boasts Scotland's first Teddy Bear Museum.
Onwards to Smailhom Tower which Scott described in "Marmion": "then rise those crags that maintain'd tower which charmed my fancy's waking hour". He spent some of his childhood at the adjacent Sandyknowe farm and in later years admitted his imagination had been fired by the Ballards and stories he heard as a child at Sandyknowe and by the sight of Smailholm Tower. Within the restored tower there is a permanent exhibition of costume figures and tapestries of extraordinary charm which illustrate Scott's "minstrelsy of the Scottish Border".
We then travel to Scotts' View, a spectacular view over the countryside to the Eildon Hills which was a favourite spot of Sir Walter. Finally, to Dryburgh Abbey where Scott was laid to rest on a dark cold day in September 1832. It was said that "when the the coffin was taken from the hearse and again laid on the shoulders of the afflicted serving men, one deep sob burst from a thousand lips".
Lunch at Edinburgh Castle
|Lunch can be arranged for you in the exclusive Jacobite Room of the Mills Mount Restaurant. Prices from £5.95 per person for a light lunch to £8.95 per person for a full 3-course meal, and your table will be reserved.
|A full Scottish dinner and entertainment can be arranged for you to complete your visit to Edinburgh.
The Edinburgh Experience Tour (Half-Day)
|A superb half-day tour, where I will show you Edinburgh's most famous landmarks..... I will take you on a guided tour of Edinburgh Castle which contains The Honours of Scotland – the Scottish Crown Jewels and the Stone of Destiny. We also visit the Palace of Holyrood House which is the official residence of Queen Elizabeth in Scotland. The Palace is adjacent to the 13th century ruin of the Abbey of Holyrood which is all set against the beautiful backdrop of Arthur's Seat and the Salisbury Crags. We also travel through the Old Town, using the Royal Mile which links the Castle to the Palace and the Georgian New Town which was begun in 1776.
Options (based on an Edinburgh pick-up point)
You supply the vehicle (coach, minibus or car) and driver.
Driver / Guide - Option One
You supply a car which must be adequately covered by valid and relevant insurance for me to drive.
Driver / Guide - Option Two
I drive you in a luxury, air-conditioned people-carrier which is fully insured.
Prices for the above options on application - In order to avoid disappointment, please try to book at least 4 weeks in advance. If that's impossible contact me anyway, and I'll do my best!
Prices do not include:
Refreshments, lunch, entry fees or a cruise on Loch Katrine.
Concessions may be available for senior citizens and children.