Following Tracks Through Celtic Lands (15 days)

Day 1

Isle of Eriska, Scotland, United Kingdom

Day 2

Isle of Mull, Scotland, United Kingdom

Day 4

Kyle of Lochalsh, Scotland, United Kingdom

Day 5

Ballindaloch, Scotland, United Kingdom

Day 6

Rothiemurchus Forest, Scotland , United Kingdom

Day 7

Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom

Day 8

Belfast, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom

Day 9

Belfast, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom

Day 14

County Mayo , Ireland


Day 1
09 Jun 2018
Isle of Eriska, Scotland, United Kingdom
Isle of Eriska Hotel and Spa Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Awaiting us are lands north, where castles, mountains

and two grand train journeys beckon. Our residence

for our first two nights in Scotland is the Isle of Eriska

Hotel and Spa, lavishly set on its own island. Built in

Scottish Baronial style, it welcomes us with dinner at its

Michelin-star restaurant.

Day 2
10 Jun 2018
Isle of Mull, Scotland, United Kingdom
Isle of Eriska Hotel and Spa Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

The Isle of Mull and its 13th century castle beckon

today. We take a ferry to the island, where we will travel

by 4WD Land Rovers. First, a visit to the grey stone

Duart Castle, home to the 28th Chief of the

Clan Maclean. If we are lucky, he is home to meet us.

We take advantage of the picturesque surroundings

with a picnic lunch served from the Land Rovers in

hampers and on rugs. Off the western end of Mull

sits the tiny island of Iona, a tranquil place and once,

a centre for Gaelic monks.

After a stop here, we board a private boat to the

uninhabited Isle of Staffa, site of Fingal’s Cave,

where basalt columns ‘as high as a cathedral’ form

the cave walls.

Day 3
11 Jun 2018
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Belmond Royal Scotsman Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today, we travel back to Edinburgh, where we

take a city tour and have lunch at The Tower,

which showcases the best of Scotland’s produce. At the

station, we board the luxuriously appointed Belmond

Royal Scotsman for a four-night classic journey through

the Highlands. Ours is the only train in the UK with an

outside viewing veranda, and is a spectacular way to

enjoy the gorgeous countryside. The train heads north,

crossing the Firth of Forth on the striking, cantilevered

Forth Railway Bridge, followed by Arbroath, Montrose

and Aberdeen. Tonight, we gather in the Observation

Car for an informal dinner.

Day 4
12 Jun 2018
Kyle of Lochalsh, Scotland, United Kingdom
Belmond Royal Scotsman Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Our journey takes us west along the Moray Firth,

the big notch on the top right corner of the country,

if you’re looking at a map of Scotland. Once we leave

the Moray Firth behind, we begin to cross the country

towards the Kyle of Lochalsh - this is possibly the most

scenic of railway routes in the British Isles.

We leave the train in Plockton, where you may spend

your afternoon on one of these Your World experiences.

- Take a boat out on Loch Carron to see wild seals.

- Experience a traditional Highland welcome at the

Plockton Hotel overlooking Loch Carron,

then savour the whiskies on offer.

- See the bleakly beautiful Eilean Donan,

a completely restored 13th century castle on a

tidal island with its own causeway.

Day 5
13 Jun 2018
Ballindaloch, Scotland, United Kingdom
Belmond Royal Scotsman Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

We head towards Carrbridge, where we leave the train

to discover Ballindalloch Castle on the River Spey.

Besides having been held by the same family since the

15th century, its holdings also include the country’s

only single estate distillery. Choose from these Your

World experiences while here.

- Follow a private guide through the castle and learn

its history.

- Play nine holes of golf on the castle’s own course.

- Go on an exclusive tour of the Ballindalloch

Distillery, followed by a tasting, as is custom.

Back on our train this evening, a true Highlander Scot

joins us after dinner. We watch and listen intently as

he recounts the myths and stories of ancient Scotland,

then puts on a display of traditional weaponry.

Our train stops for the night at the Boat of Garten

station on the private Strathspey Railway.

Day 6
14 Jun 2018
Rothiemurchus Forest, Scotland , United Kingdom
Belmond Royal Scotsman Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

The Rothiemurchus Estate extends from the River

Spey at Aviemore to the Cairngorm Summit Plateau.

On its grounds are one of the last groves of

Caledonian forest, which once covered most of

Scotland. Immerse yourself in the outdoors with

these Your World experiences.

- The pure waters of the Spey and the lochs dotting

Rothiemurchus teem with trout and pike. Try your

hand at catching one.

- It’s not every day that we can go clay pigeon

shooting. The facilities and equipment at the

estate are of the highest quality and the instructors

enthusiastic and encouraging.

- If you’re after a less strenous experience, go on

a tour of the estate and admire the scenery.

We return to our train at Kingussie for lunch, then

journey south to Dunkeld. There, we visit Glamis

Castle, where HM Queen Elizabeth and the Queen

Mother, grew up. At Perth, we rejoin our train, for the

journey to Dundee, where we spend the night.

Day 7
15 Jun 2018
Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom
Hotel Balmoral Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

We return to Edinburgh this morning, where we leave

the Belmond Royal Scotsman behind. The elegant

and historic Hotel Balmoral welcomes us for a onenight

stay. In the afternoon, we tour the city’s sights.

Dinner takes place at Number One, a Michelin-starred

restaurant in our hotel. Expect the freshest Scottish

produce prepared inventively.

Day 8
16 Jun 2018
Belfast, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom
The Merchant Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

While Belfast was once off-limits, it now boasts a

waterfront lined with modern art, a lively culinary scene

and bars. Upon arrival, we are driven to the Merchant

Hotel, our home for two nights. The Merchant was built

in the 1850s and features plush rooms decorated in

either Art Deco or Victorian style. High tea is served

here, after which, a city tour awaits, but with a twist.

We explore the streets from the back of a renowned

Belfast black cab. This evening, dress for dinner

at The Great Room restaurant in our hotel.

Day 9
17 Jun 2018
Belfast, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom
The Merchant Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Delve deeper into Belfast’s icons, history and myths

with these Your World experiences.

- An in-depth tour of the city takes you from the Iron

Age to The Troubles and includes a visit to the

Titanic Experience.

- Visit the legendary Giant’s Causeway, where

40,000 interlocking basalt columns are said to be

the remains of a stone bridge built by two dueling

giants across the North Channel to Scotland.

We end the afternoon at Bushmills Distillery.

This evening, we dine around at select restaurants

in the city.

Day 10
18 Jun 2018
Dublin, Ireland
Hotel Westbury Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

After a drive of just under two hours, explore Dublin

at your leisure. Tonight, we rest at the Hotel Westbury,

with locally crafted wool carpets and inviting Irish linen.

Day 11
19 Jun 2018
Cork, Ireland
Dublin, Ireland
Belmond Grand Hibernian Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

A Dublin city tour begins the day. Early in the

afternoon, we embark on our second train journey.

At Dublin Heuston Station, the Belmond Grand

Hibernian welcomes us aboard. Polished to sparkling

through a recent refurbishment, this well-appointed

train plays the perfect host for the next four nights,

starting with Irish afternoon tea. While this is served,

we head south to Cork. On arrival, we explore the

famed Jameson Distillery.

Day 12
20 Jun 2018
Cork, Ireland
Belmond Grand Hibernian Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

The stories of the Blarney Stone’s origin, none

confirmed, could fill a book. Kiss it and you will

be gifted with eloquence, so the belief goes.

This morning we lean backwards over the battlements

and pucker up, lips ready for a potentially life changing

peck. After the excitement, we relax on our train as we

watch emerald hills and the mirror-still Lough Leane

pass outside. We stop in Killarney, celebrated for

its national park, and ride through it in a traditional

jaunting car, a pony and trap, in search of Ross Castle.

It is set on the edge of Lough Leane, and to truly soak

up the serene setting, we take rowboats out on the

lake. This evening, musicians come on board our train

for a merry céilí.

Day 13
21 Jun 2018
Galway, Ireland
Belmond Grand Hibernian Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Galway’s residents are known to be fun-loving,

as can be seen by the countless pubs, restaurants,

cafés and live music venues all over town. We lunch

on traditional Irish cuisine in a local restaurant today.

Spend the afternoon on one of these Your World

experiences today.

- Take a walking tour that stops in at castles,

Galway Cathedral and a select few of the city’s

historical buildings.

- Look down at the crashing waves of the North

Atlantic from the Cliffs of Moher, an hour away

from Galway.

Our train turns east to Athlone, in the centre of Ireland,

where we spend the night.

Day 14
22 Jun 2018
County Mayo , Ireland
Belmond Grand Hibernian Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

This morning, we are headed for Westport and

medieval encounters at the 13th century Ashford

Castle, where we applaud an ancient skill with a

riveting demonstration of falconry. A guided walk

follows, allowing us to admire the sprawling stone

building and its vast grounds. After lunch in the

castle, we settle in to our seats for a spectacular drive

through County Mayo back to our train in Westport,

where we will spend our farewell night enjoying the

finest of dinners.

Day 15
23 Jun 2018
Dublin, Ireland
None Breakfast

We enjoy a final Irish breakfast on our train as we

return to Dublin. Our tour ends, leaving us with fond

memories of lush, green landscapes, ancient castles

and the soothing sway of our train journeys.

Tour Features


  • Culture, History & Arts
  • Food & Wine
  • Rail Journeys
  • Sightseeing


In this verdant part of the world, every stone and brick comes

with a legend attached. Ancient customs prevail, as do forests

from the Ice Age. The Celts, Vikings and Romans all came and

stayed, merging into a culture that is full of joie de vivre and

good stories that you can track back aboard the Belmond Royal

Scotsman and Belmond Grand Hibernian. Join our epic rail

journey reserved for just 20 travelers.

About Us

Captain’s Choice, creators of the world’s most life-enriching journeys, curated without compromise, continue to innovate and push the boundaries of luxury adventure and travel. Whether by private jet, small group hosted journeys, luxury and expedition voyages or land explorations, every decision is made with the guest’s experience and ultimate enjoyment in mind.

Insider Tip

Captain's Choice is the market leader in private jet travel, offering journeys to various parts of the world aboard its customised 757 jet.

Terms & Conditions

Each of our products has a slightly different set of terms and conditions depending on numerous factors. Please download the brochure containing the journey you are enquiring about and the relevant terms and conditions can be found at the very back.

The trademarks VIRTUOSO, the Globe Swirl Logo and SPECIALISTS IN THE ART OF TRAVEL are registered trademarks of Virtuoso, Ltd. Virtuoso, Ltd. has a U.S. copyright registration for the Globe Swirl Logo, ©2000. All rights reserved. Virtuoso CST#2069091-50. California CST# 2069091; TA# 808 - Registered Iowa Travel Agency; Washington UBI # 601 554 183. Registration as a seller of travel does not constitute approval by the State of California.

Reviews and Recommendations for Captain's Choice

Virtuoso Verified Traveler

All reviews are from confirmed guests sharing exclusive insights

Sort reviews by