Misty highlands, sparkling lochs and rolling hills – there’s a reason why Scotland is known for its natural beauty.

But it’s not all just deserted moors and moss-covered forests (although there are plenty of those too!), Scotland’s rich history and culture are also a big drawcard. From exploring the medieval city of Edinburgh, to the lively fun of a traditional pub where many a wee whisky can be enjoyed, there are plenty of opportunities to experience the hospitality of the local Scots beyond the clichés of kilts and bagpipes. Discovering areas like the enchanting Scottish Highlands, the modern hub of Glasgow and the wilderness of the Isle of Skye, all with the inside knowledge of a local leader is an entirely unique experience.

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Travel lightly with Intrepid. We’ve offset the main sources of carbon emissions from this trip on your behalf, including transport, accommodation & waste. Read more

Scotland tour reviews

Articles on Scotland

Scotland travel highlights

Transport in Scotland

Intrepid believes half the fun of experiencing a new country is getting there, and getting around once there! Where possible, Intrepid uses local transport options and traditional modes of transport - which usually carry less of an environmental impact, support small local operators and are heaps more fun.

Depending on which trip you're on while in Scotland, you may find yourself travelling by:

Reach Edinburgh by train


Watch the countryside speed by on a train ride to Edinburgh. These trains are diesel-electric hybrid powered, with USB charging ports in the seats and an onboard café, bar and snack wagon.

Accommodation in Scotland

Travelling with Intrepid is a little bit different. We endeavour to provide travellers with an authentic experience to remember, so we try to keep accommodation as unique and traditional as possible.

When travelling with us in Scotland you may find yourself staying in a:

The Isles of Glencoe Hotel in Scotland

Hotels and hostels

Stay in a mix of twin-share, locally owned hotels and hostels. For travellers who don’t want to share a room with a fellow traveller of the same gender, a single supplement may be available for an extra charge.

Scotland holiday information

Scotland facts
Local culture of Scotland
Geography & environment
Shopping guide to Scotland
Scotland festival calendar
Food & drink in Scotland
Further reading

Scotland travel FAQs

Trips on or before 31 December 2022

If your Intrepid trip starts on or before 31 December 2022, you must provide proof of full vaccination against COVID-19.

If you are unable to be vaccinated for medical reasons, you may apply for an exemption. Exemptions will be assessed on a case-by-case basis. To apply, you must provide a medical certificate from a medical professional. 

Children under 18 are exempt. Children aged between 5 and 17 years old must provide proof of either vaccination, recovery or a negative COVID-19 test.

Trips from 1 January 2023 onwards

From 1 January 2023, Intrepid will no longer require travelers to provide proof of vaccination against COVID-19 (excluding all Polar trips and select adventure cruises).

However, we continue to strongly recommend that all Intrepid travelers and leaders get vaccinated to protect themselves and others.

Specific proof of testing or vaccination may still be required by your destination or airline. Please ensure you check travel and entry requirements carefully.

Learn more about Intrepid’s COVID-19 policy

Visa regulations are always subject to change, which is especially likely after Britain's exit from the European Union (EU), so it's essential to check before leaving home at www.gov.uk/browse/visas-immigration. Citizens of EU countries, Australia, Canada and the United States have visa-free access to Scotland.

Tipping is customary in some situations in Scotland. Restaurant bills usually include an option to add a gratuity. If this option isn’t present, it’s still common to tip about 10 per cent of the bill. Tipping about 10 per cent is also standard in taxis. 

You’ll have reliable internet access while in Scotland’s major cities and towns. 

You’ll have mobile coverage across most of Scotland, except for some rural and remote areas. Remember to activate global roaming with your provider if you wish to use your mobile while travelling. 

Scotland has Western-style toilets.

Cup of coffee = £2.5
Pint of beer = £4

Glass of wine = £4 - £5

Pub lunch = £12 

Dinner at a mid-range restaurant = £30

Drinking tap water is safe in Scotland unless otherwise marked. For environmental reasons, we recommend avoiding buying bottled water and bring a refillable bottle or canteen with you. 

You’ll be able to use your credit card readily in Scotland, however it never hurts to carry a small amount of cash on you to make things simpler if you are splitting bills or just want a quick cup of coffee.

ATMs are referred to as cashpoints in Scotland and are commonly found. You can use Visa, MasterCard, Amex, Cirrus, Plus and Maestro at most Scottish ATMs but you will also find international bank ATMs in major cities like Edinburgh and Scotland.

Yes. All Intrepid travellers are required to purchase travel insurance prior to their trip. Please speak to your Adventure Consultant at the time of booking if you need assistance arranging insurance.

Scotland is an open country and legalised same-sex marriage in 2014. Edinburgh and Glasgow in particular have small but flourishing gay communities. 

For more detailed and up-to-date advice, we recommend visiting Equaldex or Smartraveller before you travel.

Yes, all Intrepid trips support the Intrepid Foundation. In fact, we make a donation on behalf of every traveller. Trips to this country directly support our global Intrepid Foundation partner, Eden Reforestation Projects. 

Eden Reforestation Projects

Eden Reforestation Projects are helping to mitigate climate change by restoring forests worldwide; they also hire locally and create job opportunities within vulnerable communities. Donations from our trips support restoration across planting sites in 10 countries around the globe.

Responsible Travel

Intrepid is committed to travelling in a way that is respectful of local people, their culture, local economies and the environment. It's important to remember that what may be acceptable behaviour, dress and language in your own country, may not be appropriate in another. Please keep this in mind while travelling.

Typical houses in Edinburgh

How we're giving back

In Scotland we stay in locally run accommodation including guesthouses, smaller-scale hotels and homestays in an effort to support the local economies. We also visit locally run restaurants and markets where travellers will have opportunities to support local businesses and purchase handicrafts created by local artisans.