Exclusive for MoS readers: Explore the Scottish Highlands by rail

Exclusive for Mail on Sunday readers: Explore the Scottish Highlands by rail with TV’s Carol Kirkwood

It’s  familiar to anyone who’s watched any of the Harry Potter films – the famous Jacobite steam train, better known as the magical Hogwarts Express. And this is your chance to experience it yourself. Travelling by steam engine is a wonderful experience and there’s nowhere more atmospheric to do it than through the stunning highlands of Scotland.

On this exclusive four-day break, you’ll be joined by Carol Kirkwood, whose grandfather helped to build the magnificent Glenfinnan Viaduct on the route, which is also seen in the Harry Potter films.

Your 41-mile steam-hauled journey starts near Britain’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis, passes its deepest freshwater lake, Loch Morar, and travels over the 21-arch Glenfinnan Viaduct to arrive on the shores of the Atlantic next to Loch Nevis, the deepest seawater loch in Europe.

Magical experience: The Jacobite crossing the Glenfinnan Viaduct

You’ll ride on the unique Falkirk Wheel, which is the world’s only rotating boat lift


TV weather presenter Carol Kirkwood

Joining you in her native Scotland will be Carol Kirkwood, left, the weather presenter. Carol, who trained with the Met Office, has been presenting for more than 20 years. She has a regular slot on BBC Breakfast and danced with Pasha Kovalev in the 13th series of Strictly.

You’ll pass through Morar, where Carol grew up, and she’ll tell stories of the Loch Morar monster, as well as her twice weekly train journey to school in Fort William.

Your packed itinerary also includes three unique boat rides: one on The Falkirk Wheel, a trip on the picturesque Loch Katrine, and a cruise through Rob Roy territory on Loch Lomond.


Ride the Jacobite

Travelling on what is frequently voted the world’s greatest scenic railway, you’ll puff past rugged scenery, craggy coastlines and beautiful lochs with Carol Kirkwood, on a line that opened in 1901.

Travel with Carol Kirkwood

The TV weather presenter will give a talk about her life, career, love of Scotland and her experience on Strictly Come Dancing. The region will be brought alive as Carol talks about growing up in Morar and her grandfather’s role in building the incredible Glenfinnan Viaduct.

Stay in the Trossachs

The dramatic scenery here inspired both Turner and Wordsworth and you’ll stay in the centre of it at The Winnock Hotel, an 18th Century inn near Loch Lomond.

Scenic Lochs

Enjoy a 90-minute cruise on Loch Lomond and hear the story of Scotland’s celebrated outlaw Rob Roy. You’ll also sail the waters of Loch Katrine.

The unique Falkirk Wheel

This, the world’s only rotating boat lift, will take you from the water at New Port Downie to the Union Canal more than 100ft above.

Scottish history

You’ll also visit the neo-Gothic Inveraray Castle, dating from the mid-18th Century and home of the Duke of Argyll, chief of the Clan Campbell.


  • Return flights from Stansted to Edinburgh – other airports available on request.
  • Three nights’ dinner, bed and breakfast at The Winnock Hotel, Loch Lomond.
  • Journey on The Jacobite from Fort William to Mallaig with Carol Kirkwood.
  • Cruise on Loch Katrine.
  • Exclusive talk and question-and-answer session with Carol Kirkwood.
  • Ride on the Falkirk Wheel.
  • Visit to Inveraray Castle.
  • Rob Roy Loch Lomond Discovery Cruise.
  • Comfortable coach travel throughout.
  • Porterage.
  • Services of a Brightwater Holidays tour manager.   

YOUR ITINERARY DAY 1 Arrive in Edinburgh, the Falkirk Wheel and Carol Kirkwood talk DAY 2 Journey on The Jacobite with Carol DAY 3 Rob Roy cruise on Loch Lomond, Inveraray Castle DAY 4 Cruise on Loch Katrine 


The dates: October 22-25, 2021. The price: £1,295pp. 

Call 01334 441 308 quoting ref MOS SCOTLAND. To find out more, visit mailtravel.co.uk/scotlandwithcarol

Terms and conditions: *Prices correct at time of going to press. Based on twin/double share. Single supplement of £120 applies. Flights from other airports and/or overnight accommodation before/after the tour available on request, at a supplement. Discount for no flights £100pp. Our travel partner, Brightwater Holidays, is ABTA-bonded and this trip is ATOL-protected. For full terms and conditions, go to mailtravel.co.uk/scotlandwithcarol.

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