After morning pickup from your central Edinburgh hotel, depart Scotland’s capital by comfortable private minivan. Journey northward into the Scottish countryside and, as you travel, listen as your guide shares fascinating facts and tales about the Highlands region and Loch Ness, famous for its legendary 'Nessie' monster.
Drive into the Trossachs National Park, a scenic area of stunning mountains and glens centered on Loch Lomond. Stop at Kilmahog for refreshments (own expense), and to view the ‘Hairy Coos,’ otherwise known as Highland Cattle.
After admiring these long-horned, long-haired cows, continue through lovely Highland scenery to two beauty spots: Rannoch Moor and Glencoe. Stop for photos of magnificent Glencoe, a glen framed by towering mountains, and then travel onward to Fort William and the Great Glen.
Soak up the splendors of the Great Glen's scenery, and drive to Fort Augustus, a pretty town situated at the southern tip of Loch Ness. Have lunch here (own expense) and experience your first, spectacular views of the mighty loch, the largest in Scotland by volume.
Duly refreshed from lunch, gaze out across the sparkling waters as you drive along the shores to medieval Urquhart Castle. Explore this atmospheric ruined castle, whose remnants are picturesquely set on the lochside; perhaps taking the opportunity to scan the waters for 'Nessie,' and shop for souvenirs at the visitor center.
After time here, relax on a drive through Inverness and south across the River Forth back to Edinburgh, where your day trip ends with a hotel drop-off.