top of page

Five-Day Itinerary For Central Scotland: Including Gateway To The Scottish Highlands

Central Scotland is the perfect place to base yourself for exploring the many beautiful, historic, and charming places including Aberfoyle, Crieff, Callender, Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park. Here is what not to miss while visiting the gateway to the Scottish Highlands.

Murray Fountain, James Square, Crieff
Murray Fountain, James Square, Crieff ©M D Harding Travel Photography

Five-Day Itinerary For Central Scotland: Including Gateway To The Scottish Highlands

Aberfoyle - Day 1

Traveling on a private luxury coach and a wee group of 28 from around central Scotland,

we stayed at the Rob Roy Hotel (1939, renovated in 2010) named after Robert Roy MacGregor, (a Scottish outlaw, who later became a folk hero) situated in Aberfoyle amongst idyllic countryside at the gateway to the glorious Trossachs, set within Scotland's Loch Lomond National Park for 5-days/4-nights, on a bed, breakfast and evening meal option. There are beautiful walks along the River Forth and up Doon Hill on a circular walk (known for its Fairy Folklore), as well as little cafes, and shops.

Nearby is the Queen Elizabeth Forest, part of Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park located off the scenic Dukes Pass road with visitor centre (toilets & cafe), waterfall, walking trails, wildlife hide, Highland Cows, and Go Ape.

You can also travel on the local transport public bus operated by McGill's from Stirling to Aberfoyle, which runs every two hours and the journey takes approx 1 hour.

Before visiting Aberfoyle you might also like to read Rob Roy by Sir Walter Scott.

Tree decorated with different coloured ribbon's.
Scot's Pine on Doon Hill, Aberfoyle ©M D Harding Travel Photography

Callender- Day 2

Callender is a bustling town on the River Teith, located near Stirling it is often described as the gateway to the Scottish Highlands. During Victorian Times Callender was a popular destination romanticised by poets and writers, describing the landscape. It is steeped in history with Iron Age hill forts, Neolithic burial cairns, clan burial grounds, and more. Today Callender still retains its original street plan dating back to 1739!

While visiting you might also like to enjoy afternoon tea at the Roman Camp Hotel (1625).

You can also visit on a day trip from Stirling on the local public bus.

Inside the main lounge with is real fire at the Roman Camp Hotel.
Roman Camp Hotel, Callender ©M D Harding Travel Photography

Loch Lomond - Day 3

The first National Park in Scotland - Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park (Pairc Naiseantra Loch Loamainn is nan Troisichean in Gaelic) is situated across the Highland Boundary Fault often considered the boundary between the Scottish Lowlands and the Scottish Highlands. It is a place of outstanding natural beauty with the largest of the Scottish lakes, red deer, red squirrels, and more, across the impressive 720 sq. miles.

It is a great day out with activities including boat trips, seaplane adventures, a visit to the Sea Life Loch Lomond Aquarium, Loch Lomond Bird of Prey Centre, and more.

If you don't have a car, don't worry. You can take the train to Balloch from Glasgow Queen Street Train Station.

Double rainbow at Loch Lomond.
Loch Lomond Shores ©M D Harding Travel Photography

Crieff - Day 4

The traditional Scottish market town of Crieff is a must-visit, set amidst the stunning Perthshire countryside. Home to The Glenturret Distillery, Drummond Gardens, Crieff Visitor Centre with Caithness Glass, and just across the road a large year-round Christmas Shop - Nutcracker. Famous for its whisky and cattle droving history, it is said that Crieff could be dated as far back as 1218! You can discover more about the cattle droving history in the current exhibition taking place inside the visitor centre. Did you know Rob Roy Macgregor is said to have visited often to sell his black cattle?

Crieff is more easily reached with a car but possible to visit with the local bus from Stirling.

River Earn with trees on both sides and leading to the mountains.
View From Old School Stone Bridge Over The River Earn, Crieff ©M D Harding Travel Photography

Returning From Aberfoyle - Day 5

On our return, we made a stop at Alexandra for some lunch and shopping. Then continued to enjoy more of the incredible scenic views before arriving back in Edinburgh.

Road with mountain views
One Of The Scenic Roads In Central Scotland ©M D Harding Travel Photography

I hope you have enjoyed reading and feel inspired to visit one or more of these historical and interesting destinations.

Until next travels,

Michelle x

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page