We know the famous Caledonian Sleeper is one of your favourite trains, but did you know if you are travelling north on the train from Euston as well as heading to Edinburgh it also travels to four other destinations too? Railway Traveller discovers the highlights of each spot and where to stay when you arrive.
Caledonian Sleeper to Edinburgh
Edinburgh Castle – Edinburgh Castle is a historic fortress which dominates the skyline of Scotland’s capital city from its position on the Castle Rock. This is a must-visit for first time visitors.
Princes Street – stretching 1.2 kms from Lothian Road in the west to Leith Street in the East, Princes Street is Edinburgh’s most famous road and home to many of its top shops, restaurants and hotels.
Holyrood Palace – This is the Queen’s official residence in Edinburgh and the home of Scottish royal history. You can visit the Palace but you need to book well ahead.
Arthur’s Seat – you’ll find Arthur’s Seat, an ancient volcano that sits 251m above sea level, in Holyrood Park. From here you can see the city in all its splendour.
The Royal Mile – This fascinating street runs through the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town, connecting Edinburgh Castle with Holyrood House. Here you’ll discover the fascinating history of medieval Edinburgh.
Where to stay in Edinburgh
Enjoy five-star luxury at the Gothic Balmoral Hotel situated right next to Waverley Station. Expect massive suites, a luxurious indoor pool and spa and Michelin-starred dining.
Located just a few steps from the Royal Mile, these tastefully decorated suites are great for a family stay. Rooms are cosy and all feature a TV, private bathroom and you can even book studio and one-bedroom apartments.
This friendly guest house is located in Merchiston, 1.5 miles from the city centre. Rooms are clean and comfortable and breakfast is included in the price.
Caledonian Sleeper to Glasgow
Glasgow Cathedral – This is one of the best examples of Scottish gothic architecture and don’t miss the nearby Necropolis – its fantastic cemetery that dates back to 1833.
The Finnieston Crane and the Clyde – A relic of the golden age of Glasgow’s shipyards, this 174-foot tall cantilever crane is a proud reminder of the city’s heritage. Situated on the famous Clyde, it’s well worth seeing and is near the Riverside Museum.
Clydeside Distillery – launched in 2017, this new whisky distillery has fast become one of Glasgow’s most popular visitor attractions.
Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum – Architecture fans will love this amazing building which opened in 1901 and features Spanish baroque style. Inside you’ll find some of the best work from leading Scottish artists.
Hunterian Art Gallery & Museum – Here you can discover the brilliance of Glasgow’s most famous architect, Sir Charles Rennie Mackintosh.
Where to Stay
Enjoy a luxurious stay in this five-star hotel in the city centre. The hotel is just a short walk from Sauchiehall Street.
Stay in comfort and style at this trendy modern 4-star hotel in a converted church. The rooms are brilliantly decorated and you’ll find a brasserie on site too.
Housed in a former printworks in the city centre, this reasonably priced hotel is an easy 5-minute walk from the Gallery of Modern Art.
Caledonian Sleeper to Aberdeen
The Aberdeen Art Gallery – This 19th century art gallery houses work from famous Scottish artists including William Dyce, Charles Rennie Mackintosh, William Thomas Faed and John Philip
The David Welch Winter Gardens – located in Duthie Park, this is one of Europe’s largest indoor gardens, filled with rare and exotic plants from all over the world.
The Brig o’Balgownie – this single span bridge was built on the orders of Robert the Bruce in 1320 and restored in 1607. Lord Byron namechecked it in his satirical poem, Don Juan.
St. Machar’s Cathedral — Founded in 1136, the building was completed in 1552 and now houses some of Scotland’s best examples of stained-glassed windows.
Old Aberdeen – a tight-knit collection of winding cobbled streets, here you’ll find some of the city’s oldest buildings including King’s College university.
BrewDog – The famous beer brand was born in Aberdeenshire so it’s worth the 40-minute bus ride from the city centre to visit its brewery. Spend the afternoon exploring the state-of-the-art brewery, then finish with a pint from the freshest batch in the DogTap tap room.
Where to Stay
This luxury hotel is the perfect place to stay in Aberdeen if you like the high life. Enjoy private fishing, golf spa days and the beauty of the Scottish countryside in this rural country estate – part of Small Luxury Hotels of the World.
Malmaison Aberdeen is a fantastic mid-priced hotel, which has great rooms and a fantastic friendly bar where you can drink some of the finest whisky cocktails in town.
Comfortable and fuss-free Ibis offers clean and inviting rooms and a great breakfast at a price that won’t break the bank. The hotel is also in a great location – right in the centre of Aberdeen.
Caledonian Sleeper to Inverness
Loch Ness – home to the legendary Nessie, Loch Ness is Scotland’s mostfamous loch and is situated very near Inverness so it’s a must-see.
Inverness Castle – this red sandstone Castle, built in the nineteenth century sits on a cliff overlooking the River Ness.
The Jacobite Steam Train – Railway fans shouldn’t miss the chance to hop on board this amazing train. Travelling from Inverness through the Highlands you’ll get to see some of Scotland’s most spectacular scenery.
Cawdor Castle and Gardens – This 15th-century castle was the home of the Thane of Cawdor, made famous by his mention in Shakespeare’s famous play, Macbeth.
Inverness Botanic Gardens – Boasting a host of exotic plants and a waterfall, these gardens are well worth a visit.
Where to Stay
Sleek five-star Ness Walk hotel has big luxe rooms and a great restaurant too. There’s a sweeping terrace and some rooms have private patios. It is situated near Inverness Castle.
This well-located hotel has comfy rooms with a fantastic view overlooking the River Ness. It’s also 200 yards from the train station and has a great Brasserie Restaurant.
Situated just minutes from Inverness station, the well-run Royal Highland Hotel won’t break the bank, but will make you feel like you are. For an affordable hotel it’s pretty grand, with a Titanic-inspired staircase, high ceilings and rich traditional décor.
Caledonian Sleeper to Fort William
West Highland Line – don’t miss the chance to travel on the famous West Highland Line train. From May until October, a steam train travels along the track between Fort William and Mallaig. From Fort William, the train follows the bank of Loch Eil until it reaches Glenfinnan Viaduct, made famous by the Harry Potter films.
Ben Nevis – Stunning Ben Nevis is the tallest mountain in the British Isles. Depending on your fitness you can take a little walk around its base or climb right to the summit.
Ben Nevis Distillery – this is one of Scotland’s most famous distilleries and you shouldn’t miss a chance to visit here and take a guided tour and enjoy a tasting session too.
The Commando Memorial – unveiled in 1952 by the Queen Mother, this is a one of Scotland’s most famous war memorials and also offers spectacular views of Ben Nevis
Steall Falls and the Nevis Gorge – This is a great walk for those people of all abilities. This short (two hour) walk leads through the dramatic gorge and ends at the stunning Steall Falls.
Old Inverlochy Castle – This 13th century castle on the banks of River Lochy is now a ruin but was once one of Scotland’s most important castles.
Where to Stay
It’s not every day that you get the chance to stay in a castle so splash the cash and enjoy a night or two at one of the most picturesque hotels in the world.
Situated in the shadows of Ben Nevis and overlooking the picturesque Loch Linnhe, this reasonably-priced hotel is only 5 minutes’ walk from the centre of Fort William.
The Brevins Guest House is a great budget option for those looking for a comfortable place to stay the night.