17 days in Scotland, Northern Ireland & Ireland Itinerary

17 days in Scotland, Northern Ireland & Ireland Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Europe trip itinerary planner

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Fly
1
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
— 2 nights
Drive
2
Inverness, United Kingdom
Drive
3
Isle of Skye, United Kingdom
— 1 night
Drive
4
Fort William, United Kingdom
— 1 night
Drive
5
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
— 2 nights
Fly
6
Derry, United Kingdom
— 3 nights
Bus
7
Belfast, United Kingdom
— 1 night
Bus
8
Galway, Ireland
— 2 nights
Train
9
Dublin, Ireland
— 3 nights
Fly

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Edinburgh, United Kingdom

— 2 nights

Athens of the North

World Heritage-listed Edinburgh combines ancient and modern in a uniquely Scottish atmosphere.
On the 14th (Sat), admire the landmark architecture of Craigmillar Castle, explore the different monuments and memorials at Greyfriars Kirkyard, and then take in the spiritual surroundings of Holyrood Abbey. On the 15th (Sun), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: admire the masterpieces at Scottish National Portrait Gallery, steep yourself in history at Dean Village, and then contemplate the long history of Grassmarket.

To find reviews, where to stay, photos, and other tourist information, use the Edinburgh trip planner.

Atlanta, USA to Edinburgh is an approximately 13.5-hour flight. The time zone changes from Eastern Standard Time (EST) to Greenwich Mean Time (GMT), which is usually a 5 hour difference. Traveling from Atlanta in May, you will find days in Edinburgh are much colder (58°F), and nights are little chillier (43°F). Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 16th (Mon) to allow time for the car ride to Inverness.

Things to do in Edinburgh

Historic Sites · Museums · Parks · Nature

Inverness, United Kingdom

Gateway to the Highlands

Inverness, often described as the Gateway to the Highlands, is a thriving commercial and industrial center.
To find maps, photos, more things to do, and more tourist information, go to the Inverness trip itinerary builder app.

Traveling by car from Edinburgh to Inverness takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or take a bus. In May, daily temperatures in Inverness can reach 58°F, while at night they dip to 41°F. On the 16th (Mon), you're off to Isle of Skye.

Things to do in Inverness

Outdoors · Parks · Tours · Shopping

Isle of Skye, United Kingdom

— 1 night
Blessed with picturesque lochs and a dramatic, rocky coastline, the far-flung Isle of Skye remains one of Scotland's most beloved destinations.
To see where to stay, more things to do, traveler tips, and other tourist information, go to the Isle of Skye trip itinerary planner.

Traveling by car from Inverness to Isle of Skye takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or do a combination of train and bus. In May, daily temperatures in Isle of Skye can reach 56°F, while at night they dip to 44°F. You'll set off for Fort William on the 17th (Tue).

Things to do in Isle of Skye

Outdoors · Tours · Parks · Shopping

Fort William, United Kingdom

— 1 night
Fort William is the second largest settlement in the Highlands of Scotland with around 10,000 inhabitants – and the largest town: only the city of Inverness is larger.Fort William is a major tourist centre, with Glen Coe just to the south, Aonach Mòr to the east and Glenfinnan to the west, on the Road to the Isles. On the 17th (Tue), take an in-depth tour of Glencoe Folk Museum, admire the verdant scenery at Glen Coe, and then trek along Glencoe Lochan.

To find more things to do, reviews, where to stay, and other tourist information, go to the Fort William trip planning app.

You can drive from Isle of Skye to Fort William in 2.5 hours. Another option is to take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 18th (Wed) early enough to drive to Edinburgh.

Things to do in Fort William

Outdoors · Parks · Trails · Scenic Drive

Side Trips

Edinburgh, United Kingdom

— 2 nights

Athens of the North

On the 19th (Thu), learn more about the world around you at National Museum of Scotland, stroll the grounds of Greyfriars Kirk, then take an in-depth tour of Surgeons' Hall Museums, and finally walk around Holyrood Park.

To find photos, where to stay, reviews, and more tourist information, refer to the Edinburgh road trip site.

Traveling by car from Fort William to Edinburgh takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and train; or take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 20th (Fri) to allow enough time to fly to Derry.

Things to do in Edinburgh

Museums · Parks · Historic Sites

Derry, United Kingdom

— 3 nights

Maiden City

Ancient yet modern, Derry has a photogenic location on the River Foyle and features a series of historic defensive walls that are the most complete in Ireland.
Explore hidden gems such as Causeway Coastal Route and Downhill Demesne & Hezlett House. Take a break from the city and head to Giant's Causeway and Castlerock Beach. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Derry: Largantea Picnic Area (in Limavady) and East Strand (in Portrush). Next up on the itinerary: take an in-depth tour of Tower Museum, explore the different monuments and memorials at Derry City Cemetery, take in the spiritual surroundings of St. Eugene's Cathedral, and admire the landmark architecture of St. Augustine's Church.

For ratings, photos, more things to do, and more tourist information, go to the Derry tour itinerary planner.

Getting from Edinburgh to Derry by flight takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of car and ferry; or do a combination of bus and ferry. Traveling from Edinburgh in May, expect somewhat warmer with lows of 49°F in Derry. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 23rd (Mon) so you can go by car to Belfast.

Things to do in Derry

Historic Sites · Parks · Outdoors · Beaches

Side Trips

Belfast, United Kingdom

— 1 night
A city with character, Belfast remains a great place for a leisurely exploration, as it is still relatively undiscovered by foreign tourists, who usually opt to visit Dublin instead.
On the 24th (Tue), get engrossed in the history at Irish Republican History Museum and then take in the awesome beauty at Black Mountain.

To find where to stay, more things to do, maps, and other tourist information, go to the Belfast day trip app.

You can drive from Derry to Belfast in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or take a train. Expect a daytime high around 59°F in May, and nighttime lows around 47°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 24th (Tue) so you can go by car to Galway.

Things to do in Belfast

Museums · Parks · Nature

Galway, Ireland

— 2 nights

City of the Tribes

A major hub for visitors exploring Ireland's western regions, Galway serves as a city of art and culture, renowned for its vibrant lifestyle and numerous festivals.
Start off your visit on the 25th (Wed): delve into the distant past at Kilmacduagh Tower, take in nature's colorful creations at Coole Park Nature Reserve, and then contemplate the long history of Thoor Ballylee - Yeats Museum. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 26th (Thu): head outdoors with Outdoor Activities and then get to know the fascinating history of Riverside Walk.

To see more things to do, ratings, and other tourist information, read our Galway trip planner.

Traveling by bus from Belfast to Galway takes 5.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus; or take a train. In May, plan for daily highs up to 57°F, and evening lows to 44°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 26th (Thu) so you can go by car to Dublin.

Things to do in Galway

Historic Sites · Outdoors · Tours · Parks

Side Trip

Dublin, Ireland

— 3 nights

Fair City

A history spanning over a thousand years, vibrant nightlife, and a mix of Georgian and modern architecture make Dublin a popular European tourist destination.
On the 27th (Fri), take an in-depth tour of 14 Henrietta Street, then steep yourself in history at Kilmainham Gaol Museum, and then see the interesting displays at Guinness Storehouse. Keep things going the next day: visit Temple Bar, take in the awesome beauty at Dublin Mountains, then take in nature's colorful creations at Powerscourt Gardens and House, and finally take in the awesome beauty at Bray Head.

To see reviews, traveler tips, other places to visit, and more tourist information, use the Dublin itinerary planner.

Traveling by train from Galway to Dublin takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a train; or take a bus. In May in Dublin, expect temperatures between 59°F during the day and 43°F at night. On the 29th (Sun), you'll have the morning to explore before heading back home.

Things to do in Dublin

Historic Sites · Museums · Parks · Nature

Side Trips

Scotland travel guide

4.4
Castles · Specialty Museums · Distilleries
A land packed with thousands of years of history, Scotland is home to numerous thriving cities and a vibrant population proud of its distinct culture, heritage, and art. The Scottish people are fond of saying "Good things come in small packages," and nowhere is that more true than in their compact homeland. Despite its relatively small size, the country is crammed full of attractions, not the least of which are numerous world-famous golf courses and whiskey distilleries. Though the sun may not always shine here, Scotland is a stunning country renowned for its dramatic scenery of mountains, valleys, hills, green fields, and rugged coastlines, guaranteeing a diverse holiday. While most tourists restrict their itinerary to the historic Highlands, where they search for the mysterious Loch Ness monster, you can also explore the Lowlands’ outstanding natural wonders and flourishing cultural scene.

Northern Ireland travel guide

4.4
Specialty Museums · Historic Sites · Geologic Formations
Unlike the place travelers found several decades ago, the Northern Ireland of today is a rejuvenated and dynamic region attracting increasing amounts of tourism. Belfast, the region’s biggest urban center and capital, is a hip city with vibrant nightlife and a thriving gourmet culinary scene, providing an extensive list of indulgent things to do. The region’s renowned coastline, featuring the World Heritage-listed Giant’s Causeway, is an attractive holiday destination for hikers, cyclists, photographers, and other adventurers of all descriptions. Northern Ireland has seen more than its fair share of political and economic unrest, yet the people of this region have always remained proud of their cultural and artistic heritage, providing visitors with a warm hospitality hard to find almost anywhere else in the world.

Ireland travel guide

4.4
Specialty Museums · Nightlife · Castles
Emerald Isle
Gentle green hills, Guinness, leprechauns, and friendly folks characterize this small isle of a country. From the busy big city of Dublin to cozy countryside, the emerald isle harbors a varied natural landscape and is steeped in tradition. Visitors can immerse themselves in the native Irish language by visiting a Gaeltacht, or Irish-speaking region of the country, where traditional culture thrives. The Irish are known for being open and welcoming: from the moment you land to the moment you leave, you'll be greeted with "cead mile failte"--a hundred thousand welcomes.