13 Most Scenic Street Journeys From Edinburgh (2022)

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As a result of Edinburgh is Scotland’s capital, it’s some of the in style vacationer locations within the UK… and it’s after all full of stuff to do.

However it’s additionally a massively underrated base. Proper from town, you’ll be able to simply sort out hikes, cliffs, different cities, and… as you’ve in all probability guessed from the title of this weblog submit… plenty of nice highway journeys.

So on this information, I’ve served up the 13 finest highway journeys from Edinburgh. Hop within the driver’s seat, rev up that engine, and are available be part of the four-wheeled enjoyable!

Finest Street Journeys from Edinburgh

Note: I’ve added a beneficial length for every journey. That beneficial length isn’t a sign of how shortly you’ll be able to drive round every route with out stopping (though, should you’re quick on time, that’s clearly an possibility too). As an alternative, it’s a sign of how a lot time you must take if you wish to see all of the sights, have some stop-offs, and benefit from the highway journey correctly (as an alternative of simply speeding round it). Take pleasure in!

1. Edinburgh to Glasgow

2 hours from Edinburgh (55 miles, 90 km)

Stop at the Linlithgow Palace during your Road Trip from Edinburgh to Glasgow
Cease on the Linlithgow Palace throughout your highway journey from Edinburgh to Glasgow

This trip takes you between Scotland’s two greatest—and two most well-known—cities. And right here’s some excellent news for you: between the 2 nice locations, you’ll be able to cram in plenty of highlights.

However earlier than you leap in your automotive, this half’s essential: you don’t wish to drive the quickest route. Clearly, there are numerous methods to get from Edinburgh to Glasgow… however if you wish to keep away from boring roads with out taking outrageous detours, you must drive by way of Linlithgow, Falkirk, Bonnybridge, Drumpellier Nation Park, and Seven Lochs Wetland Park.

(Alongside the best way, be sure you go to each the Kelpies and Linlithgow Palace, two of probably the most attention-grabbing sights within the area).

The Kelpies, Falkirk, Scotland
Cease on the spectacular Kelpies in Falkirk

The overwhelming majority of Scotland’s residents dwell on this a part of the nation… so it may be tough to seek out attention-grabbing en-route sights. However should you comply with the above, you’ll see a pleasant combination of pure magnificence, heritage sights, historic stuff, and fairly cities and villages.

If you wish to make a potentially-boring journey right into a much-prettier one, that is among the many finest highway journeys from Edinburgh. It’s manner manner higher than the route most individuals trip on.

⛪ What to Do in Glasgow

As a result of it’s probably the most populous metropolis in Scotland, Glasgow has a lot to supply. Try the cathedral and the necropolis, wander alongside the river, and munch on a picnic at Pollok Nation Park. And since you’re within the coronary heart of the UK’s UNESCO Metropolis of Music, don’t miss Glasgow’s music mile tour adopted by the Silent Disco journey tour. And should you’re an Outlander fan, you’ll love this full-day tour! Oh, and when you’ve got time, be sure you additionally sort out some day journeys.

🏠 The place to Keep in Glasgow

Glasgow (after all) has countless locations to remain… together with some subpar spots. Keep away from the dangerous stuff by heading to both Voco Grand Central (which could be very elegant and really central) or Acorn Lodge (which is a bit of quieter, and a bit of extra reasonably priced).

🗺️ Route Map and Particulars

  • Itinerary: Edinburgh – Linlithgow – Falkirk – Bonnybridge – Glasgow
  • Distance: 55 miles/90km
  • Full journey length: 2-5 hours
  • Highlights: Linlithgow Palace, Falkirk, the Kelpies, some surprisingly small cities, seeing the 2 greatest cities in Scotland, and an alternate manner of using between Edinburgh and Glasgow

2. Edinburgh to Eyemouth

2 hours from Edinburgh (60 miles, 95 km)

Road Trip from Edinburgh to Eyemouth with Seagull

One of many prettiest, finest, and hottest seaside cities in southern Scotland, Eyemouth is all the time full of folks.

Although this isn’t a very prolonged route, it gives a great deal of magnificence and selection. For the entire route, keep as near the coast as you’ll be able to, and all the time take the smaller roads as an alternative of the primary ones.

The part between Cockburnspath and Eyemouth is my favourite coastal stretch in southern Scotland, with colossal cliffs, steep thrilling ascents, and countless unbelievable views. You’ll wish to cease for pictures each 5 minutes.

Different highlights embody Musselburgh, North Berwick, Tantallon Citadel, Dunbar, and Coldingham.

Tantallon Castle in Scotland
Tantallon Citadel

In the event you like coastal drives however you don’t have an enormous period of time to spare, this is likely one of the finest highway journeys from Edinburgh. It’s additionally an incredible possibility when you’ve got children—there are many child-friendly sights and eateries alongside the route. Top-of-the-line is East Hyperlinks Household Park simply west of Dunbar.

And whether or not you’re touring with little ones or not, you must undoubtedly take a look at the Scottish Seabird Heart in North Berwick.

🛥️ What to Do in Eyemouth

Eyemouth is the archetypal UK seaside city. Ensure you slurp on some ice cream, chow down on some fish and chips, wander alongside the beautiful seashores, and go to the superb pure harbor. And when you’ve got time, sort out one of many city’s wonderful boat journeys.

🏠 The place to Keep in Eyemouth

The Glenerne Visitor Home is likely one of the most charming spots in Eyemouth, with nice meals, cozy beds, and many heat welcomes. In the event you favor to have your individual self-catering cottage, head to The Outdated Library as an alternative.

🗺️ Route Map and Particulars

  • Itinerary: Edinburgh – Musselburgh – North Berwick – Cockburnspath – Eyemouth
  • Distance: 60 miles/95km
  • Full journey length: 1-2 days
  • Highlights: Large Tantallon Citadel, fairly North Berwick, the stretch between Cockburnspath and Eyemouth, exploring a lesser-known a part of Scotland’s coast, and beautiful Eyemouth itself

3. Edinburgh to St Andrews

2 hours half-hour from Edinburgh (70 miles, 110 km)

Elie Ness Lighthouse in Earlsferry Scotland
Elie Ness Lighthouse in Earlsferry

In the event you like coastal cities, fishing villages, and populated ports, that is completely among the finest highway journeys from Edinburgh.

As an alternative of heading south (as you do within the route above), you as an alternative drive north, driving to one among Scotland’s most spectacular, vital, and historic settlements.

Once more, you don’t wish to drive the direct route. Keep as near the coast as you’ll be able to, and also you’ll have a a lot better time. The primary problem on this route is whittling down the locations to cease — there are pretty highlights dotted all the best way alongside this a part of the coast, with good fairly settlements about each ten minutes.

A few of your finest decisions are Kinghorn, Dalgety Bay, family-friendly Aberdour Seashore, charming Earlsferry, and harborside Pittenweem.

However no matter you do, be sure you cease at each Anstruther and Crail (and in a single day in one among them when you’ve got time). They’re each tremendous charming and tremendous fairly, and there’s an easy-but-beautiful stroll connecting the 2 of them.

Beautiful house with lobester decorations in Crail, Scotland
A cute home with authentic lobster decorations in Crail

🏌️ What to Do in St Andrews

Go to the outdated cathedral, wander across the cobbled streets, and gawp in any respect the traditional structure. To see the entire finest locations and extra, be part of this guided strolling tour which is a “must-do tour for anybody visiting St Andrews”. And should you like golf (which is especially what the place is legendary for), be sure you take a look at a few of St Andrews’ programs and take part on this Golf Historical past Tour.

One other authentic and attention-grabbing exercise that I like to recommend is to discover the supernatural places of town looking for ghosts! This award-winning exercise will allow you to do exactly that!

🏠 The place to Keep in St Andrews

For an enormous fats slice of ridiculously self-indulgent luxurious, head to the Outdated Course Lodge. Or for the UK sleep-in-a-pub-style expertise, get your self alongside to Rooms on the Saint as an alternative.

🗺️ Route Map and Particulars

  • Itinerary: Edinburgh – Queensferry – Kinghorn – Anstruther – Crail – St Andrews
  • Distance: 70 miles/110km
  • Full journey length: 1-2 days
  • Highlights: Using over the enduring Forth Street Bridge (UNESCO listed website), an enormous variety of en-route seashores, plenty of fairly lighthouses, Kinghorn, Pittenweem, and the beautiful fishing settlements of Anstruther and Crail

4. Edinburgh to Tyndrum

3 hours half-hour from Edinburgh (108 miles, 174 km)

Aerial View of the A82 Road Along the Loch Lomond During Autumn
You’ll take the scenic A82 highway alongside the Loch Lomond throughout your road-trip to Tyndrum

If you wish to discover Loch Lomond & The Trossachs Nationwide Park, that is clearly among the finest highway journeys from Edinburgh. It takes you on a north-to-south journey via everything of the park, and also you tick off plenty of highlights alongside the best way.

There are countless methods you’ll be able to attain Tyndrum from Edinburgh. However the commonest is by heading west to Glasgow, earlier than then using north via Balloch and Inverarnan, alongside the western banks of super-famous Loch Lomond. And that’s precisely what I’m recommending to you.

(In our subsequent route, to Oban, I’ve coated some different elements of the nationwide park).

Between Edinburgh and Glasgow, you’ll cross all of the stuff we’ve already coated above. From right here, different en-route highlights embody Loch Lomond Chook of Prey Heart, Inchmoan Island (which you’ll have to take a ship journey to go to), surprisingly-quiet Culag Seashore, the tiny settlement of Inverbeg, and the gorgeous village of Tarbet (the place you’ll be able to take some nice boat journeys).

Boat on Loch Lomond
Have a break and take a ship journey on Loch Lomond from the village of Tarbet

You’ll additionally hit plenty of nice viewpoints alongside the best way, and a great deal of climbing spots. A number of the prime en-route ascents are Ben Vorlich, The Cobbler, and Beinn Ime.

🧺 What to Do in Tyndrum

Eat some fish and chips on the Actual Meals Cafe, have a picnic at Lochan na Bi, and head north to Loch Tulla. And be sure you see the enduring Inexperienced Welly, an age-old service station. Oh, and should you’re with children, take a look at the family-fun wander of the Tyndrum Gruffalo Path.

🏠 The place to Keep in Tyndrum

Properly-located mattress and breakfast Clifton Cottage is welcoming and pleasant and gives nice breakfasts. In the event you’d favor to remain in a “actual” resort, your best choice is Muthu Ben Doran Lodge.

🗺️ Route Map and Particulars

  • Itinerary: Edinburgh – Glasgow – Balloch – Inverarnan – Tyndrum
  • Distance: 108 miles/174km
  • Full journey length: 1-3 days
  • Highlights: Some wonderful en-route hikes, the wander up The Cobbler, plenty of picnic spots alongside the western shores of Loch Lomond, and seeing a great deal of Loch Lomond & The Trossachs Nationwide Park

5. Edinburgh to Oban

4 hours from Edinburgh (130 miles, 210 km)

Oban Harbor on the Argyll Coastal Route, Scotland
Oban Harbor on the Argyll Coastal Route

This journey is completely full of a great deal of good things and gives an enormous quantity of selection. It’s arduous to choose an very best route from this listing, however I’m tempted to appoint this one.

There are countless other ways you’ll be able to drive from Edinburgh to Oban. However for filling your journey with as many stunning and attention-grabbing highlights as you’ll be able to, right here’s what I like to recommend:

First, head west to Falkirk and Stirling, for the populated a part of your trip. Throughout this stretch, you’ll wish to cease off at each The Kelpies and Stirling Citadel.

From right here, head via Callander, Strathyre, and Tyndrum, for a stretch that takes you alongside a number of the most underrated and unknown elements of Loch Lomond & The Trossachs Nationwide Park. Good hike choices throughout this part embody the wanders up Ben Ledi, Ben Vorlich, and Ben Vane.

Ensure you additionally cease to eat at lochside The Cabin, and make the quick detour to Ardvorlich for some nice views of Loch Earn.

From Tyndrum, you then head west via Lochawe and Taynuilt to lastly attain pretty pretty Oban.

Historic Ruins of Kilchurn Castle on Loch Awe
Ruins of Kilchurn Citadel on Loch Awe, in your solution to Oban

On this trip, you get cities, cities, a nationwide park, some nice lochs, stunning castles, distant mountains, a superb coastal stretch, and an outrageously stunning finale.

🎣 What to Do in Oban

One of many prettiest fishing cities in the entire of Scotland, Oban is ridiculously stunning… and simply wandering across the harbor is gorgeous. However you must also do some scuba diving on the Puffin Dive Heart, and stroll to Dunollie Level. And when you’ve got time, take a ship to the superb Isle of Mull. And all instances, don’t go away town earlier than taking part on this (very low cost) guided city highlights strolling tour.

🏠 The place to Keep in Oban

Pub-based The Scot is fashionable, fashionable, family-friendly, and comparatively reasonably priced. In the event you’re touring on a a lot tighter funds, your finest wager is Oban Youth Hostel, which is surprisingly fairly.

🗺️ Route Map and Particulars

  • Itinerary: Edinburgh – Stirling – Callander – Strathyre – Ardvorlich – Tyndrum – Lochawe – Oban
  • Distance: 130 miles/210km
  • Full journey length: 2-3 days
  • Highlights: Various elements of Loch Lomond & The Trossachs Nationwide Park, and the cities of Falkirk and Stirling; the attractive Loch Earn then Loch Awe.

6. Edinburgh to Newcastle Upon Tyne (the Inland Route)

3 hours half-hour from Edinburgh (130 miles, 210 km)

Kielder Water and Forest Park in Northumberland
In your solution to Newcastle, you’ll drive near the Kielder Water and Forest Park in Northumberland

Most individuals drive from Edinburgh to Newcastle by way of the coast. And later on this information, we’ll do this too. However this path to Newcastle is a wonderful different and drives via some lesser-known inland areas.

In the event you like rolling hills, low-level hikes, old-school abbeys, or historical past and heritage, you’ll assume this is likely one of the finest highway journeys from Edinburgh. And I’m in all probability a bit biased (cos I’m from Newcastle), however I agree with you.

To kick issues off, you wish to drive southeast out of Edinburgh, alongside the A7. Head via Melrose, Selkirk, Hawick, and Bellingham (following the huge Kielder Reservoir in your manner into Bellingham).

You then wish to enterprise northeast for a short time, from Bellingham to Otterburn. From Otterburn, head southeast once more, following the A696 into Ponteland, then via into Newcastle.

On the Scottish borderlands part of your route, be sure you cease at Melrose, with its large sensible abbey, and its good hike as much as the Eildon Hills. Once you hit Northumberland, cease for a picnic at Kielder (after which once more at Bellingham).

The stretch via Northumberland Nationwide Park can also be nice for climbing, whereas there are wonderful mountain biking trails simply north of Kielder Reservoir.

⚽ What to Do in Newcastle

Discover town heart, eat and drink within the Ouseburn space, uncover the fortress, town’s imposing Norman fortress, and head to St. James Park for a soccer sport (no, it’s not known as soccer) for the perfect sporting environment you’ll ever expertise. You must also get your self to the close by coastal cities of Tynemouth and Whitley Bay.

🏠 The place to Keep in Newcastle

In the event you’re touring on a funds, the super-central YHA Newcastle is new, fashionable, and cozy. In the event you’re as an alternative on the lookout for a typical resort, Motel One Newcastle is elegant, fashionable, and surprisingly reasonably priced.

🗺️ Route Map and Particulars

  • Itinerary: Edinburgh – Melrose – Selkirk – Hawick – Bellingham – Ponteland – Newcastle-upon-Tyne
  • Distance: 130 miles/210km
  • Full journey length: 2-3 days
  • Highlights: Melrose Abbey, using alongside Kielder Reservoir, fairly Bellingham, exploring the distant hills of Northumberland Nationwide Park, and wandering round Newcastle while you’re carried out

7. The Arran Loop

6 hours half-hour from Edinburgh (155 miles, 250 km) – This route features a ferry

A Country Road Through the Isle of Arran

The west coast of Scotland is dwelling to a great deal of large islands. However the southern a part of the east coast isn’t… so if you wish to discover any main island life from Edinburgh, you don’t have any alternative however to move west.

Of all of the west coast islands, Arran is the closest to Edinburgh… which is partially why it’s on this listing. However it’s additionally on this listing for a a lot better purpose: as a result of Arran is a round form, it has a superb (and accessible) ring highway operating round its perimeter.

So if you wish to see everything of the island, road-tripping round this perimeter is the proper answer.

When you get to Arran from Edinburgh, you’ll be able to trip round this highway, ticking off a lot of the island’s highlights en route. They embody Whiting Bay, Blackwaterfoot, the island-from-an-island of Holy Isle, and the wild roaming deer in Lochranza. In case you have time, you must also stroll alongside the coast from Lochranza to Sannox—it’s the perfect coastal stretch on the island.

To get to Arran, you must drive to Glasgow by way of the route we’ve already outlined. From there, head to Ardossan, the place you (and your automotive) can hop on the ferry to Brodick.

🦌 What to Do in Arran

Brodick is the pure place to in a single day on Arran. From Brodick, you must climb up Goatfell (should you haven’t already carried out that in your drive), go to Brodick Citadel, and discover the valley of Glen Rosa. There’s additionally a highway operating from Brodick to Machrie, which gives one other enjoyable drive. For extra choices head over to my information about the perfect issues to do in Arran.

🏠 The place to Keep in Arran

As I mentioned, you must spend the night time in Brodick. In the event you’re on the lookout for elegant and fancy, take a look at Auchrannie Resort. However for a way more no-frills expertise, head to the superb Shore Lodge as an alternative.

🗺️ Route Map and Particulars

  • Itinerary: Edinburgh – Glasgow – Brodick – Lochranza – Blackwaterfoot – … and again to Brodick
  • Distance: 155 miles/250km
  • Full journey length: 3-7 days (you must in a single day on Arran for a couple of days when you’ve got time)
  • Highlights: Overnighting in Glasgow, the ferry to Arran, climbing up Goatfell, wandering round Glen Rosa, the deer in Lochranza, the village of Blackwaterfoot, and seeing just about everything of 1 thrilling island

8. Edinburgh to Aberdeen

4 hours quarter-hour from Edinburgh (155 miles, 250 km)

Dunnottar Castle in Aberdeen, Scotland
Dunnottar Citadel in Aberdeen

This route’s particularly good when you’ve got children—your entire trip is populated, well-equipped, and full of massive settlements, so it has all of the conveniences you (and your little ones) want. It additionally has plenty of family-friendly enjoyable, together with an enormous bunch of sensible seashores.

(Although you don’t want children to get pleasure from this journey, clearly).

First up, you’ll drive to St Andrews on the route we’ve already outlined. From St Andrews, you then hold following the highway for lots longer, staying near the coast as you trip.

A number of the en-route highlights between St Andrews and Aberdeen embody the quiet and distant Kinshaldy Seashore, the views from Tay Street Bridge, the lovable city of Carnoustie (and its wonderful seaside), Dunninald Citadel and Gardens, Montrose Basin Wildlife Reserve, and the clifftop ruins of Dunnottar Citadel.

And be sure you additionally cease off in Stonehaven, which has a fairly port, an incredible seaside, and many saliva-inducing fish and chips.

A number of the finest kid-friendly sights alongside this route (other than all of the seashores) embody canine-packed Huskyhaven, the atmospheric Arbroath Cliffs, and the household funfest of Arbroath’s Pleasureland.

🐬 What to Do in Aberdeen

Aberdeen is massively underrated and has masses to supply. To get began, take a look at Greyhope Bay (the perfect dolphin-watching spot within the UK!), the kid-friendly Aberdeen Science Heart, and Donmouth Native Nature Reserve. Additionally, you will get pleasure from this particular strolling meals tour to discover town, its tradition, and its tasty native delicacies.

🏠 The place to Keep in Aberdeen

For an enormous hearty portion of indulge-yourself luxurious, select the Sandman Signature Aberdeen Lodge & Spa. However if you’d like a basic-but-brilliant mid-range resort, the Vacation Inn Specific is reasonably priced, dependable, and in an incredible location.

🗺️ Route Map and Particulars

  • Itinerary: Edinburgh – St Andrews – Dundee – Stonehaven – Aberdeen
  • Distance: 155 miles/250km
  • Full journey length: 2-4 days
  • Highlights: Dunnottar Citadel, Huskyhaven, Stonehaven, some wonderful seashores, plenty of family-friendly enjoyable, and seeing the superb metropolis of Aberdeen

9. Edinburgh to Newcastle Upon Tyne (by way of the Coast)

3 hours half-hour from Edinburgh (145 miles, 235 km)

Warkworth Castle
Warkworth Citadel. You’ll attain this spectacular fortress within the second half of your highway journey from Edinburgh to Newcastle.

Right here’s the more-popular manner of reaching Newcastle from Scotland’s capital.

In the event you like coastal rides (or if you wish to enterprise into England), this is likely one of the finest highway journeys from Edinburgh. I’ve tackled the trip on the again of my bike, and it’s among the finest issues I’ve ever carried out within the UK.

For the primary half, comply with the path to Eyemouth we’ve already outlined, then proceed alongside the coast all the best way to Berwick. From Berwick, you wish to hold heading south, within the route of Tynemouth.

Throughout this second half, you’ll trip alongside some of the underrated coastlines in England, the uncatchily-titled ‘Northumberland Coast Space of Excellent Pure Magnificence.’

This entire space is legendary for distant seashores, charming cities, and large castles—some along-the-way highlights embody Bamburgh Citadel, Dunstanburgh Citadel, Warkworth Citadel, Craster, Alnmouth, Amble, Cresswell, and Tynemouth.

That is additionally one of many friendliest elements of the UK—and also you’ll get loads of heat welcomes and smiling faces (I advised you I used to be biased).

When you get to Tynemouth, head briefly west to the middle of Newcastle. And should you can, cling round right here for a few days.

🥾 What to Do in Newcastle

I’ve already talked about Newcastle’s highlights earlier on this information. However for this route, you haven’t seen any of the inland stuff… so when you’ve got time, head to Northumberland and clamber alongside a number of the area’s hikes. The Cheviots are a great place to start out, whereas Simonside is one other in style favourite. As beforehand beneficial, it’s also possible to keep inside town to wander its streets and discover its fortress.

🏠 The place to Keep in Newcastle

I’m going to suggest the identical locations I’ve already beneficial above. To reiterate, they’re YHA Newcastle (excellent for backpackers) and Motel One Newcastle (which is a bit more fashionable and upmarket).

🗺️ Route Map and Particulars

  • Itinerary: Edinburgh – Eyemouth – Berwick – Bamburgh – Alnmouth – Tynemouth – Newcastle upon Tyne
  • Distance: 145 miles/235km
  • Full journey length: 2-5 days
  • Highlights: Craster, Bamburgh, Alnmouth, the superb tucked-away seashores, all the huge castles, biking alongside this well-equipped a part of the coast, and exploring the beautiful metropolis of Newcastle

10. Edinburgh to Portpatrick

4 hours half-hour from Edinburgh (150 miles, 240 km)

Portpatrick village in Dumfries and Galloway
Portpatrick village in Dumfries and Galloway

If you wish to proceed west (and south) previous Glasgow, this route is a good possibility.

Once more, it’s an incredible alternative for folks touring with children—this space is gorgeous, enjoyable, (comparatively) densely populated, and filled with family-friendly sights.

Begin by reaching Glasgow in the identical manner we’ve outlined above. From right here, comply with the M77 and A77 to Ayr. Then from Ayr, comply with the coast south, all the best way right down to Portpatrick.

Some highlights alongside the stretch between Ayr and Portpatrick embody Culzean Citadel, the strangely-vivid behemoth of Turnberry Lighthouse, the neglected harbor city of Girvan, stunning Ballantrae Seashore, unfairly-underrated Stranraer, and the northern a part of Portpatrick’s peninsula.

And get this: when you’ve got loads of time to spare, you’ll be able to even catch a ferry from Cairnryan to Belfast, and discover a few of Northern Eire.

In the event you are adventuring round with little ones, a few of this route’s finest family-friendly stuff embody attraction-packed Agnew Park, Heads Of Ayr Farm Park, and the curiously-creepy Snib’s Cave.

⚓ What to Do in Portpatrick

Stroll right down to the loveable harbor, go to the cliffy ruins of Dunskey Citadel, and eat some tasty meals on the super-quirky Port Pantry cafe/restaurant. And when you’ve got time, you must take a day journey to the tiny dimensions of endearing little Port Logan.

🏠 The place to Keep in Portpatrick

The pub-based Harbor Home Sea Entrance Lodge is primary however sensible in the very best methods. In the event you’re on the lookout for one thing way more elegant and upmarket, wander to The Portpatrick Lodge as an alternative.

🗺️ Route Map and Particulars

  • Itinerary: Edinburgh – Glasgow – Ayr – Girvan – Stranraer – Portpatrick
  • Distance: 150 miles/240km
  • Full journey length: 2-5 days
  • Highlights: Girvan, Stranraer, Glasgow, Ballantrae Seashore, all of the kid-friendly en-route sights, leaping on a ferry to Northern Eire, and exploring Portpatrick while you’re carried out

11. The Borderlands Loop

4 hours half-hour from Edinburgh (170 miles, 270 km)

Dryburgh Abbey, Scottish Borders
Dryburgh Abbey on the Scottish Borders

In the event you’re on the lookout for a loop (and there’s nothing extra satisfying than road-tripping a loop), this is likely one of the finest highway journeys from Edinburgh. It runs in an enormous lengthy circle across the England-Scotland border, hitting coasts, inland hills, historic abbeys, and a number of the finest under-the-radar villages in southern Scotland.

First, head south to Eyemouth by way of the route we’ve already described. From right here, hold heading south to Berwick, the English border city. From Berwick, you then wish to head west, operating via Kelso, Melrose, Innerleithen, and Peebles.

You’ll cross abbeys at Melrose, Dryburgh, and Kelso, and many locations for low-level hikes. A number of the finest walks right here embody the Glentress Circuit (from Peebles), the Minch Moor circuit (from Traquair), and the good hike from Melrose as much as the panorama-packed Eildon Hills. This area might be probably the most neglected climbing space in Scotland, and it’s brimming with nice stuff.

Once you cross Innerleithen and get near Dolphinton, head northeast on the A702… and your route again to Edinburgh will carry you alongside the western facet of Pentland Hills Regional Park.

This place is all the time neglected by Edinburgh’s vacationers, however you shouldn’t make the identical mistake. In the event you’re solely going to try one hike right here, wander as much as the summit of Scald Legislation, the loftiest peak within the park. It measures 579 meters (1900 ft).

🏰 What to Do in Edinburgh

Once you get again to Edinburgh, there’s loads of stuff to do (should you haven’t carried out it already). Begin with Edinburgh Citadel (get a skip-the-line ticket, that is necessary to keep away from ready a protracted very long time exterior) and Arthur’s Seat (higher with a motorbike), then take a look at The Royal Mile, Calton Hill, and the charming shores of watery Leith. In the event you’re a Harry Potter take this thrilling tour.

For extra concepts and proposals, checkout my 2-day itinerary information for Edinburgh.

🏠 The place to Keep in Edinburgh

Once you’ve completed this one, you’ll be again in Edinburgh! In the event you’re on a funds, keep within the Royal Mile Backpackers. In the event you’re not, the Ibis South Bridge continues to be fairly reasonably priced, however it’s a bit of extra elegant and cozy.

🗺️ Route Map and Particulars

  • Itinerary: Edinburgh – Eyemouth – Berwick – Kelso – Melrose – Peebles … and again to Edinburgh!
  • Distance: 170 miles/270km
  • Full journey length: 3-7 days
  • Highlights: All the superb abbeys, exploring the underrated borderlands, climbing to some actually remoted peaks, the climb up Scald Legislation, and the rewarding feeling of road-tripping a loop

12. Edinburgh to Carlisle (by way of Hadrian’s Wall)

4 hours half-hour from Edinburgh (190 miles, 300 km)

Road trip along the Hadrian's Wall
Street journey alongside the Hadrian’s Wall

You’ve in all probability already heard of Hadrian’s Wall. Constructed all the best way again in AD122, this large lengthy protecting frontier was designed to maintain the (then thought of) northern barbarians out of England.

It’s some of the vital Roman relics within the UK… and if you wish to see plenty of its most well-known websites, you are able to do precisely that on this highway journey.

This isn’t the direct route from Edinburgh to Carlisle. As an alternative, it’s a roundabout trip that takes you all the best way alongside the coast to Newcastle (a journey we’ve already coated) earlier than then heading west and following the A69 to Carlisle.

In the event you’re concerned with historical past and heritage, that is after all among the finest highway journeys from Edinburgh. However the stretch between Newcastle and Carlisle isn’t simply museums and relics—it additionally has a great deal of nice hikes and bike rides, and a complete bunch of lovely rolling-hill landscapes.

On this A69 stretch, you’ll additionally cross the good cities of Hexham, Haydon Bridge, Haltwhistle, and Brampton. They’re all well-known nearly as good bases for strolling… however they’re additionally simply good locations to cease for some meals and drinks.

🥾 What to Do in Carlisle

Admittedly, Carlisle isn’t notably fairly or thrilling, and I don’t suggest spending a lot time right here. However there’s a pleasant hike from Carlisle to Bowness-on-Solway, whereas town can also be dwelling to an enormous Twelfth-century fortress, and the gorgeous riverside Bitts Park.

🏠 The place to Keep in Carlisle

The town-center Crown & Mitre Lodge gives a pleasant stability between luxurious and affordability. In the event you’d favor to remain exterior of town (a alternative I completely perceive), overnighting in Warwick Corridor is like having your individual little royal residence.

🗺️ Route Map and Particulars

  • Itinerary: Edinburgh – Berwick – Newcastle – Hexham – Brampton – Carlisle
  • Distance: 190 miles/300km
  • Full journey length: 3-5 days
  • Highlights: Passing via Newcastle, hitting the Northumberland coast, the good cities of Hexham and Haydon Bridge, Roman ruins and relics, and climbing alongside iconic Hadrian’s Wall

13. Edinburgh to Inverness

6 hours half-hour from Edinburgh (280 miles, 450 km)

Lossiemouth City in Scotland
Lossiemouth metropolis, east of Inverness

If you wish to make the Edinburgh to Aberdeen trip even longer, you’ll be able to prolong the route by persevering with to comply with the coast from Aberdeen to Inverness. This provides an extra 145 miles (233km) to your trip.

Some en-route Aberdeen-to-Inverness highlights embody the incredible (and straightforward!) Bullers of Buchan hike, the sands of Cruden Bay, and the beautiful fishing village of Portknockie. Ensure you additionally cease at bay-backed Boyne Citadel, Rosehearty Seashore, and Newburgh Seal Seashore, the place you’ll all the time discover dozens of the cute fatsos lazing round.

This route additionally brings you proper previous RSPB Scotland Troup Head. This RSPB reserve is dwelling to mainland Scotland’s greatest gannet colony, together with dolphins, porpoises, and minke whales.

And final of all, be sure you spend a while in Lossiemouth earlier than you get to Inverness. It’s one among my favourite coastal cities in Scotland.

In the event you’re on the lookout for lengthy, this is likely one of the finest highway journeys from Edinburgh. However as a result of it’s a prolonged drive, and since there are such a lot of highlights alongside the best way, you’ll want not less than per week to understand it.

🐬 What to Do in Inverness

Go to Loch Ness and the Urquhart Citadel, take a look at Clava Cairns, the lovable Ness Islands, discover town, and the dolphin-and-otter-spotting cruises leaving from the north of town. Or should you’re feeling actually adventurous (and have plenty of time), you’ll be able to prolong your on-road adventures by tackling the North Coast 500.

🏠 The place to Keep in Inverness

The ever-reliable Vacation Inn Specific is a good alternative for relative luxurious on a relative funds. In the event you as an alternative need one thing way more reasonably priced (however clear and comfy), our #1 alternative is the Inverness Youth Hostel.

🗺️ Route Map and Particulars

  • Itinerary: Edinburgh – St Andrews – Aberdeen – Peterhead – Lossiemouth – Inverness
  • Distance: 300 miles/483km
  • Full journey length: 7-14 days
  • Highlights: Stonehaven, Dunnottar Citadel, Lossiemouth, Portknockie, watching plenty of wildlife, some wonderful coastal walks, and exploring an enormous lengthy trip via plenty of Scotland

Remaining Ideas and Additional Studying

Alright, put these brakes on and pull into the car parking zone—we’ve reached the top of our information to the 13 finest highway journeys from Edinburgh!

For way more data on using round Scotland, zoom on over to our guides on the perfect highway journeys from Inverness, the perfect highway journeys from Glasgow, and all the perfect highway journeys in Scotland.

Thanks for studying, thanks for selecting Travelness, and we’ll see you subsequent time!

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