Dulse and Brose
Elevated Scottish comfort food & drinks in a cottage-style building with rustic bistro interiors.
Phone: +44 1478 612846
Local produce from the island features heavily at this venue for thoughtful seasonal cuisine.
Phone: +44 1478 612069
Local langoustines, salmon and hand-dived scallops, served in a 19th-century quayside building.
Phone: +44 1478 612016
I usually take what I call “hiking shoes” – they’re like hiking boots but stop at the ankle like tennis shoes.
For the Immersion and Redoux tours, there are castles and parks that include a fair amount of walking outside. It is usually paved (but sometimes could be gravel paths, grass or dirt/mud) and usually wet. So you would need water proof shoes with good traction. Traditional, over the ankle hiking boots are not really necessary for these tours but would be ok if that’s what you’re comfortable wearing.
For the Immersion Tour there is an optional walk in Glen Affric which would be a bit hilly, then there is also walking at the Culloden Battlefield (usually on a paved path), more walking in Clava Cairns (not paved) and walking around the Brochs. The village where Rent was filmed has a walk though the woods (above). My pictures are here: https://ahpinc.smugmug.com/CelticTime/Scotland/Outlander-Immersion/May312015 (Some things are different – there wouldn’t be filming where we saw it – but there may be filming somewhere else and we are stopping at a different location in Glen Affric – to name a few changes.)
For the Redoux tour, there is an optional walk out to Neist Point – the weather was too bad when we were there so we just saw it from the van and my group elected not to do the Fairy Pools which is a tramp through moors. So there is no hard core hiking, but it could be hilly and wet. My pictures are here: https://ahpinc.smugmug.com/CelticTime/Scotland/2018/Outlander-Redoux .
Here are some links to the places we didn’t walk to:
There are also some new places added to the Redoux for season 4 that I haven’t been to yet. Once I go, I’ll post more. 🙂
Note: The tours now aren’t exactly the same as when I first went on them – the pictures are just to show you the types of terrain you might find.
To apply for a passport, see this link: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/passports/apply-renew-passport/apply-in-person.html
To Renew your passport, see this link: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/passports/apply-renew-passport/renew-by-mail.html
Different countries have different rules about the expiration date of your passport and whether they’ll let you into their country or not. So it is always good to check the specific country’s rules. Search on “passport expiration date rules [the country you are going to]” and you’ll see something like “Passports should have at least six months remaining validity beyond your departure date.” That means if you try to enter the country, say the UK on May 30th for example, then your passport should not expire before December. It is not dependent on when you book your travel. It is dependent on when you are arriving into the country. I just renewed my passport and it is supposed to be coming very close to 4 weeks from when I renewed it (and I just did the regular form not the expedited).
A couple of suggestions:
You can use this site to check if you need a visa : https://cibtvisas.com/visa-quick-check
Newgrange passage tomb is Ireland’s best known prehistoric monument. Built around 3200 BC by Stone Age farmers, Newgrange is 1,000 older than Stonehenge and centuries older than the great pyramids of Egypt. The mound itself is 85 meters (93 yards) in diameter and 13.5 meters (15 yards) high, and on an area of about 1 acre. The Boyne Valley complex was designated a World Heritage site by UNESCO in 1993. Look how small the people are next to it in the picture below:
You cannot just drive up to Newgrange (I know because I tried). You need to go to the Brú na Bóinne Visitor’s Center and buy tickets and a shuttle will take you to Newgrange (or Knowth or Dowth if you choose to go to one of the other passage tombs).
Note: Brú na Bóinne Visitor Centre is due to undergo major refurbishment from February 2019. For the duration of the works, the online pre-booking service will not be available.
All tickets will be issued on a daily first come first served basis.
After driving around to try to find Newgrange on my own, I found Mary Gibbons Newgrange tours. She does a fabulous job of getting you to the Visitor’s Center, getting your tickets (although this may change with the pre-booking not available as mentioned above), and getting you on the shuttle. She also includes the Hill of Tara which is a site of deep contemplation and was once the ancient seat of power in Ireland.
Glendalough is one of my favorite places in Ireland. The name comes from the Irish “Gleann da locha”, meaning the Glen of two Lakes. “It combines extensive monastic ruins with a stunning natural setting in the Wicklow Mountains. The beauty and tranquility of the lakes and glacial-carved valley no doubt appealed to St Kevin, a hermit monk, who founded the monastic site near the Lower Lake in the 6th Century.”
“Kilkenny is famous for many things: its majestic creeper-clad castle (the image at the top); a bustling crafts industry; cobbled lanes and secret passages; 1,000 years of history and cracking festivals.
This magical combination of culture and entertainment that attracts so many people to this captivating heritage city, right in the centre of Ireland’s Ancient East and just 90 minutes south of Dublin.”
You might want to stop in at the famous Kytelers Inn which dates back to 1324. I was in Las Vegas for St Patrick’s Day one year, and they had a sign for Kytelers Inn. I took a picture of it and posted it on twitter which earned me a free pint of Guinness when I went to Kytelers a month or so later.
You should also visit St. Canice’s Cathedral and Round Tower. The tower is fun because you can actually climb up in and see the surrounding countryside.
Seans Bar is a fun place to visit. It has a “detailed and documented history right back to 900AD”. It is between Dublin and Galway, in the middle of the country in Athlone.
How to get there: https://www.rome2rio.com/s/Dublin/Sean-s-Bar
Belfast – Is a short train ride from Dublin. But you should plan to spend at least one night there to see the sites in the area. So Belfast deserves it’s own blog page. 🙂
As part of the Outlander Immersion Tour, we have a special performance by Gwyllyn the Bard who played and sang in Castle Leoch in the Outlander TV show. Gwyllyn, a charming man altogether, entertains with beautiful songs, fascinating stories about Scottish history, as well as discussing his work on the Outlander set.
For information on his music, go here.
Here is a picture of us when we first met talking about him being part of my tours. This is at the Citizen-M which is a really fun hotel and where we have reserved a private room for him to do his performances for the tours.
One of the things that can really get your trip off to a bad start is missing a flight or having your luggage miss a flight. I recommend a minimum of 2 hours for a layover and if you are connecting to a smaller airline or going through a large airport (like London Heathrow or Dallas or Newark…) then allow even more time. Smaller airlines may be cheaper, but they also aren’t as reliable and can take longer to get your luggage to you if your luggage doesn’t arrive at the airport with you. (There were 2 ladies on one of my tours who went without their luggage for 4 days!) Then of course if you are going through a large airport, you most likely will have to go to a different terminal which can take a considerable amount of time and if your first flight is late, then you’re likely to miss your second flight. (Another 2 ladies missed a day tour they had scheduled prior to joining my tour.) Is it really worth it to save an hour at an airport when you are going on a trip that is a week long or more???
I recommend going to the site Trip Advisor and looking for flights from your home airport to your destination and trying to find the flight that has the least connections with the appropriate amount of time for layovers. You can check the box on the left for 2 stops – don’t go for more stops than necessary just to save money –> it can ruin your vacation!
But I do not recommend purchasing your flight on tripadvisor or any other site that you use for comparison. I would recommend going to the major airline site and book the flight on their site. If you book on the airline site directly,
For instance, if you are flying from Dallas to Glasgow and American Airlines is the flight from Dallas to London (it says “operated by” below the flight), then go to the American Airlines website and search for flights from London to Glasgow. If you can’t find the same price on line, call them and ask for the specific times you saw on tripadvisor and see what price they can come up with.
In addition to searching on Trip Advisor, I also use 2 other airlines websites:
Iceland Air allows you to take a layover in Iceland. They have a fairly short layover in Iceland (near Reykjavík) but it is a small airport and they control the flight in and the flight out (both are on Iceland Air) so they make sure you make your connection.
Norwegian Air is a low cost airline but it has Dreamliner planes with better cabin pressure so you don’t feel as tired when you arrive to your destination. They fly to London Gatwick then you’d have to add your own flight (and transfer your luggage) to your final destination. (Be careful to fly out of Gatwick and not Heathrow because it is not fun to get between the two.) Some Norwegian flights may only fly on specific days of the week or specific times of the year but it is cheaper and the planes are new and nice.
See the example below: Use the sliders to set the earliest departure time and latest arrival time. If you select the first flight, then open the flight details, you’ll see that the layover is too short. The next 2 flights listed have similar longer layover times, but the second one leaving at 5:55 might be better because you’re more likely to be able to sleep on a later flight, and when you arrive 1:25pm it is closer to check-in time. But the 3rd one looks like it is operated by British Airways and has a lower “Fly Score” than American.
I quit flying British Airways economy from Denver to London after they left me – at the gate – at London Heathrow airport while they worked on the plane for over 4 hours and made me miss 4th of July with my family. Their planes are old and don’t have air vents nor do they have wifi.
If you go to one of the sites where you can book hotels, flights & cars then use that to book the cheapest flight possible, I’ve seen a couple of issues with that:
I also had a couple who had purchased their tickets using the hopper app. They routed them from the UK to Chicago to Philadelphia. That intermediate flight (Chicago to Philadelphia) was cancelled, so Hopper rebooked them a day earlier so that meant that they were supposed to leave the UK before their tour was over. Hopper sent an email saying “You’ve been rebooked.” It took the couple a week of calling and not getting through and then calling and getting though but getting cut off multiple, multiple times before they finally got their flights fixed.
Here are some restaurants that you might wish to make reservations at before you get to Stirling.
Cafe, British, Scottish (0.1 mile from Stirling Castle)
+44 1786 449142
The Gallery Restaurant
European, British, Scottish (long walk or taxi)
+44 1786 406027
Indian, Asian, Balti
+44 1786 470999Napizza
Italian, Pizza, Mediterranean
+44 1786 464411
Nicky Tams Bar & Bothy
Bar, British, Pub
+44 1786 472194
There are direct flights to Inverness Airport from London (Heathrow, Gatwick & Luton), Amsterdam (Schiphol), Bristol, Manchester, Birmingham, Dublin, Belfast, Zurich … https://www.invernessairport.co.uk/fly-direct/
The airport in Inverness (like most airports) is a bit out of town. There are busses to get you from the airport to the city center and back. “The bus fares to and from Inverness Airport are around £3.10. Getting to by bus from the bus station to Inverness Airport takes around 30 minutes.” https://www.invernessairport.net/transport/buses.shtml
Or you can take the train from Edinburgh, Glasgow, London… (The TrainLine) . Click on map to enlarge.
Or there are buses from almost anywhere in Scotland. Here are some bus links:
I use google maps, put in the destination, then press the Directions button. Then you can add an Origin and select the thing that looks like a train.
If you’ve taken the ferry from Belfast to Cairnryan (Stena Line Ferry), then you can take the bus from Cairnryan to Ayr then the train to Inverness.
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