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“Best day trip ever!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Hebridean Explorer

The Hebridean Explorer
Inverness, Scotland
+44 7943 863292
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Ranked #3 of 48 Activities in Inverness
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Attraction details
Owner description: Private Tours around the Scottish Highlands and Hebrides with a local Highland guide. Explore stunning views, dramatic landscapes, ancient and medieval history, Scots Gaelic culture and Highland traditions. John Alasdair Macdonald, is a native of the Outer Hebrides and was raised in a Scots Gaelic speaking family. Getting "off the beaten track" and discovering the best of the region is always our aim on all our Highland and Hebridean tours.
Useful Information: Lockers / storage, Bathroom facilities, Activities for older children
Dores, United Kingdom
2 reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Best day trip ever!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2013

We took the 11 hour day trip to the Isle of Skye and back. John was brilliant! We were a group of 4 and he was extremely accommodating. He is very knowledgeable about Gaelic, Pictish, Highland and Lowland history. The experience made memories that will last a lifetime. Highly recommended.

Visited July 2013
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107 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
1 review
“To Skye and Back”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 29, 2013

If you are looking for the wildly beautiful side of Scotland, and don't mind a little wind (ha), then look no further than a one day trip with John to the end of the Isle of Skye and back. What a fun, interesting and thoroughly enjoyable experience. Great scenery - from Loch Ness to the Quiraing - and a lunch stop in the quaint town of Portree. John entertained us with history, personal stories and local legends that made the 7 hour trip fly by. It was easily the best tour we have been on, and our favorite during our visit to beautiful Scotland. Make sure to take a coat of some kind because, I don't care what the temperature or wind factor is at the bottom, but the top of the Quiraing will blow you away. Great times! Thanks, John!

Visited May 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
1 review
“Best Highland tour ever!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 28, 2013

John was one of the best tour guide I've ever come across. He is so friendly and knowledgeable, and he is definitely not the boring read-from-the-guide type. He really knows how to tell the histories and stories, and even give a little glimpse into the personal side of life in the Highlands. The tour itself is also very well-arranged and flexible to our needs - you can really pick and choose where you wanted to stop or skip. It really was a unique and memorable experience. I really would recommend this tour. Actually, I already did recommended it to a friend who is planning to go to Scotland in September! I really hope the best for this business.

- From a bunch of Thai girls from the university of Bristol :)

Visited June 2013
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Albuquerque, New Mexico
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
“A truly unique experience ...”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 19, 2013

Our whisky tour with John Alasdair MacDonald turned out to be just what we hoped for. He showed up right on time outside the hotel in his comfy Mercedes van. He's was born in the outer Hebrides, and is a native Gaelic speaker with the unique knowledge that only such a person has. We found out that he also loves studying history, especially that of the British Isles and is going to the University to get a degree in it. As a result, he is not your ordinary canned-speech kind of guy. He genuinely loves what he does, and the country he calls home. He just filled us with an understanding of the Highlanders and their history, but the entire time it was more like a discussion among friends over a pint.

He took us to three distilleries, Macallan, Glenlivet, and Glenfiddich, and because of his relationship with them, he had already set us up for the tours.

On the way back, we stopped on an old bridge over the river Spey, and John told us the bridge is the symbolic border of the Highlands and the Lowlands. A drive through the countryside with a continuous dialog going on and a special stop at a monolith with Pict hieroglyphics on one side and Gael Celtic crosses on the other.

A final drive back to Inverness along Loch Ness, and we sadly had to say goodbye, but when we come back, John will be part of it again.

Visited May 2013
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Lexington, Kentucky
1 review
“Above and Beyond”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 18, 2013

My wife and I traveled to the UK with a group of college singers who were performing all over England, Ireland and Wales. My wife and I decided to first spend a few days to ourselves in Scotland. We booked the "Private 1 Day Isle of Skye – Clan MacLeod and Dunvegan Castle Tour" and this was hands down without a doubt the #1 highlight of our 15 day trip throughout the UK. Because we were traveling with a group of singers for England, Ireland and Wales, we had many tour guides throughout the trip, However John stood out among all the rest. He was very organized, on-time, knowledgeable and just a lot of fun to be around. His van was clean and well maintained. Whenever my wife or myself saw something we wanted to stop and take a picture he found the first safe place for us to stop. John was flexible and attentive to our interests and questions. The tour was quite interactive and entertaining. By the end of the tour John felt like a friend I had known for years instead of a tour guide. The tour had lots of opportunities for food, snacks, and bathroom breaks however if they were not needed they were skipped to make more time available for the sights. John made it very clear he had a time schedule to maintain if we wanted to see everything on his list, however if we simply enjoyed ourselves at one location he could take time off another or skip something entirely as needed so it felt like we were in control. This was nice because we never felt rushed. This was a great trip for us the pace was relaxing and exciting at the same time. John is truly a gifted tour guide and in my opinion the best tour guide I have had to date. A tour with John will very likely also be the highlight of your vacation like it was with ours.

Visited July 2012
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