Our railway vacations in Scotland

Thereís no finer, more agreeable, way to explore Scotlandís majestic natural beauty than by train. Our Scotland railway vacations follow iconic routes such as the West Highland Line, which can lead to car-free island-hopping in the Hebrides, or the Far North Line into the North Highlands. For convenience and companionship join a guided small group tour, or there are plenty of tailor made options allowing you to shape the route according to your own interests. Add the opportunity to overnight in family-owned accommodations and sample a range of locally sourced foods from Scotlandís famous Ďnatural larderí, and going by rail is the obvious answer.

Our top Rail vacations in Scotland

Scotland by railway vacation

From £1185 to £1245
8 days ex flights
Experience authentic Scotland independently and car-free

Scotland guided rail tour, Skye & Glencoe

From £1875
7 days ex flights
Visit Scottish castles and beautiful gardens by train
Small group2022: 22 May, 12 Jun, 17 Jul

West Highland Line railway vacation in Scotland

From £925 to £995
5 days ex flights
Take the world's best rail journey to the Isle of Skye

More vacation ideas

West Highlands guided rail tour in Scotland

From £1995
7 days ex flights
Discover Scotland's Highlands & distinctive islands by train
Small group2022: 26 Jun, 24 Jul, 18 Sep

Scotland island hopping vacation, car free

From £1345 to £1460
8 days ex flights
Explore three contrasting Scottish islands car-free

Scotland railway short break, West Highland Line

From £395 to £425
3 days ex flights
First-class trip on Scotland's famous West Highland Line

Rail tour in North Highlands & Orkney

From £1795 to £1875
7 days ex flights
Scotlandís geographic extremities & ancient history by train
Small group2022: 15 May, 5 Jun, 3 Jul, 7 Aug, 11 Sep

Loch Ness & Skye guided rail tour, Scotland

From £1945 to £2095
7 days ex flights
Discover Scotlandís Highlands & Isle of Skye by Rail
Small group2022: 1 May, 12 Jun, 10 Jul, 21 Aug, 4 Sep, 25 Sep, 9 Oct

Tour of Britain by train

From £3225 to £3550
16 days ex flights
Explore England and Scotland's cities & landscapes by train.
Tailor made

Map & highlights

There are plenty of tailor made Scotland railway vacations available that allow you to shape your itinerary. Several follow classic routes such as the West Highland Line, via Ben Nevis and the Great Glen, and the coast-to-coast Kyle Line Ė both ideal for hopping over to the Isle of Skye too. Other destinations you might want to consider include Scotlandís magnificent capital, Edinburgh, and Fort William, terminus for the Caledonian Sleeper and base camp for walking Ben Nevis. You can easily stop off in the Cairngorms National Park too; the main town, Aviemore, is on the London to Scotland sleeper route.
Cairngorms National Park

1. Cairngorms National Park

If you are heading to Inverness from Edinburgh, think about fitting in a day or so in Cairngorms National Park, with Aviemore train station at its heart. Take the funicular railway up Cairngorm Mountain, or go for a more extensive hike up myriad Munros. For another rail experience, check out the Strathspey steam train journey, a two-hour round trip through the national park on a 19th century track.

2. Edinburgh

As well as having a beautifully located main station, Waverley, in between the medieval old town and the 18th century side, the capital is always a wonderful place to visit, as well as being the terminus or starting point for many a railway journey. Edinburgh is cool, boasts classy cuisine, a contemporary arts scene, elegant architecture and a castle bang in the middle. Plus itís on the coast, for further exploration.
Fort William

3. Fort William

The terminus for the Caledonian Sleeper train, there is nothing like waking up at the foot of Ben Nevis, the countryís highest mountain and a gateway to a world of wilderness adventures. Although the town itself isnít the prettiest, it has gorgeousness all around, not least Loch Linnhe on the shores of which it is located. As well as the Mamores Mountains, which are less busy than Nevis for hiking.
Isle of Skye

4. Isle of Skye

Itís a shame to go all the way to Mallaig or Kyle of Lochalsh by train and not hop across to the iconic Isle of Skye. Base yourself in Portree, and then explore by foot or hire car to visit the likes of the Old Man of Storr, swim in the famous faerie pool or visit Loch Coruisk, enveloped by the Cuillin Mountains. Local guides are excellent, so do make the most of them.
The Kyle Line

5. The Kyle Line

Running coast to coast between Inverness in the east and Kyle of Lochalsh and the Isle of Skye in the west, this is one of the lesser known beauties when it comes to rail journeys in Scotland. Sit back and watch 120km worth of Highland heritage including the Torridon Peaks, as well as wild heathland where deer hover on the outskirts of remote ancient forests Ė particularly on the slopes down from Loch Luichart.
West Highland Line

6. West Highland Line

No matter which direction you take this in, picking it up in Mallaig and heading south, or starting in Glasgow and heading up the north coast, this is most definitely one of the most spectacular train journeys. Although only taking five hours, do hop on and hop off over a few days. Zipping through Rannoch Moor lifts anyoneís heart, same with Ben Nevis. This really is a journey into the wilds.
Photo credits: [Page banner: 96tommy] [Railway vacations : Jack Anstey] [Small ship cruises : pxhere] [Watching wildlife: eric niven] [Types of vacations : Petr Meissner] [Where to go in Scotland : Nathan Anderson]