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SCOTLAND, UK:SCOTLAND

Walking in the Scottish Highlands

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Road Scholar
Program #19750RJ
11 Days | 10 Nights
ACTIVITY LEVEL: Moderately Challenging
Love to learn in a small-group setting? This collection of programs has at most 10-24 participants.
See our Small Group programs.
EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. There’s minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
ChallengingGet ready to keep up with our highest-energy group. These demanding — and rewarding — programs are for seasoned outdoor enthusiasts.

Itinerary for May 7 — May 17, 2015

Expand all
Day One: Thursday, May 07 -
In Transit: Overnight flights from North America.

Type: Three-Star Hotel

Description: 300 yards from airport.

Contact info:
Abbotsinch
Paisley
Glasgow, PA3 2TR UK:Scotland
phone: +44 870 400 9031
web: www.holidayinn.com/hotels/gb/en/glasgow/glwre/hoteldetail

Room amenities: Air-conditioning, TV, direct dial telephone, hairdryer, tea and coffee facilities, minibar.

Facility amenities: Restaurants, lounge and bar. Room service. Free WiFi in public areas. ATM.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: TBC.
For additional pre and post program accommodations, please contact Road Scholar Travel Services at (800) 241-1404 or via email to travelinfo@roadscholar.org

Check in time: 2:00 PM


Day Two: Friday, May 08 -
Arrive To: Glasgow. Walk 300 yards to the hotel.

Lunch: A light lunch is served in the hotel at 12:30pm. Ask at Reception for the location of lunch.

Afternoon: Your Aigas Ranger/Group Leader will arrrive by early afternoon. At leisure until a welcome meeting in the hotel at 5:00pm before dinner.

Dinner: In the hotel.

Evening: At leisure.

Lodging: Holiday Inn Glasgow Airport

Meals Included: Lunch, Dinner
Type: Other

Description: Aigas is the family home of Sir John and Lady Lister-Kaye and field studies centre. Sir John is one of Scotland’s leading naturalists and nature writers. Accommodation for up to 40 guests is in comfortable, heated timber lodges all with twin bedrooms with private bathrooms appealingly set in the spacious gardens and wooded grounds of the House of Aigas.

Contact info:
Beauly
Inverness, 1V4 7AD UK:Scotland
phone: +44 1463 782443
web: www.aigas.co.uk

Room amenities: Lounge area, drying room, fridges. Tea and coffee making facilities.

Facility amenities: Library, common room, shop and office. Drinks purchased by cash bar in the common room. Loch, fishing, walks and trails.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Three: Saturday, May 09 - Scenic transfer to the Highlands.
Breakfast: Full Scottish breakfast in the hotel.

Morning: Day-long transfer to Aigas Field Center in Inverness-shire with information about and stops en route at Luss (Loch Lomond), Tyndrum, Glencoe and Spean Bridge.

Lunch: Packed lunch.

Afternoon: Continue to Aigas with stops en route, including Drumnadrochit. Please note, the proposed route is subject to change due to weather, traffic or other unforeseen circumstances. Arrival at Aigas in time for afternoon tea and welcome. Aigas Field Centre is based at the House of Aigas, a Victorian sporting lodge purchased by Sir John Lister-Kaye in 1977. In addition to the main house the estate comprises an extensive arboretum, formal gardens, native pinewoods, birch woodland, exotic plantation, moorland and agricultural land as well as a picturesque freshwater loch. This range of habitats attracts a myriad of wildlife, with over 120 different species of birds recorded, and many of Scotland’s larger mammals including pine marten, otter, badger and deer. We will meet before dinner to discuss domestic arrangements for the week ahead and to talk about wish lists.

Dinner: In the baronial hall in the House of Aigas, the home of Sir John and Lady Lucinda Lister-Kaye. Meals eaten in the baronial hall surrounded by family portraits and Victorian artefacts.

Evening: At leisure. Drinks available in the lounge for cash payments. Use of the extensively stocked library of history and natural history books, wall map of northern Scotland. The old Victorian dining room is now used as a guest common room.

Lodging: Aigas Field Centre and House of Aigas

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Other

Description: Aigas is the family home of Sir John and Lady Lister-Kaye and field studies centre. Sir John is one of Scotland’s leading naturalists and nature writers. Accommodation for up to 40 guests is in comfortable, heated timber lodges all with twin bedrooms with private bathrooms appealingly set in the spacious gardens and wooded grounds of the House of Aigas.

Contact info:
Beauly
Inverness, 1V4 7AD UK:Scotland
phone: +44 1463 782443
web: www.aigas.co.uk

Room amenities: Lounge area, drying room, fridges. Tea and coffee making facilities.

Facility amenities: Library, common room, shop and office. Drinks purchased by cash bar in the common room. Loch, fishing, walks and trails.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Four: Sunday, May 10 - Sir John Lister-Kaye lectures on the history of t...
Breakfast: Continental breakfast with pinhead porridge.

Morning: Sir John will introduce you to the complex history of the Highlands with special reference to the Victorian sporting era and the 19th century conversion of the House of Aigas from a Highland tacksman’s house to a sporting lodge, setting the historical scene for the week.

Lunch: Buffet lunch in Aigas.

Afternoon: Later on this afternoon we will head to the remains of three Bronze Age hut circles and perched on a nearby hill, the remains of a typical Iron Age fort, evidence of Aigas' continuous occupation for over 3000 years. We shall carry on across old peat cuttings to the summit, a good place to orientate, with views of Strathglass and the country surrounding the House of Aigas. Look out for hen harriers, peregrine falcons, ravens, red grouse and red deer. If we have the time and energy we will continue across the moor to Aigas Woods, a wonderful pinewood relic of great Forest of Caledon, which once covered the majority of the Highlands. A good selection of typical pinewood plant species grow here and if lucky we may see Scottish crossbills, Britain’s only endemic bird. We will walk back to Aigas House on quiet forest tracks and paths. Walking of up to four miles, including some rough walking.

Dinner: In the baronial hall in Aigas House.

Evening: Evening trips with fully trained Aigas Rangers to the Pine Marten and Badger Hides, badger spotting, roe deer and tawny owls. Interpreted trips to the Beaver Hide to see the thriving family of beavers in their natural habitat. From the Tree Top Hide, see Red Squirrels, Red Kite, buzzards and ravens and take in the views of the valley of the River Beauly.

Lodging: Aigas Field Centre and House of Aigas

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Other

Description: Aigas is the family home of Sir John and Lady Lister-Kaye and field studies centre. Sir John is one of Scotland’s leading naturalists and nature writers. Accommodation for up to 40 guests is in comfortable, heated timber lodges all with twin bedrooms with private bathrooms appealingly set in the spacious gardens and wooded grounds of the House of Aigas.

Contact info:
Beauly
Inverness, 1V4 7AD UK:Scotland
phone: +44 1463 782443
web: www.aigas.co.uk

Room amenities: Lounge area, drying room, fridges. Tea and coffee making facilities.

Facility amenities: Library, common room, shop and office. Drinks purchased by cash bar in the common room. Loch, fishing, walks and trails.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Five: Monday, May 11 - West Coast and Inverewe Gardens
Breakfast: Continental breakfast and pinhead porridge.

Morning: Today we’ll head west to experience a leisurely visit to the famous Inverewe Gardens, on the West Coast, which lies beyond the majestic mountain landscape of Beinn Eighe National Nature Reserve. The land was purchased by Osgood Mackenzie in 1862 and he spent the majority of his time over the next forty years creating these wonderful gardens. We will be led on a guided tour by one of the gardeners, who will be able to provide a unique insight into this remarkable place. The balmy Gulf Stream Drift promotes the luxuriant growth of plants from all around the world - Tasmanian eucalyptus and New Zealand daisy bushes vie for attention with woodland containing a canopy of Scots pine, underplanted with many unusual plants such as meconopsis and the primula Inverewe. Winding walks, rising and falling, give sudden glimpses of shimmering water through the foliage. Firm paths with a maximum walk of two miles.

Lunch: Lunch is included today.

Afternoon: Field trip continues.

Dinner: In the baronial hall in the House of Aigas.

Evening: At leisure.

Lodging: Aigas Field Centre and House of Aigas

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Other

Description: Aigas is the family home of Sir John and Lady Lister-Kaye and field studies centre. Sir John is one of Scotland’s leading naturalists and nature writers. Accommodation for up to 40 guests is in comfortable, heated timber lodges all with twin bedrooms with private bathrooms appealingly set in the spacious gardens and wooded grounds of the House of Aigas.

Contact info:
Beauly
Inverness, 1V4 7AD UK:Scotland
phone: +44 1463 782443
web: www.aigas.co.uk

Room amenities: Lounge area, drying room, fridges. Tea and coffee making facilities.

Facility amenities: Library, common room, shop and office. Drinks purchased by cash bar in the common room. Loch, fishing, walks and trails.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Six: Tuesday, May 12 - The Black Isle.
Breakfast: Continental breakfast and pinhead porridge.

Morning: Today we will travel east to the Black Isle, a mosaic of habitats surrounded by internationally important estuarine waters of the Moray and Cromarty Firths. This peninsula to the north and east of Inverness was the location for the first UK re-introductions of the red kite in 1989. These are now widespread, with around 50 breeding pairs in the north of Scotland population - the majority of them on the Black Isle. Habitats including pebble shores and cliffs are carpeted with thrift, stonecrop and campion. The interior is rich agricultural land intermixed with areas of native woodland, forestry and old hedgerows. We will walk through the private estate surrounding the ruined castle at Redcastle, which contain a lovely open woodland and is a prime spot for nesting raptors. We will carry on along the shore of the Beauly Firth where we can expect a host of wetland birds and hedgerow flowers. We will visit the ruined cathedral at Fortrose before heading towards Chanonry Point which is one of the best sites for spotting our resident bottlenose dolphins whilst looking for some of the interesting coastal flowers.

Lunch: Packed lunch.

Afternoon: In the afternoon the field trip continues. Time permitting, we may take a stroll through Drummondreach ancient oakwoods or investigate the Georgian fishing village of Cromarty. There will be options of shorter or longer walks of between three and six miles today.

Dinner: In the baronial hall in the House of Aigas,

Evening: Highland house party activity.

Lodging: Aigas Field Centre and House of Aigas

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Other

Description: Aigas is the family home of Sir John and Lady Lister-Kaye and field studies centre. Sir John is one of Scotland’s leading naturalists and nature writers. Accommodation for up to 40 guests is in comfortable, heated timber lodges all with twin bedrooms with private bathrooms appealingly set in the spacious gardens and wooded grounds of the House of Aigas.

Contact info:
Beauly
Inverness, 1V4 7AD UK:Scotland
phone: +44 1463 782443
web: www.aigas.co.uk

Room amenities: Lounge area, drying room, fridges. Tea and coffee making facilities.

Facility amenities: Library, common room, shop and office. Drinks purchased by cash bar in the common room. Loch, fishing, walks and trails.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Seven: Wednesday, May 13 - Glen Strathfarrar.
Breakfast: continental breakfast and pinhead porridge.

Morning: Today we will be exploring one of the most beautiful secluded glens through moorland, woodland and forests where we will hope to find northern marsh, heath spotted and fragrant orchids, clubmoss, yellow pimpernel, dwarf cornel, the insectivorous butterwort and sundews. The hills here are home to thousands of red deer and even a few feral goats. An abundance of freshwater lochs and rivers means this is an ideal opportunity to find whooper swan, little grebe, red-breasted merganser, tufted duck and goosander, with dippers and grey wagtails flitting over the fast-flowing streams. Sparrowhawks are often seen skillfully navigating the mixed woodland and we’ll search the craggy ridges for the resident golden eagles soaring overhead. Rough paths, gentle hill climb onto hill ridge, up to five miles.

Lunch: Packed lunch.

Afternoon: The field trip continues.

Dinner: In the baronial hall.

Evening: At leisure.

Lodging: Aigas Field Centre and House of Aigas

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Other

Description: Aigas is the family home of Sir John and Lady Lister-Kaye and field studies centre. Sir John is one of Scotland’s leading naturalists and nature writers. Accommodation for up to 40 guests is in comfortable, heated timber lodges all with twin bedrooms with private bathrooms appealingly set in the spacious gardens and wooded grounds of the House of Aigas.

Contact info:
Beauly
Inverness, 1V4 7AD UK:Scotland
phone: +44 1463 782443
web: www.aigas.co.uk

Room amenities: Lounge area, drying room, fridges. Tea and coffee making facilities.

Facility amenities: Library, common room, shop and office. Drinks purchased by cash bar in the common room. Loch, fishing, walks and trails.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Eight: Thursday, May 14 - Corrie Loch.
Breakfast: Continental breakfast and pinhead porridge.

Morning: This morning we will head off towards Glen Affric for a loop route walk which will take us past Dog Falls and the secluded Corrie Loch. At the bottom of the bowl is a nationally important site for dragonflies, with fourteen different species breeding there. It is one of the lesser-known areas in the Highlands and a hidden gem. Woodland trail up to four miles.

Lunch: Packed lunch.

Afternoon: Field trip continues.

Dinner: In the baronial hall.

Evening: At leisure.

Lodging: Aigas Field Centre and House of Aigas

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Other

Description: Aigas is the family home of Sir John and Lady Lister-Kaye and field studies centre. Sir John is one of Scotland’s leading naturalists and nature writers. Accommodation for up to 40 guests is in comfortable, heated timber lodges all with twin bedrooms with private bathrooms appealingly set in the spacious gardens and wooded grounds of the House of Aigas.

Contact info:
Beauly
Inverness, 1V4 7AD UK:Scotland
phone: +44 1463 782443
web: www.aigas.co.uk

Room amenities: Lounge area, drying room, fridges. Tea and coffee making facilities.

Facility amenities: Library, common room, shop and office. Drinks purchased by cash bar in the common room. Loch, fishing, walks and trails.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Nine: Friday, May 15 - Aigas day.
Breakfast: Continental breakfast and pinhead porridge.

Morning: This morning we will spend exploring the gardens at Aigas which have been reinstated by Lady Lister-Kaye around the extensive Victorian arboretum with specimens from as far as Japan, New Zealand and California. The formal gardens have flowerbeds, a pond and areas of shrubbery. There are also native birch woods, Scots pine with a juniper understorey and many fine trees such as Douglas, Noble and grand fir. Later this morning we will have the chance to spend a leisurely morning in the small village of Beauly. There will be time to visit the 13th Century Priory, Campbell’s Tweedshop (of Royal patronage) and the option of a tour to the local distillery.

Lunch: Packed lunch is included although you may wish to sample local fare in Beauly-there are pubs, hotels, cafes and restaurants--even a fish and chip shop!

Afternoon: In the afternoon we will visit Reelig Glen, a charming 19th Century woodland walk popular with local people and which hosts a profusion of native and exotic species of plants and trees. Woodland trail up to two miles.

Dinner: In the baronial hall.

Evening: Farewell with traditional pipe music.

Lodging: Aigas Field Centre and House of Aigas

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Three-Star Hotel

Description: 300 yards from airport.

Contact info:
Abbotsinch
Paisley
Glasgow, PA3 2TR UK:Scotland
phone: +44 870 400 9031
web: www.holidayinn.com/hotels/gb/en/glasgow/glwre/hoteldetail

Room amenities: Air-conditioning, TV, direct dial telephone, hairdryer, tea and coffee facilities, minibar.

Facility amenities: Restaurants, lounge and bar. Room service. Free WiFi in public areas. ATM.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: TBC.
For additional pre and post program accommodations, please contact Road Scholar Travel Services at (800) 241-1404 or via email to travelinfo@roadscholar.org

Check in time: 2:00 PM


Day Ten: Saturday, May 16 - Scenic transfer to Glasgow.
Breakfast: Continental breakfast and pinhead porridge.

Morning: Depart Aigas, transfer to Glasgow with information about and stops en route at Ruthven Barracks and Pitlochry.

Lunch: Packed lunch.

Afternoon: Continue to Glasgow with stops en route, including Blackford. Please note, the proposed route is subject to change due to weather, traffic or other unforeseen circumstances.

Dinner: In the hotel.

Evening: At leisure.

Lodging: Holiday Inn Glasgow Airport

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day Eleven: Sunday, May 17 -
Breakfast: Full Scottish breakfast in the hotel.

Morning: Walk 300 yards to Glasgow Airport for return flights to North America.

Meals Included: Breakfast


Free Time Opportunities


Glasgow.
GlasgowGlasgow Cathedral, Burrell Collection, Tenement House, Willow Tea Room, People’s Palace, Hunterian Art Gallery, Art Gallery and Museum, Glasgow School of Art, Pollock House, theatres, cinemas. For additional information, visit www.seeglasgow.com

Important information about your itinerary:
Please know that while we do everything we can to finalize all aspects of our programs well in advance, there are logistics that occasionally must be altered. Our website will reflect the most recent information, and we are committed to providing you with final program details no later than eight weeks prior to the start of programs outside the U.S. and three weeks prior to the start of programs within the U.S. If you ever have questions about your program, please don't hesitate to contact us and we will be happy to assist you.

Our Value Promise To You

You won't find a better value.

Included
at no additional cost on this date ...
9 nights of accommodations
27 meals: 9 breakfasts, 9 lunches, 9 dinners
2 Expert-led lectures
11 Field trips
2 Hands-on experiences

Ratings

4.8
Ratings are determined by participant evaluations.

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