Country Living (UK)

Explore the Scottish Highlands by steam

Experience breathtaki­ng scenery by paddle steamer and the iconic Jacobite steam train


For hundreds of years, the wooded hills and glens and the crystalcle­ar lochs of the Trossachs have inspired visitors from all over the world. On this exclusive four-day holiday, you will travel over land, sea and loch – all powered by steam. Travelling on the famous Jacobite steam train, the paddle steamer The Waverley and the SS Sir Walter Scott, you will take in the impressive sight of Britain’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis, enjoy a unique experience on the world’s first rotating boat lift, and pass over the spectacula­r 21-arch Glenfinnan Viaduct, as seen in the Harry Potter films.

VOYAGE BY PADDLE STEAMER Aboard the world’s last ocean-going paddle steamer, The Waverley, you will set sail across the Firth of Clyde, enjoying the gentle beauty of the Argyll hills and the Kyles of Bute from the deck. The SS Sir Walter Scott has been piloting tourists over Loch Katrine for more than 100 years and is one of only a few surviving screw-driven steamers in service. She retains her original engines, now using smokeless solid fuel, and many passengers enjoy pressing their noses against the viewing pane to watch the triple-expansion steam engine. The scenery around the loch is breathtaki­ng – at its northern end is Glengyle, the birthplace of Scottish outlaw and folk hero Rob Roy. THE FALKIRK WHEEL As part of your boat journey, you will experience the world’s first rotating boat lift – the Falkirk Wheel – before sailing along the Union Canal below the Antonine Wall to its visitor centre. This UNESCO World Heritage Site marked the northernmo­st frontier of the Roman Empire, some 99 miles north of Hadrian’s Wall.

A STEAM JOURNEY The Fort William to Mallaig line is frequently voted the world’s greatest railway journey. Aboard The Jacobite, you will puff past rugged scenery, craggy coastlines and inland lochs. After a stop for seafood or fish and chips at Mallaig, you will return to Fort William with Champagne and chocolates.

STAYING IN LUXURY Your base for three nights is the four-star Macdonald Forest Hills Hotel & Spa in The Trossachs, where the 55 classicall­y styled bedrooms are inspired by the landscape.

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