A gentle yet very adventurous walking holiday in the Scottish Highlands taking you from East coast dunes in Nairn to West coast beauty surrounding Fort William through the magnificent Great Glen and onto the island of Skye. Visit castles, revel in wilderness, cruise on Loch Ness, walk on Skye's cliff tops, steam across the Glenfinnan viaduct on one of the world's great railway journeys and enjoy a chauffeur on Skye as you explore the highlights we love there.
The trip enjoys relaxing 2 nights stays in luxury hotels with shortish and carefully crefted walks, many of which are optional and with a choice of high or low level routes. Amble along river banks, cliff tops, lochside paths, hill and forested tracks, dunes and canal towpath with plenty of time on this hassle-free itinerary to stop, stare and listen - to the silence!
from £4,325 per person
Based on two people sharing a room
Loch Ness cruise, Jacobite steam train ride, Private Driver Guide on Skye for one day, entry to Urquhart Castle and transfers to/from walks . See what’s included as standard
Start & Finish
Starts Inverness and finishes Fort William. Inverness has an airport and is 3.5 hours north of Edinburgh by train. Fort William is 2 hours west of Inverness and 4 hours north of Glasgow by train
Two 5 star hotels and three 4 star hotels
This tour is priced without a guide and you are free to explore on your own. If you would like a guide for part or all of your trip, we are happy to provide a knowledgeable, local guide
Gentle walking (2) More info...
2 days of walking 7/8 miles (11/12 km) and 3 days of optional walking 2-11 miles (4-18 km)
gentle slopes with some short steeper sections
- additional nights in Inverness and on Skye
- extend the tour by adding our Highland lochs and isles walking trip from Fort William
Our favourite hotel was the Cuillin Hills at Portree. The location, the rooms, the food, the views, the relaxed but attentive staff... everything just perfect.
Mary and family
The sun is trying to shine on our last day of The Carter Company’s “From Sea to Sky” tour. All in all, it was splendid with absolutely charming hotels & superb cuisine, interesting, magnificent scenery & manageable hiking paths. “From Sea To Skye” was a memorable and enlarging adventure. Thank you so much for all you did to arrange it so successfully. We will recommend it enthusiastically.
Terry and Eve
1. Day one
Arrive in Nairn
We will meet you in Inverness and transfer you to your hotel for the next 2 nights in nearby Nairn. This ancient fishing port and market town has a harbour and expansive beach on the Highland’s east coast. Once you've settled in, your Host will brief you on the routes and answer any questions you have. The rest of the day presents an opportunity to explore locally and unwind in your hotel.
2. Day two
Nairn to Cawdor castle
Here’s a wondrous start to your adventure. After breakfast we transfer you to the coast at Nairn for an inspiring walk through the dunes and beside the beach to the tiny harbour. Then on to the characterful town to pick up the river path which gently leads you inland through lovely countryside across fields and through woods to reach the village of Cawdor and romantic Cawdor Castle with its three gardens, lived in for 600 years by the same family. Bolstered by lunch in their Courtyard café, discover the charms of this delightful home and why Shakespeare chose the traditional Scottish castle for the setting of Macbeth. We meet you here late afternoon and transfer you back to your hotel.
7 miles (11 km)
3. Day three
Nairn to Loch Ness and Inverness
Today begins with a transfer mid morning to the mouth of Loch Ness. With its fair share of mystery and myth for you to unravel, enjoy a midday boat trip on the loch, cruising from Inverness to Urquhart Castle. Disembark here and explore the iconic ruined fortress with its commanding position on the loch side before returning by boat. Arriving back early afternoon we will transfer you into the centre of Inverness so you can explore the town and if you fancy a short walk too we have just the ticket leading beyond your hotel which is in the heart of the town, onto the banks of the River Ness.
Optional 2.5 miles (4 km)
4. Day four
Inverness to Fort Augustus
Now is your chance to walk in the Great Glen after a short transfer out of Inverness. Head along the north side of Loch Ness on the Great Glen Way with the choice of a higher or lower level route of similar length. A bit more climbing (1200’ rather than 700’ ) gives you better views and a true wilderness experience often above the woods, whilst the lower level route is gentle Highland walking, invariably wooded and giving some great views of Loch Ness and a wonderful experience of the glen’s atmosphere. The walk ends in Fort Augustus where you stay 2 nights, a waterside village at the western end of vast Loch Ness where a flight of locks enable boats to reach the Caledonian Canal.
7.5 miles (12 km)
5. Day five
North Laggan to Fort Augustus
Today’s adventure includes one of the best sections of the Great Glen Way and again there is a choice of a lower and upper level walk, the latter being a bit longer. North Laggan, where we transfer you at the start of the day sits on Loch Oich and the shorter walk takes the wild side of Loch Oich, on the waters edge with magnificent woodlands. The more energetic option takes you 850’ uphill into wonderful wilderness and forest above the loch. Both walks then follow the towpath along the Caledonian Canal with its moorings and colourful boats bobbing and chugging. Windlasses and gates will be wound and opened as you reach the locks in Fort Augustus – ask the boaters if they want assistance and stay a further night here.
Optional 9 or 11.5 miles (14 or 18 km)
6. Day six
Fort Augustus to Portree, Skye
For something completely different, your Driver Guide for the day will meet you after breakfast and share the delights of Lochalsh and the island of Skye with you. Stop at Eilean Donan Castle on the mainland if that’s of interest and then once on Skye, enjoy a potpourri of special places we love to share from Castles to Crofters’ townships, mountain roads to fishing tracks, art galleries, potteries, acclaimed restaurants and wildlife. Your day ends in Portree, the island’s capital, where you stay 2 nights.
7. Day seven
Storr to Portree
A truly wonderful last walk awaits you along the top of dramatic coastal cliffs. north of Portree with stunning views to distant islands and the mainland. There are a few short steep sections, and soggy moorland in places but these fade in what is otherwise a fabulous parade. We transfer you after breakfast to the start of the walk which ends back at your hotel with time to explore Portree if you haven’t already done so. Head for the harbour for the focal point of the town and weave your way back to the hotel through this characterful town.
Optional 7.4 miles (12 km)
8. Day eight
Portree to Fort William
It’s a fairly leisurely start today before you are transferred to Armadale for the short ferry crossing over to the mainland at Mallaig, once the major route onto Skye. Here you connect with the hissing Jacobite steam train that takes you across the famous Glenfinnan viaduct on what is billed as one of the great railway journeys of the world through glorious Highland country. You reach Fort William at tea time where we meet you and transfer you to your final hotel on the shores of Loch Shiel. A 10 minute walk through the hotel estate gives you a view from under the viaduct. Wow! what an incredible journey through Highland Scotland from the East coast to the West courtesy of the Great Glen and the island of Skye.
9. Day nine
Depart Fort William
Depart from Fort William at your leisure today. You can also add our Highland lochs and isles walking tour here if you fancy seeing more of the Highlands.