A single sovereign state comprising the four countries of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, the United Kingdom packs a wealth of history, culture and scenery into a surface area only slightly larger than the state of Minnesota. Taylored Tours has gathered ideas for how you can visit and combine the UK’s highlights. Whether you wish to travel with a group, hire a private chauffeur, or drive yourself, we’ll help make your trip to the Unite Kingdom memorable.
One of the most rewarding aspects of a trip to the UK can be exploring its countries’ cultural quirks, their varying landscapes, and the stormy history connecting them. We can recommend experiences such as watching one of the Bard’s plays at the reconstructed Shakespeare's Globe in London, salmon fishing with a ghillie in the Cairngorms, and hiking through the Highlands. You might find yourself standing on the basalt columns of Northern Ireland’s Giant’s Causeway, or heading to England’s languid Cotswolds, where villages of honeysuckle-bedecked cottages resist the hand of time.
Best time to visit?
The United Kingdom can be visited at any time of year, as its climate is relatively temperate and, in general, doesn’t experience extremes during either summer or winter. Overall, spring (late March to early June) and autumn (September to November) are the best times to visit, when it’s usually warm and dry. At these times you’ll see beautiful spring flowers or the leaves changing hue in autumn, and avoid the much busier summer period. Winter (December to February) can also be an enjoyable time to visit. Although some attractions close in mountainous areas and in the north, where there’s likely to be snow, the main cities remain fully open and will be quieter for sightseeing. The highest temperatures are experienced in the summer, but these rarely rise above 30°C (86°F).
Edinburgh, Scotland’s capital, has earned the reputation of being one of the world’s most beautiful cities, so it's made it right to the top of the list of must-see cities. The city itself is a work of art. Its architecture, new and old, ranges from lofty and modern to stoic and breathtaking.
Edinburgh's festivals showcase their skill, talent, and ingenuity, and everyone has a chance to enjoy them. During the busy summer season, you can find thousands of shows in hundreds of venues, very often unique or unconventional, and occasionally sold out, so know which ones you want to see before you go!
Alongside an amazing array of festivals, there are plenty of crowded pubs, swanky restaurants, all-night parties, beer-fueled performances, and more. Taking Edinburgh by night offers a different and true view of Edinburgh, and should not be missed by anyone who likes to party.
Next up is Glasgow, Scotland’s second largest city. Glasgow takes it down a notch from Edinburgh, flaunting Victorian-styled buildings that speak of old money, trade, and stories. Among these stoic relics, trendy bars, 5-star restaurants, and live music scenes thrive, giving a modern breath of life into the city to blend the two time periods together.
If you’re looking for a shopping destination on your trip as well, Glasgow is the place for it. Everything from the height of Italian fashion to homey thrift stores, Glasgow has something for everyone. There are also beautiful museums here complimented by stunning art galleries. On display is a mix of industrial heritage and modern pieces.
Regarded as the capital of the Highlands, Inverness rests in the mountainous region and is separated from the rest of the country by the Great Glen, an ancient fault line used to create the amazing Caledonian Canal.
The beautiful coastal city hosts a variety of caslte ruins, cathedrals, port restaurants and pubs, and offers plenty of opportunities for hiking and biking through the raw wilderness of the highlands. In Inverness and the surrounding port towns, you can find everything from towering trees to Victorian footbridges.
For those looking for adventure, look no further than the soaring peak of Ben Nevis, which towers a little over 4,400 feet above the town. Not only is this behemoth of a mountain, rife with hiking, climbing, and scrambling trails, the highest point in Scotland, it is also the highest mountaintop in all of the UK. Making your way to the top is no easy feat, but those who persevere are rewarded with some of the most amazing views over the Atlantic coast, as well as the Grampian Mountains as they stretch towards Glencoe.
Many know Loch Ness only as the home to the notorious monster supposedly dwelling within its waters, but the lake’s shores support spectacular ruins of one of Scotland’s largest castles, Urquhart Castle. For those looking for history, a relaxing trip out on the 754-foot deep lake, or those looking to catch a glimpse of the sea monster, Loch Ness is the place to be.
The Isle of Skye is one of the most visited of Scotland’s Hebrides Islands, and for good reason. Make sure you’ve got your camera for this excursion, because the isle provides some of the most alluring landscapes of western Scotland. Made up of sandy beaches, towering mountains, and windswept moorlands, hikers and rock climbers head here for the Cuillin Hills Mountain passes, which some of the best coastal views in all of the UK. Those visiting during the low season can even enjoy the vast stretches of countryside all to themselves.
Relive the tragic battles, death-defying escapes, and sentimental moments of Outlander. Visit towns that are virtually unchanged since the 16th century, wander through ancient battlefields, and visit some of Scotland’s most hidden-away castles.
See the ancient past come to life, explore Stonehenge, wander isolated moors, relax on stunning beaches, and discover one of the most memorable parts of England.
Enjoy pre-booked hotels in ideal locations to reach golf courses, tee times for 3 rounds of golf at St. Andrews Jubilee Course, Carnoustie Golf Links, and Kingsbarns Golf Links, and an automatic car rental with super collision insurance.
Whisky (not whiskey) is Scotland's national drink and enjoyed around the globe and in Scotland. On this 5-night trip, venture to some of the best distilleries in Speyside and the capital Edinburgh.