Hidden Gems of Scotland Europe

Fly Water Travel is proud to be the exclusive North American agent for Alba Game Fishing. Together we are excited to bring you fully customizable tours of Scotland. These tours are ideal for couples that want to experience the warmth and hospitality of the Scottish people, see its most historic and beautiful places and sample a number of the country’s premier fisheries along the way.  It is complete with historic cities, castles, islands surrounded with clear blue seas, lochs, spas, scotch and of course great private beats of fly water.  It is designed for private parties of 2-6 people and includes a private driver and four star boutique accommodations. 

Planning Your Trip
The process of creating your custom trip to Scotland could not be easier. In a phone conversation we will find out how many are in your group, what your preferred dates of travel are, your party’s physical abilities, how many days the anglers in the group would like to fish, what special interests your party members have, and from that, we will design a draft itinerary for your review. For those that elect activities other than fishing, the offerings will be robust and varied. Once we dial in the plan, we will set up the reservations and then create the final itinerary. Smaller parties of one to three guests will typically be met at the airport by their private driver and guide in a luxury Land Rover Discovery while larger groups will be picked up in one or more new Mercedes touring vans. All state-of-the-art fishing tackle and flies are included so you won’t need to pack any of those items unless you want to. Shortly into your trip your guide will go over your entire itinerary and make any required last-minute adjustments. From there it is just you and your crew enjoying the fishing and many attractions of Scotland.

Angling Options
Guests can enjoy four distinct types of fishing, often with multiple venues within each type. Again, all rods, reels, lines, waders, boots and flies are provided for all kinds of fishing offered, making packing simple. Because there is so much to do and see, most of our guests spend less than half of their days fishing, but for those that want to fish nearly every day, that is also possible.

Salmon: Scotland is synonymous with the art and lore of fishing Atlantic salmon on the fly. Depending on the time of year and availability, guests can fish the rivers Tweed, Tay, Dee and Spey. This is a great opportunity to spey cast with a real ghillie on some of the most famous waters in the world. Most of these waters are open from February through September or October and tend to fish best in late spring and fall.

Trout and Grayling: The options here are far too many to list. Guests can fish for wild browns on countless Highland rivers, streams or select from lochs, many of which are not far from cities of interest. Choose between walk and wade fishing and fishing still waters by boat, depending on interest and physical abilities. Basic fly fishing classes are also available for those interested in learning the sport near where it all began. Cooked fishing lunches of the very highest quality paired with wines are all part of the package. Year-round with some of the best hatches occurring in late-April, May and June.

Pike Loch: Alba Game Fishing has access to an exceptional catch and release pike lake near Edinburgh. These fierce predators range from five to well over 20 pounds, and guests are welcome to fish for them with fly or conventional tackle. This fishing experience will be for your private party alone, and guests will enjoy a fabulous lunch at the loch-side lodge. Year-round.

Saltwater Pollock: First off, this is not to be confused with Alaskan pollack. The saltwater pollock of Scotland is a handsome hard-fighting fish that can provide excellent sport fishing for fly anglers. This fishing can be done from the shore (somewhat physical), but most often is done from a cabin cruiser. Fly fishing with sinking heads is very effective, but guests can also choose from a range of conventional methods. Much of this fishing takes place in the Highlands, Berwickshire (near Edinburgh) or on the breathtakingly beautiful Isle of Skye. May through October.

TOURING

While Alba Game Fishing have their origins in sporting pursuits, they are true masters at putting together a great tour which exposes guests to the real hidden gems of Scotland, from the local pub you might have never found to the freshest fish and chips one could ever hope for. They have a wide variety of highly vetted accommodations as well, ranging from castles to country manors or historic downtown hotels. If guests love to hike, they have the trails. If they want to visit churches or historic sites, the options are endless. If guests want to visit distilleries and breweries, no problem. If guests wish to dig into the history and cultural sites in cities like Edinburgh, consider it done. During September and October, the most serious sportspeople can even try the Macnab Challenge in which one attempts to target a stag, a salmon and a brace of grouse in a single day! Whatever it is that you want out of Scotland, we can help make it happen!

Below are two sample itineraries for the Hidden Gems of Scotland tour. Both trips start with two days in Edinburgh, pike fishing on a private loch and fishing on the River Tweed, but from here you will have the choice to take your tour west to the Isle of Skye with fishing for hard fighting Atlantic pollock or north to the Highlands and Speyside with salmon fishing on the legendary River Spey.

Isle of Skye Sample Itinerary:

Day One – Arrive in Edinburgh in the early afternoon. You will be picked up by your private guide and transferred to the Bonham Hotel. Next, over coffee, you will do an overview of your itinerary with your guide and make any needed adjustments. The rest of this day would be yours to relax, settle in and get acclimated.

Overnight: The Bonham Hotel
Dinner: Forage and Chatter

Day Two – On day two you will tour Edinburgh including Holyroodhouse, old town, ghost tours, botanic gardens and the gothic school that inspired Hogwarts of the Harry Potter series.  Lunch will be at Canny Man’s pub, a hidden gem and the best old pub in Edinburgh. Transport, a kilt wearing guide, refreshments and snacks are provided.

Overnight: The Bonham Hotel
Dinner: The Honours

Day Three – A full day of guided pike fishing on a private exclusive loch near Edinburgh. Lunch is provided in a fishing cabin overlooking the loch. Stunning scenery along with big and plentiful pike make this a day to remember. At the end of the day we will transfer to the River Tweed Lodge.

Overnight: Windlestraw or Cringletie
Dinner: Windlestraw or Cringletie

Day Four – Day four will be a full day of guided trout or salmon fishing on a private estate along the River Tweed. Those less interested in fishing can enjoy a day at Stobo Castle Health Spa 30 minutes from the lodge or a unique tour of the Scottish border, Roslyn Chapel, Melrose Abbey, authentic wooden mills, castles and gardens.

Overnight: Windlestraw or Cringletie
Dinner: Windlestraw or Cringletie

Day Five – Today you will depart for a tour of the Highlands, starting in Dunkeld the gateway to the Highlands. After a short, easy walk to a romantic waterfall you will then travel on to House of Bruar before the beautiful drive over to the west coast at Fort William.

Overnight: The Appin Bay View
Dinner: The Old Inn or Pierhouse Seafood Restaurant.

Day Six – Today you will take a walking tour of Glencoe Village. Lunch will be under the shadow of the town of Glencoe at Loch Leven Seafood Café, a hidden gem, serving the freshest of seafood almost straight out of the sea into the kitchen.

Overnight: The Appin Bay View
Dinner: The Old Inn or Pierhouse Seafood Restaurant.

Day Seven – Today the tour will depart for Skye, with stops at the Glenfinnan monument, the village of Kyle of Lochalsh and Skye Bridge. On the journey you will have the opportunity to breathe in some of the most majestic scenery and landscapes Scotland has to offer. There will be plenty of stops along the way to shoot photographs. This is a day of breathtaking scenery and we hope you might see red deer amidst iconic landscapes. Do not miss traditional fish and chips in newspaper in Kyle of Lochalsh, where they serve the freshest haddock in Scotland.

Overnight: Kinloch Lodge
Dinner: Kinloch Lodge

Day Eight – A full day of guided fishing in Skye for Atlantic pollock, the hardest fighting fish in Scottish waters. Non anglers can enjoy further touring/ wildlife or photographic opportunities in Skye.

Overnight: Kinloch Lodge
Dinner: Kinloch Lodge

Day Nine – You will depart for Inverness with a guided tour of Eileen Donan Castle, a fully restored 13th Century castle. Then you will take a boat tour of Loch Ness to Urquhart Castle, for a brief stop and possible sighting of the Loch Ness monster.

Overnight: Killiehuntly Farmhouse (One of Scotland’s most unique accommodations.)
Dinner: Killiehuntly Farmhouse

Day Ten – Depart for 2.5 hour transfer to Edinburgh. On the road back to Edinburgh you will have the chance to see magnificent scenery en route, such as the Drovers bridge at Carrbridge, Ruthven Barracks and the Cathedral at Dunkeld.

The Highlands and Speyside Sample Itinerary:

Day One – Arrive in Edinburgh in the early afternoon. You will be picked up by your private guide and transferred to the Bonham Hotel. Next, over coffee, you will do an overview of your itinerary with your guide and make any needed adjustments. The rest of this day would be yours to relax, settle in and get acclimated.

Overnight: The Bonham Hotel
Dinner: Forage and Chatter

Day Two – On day two you will tour Edinburgh including Holyroodhouse, old town, ghost tours, botanic gardens and the gothic school that inspired Hogwarts of the Harry Potter series.  Lunch will be at Canny Man’s pub, a hidden gem and the best old pub in Edinburgh. Transport, a kilt wearing guide, refreshments and snacks are provided.

Overnight: The Bonham Hotel
Dinner: The Honours

Day Three – A full day of guided pike fishing on a private exclusive loch near Edinburgh. Lunch is provided in a fishing cabin overlooking the loch. Stunning scenery along with big and plentiful pike make this a day to remember. At the end of the day we will transfer to the River Tweed Lodge.

Overnight: Windlestraw or Cringletie
Dinner: Windlestraw or Cringletie

Day Four – Day four will be a full day of guided trout or salmon fishing on a private estate along the River Tweed. Those less interested in fishing can enjoy a day at Stobo Castle Health Spa 30 mins from the lodge or a unique tour of the Scottish border, Roslyn Chapel, Melrose Abbey, authentic wooden mills, castles and gardens.

Overnight: Windlestraw or Cringletie
Dinner: Windlestraw or Cringletie

Day Five – We will depart for a tour of the Highlands, starting in Dunkeld, the gateway to the Highlands. Next, we will take a short, easy walk to a romantic waterfall, then on to House of Bruar, before the beautiful drive over to the Spey Valley.

Overnight: Muckrach Hotel
Dinner: Muckrach Hotel

Day Six – A full day of guided salmon fishing on the River Spey, with cooked lunch in a riverside hut. Non anglers can enjoy a tour of Speyside, visit the distilleries of your choice, the Speyside cooperage and Ballindalloch Castle.

Overnight: Muckrach Hotel
Dinner: Muckrach Hotel

Day Seven – On day seven you will depart for Inverness and the Highlands. There will be lots of opportunities for photos and sightseeing along the way. In the afternoon you will take a boat tour of Loch Ness to Urquhart Castle, keeping an eye out for the Loch Ness monster.

Overnight: Glenmorangie House
Dinner: Glenmorangie House

Day Eight – Anglers can enjoy a day of salmon fishing on either the Alness river, Findhorn, River Connon or Beuly (dependent on conditions). Non anglers can enjoy a guided tour of the Highlands, Royal Dornoch, or guided food foraging, wildlife or photography tours.

Overnight: Glenmorangie House
Dinner: Glenmorangie House

Day Nine – Whole group can enjoy a guided tour of the hidden gems of the Highlands. In the afternoon, depart for Newtonmore and the Cairngorms National park, touring en route and numerous stops including lunch in a local Inn.

Overnight: Killiehuntly Farmhouse (One of Scotland’s most unique accommodations.)
Dinner: Killiehuntly Farmhouse

Day Ten – Depart for 2.5 hour transfer to Edinburgh – On the road back to Edinburgh you will have the chance to see magnificent scenery en route, such as the Drovers bridge at Carrbridge, Ruthven Barracks and the Cathedral at Dunkeld.

Rates and Details

Rate: While all trips are custom, to date, they have averaged $930 per person per day based on double occupancy. 

Included: All accommodations, airport transfers, personal guide with Mercedes People Carrier, lunches for anglers on fishing days, all needed tackle, entrance fees to castles and other attractions in itinerary, concierge service in Scotland.

Not Included: Airfare, Evening meals or hotel extras such as bar bill and telephone calls, lunch on non-fishing days,  Gratuities

Species:  trout, Atlantic salmon, Atlantic pollock, pike, grayling 

Season:  May to October is prime but year-round tours are available. 

Capacity: 2-6 guests

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