Visit the REAL Highlands away from the crowds. On this magnificent Highland adventure, you’ll see “off-the-beaten-track” places other tourists never visit. You’ll leave with an experience of Scotland that’s impossible to forget.
The original FREE Scottish Highlands Hairy Coo Tour started back in 2010. Since then the tour has shown tens of thousands of adventurers the magic and beauty of Scotland. Follow in the footsteps of Scottish heroes, kings and queens on this marvellous 1-day adventure from Edinburgh.
We believe EVERYONE should have the opportunity to experience the beauty and history of the Scottish Highlands, regardless of their budget, which is why we run this tour for FREE!
The obvious question you’re asking is, “What’s the catch?”
We run this tour on a tips-only basis (£45 value). This means that at the end of the tour, we gratefully accept any donation equal to what you feel the tour was worth. These tips allow us to keep our free tour up and running, so we can keep showing the world the real Scotland.
Please note that between April-October this tour runs on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays only. On Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays our ‘Stirling Castle, Loch Lomond & Whisky Tour‘ runs as an alternative.
8:45am – Departing Edinburgh, we travel to the village of South Queensferry. Gaze at the Forth Bridge, it is a magnificent 8094 ft engineering masterpiece. The bridge opened in March 1890 and has recently been added to the UNESCO World Heritage Sites. “And you think that’s impressive?” says your guide. “Wait until you see what’s next…”
On to the Wallace Monument in Stirling and the stunning views of Stirling Castle! This is the same ground where William Wallace sprung his trap, slaughtered Edward I’s armies as they crossed the perilous Stirling Bridge and took Stirling back from the English.
We then visit The Lake of Menteith, the only lake in Scotland. The lonely island in the middle of the lake was the final refuge for the 4 year old Mary ‘Queen of Scots’, as Henry VIII’s armies marched by unknowingly. This was also the final resting place of one of the most interesting men in Scottish history, Robert Cunninghame Graham aka ‘Don Roberto’, a friend of ‘Buffalo Bill’.
We will stop for lunch in the highland village of Aberfoyle and the scenes that inspired ‘Don Roberto’. There are some fabulous cafes, pubs and restaurants here, however, if you’re anything like us, you’ll prefer a haggis and cheesy mash pie from the local bakery, and a park bench to take in the views.
After lunch, ramble the Glen of Trossachs before meeting a few of the ‘locals‘. Now, when we say ‘locals’, we mean Hairy Coos! These magnificent creatures are symbolic to Scotland and they love a good selfie. Depending on the season and the weather you might take a short forest walk to see a little-known, but absolutely stunning local waterfall.
Next, we step into Sir Walter Scott’s poem ‘The Lady of the Lake’, which was inspired by the beautiful Loch Katrine. The loch derives its name from the term cateran from the Scots’ Gaelic ceathairne, a collective word meaning “cattle-thief”, the most famous of all, was ‘Rob Roy MacGregor’, the Scottish ‘Robin Hood’. Your Driver Guide will tell you all about this Scottish hero/villain (depending on whose version of history you believe!)
Finally, step back in time at Doune Castle. This 14th Century Castle has been a setting on ‘Outlander’, ‘Monty Python and the Holy Grail’ and ‘Game of Thrones’. Almost all of the stonework is original and if you venture inside, you’ll see one of the best-preserved Great Halls in Scotland.
By approximately 6.30pm we arrive back in Edinburgh city centre, having seen mountains, lochs, castles, waterfalls and of course Hairy Coos!
Deacon’s House Cafe, 304 Lawnmarket, Edinburgh, Postcode: EH1 2PS
Check in for your tour will begin at 8:30am with your Driver Guide at the Bus Stop located outside the Deacon’s House Cafe, 304 Lawnmarket, and the bus will depart PROMPTLY at 8:45am. Seats are unreserved and allocated on a first-come, first served basis upon check-in. Therefore, we recommend that you arrive in plenty of time.
We CANNOT wait for guests who are late. It is YOUR responsibility to be at the Meeting Point by 8:30am at the latest.
The tour will return to Edinburgh at approximately 6:30pm, dropping off at the same location as the Tour Departure Point (unless otherwise specified).
Please note that throughout the Edinburgh International Festival (August), all tours will drop off at Waterloo Place near Waverley Station and NOT Lawnmarket, due to traffic restrictions.
CASH – Bring enough for the day for things such as food, drink and any optional extras you might want to participate in.
A CAMERA – for pictures of the beautiful scenery.
WET WEATHER CLOTHING (rainproof) & COMFORTABLE SHOES
Our ‘Easy to Cancel’ Policy means it is no problem if your plans change.
Email your cancellation request to: email@example.com
We require AT LEAST 48 hours notice prior to the tour departure. If you do not show up for the tour or cancel your booking within 48 hours of departure, you will be liable to pay a ‘NO SHOW FEE’.