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How to Spend 10 Days in Scotland with Kids

How to Spend 10 Days in Scotland with Kids

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Planning a trip to Scotland with kids and want a totally doable 10 days in Scotland itinerary? Keep scrolling to check out my kid-friendly classic Scotland itinerary that hits all the highlights!
This kid-friendly 10 days in Scotland itinerary was written by family travel expert Marcie Cheung and contains affiliate links which means if you purchase something from one of my affiliate links, I may earn a small commission that goes back into maintaining this blog.

When we decided to plan a summer trip to Scotland with our kids, we thought it would be great to do a “grand tour” of the country.

The tricky thing is that our kids get car sick. So we decided to not rent a car and just use trains and day tours to see the country.

Our kids really wanted to ride the Harry Potter train and look for the Loch Ness monster. And we had a few ideas of what to do in between.

Keep scrolling to see our exact kid-friendly itinerary for 10 days in Scotland with our family.

Image of two boys dressed in traditional Scottish clothing at the Tartan Weaving Mill in Edinburgh
Scotland is one of our favorite family travel destinations! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

Best Places to Visit in Scotland with Kids

With 10 days in Scotland, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by all the possibilities. I mean, you could easily do a 10-day Scotland Highlands itinerary, a full Edinburgh/Glasgow itinerary, or spend the whole time exploring the islands.

For this trip, we stuck with the classic Scotland itinerary: Edinburgh and Inverness. A lot of families visit Scotland this way because you have a home base in the South and the North.

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Edinburgh with Kids

Edinburgh is one of the most popular places to visit in Scotland because that’s where the airport is. Plus, that’s where you’ll find Edinburgh Castle, the National Museum of Scotland, the Royal Mile, Arthur’s Seat, and Calton Hill.

Victoria Street in Edinburgh is lovely! Photo credit: Kim with Flytographer in Edinburgh

We knew that we wanted to do a Harry Potter walking tour to see where JK Rowling wrote the books. We also wanted to check out some of the historic sites and do some interactive activities. Check out the top things to do in Edinburgh with kids.

Inverness with Kids

Inverness is another popular Scotland destination. It’s a great jumping-off point for exploring the Scottish Highlands.

Urquhart Castle is super close to Inverness. Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

We knew that we wanted to look for the Loch Ness Monster, see some Outlander sights, and visit the Isle of Skye.

Our Exact 10 Days in Scotland Itinerary

I want to say that we planned this Scotland itinerary for our family of four, which consists of myself, my husband, and our two boys (ages 7yo and 10yo).

I like a fairly tight schedule, so this 10 days in Scotland itinerary might sound a bit aggressive for your family. Part of that is because we had to pick day tours (since we weren’t renting a car) so that involved a lot of long days.

I suggest picking and choosing the activities and building in more “downtime” if you want a more leisurely schedule.

DAY 1: EDINBURGH ITINERARY

We actually flew into London for a few days first to see Matilda, take a Tower of London tour, and do a fun Bridgerton photo shoot.

Image of a dad and 2 boys at Platform 9 3/4 at King's Cross Station in London
We almost missed our train in order to get this pic! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

We took the 9:00 a.m. train from Kings Cross Station (and got our Platform 9 3/4 photos) and arrived in Edinburgh around 1:30 p.m.

Arrival in Edinburgh

When we got to the Edinburgh train station, our GPS said it would be a 6-minute walk to our hotel (the Radisson Blu).

What it failed to mention was that we’d have to haul our luggage up a long staircase and then continue uphill until we reached our hotel. Whew!

Image of the Radisson Blu Royal Mile in Edinburgh
The Radisson Blu is in an awesome location! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

But, we made it in one piece and we were able to go right to our room. We got a suite at the Radisson Blu and we were all blown away by how much space we had to spread out!

However, the sun was shining, and I was ready to get out and explore Edinburgh.

Tartan Weaving Mill

So, I’m a sucker for a really good (aka touristy) photo op. I knew I wanted to get photos of my boys in kilts and when I saw that Tartan Weaving Mill offered them, it was a no-brainer for me.

We were able to get in as soon as we asked at the main counter in the store. Our photographer came to collect us and brought us to a quieter part of the store.

Image of Marcie Cheung and her family posing in Scottish clothing
It was cool to dress up! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

There, she showed us an array of costume options (military or highland) for men, women, and children. These items are mostly one size, so you can just throw them on over your clothes and tie them in the back.

There were a few different backdrops to choose from and tons of props. We took full advantage and got some amazing photos!

Image of a boy wearing a kilt and holding a sword while sitting in the throne from Game of Thrones
This was a great set! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

It costs £25 per adult and £15 per child for a 1-hour photo session. Our package came with 4 printed photos and then we paid £12 more to get a memory stick with all the digital copies (69 photos total).

After our photoshoot, we walked around the massive shop and bought a few really nice wool items that are the perfect souvenirs for us.

Camera Obscura & World of Illusions

Camera Obscura & World of Illusions is next to Tartan Weaving Mill. It was on my radar as a potential activity and when my kids walked past it, it became a must-do!

We’ve visited the Museum of Illusions in Amsterdam, Seattle, and NYC and this was very similar to both of them but offered a lot of things we’d never seen before.

Image of Marcie Cheung and her family at the World of Illusions in Edinburgh Scotland
Always love this illusion! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

I think the coolest thing we saw was the Camera Obscura. It’s a camera that was built by Maria Short in the 1800s and is still used today. We got to see all over Edinburgh and the kids were completely engaged in the short presentation.

We also got some fun photos with the illusions and the kids burned off the little energy they had left after a long travel day. And it was great that we didn’t need to pre-book anything.

Dinner at Ondine Oyster & Grill

We knew we needed everyone to be fed before we got back to the hotel. So, when we walked past a sign for Ondine Oyster & Grill that highlighted mussels (something our entire family loves), it was a no-brainer to stop.

Our family LOVES mussels! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

The food was super good and the staff were really nice to us (even when our kids were a little grumpy).

DAY 2: EDINBURGH ITINERARY

Flytographer Photo Shoot

I’m pretty obsessed with doing a Flytographer photo shoot almost everywhere we travel. They are fun, easy, and fairly affordable. So, no one flinched when I told them we had an 8:00 a.m. Edinburgh photo shoot.

Find out how to book an affordable Edinburgh photo shoot with tips by to family travel blog Marcie in Mommyland. Image of Marcie Cheung and her family in Edinburgh
Photo credit: Kim with Flytographer in Edinburgh

We met up with our photographer Kim (who’s fabulous and I totally recommend her). At the time, our 7yo was not a happy camper and didn’t want to participate in the shoot. She was great about going with the flow and ended up getting him fully involved later on.

Photo credit: Kim with Flytographer in Edinburgh

We chose the Royal Mile route because it was right next to our hotel, and the backdrops hit up some of the top Edinburgh sights.

Our photoshoot ended right in front of a macaron shop, so it was the perfect reward for our family! See our Edinburgh photos.

Shopping

I need to grab a few items from Boots and we figured we’d stock up on some snacks and drinks. So we spent about an hour walking on some streets off the Royal Mile to get these items.

Lunch at Byron Proper Burger

After shopping, we spent some downtime back at the hotel to change out of our “nice” clothes and into more comfortable items. And we took a break to regroup.

Then, we headed across the street to Byron Proper Burger for lunch. My 10yo is obsessed with burgers and it totally hit the spot.

The service was fairly fast and the food was quite tasty. We’d definitely recommend it for families.

Potter Trail Private Tour

Our family loves Harry Potter so when I planned this trip, I knew we needed to do some sort of Harry Potter tour. I mean, Edinburgh is where J.K. Rowling wrote all the books!

This was such a cool tour! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

Since I know our kids sometimes need to alter our plans, I opted to book a private Potter Trail tour instead of the group tour. It cost a bit more, but they were fully engaged the entire time, asking our tour guide questions, learning a cool spell, and taking some pics.

Image of a boy wearing a Slytherin scarf in front of Tom Riddell's grave in Edinburgh
My Slytherin son was stoked to see Tom Riddell’s grave. Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

We brought Harry Potter scarves and wands from home to enhance the experience.

Our tour guide, Allistair, was super knowledgeable, and we had an incredible time! Plus, the tour ended at the Elephant House Cafe pop-up so we could all grab Butterbeer!

Back to the Room

Since we knew that we’d be doing a full-day tour the next day, we decided to try to make an early night and give the kids plenty of downtime.

So, we came back to the room to do some drawing time and hang out on screens.

Room Service Dinner

In an effort to keep our night low-key, we opted for room service. It’s something that my kids really appreciate and it saved us time and energy.

DAY 3: EDINBURGH ITINERARY

When I told my blogger friends that we were heading to Edinburgh, everyone recommended that we get out of the city to see the countryside, castles, lakes, etc.

Since my kids get car sick, I figured booking day tours might be the way to go versus renting a car. So I booked a tour through Tartan Viking that used a minibus.

Scotland in a Day Tour

Our tour met at 7:45 a.m. and left at 8 a.m., which meant we needed to leave our hotel by 7:20 a.m. to get to the meeting spot on time.

Image of Marcie Cheung taking a selfie at Doune Castle in Edinburgh
Doune Castle is where they filmed Monty Python and the Holy Grail! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

We met up with our tour guide, Calum, and he chatted with us on the drive to Castle Doune. We got out of the van to stretch our legs and take a few photos in front of this castle while hearing a bit of the history.

Next, we headed to the village of Callander specifically to pick up lunch items at Mhor Bread to eat at our leisure.

Our next stop was just a few minutes away and we got to meet and feed a few highland cows! This was a total bucket list item for me!

Then, we checked out one of the prettiest landscapes we’d seen so far!: The Falls of Dochart.

It’s such a picturesque place! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

Calum gave us a bit of history about the area and the clans who lived (and fought) there. And then he walked us down for some epic photo spots.

Then, we walked over to the Falls of Dochart Smokehouse where we got to try some cheddar cheese infused with the whisky flavor.

A few of us got hungry for lunch by then, so we started enjoying our sandwiches as we headed to the next spot.

Image of a family looking at a hut in Glencoe Visitor's Center
The Glencoe Visitor Center is worth a stop! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

We made a few stops in Glencoe. A couple of then were just for a few minutes to snap a quick selfie with the stunning landscape.

The last few stops included Laggan Dam, Pattack Falls, and Pitlochry Village.

Then, we made the 90-minute drive back to Edinburgh.

Takeout Dinner

It was about 6:30 p.m. when we got back to Edinburgh and our family was WIPED. Thankfully, we were able to order in food for dinner at our hotel.

We opted to see what Scottish Chinese food tasted like, since Chinese is one of our comfort foods. It was similar to what we get in Seattle but the flavors were a bit different.

DAY 4: EDINBURGH ITINERARY

The very first thing I booked for our Scotland trip was this tour with Andy the Highlander.

My blogger friend Kirsten from Kids Are a Trip said it was the highlight for her boys when they toured Scotland for the first time. So, I knew it would be great for my boys. Plus, we follow him on Instagram.

Andy the Highlander Private Outlander Tour

This might have been our favorite day in Scotland! This tour literally blew us all away.

Andy the Highlander is a popular Scottish content creator (@andythehighlander on IG) who has also been in a lot of episodes of the hit show Outlander.

Image of Andy the Highlander and Marcie Cheung's family at Blackness Castle in Scotland
Andy was awesome! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

My husband and I are HUGE Outlander fans so we thoroughly enjoyed hearing some behind-the-scenes stuff and visiting filming sites. He had photos and video so we could see the exact scenes that were filmed.

Our kids haven’t seen the show, but Andy had them completely engaged in Scottish history the entire day. He had cool books in the van for them to read, scavenger hunts at the historical stops, and lots of fascinating stories.

My husband and I geeked out when we visited Lallybroch from Outlander! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

But I think their favorite part of the day was getting to wear kilts, grab some fake weapons, and do an all-out family battle in front of Blackness Castle!

Some of the other stops included Doune Castle (aka Castle Leoch), Culross Palace, Abercorn Church, and Midhope Castle (aka Lallybroch).

DAY 5: EDINBURGH ITINERARY

So, we were supposed to do a Harry Potter & the Hogwarts Express tour that included a ride on the Jacobite Steam Train (made famous by Harry Potter), but they canceled on us just a few days earlier.

Our family was pretty bummed about this, but later I was secretly relieved because I had a feeling that 3 all-day tours in a row would do my family in. This gave us a “free day” for the kids to help choose some things they really wanted to do.

Breakfast at Southern Cross Cafe

After eating hotel breakfast for the previous few days, we were ready to venture out to change things up. My husband saw that Southern Cross Cafe had great reviews, so we headed there.

We definitely recommend Southern Cross for breakfast! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

The food was really tasty and the service was fantastic! We had breakfast tea and hot chocolate (which the kids raved about). We also enjoyed the eggs florentine, eggs benedict, the yogurt parfait, and toast with jam.

Shopping on the Royal Mile

While we did a bit of shopping on our first day in Edinburgh, it was more relaxing to take our time checking out the cute tourist shops.

Image of Highland Cow slippers
Of course, my son “needed” these Highland Coo slippers! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

Our kids found a few things they couldn’t live without, and I was excited to find my new favorite whisky and honey-flavored lip balm from Highland Soap Co!

National Museum of Scotland

They kids weren’t really excited about checking out the National Museum of Scotland, but it was FREE and I figured we might as well take a quick lap.

Image of a dad and two boys at the National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh
The National Museum of Scotland is a must-see attraction for families. Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

Well, it ended up being a LOT cooler than we expected and we spent about 90 minutes exploring the exhibits, playing in the kid zone, and experiencing the hands-on activities.

The museum itself is simply gorgeous and it’s worth walking around whether or not you have kids with you. I also think that teens would like it.

Tesco Express for Grab-and-Go Lunch

At this point, we were ready for a break. So, we popped into Tesco Express on our way back to the hotel to grab fresh fruit, sandwiches, chips, and cookies.

Some of these snack items were just to have on hand for the rest of our trip.

Then, we spent some time at the hotel just eating, relaxing, and saving up energy to go out again.

Dynamic Earth

After our break, we walked over to Dynamic Earth. It’s a really cool science museum filled with tons of hands-on activities.

Image of two boys at Dynamic Earth in Edinburgh, Scotland
Dynamic Earth was super cool! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

You basically walk through several special rooms where you experience something (like the shaking of a volcano or getting to touch a real iceberg) and there are some virtual reality shows.

My kids also really liked the planetarium show, which was about whether or not aliens exist.

We did the whole museum in 90 minutes (including the planetarium show).

Dinner at Bertie’s Proper Fish & Chips

Since we had done delivery for the prior couple of days, we decided we should eat out at a restaurant. We saw this fish & chips place on Victoria Street when we did our Flytographer shoot so we figured we’d give them a shot.

Ice cream for the win! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

They had a great kids menu where all the meals came with dessert (a big hit with my boys). And the food was decent.

I mostly appreciated that it’s WAY bigger than it looks from the outside so we had no problem finding a seat on a busy Sunday evening.

DAY 6: EDINBURGH AND INVERNESS ITINERARY

When we planned this Scotland trip, we weren’t sure if we’d have enough time to explore Edinburgh since we had a bunch of all-day tours planned. So, we chose to have a half day to play around the city before taking the train up to Inverness.

Breakfast at The Edinburgh Larder

My husband really wanted to eat here the previous day but there was a huge wait. So we tried the following day at 8 a.m. and we got right in!

The food was super tasty and the staff were so friendly to us. We enjoyed coffee, hot chocolates, and lots of yummy food. They had a great kids menu, too!

Shopping and Break

We may have had an incident involving the hot chocolate so my 7yo needed a new shirt. We used it as a great excuse to get him a souvenir Scotland shirt. We also picked him up a sweatshirt so he’d match the rest of us who bought one earlier in the trip.

Then, we headed back to the hotel room to pack up and take a rest.

Edinburgh Castle

We tried (and failed) to see Edinburgh Castle the previous day because they were sold out of tickets. So, we made sure to book tickets in advance for 12:30 p.m.

Image of a boy sitting on a cannon at Edinburgh Castle
My kids liked climbing on the cannons and seeing the view. Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

To be honest, Edinburgh Castle was “mid” according to our kids. It was crazy busy the day we went and it was a bit overwhelming for us all. It was by far the most crowded castle we’d visited so far.

My husband was excited to experience the 1:00 gun (cannon fire) but the rest of us were pretty ready to leave after an hour at the castle.

That said, there are TONS of exhibits and I think a lot of other families would get a lot more out of the experience.

Princes Street Gardens

The best thing about Edinburgh Castle is that my 10yo and I spotted a playground at Princes Street Gardens, so we headed there next.

It was about a 15 minute walk from the castle and the gardens were lovely.

This trampoline was epic! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

Unfortunately, the playground was under renovation so we couldn’t play there. However, there was a new pop-up attraction that featured bungee trampolines and hamster balls on water that my kids LOVED!

It was the perfect way to burn off some energy before our train ride later that afternoon. They played HARD and had the best time.

We also were able to grab lunch in the park and did a little picnic. It was a great fit for our family.

Train to Inverness

After our late lunch, we headed back to our hotel to pick up our luggage and head to the train station. We hopped on the 4:33 p.m. train to Inverness.

Image of Marcie Cheung working on her laptop on a train
Proof that I got some work done on the train! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

As before, we booked a first class car which came with free drinks, snacks, and food. So, we were able to have dinner on the train, and we all got lots of screen time with free Wi-Fi. Although, I did enjoy some stunning scenery along the way.

Arrival in Inverness

The train arrived just after 8 p.m. and we headed to the Inverness City Suites to get the keys to our apartment. It was an easy 5-10 minute walk.

DAY 7: INVERNESS ITINERARY

Takeaway Breakfast

Since the kids were super tired from all our traveling, my husband went out and brought back breakfast items from a local cafe. So, the kids ate a bunch of pancakes.

Culloden Battlefield

Once we were fed, we headed out to Culloden Battlefield. It’s just about 20 minutes from Inverness so it’s an easy half-day trip.

Image of a tour guide next to an English gravestone at Culloden
Our tour guide was FANTASTIC! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

There’s a large visitor’s center with lots of displays to learn about the historic battle that took place there. And they have a scavenger hunt for kids to do in the exhibit area.

We got tickets for the guided tour (which I highly recommend) and we learned SO much about Culloden. I admit, my husband and I only knew stuff from Outlander so our minds were blown by the facts.

Exploring Inverness

After a couple of hours at Culloden Battlefield, we headed back to Inverness where we went grocery shopping at M&S Foods. We figured that was the easiest way to get a bunch of stuff for lunch, snacks to have at the hotel, and breakfast items for the next day.

Then, we enjoyed a leisurely lunch at the hotel while we relaxed a bit before heading out to check out the local shops.

I really liked the fish at Prime! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

After another long rest, we headed to our dinner reservation at Prime (Andy the Highlander recommended it). It’s a really tasty restaurant that has a kids’ menu and an extensive steak and seafood menu. We thought the food was excellent, and we’d recommend it.

DAY 8: INVERNESS ITINERARY

Since we knew it would be an early morning, we made sure to grab lots of breakfast items and snacks at M&S the day before.

Isle of Skye Tour

We had a tour with John of Aye Tours Scotland who picked us up from our hotel and drove us all the way to the Isle of Skye. It was INCREDIBLE. Since it was an 11-hour tour from Inverness, we knew we’d just hit the highlights.

We stopped at Eilean Donan Castle (where they filmed Highlander) and enjoyed some ice cream while we looked at the exterior of the castle and learned about how it’s actually not that old.

Image of Marcie Cheung and her family at Eilean Donan Castle in Scotland
It was cool to see the Highlander Castle! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

Then, we went across the Skye Bridge and headed to Portree for lunch. My 10yo wanted a burger (no surprise) but the rest of us wanted fish so we went to the Antler. It was really tasty! Then we looked at the colorful buildings and did a little shopping.

Next, we headed to Fairy Glen which was seriously magical! The boys LOVED climbing up the narrow paths and scaling rocks to get some epic views! We only stayed for about 45 minutes, but they could have easily stayed for a few hours just exploring.

Image of Marcie Cheung and her family at the Quiriang at the Isle of Skye in Scotland
The Quiriang blew us away! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

Then, we drove to Quiriang for another easy hike with the most amazing views! The rain was getting pretty hard so we were quite wet but it was totally worth it. And we got a lot of cool photos!

Our final stop was Kilt Rock, which was pretty cool to see! There’s even a little waterfall there!

By the time we got back to our hotel, we only had energy to grab Chinese takeout before crashing in the room.

DAY 9: INVERNESS ITINERARY

I don’t necessarily recommend doing full-day tours back to back. I mistakenly thought we had an unscheduled day in between these tours. So when you’re building your itinerary, that’s what I’d suggest.

Loch Ness Tour

For our final tour in Scotland, we ended with the world-famous Loch Ness. I admit, I love hearing stories about Nessie and it seemed like a shame to come all the way up to the Scottish Highlands and NOT look for her.

My son searched for Nessie on Loch Ness. Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

So I booked a tour with Rabbie’s because I’d heard good things about them. I’m not a fan of big bus tours, so I was curious about their mini-bus tour since it maxes out at 15 people.

We lucked out and there were only 9 people on our tour so we all had a bit more elbow room on the mini-bus. And I have to say, we LOVED the bus! It had skylights and massive windows and it was easy to take in all the views.

It included a stop at Urquhart Castle. Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

The tour itself had lots of stops for photos, spotting waterfalls, enjoying snacks/lunch, exploring Urquhart Castle, taking a cruise along Loch Ness, and even seeing Highland Coos.

We got back to our hotel with time to relax a bit before our dinner reservation at the Mustard Seed. The food there was super good and they had a great kids menu.

DAY 10: INVERNESS ITINERARY

Our last day in Scotland was a mix of shopping, packing, and exploring the town a bit more. We were all pretty tired by this point and wanted to keep things chill.

My husband went out and picked up hot breakfast items from Comfort Foods. It was great to have a lazy morning with breakfast we didn’t have to make!

I highly recommend a stop at the Scottish Kiltmaker Visitor Centre. Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

Then, we went to the Highland House of Fraser to check out their Scottish Kiltmaker Visitor Centre. It’s upstairs and it features really cool kilt displays, an area to watch people sew kilts, and the best video I’ve ever seen in a visitor center!

Leakey’s Bookshop is like a treasure hunt! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

We also went shopping at Leakey’s Bookshop (a cool used bookstore), explored the Victorian Market, got treats at Miele’s Gelateria, and picked up lunch items and snacks at M&S Foods.

Our evening kicked off with dinner at Aye Eat (across the street from where we were staying) plus a family movie night featuring The Princess Bride!

Is This The Best Scotland Itinerary for Families?

Even though I’m a family travel blogger and my whole job is to give advice about where families should go, I’m a firm believer that there isn’t a one-size-fits-all Scotland itinerary.

Image of three guys walking in the Fairy Glen in Scotland
The Fairy Glen was such a cool stop in the Scottish Highlands! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

Other Scotland Itinerary Ideas

Here are some popular options if you’d like to extend your Scotland itinerary or swap out any of the cities I mentioned above.

Glasgow

Families might want to visit Glasgow for its vibrant culture and family-friendly attractions like the Glasgow Science Centre, which offers hands-on exhibits and a planetarium. The city also has beautiful parks, such as Kelvingrove Park, perfect for picnics and outdoor play.

St. Andrews

St. Andrews is a great family destination known for its stunning beaches and historic landmarks, like the St. Andrews Cathedral ruins. Kids and adults alike can enjoy exploring the town’s famous golf courses and charming streets.

Other Islands Besides Skye

Other Scottish islands, like the Isle of Mull and Orkney Islands, offer families the chance to see amazing wildlife, visit historic castles, and explore beautiful landscapes. These islands provide a mix of adventure and relaxation, perfect for a memorable family trip.

Where Did We Stay in Scotland with Kids?

Radisson Blu in Edinburgh

I really wanted to be walking distance from as much stuff as possible so we splurged and got a room at the Radisson Blu right on the Royal Mile.

It ended up being one of my favorite places to stay because we had a bedroom plus a separate living room and dining room area. Plus, it was super easy to get everywhere we wanted by foot. I highly recommend this hotel. Check the latest rates and availability.

Inverness City Suites

We actually hard a hard time finding somewhere to stay in Inverness for four people. We settled on the Inverness City Suites which are serviced apartments (although they only took out the trash once during our 4-night stay).

Our kids loved this place because they had their own bedroom and we liked the location. The only drawbacks were that the wifi was spotty and our unit was on the 3rd floor with no elevator. But they have rooms on the 1st and 2nd floors, too. Check the latest rates and availability.

What to Pack for Scotland with Kids for Summer

Packing for a trip to Scotland with kids can vary depending on the season, but here are some general Italy packing essentials we used in the summer.

Comfortable Walking Shoes

I brought my Vessi shoes and they were awesome. They are waterproof and comfy so they were perfect for walking on cobblestone as well as on trails in the Highlands.

My husband had leather shoes (which got wet a few times) and my kids wore their normal sneakers and were fine.

I also brought along leather sandals to wear with dresses and only had the chance to wear them twice.

Rain Jackets

This is one of the most important things to pack. I brought my light pink rain jacket that is actually water-resistant and it helped block the wind.

My husband brought his gortex rain jacket and my kids wore their Columbia rain jackets.

Layered Clothing

I’m a HUGE fan of wool so I packed wool t-shirts and base layers to use under my sweaters and they helped a lot!

My husband relied on his wool t-shirts and lightweight wool pull-overs. My kids wore sweaters or sweatshirts every day.

Travel Adapter

We always pack lot of electronics so our travel adapters are crucial. We use this one because there are USB ports.

Image of two boys hiking up to a cave at the Fairy Glen
My kids loved exploring! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

My Tips for Visiting Scotland with Kids

Public Transportation vs Taxi/Uber

We had really good experiences using the buses and taxis in Scotland. And the train was fabulous. We found it pretty easy to get around Scotland without a car.

Do You Need to Rent a Car in Scotland?

No, it’s not necessary. You don’t need a car in Edinburgh as it’s easy to walk or take public transportation to get around town. If you visit the Scottish Highlands, you’ll want to either rent a car or book day tours to get you out and about.

Be Prepared for Train Delays

You just never know what will happen with trains in the U.K. So, I recommend NOT planning any activities after your train ride just in case it’s delayed.

Book Skip-the-Line Tickets (especially during the summer)

While we visited early in the summer, we found that Edinburgh Castle was sold out for the entire day when we tried visiting in the morning. So we booked tickets online for the next day. Tours also book out weeks in advance during the summer.

Image of Urquhart Castle and Loch Ness
Urquhart Castle is right on the banks of Loch Ness. Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

10 Days in Scotland Itinerary FAQs

Can I see all of Scotland in 10 days?

Haha not even close! But, you can definitely hit a lot of the highlights and get a great overview of this beautiful country.

How should I spend 10 days in Scotland?

Your 10-day itinerary in Scotland should ideally include a mix of sightseeing, relaxation, and immersive experiences. I suggest splitting your time between 2-3 hubs since places are spread far apart. Please save a few days to explore the Scottish Highlands!

How many days is good in Scotland?

We really felt like 10 days was the right amount for our family. The kids were wiped by the last day (and we were also lagging a bit). I’d suggest 5-7 days in Scotland if you’re combining it with a trip to England or Ireland.

How many cities can I realistically visit during a 10-day trip to Scotland?

I think focusing on 2 cities is ideal. We did Edinburgh and Inverness. You could replace Inverness with Loch Ness pretty easily if you’re renting a car. Or you could do Isle of Skye instead of Inverness.

Should I rent a car for a 10-day trip in Scotland?

That’s a personal choice. We didn’t rent a car and just used trains and day tours and that worked best for our family because of car sickness as well as making sure both adults could sightsee instead of stressing out about the roads. But, renting a car provides a lot of freedom to explore.

Spending 10 Days in Scotland with Kids Wrap-Up

Spending 10 days in Scotland with your family can be an extraordinary journey.

With these Scotland itinerary ideas, your Italy trip will be a blend of adventure, relaxation, and education. Be it day trips or extended stays, Scotland vacations cater to every age, making it an ideal destination.

Remember, every itinerary is just a suggestion—feel free to adapt it to your family’s tastes and pace. Happy travels!

Looking for more Scotland travel resources? Check out How to Spend 5 Days in Edinburgh with Kids in the Summer, How to Plan a Budget-Friendly Photo Shoot in Edinburgh, Scotland, 13 Must-Read Scotland Travel Tips for First-Timers, and Best Harry Potter Places in Scotland Worth Visiting!

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