Scotland: A Journey For Women
Adult Mission Trip
Life with Jesus is about the journey.
As women, we move quickly through life. In the midst of serving and doing good in the world, we often forget to take time to refuel. Our Scotland rail and hike journey is about slowing down, intentionally engaging in conversation and taking each moment with reflection and purpose. Each day we will talk about a new dimension of God and Faith. We will be experiencing the Scottish Highlands by train and on foot, taking in some of the best scenic rail journeys in the world. Starting from the regal city of Edinburgh, travel deep into the Highlands and across to the Isle of Skye, before returning to vibrant Glasgow. Ride the iconic West Highland Line on the Jacobite steam train, the ’Hogwarts Express’, as well as the as North Highland Line, one of Britain’s most remote and spectacular, between Inverness and Kyle of Lochalsh, gateway to Skye. Relax as you speed past brooding lochs, leafy glens and rugged mountains. What’s more, you’ve some rewarding hikes included, as well as time to explore castles, ancient battlefields, Loch Ness, distilleries and centuries-old Highland estates.
Day 1: Edinburgh to Blair Atholl by train.
Your rail and hike adventure through Scotland starts in the majestic capital of Edinburgh. Jump on board your first train which whisks you away into the Highlands to charming Blair Atholl (2hrs approx.). Settle into your cosy B&B for a two night stay; the ideal base from which to explore.
Day 2: Blair Atholl Walks & Castle.
After a hearty Scottish breakfast explore the idyllic Atholl Estates. Follow paths that meander through woodland and heather-clad hills surrounding Blair Castle, the historic home of the Earls and Dukes of Atholl and dating from the 1200s. Alternatively, take a lovely 9 mile riverside walk to the quaint and popular town of Pitlochry, returning by local bus.
Walk: Up to 10 miles, minimal ascent/descent.
Day 3: Train to Inverness, Optional Visit to Loch Ness/Culloden Battlefield An early start today (1h30 train ride) will give you plenty of time to discover Inverness. This friendly city has several of Scotland’s star attractions close by. Visit Loch Ness and Urquhart Castle on an optional day trip by boat and coach, or the Culloden Battlefield exhibition, scene of the last Jacobite uprising in 1745, is an easy bus ride away.
If you’d prefer to stretch your legs, set out on a superb loop walk along the peaceful River Ness and Caledonian Canal.
Walk: 7 miles, minimal ascent/descent
Day 4: North Highland Line to Portree
Sit back and relax as you depart Inverness on the iconic North Highland Line, a stunningly scenic journey alongside remote lochs, glens and mountains to the seaside station of Kyle of Lochalsh (2h30).
Here you change for a bus (payable locally) which carries you over the Skye bridge to the isle itself and on to Portree (1hr) your base on Skye.
Day 5: The Storr, Portree Coastal Walk or Optional Day Trip
The colorful waterfront houses of Portree harbour adorn many a picture postcard. Today you’re free to wander around this delightful Highland town, or you could take a bus journey (25 mins, payable locally) to The Storr; a rocky hill on the Trotternish peninsula. From here, it’s a rewarding 7 mile walk along the coast back to Portree.
Alternatively, take a day trip around the Isle of Skye (supplement payable), taking in the brooding black and red peaks of the Cuillins, Talisker Distillery, and the rock pinnacle of the Quiraing. Calmac also operates a ferry service from nearby Sconser to Raasay if you prefer to explore one of the islands.
Walk: Storr to Portree Coast, 7 miles, 465m ascent
Day 6: Travel to Mallaig, Jacobite steam train to Fort William
You can look forward to many memorable travel experiences today! First, take a scenic bus ride (1hr, payable locally) to Armadale, where you catch the trusty Calmac ferry (30 mins) to Mallaig.
Arriving back on the mainland, its time for a highlight of your adventure—the Jacobite steam train. The ’Hogwarts Express’ winds its way past pristine beaches and mountain panoramas, passing over the Glenfinnan viaduct to arrive at the lochside town of Fort William (2h50).
Day 7: Walk to Spean Bridge
Enjoy a lovely walk today, with views of Britain’s tallest mountain, Ben Nevis, and you’ll also enjoy the impressive eight locks of Neptune’s Staircase along the Caledonian Canal. Take in the impressive panorama of the Commando Memorial, as you make your way to Spean Bridge.
The trail begins with an easy walk along the canal, heading up the Great Glen and through woodland that is home to red squirrels.
Walk: 12 miles, 190m ascent/descent
Day 8: West Highland Line to Glasgow
Get ready for yet another of Britain’s most scenic railway journeys as you travel south on the classic West Highland Line.
Soak up the last of the Highland scenery from your seat as you speed through the fertile Great Glen to Rannoch Moor, a remote plateau at 300m above sea level. This is a wild landscape of peat bogs, lochans and ancient forests, home now to herds of red deer.
Your delightful 3h30 journey ends in the vibrant city of Glasgow, from where you can make your onward journey. Accommodation tonight in Glasgow is not included, however please contact us should you wish us to make arrangements for you.
Short trips to Lochness and Isle of Skye are included if you choose to participate