Ian Byers gave us a tour well worth the name of his Scottish touring company, Stravaigin meaning "meandering". On a tour of the west coast and the Isle of Skye, we marvelled at the glacially-carved valleys, the Atlantic-swept coasts and mountains, the quiet beauty of Loch Lomond and the ancient history of Dunadd Fort, among much, much more while winding along backroads, strolling through the scenery and ruins, indulging in local beers (the Williams' Fraoch heather beer was lovely) and spending nights in beautiful inns. We had time to do some whisky tasting at Glengoyne (good prices for Europeans, too!), wander up to McCaig's Tower in Oban, stroll around Glenfinnan and visit the very atmospheric Eilean Donan and Kilchurn Castles.
He also took us on a tour to the Borders, Lochcarron's Tartan Mill tour, Walter Scott's Abbotsford House, Melrose Abbey and Rosslyn Chapel, all of which we enjoyed immensely. And we squeezed in a final tour on our last day driving up to the Edradour Distillery (highly recommended!), Blair Castle Gardens, Pitlochry and Dunkeld Cathedral before he dropped us off at the airport.
All this was arranged through a few e-mails and the experience was friendly, relaxing, informative, interesting and simply enjoyable from start to finish. Always attentive to the pace we wanted to follow, he always had great options for getting a bite to eat or visiting a restroom. Ian is a truly affable guy, making his guests perfectly comfortable and letting them just sit back and enjoy.
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