On our Flavours of Scotland tour you'll stay in some of Scotland's finest hotels, carefully selected for their menus, where you'll enjoy the very best in Scottish hospitality at the end of each day's adventures. Our suggested driving route starts north of Edinburgh in Dunblane, before taking in the coastal delights of Ayrshire and the stunning eastern coastline. Along the way, you'll stay in castles and country houses with fine dining influenced by the likes of Albert and Michel Roux Jnr. Your days are your own to discover the true tastes of Scotland, whether its a Lowland whisky distillery for a tasting, or a sedate afternoon tea. Whatever you decide, with a focus on local ingredients and suppliers, you'll sample a true taste of Scotland.
If you're based in the south we've included an overnight journey on the famous Caledonian Sleeper from London Euston, departing in the evening to maximise your time in the Scotland. With brand new trains introduced in 2019, you'll enjoy the best in onboard comfort, from Glencraft mattresses to that all-important breakfast, served in your cabin. Go for a Club or Caledonian Double and you'll benefit from an en-suite toilet and shower room as well. Remember, if you live elsewhere in the UK, speak to our specialists who'll tailor-made your trip to your specific requirements
Stay: Caledonian Sleeper
Arrive in Edinburgh just after breakfast and collect your hire car at Waverley Station for the drive north, the route follows Scottish history, firstly through Falkirk where William Wallace was defeated in 1298, then on to explore Bannockburn, then Stirling Castle and the Wallace Monument which dominate the skyline - the heart of the nation’s independence. From the castle ramparts you can see the sites of many historical battlefields, including the Battle of Bannockburn.
After your dose of history, continue to The Inch Hotel on the central shores of Loch Ness, with spectacular views over the heart of the Loch, and walking distance to Urquhart Castle. The Inch has a restaurant specialising in local produce, and a bar with a fine malt whisky selection.
The Restaurant at The Inch boasts a menu focussing on using seasonal locally sourced produce such as North Sea Cod and Smoked Scottish Haddock or New Season Scotch Rump lamb.
Stay: Inchnacardoch Country House Hotel
After breakfast head south, this is a perfect opportunity to explore Glasgow, a beautiful city with a rich culture and history alongside a quirky, vibrant contemporary social life full of friendly and eccentric locals. Discover the city's museums, walk through Kelvingrove Park, a beautiful and peaceful city central park, or get under the skin of Glasgow’s trendy side by visiting Byres Road and Ashton Lane, where you’ll find local pubs and fantastic restaurants bustling with locals, it'll be a day filled with exciting exploration. Then continue to your castle accommodation situated just 20 minutes south of Glasgow. Crossbasket Castle, a Scottish retreat with a story behind every staircase and soaring turret. You could be hanging clothes in the Duke of Cambridge's wardrobe, or gazing at the grounds that belonged to Charles Macintosh, the castle has 15th century roots dating back to Robert the Bruce.
Crossbasket Castle is also the perfect base to explore the rolling landscapes of Ayrshire, perhaps visit the cottage of Robbie Burns, followed by a stop at one of the country's grandest manor houses Dumfries House set in a stunning 2,000-acre estate, or wander the tropical gardens of Culzean Castle, perched on a cliff edge. You could visit Ayr, a lovely seaside town, complete with charming sea front and fantastic esplanade with a long sandy beach which is perfect for a peaceful walk.
Back at your hotel, dining inspired by Michelin starred chefs awaits you, where Albert and Michel Roux Jr have designed a sumptuous menu using the best Scottish ingredients from West coast crab, to Tweed Valley beef and desserts using Perthshire strawberries, raspberries and other locally sourced ingredients.
Stay: Crossbasket Castle
After breakfast make the drive east, follow the southern coast of the Firth of Forth and break the journey in the cosmopolitan town of Leith, now famous for its art scene, but also the home of the Royal Yacht Britannia.
Continue along the coast to your final accommodation Greywalls Hotel, complete with six acre formal walled garden, designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens in 1901. Originally built as a holiday home for its original owner, the Hon. Alfred Lyttelton. Lyttleton, a keen golfer who insisted that the house be built ‘within a mashie niblick shot of the eighteenth green at Muirfield’.
Greywalls is the perfect base base to explore Scotland’s capital, or for exploring the stunning coastal driving routes, alternatively perhaps join a boat tour including a visit to Bass Rock, with biggest Northern gannet colony in the world and Isle of May, a legendary island which has been home to a magical mix of seabirds, seals and smugglers. As you cruise the beautiful North Sea waters, you will have the opportunity to see some stunning wildlife that is unique to the are including razorbills, guillemots, cormorants, shags, seals and dolphins on top of the gannets and puffins. The area is truly blessed with sea life.
Nearby lies one of Scotland’s only Lowland distilleries. We recommend a visit to the home of 'The Edinburgh Malt’, Glenkinchie Distillery, for a tour and tasting experience, and if Gin is your preferred drink then the NB Gin Distillery in nearby North Berwick has been recognised as one of Scotland's leading Gin producers.
As always you have the option to return to your hotel for Michelin star inspired dining and a menu designed by the Roux brothers with a Scottish themed menu including rabbit, trout and ingredients from some of Scotlands finest producers.
After breaksfast, make the short drive back into Edinburgh and drop off your hire car, before joining your day train back to London.
"I designed this itinerary to highlight just a small collection of the wonderful small luxury hotels in Scotland, where you can stay in historic buildings in superb locations, and sample the best of local gastronomy designed by the famous Roux brothers in-house, or venture out into the local surrounds to experience the rich array of delicacies created from local producers and growers, and in the case of the finest whiskies some of the tastes have been perfected over hundreds of years."
01 Nov 2023 - 31 Mar 2024 from: £1,670 pp
Optional Restaurant - Dinner
Albert & Michel Roux Jr at Crossbasket
Chez Roux, Greywalls Hotel
We would recommend enjoying the restaurants at each of the hotels for at least one night of your stay, it is advised that reservations for dinner are made at the same time as confirming accommodation. Menus are seasonal and changeable, but Wexas are able to obtain sample menus to coincide with your stay.
Greywalls Hotel - Wildlife boat tour to Bass Rock
We would recommend booking the above experiences at the time of confirming accommodation if you would like to add these to your itinerary