Another year of great success! For the first time, we did two back to back tours this year. Our Scotland with a Touch of Outlander itinerary was followed by our new Islands itinerary. Both were phenomenal journeys! We made wonderful memories and new travel friends.
Scotland with a Touch of Outlander had many first time visitors to Scotland as well as a few returning visitors. The weather was wonderful, only one day of rain while on the Isle of Skye, but we didn’t let rain stand in the way of enjoying the beautiful grounds and gardens at the Clan Donald Centre. Our days were filled with history, beautiful scenery, great food and many laughs!
The new Islands itinerary was a sold out success! Many of the travelers had been with us on previous tours and those who had not were a party of 5 brothers/sisters/in laws so the familiar and feeling of being a close knit family traveling together was established at the very beginning. The dynamic within the group was amazing and we had a fantastic time! This new itinerary came with a bit of apprehension and worry about the logistics working with this size group, ferry schedules, and weather. It worked perfectly, so well that we will be using it again in September of 2018!
Anchor Travel has been hosting personally escorted tours to Scotland for a number of years. Each of our tours are managed by agency owner, lead agent and ScotsMaster agent Tawnya Hoffmann. Along with Scottish historian, author and guide Hugh Allison and driver, Mark, they form a dynamic team who ensure their travelers create life long memories with friends and loved ones.
Below are recaps, reviews and photos from past tours. For more information on our upcoming tours, please visit our Tours Page.
“Scotland's Route 66.” 500 miles of some of the most dramatic and amazing scenery in Scotland. Rugged mountains, secluded beaches, charming villages, open farm fields, amazing ruins and more. It is one of the world's most beautiful road trips.
Another sold out success! Great memories were made within our group of 20 travelers. While our group was comprised mostly of Minnesotans, we were joined by others from California and Washington State. We shared lots of smiles, laughter and even a few tears of joy. It really was an amazing journey!
Sold out success!
With a group ranging from new international travelers to the well traveled, gals in their 20's to the young at heart in their 70's, and a few guys thrown in the mix we made great memories! On one of tour days, the day where we hit the most Outlander connected sites, we had nothing but surprises and bonuses. When we arrived for our peek at the location being used as Lallybroch we noticed quite a bit of vehicle traffic coming in and out as we walked down the drive. Low and behold they were filming that day! While we didn't see any of the stars and couldn't go all the way up the drive we were giddy with excitement. What a great start to the day! We continued on to our next visit to Blackness Castle which is standing in as Fort William. When we arrived Graeme, the employee on duty asked if we would mind waiting just a few moments before we entered. Imagine our surprise when Graeme came out with his bagpipes to lead us into this imposing fortress to the tune of Scotland the Brave! If you want a goosebumps moment, that was it! Later that afternoon we made a stop in The Royal Burgh of Culross. Now Culross is a treat in itself. It is a 17th and 18th century village where time seems to have stood still. This makes it very fitting to be Crainsmuir in the television series. We ventured out on a walk about and came to the historic square and mercat cross. We knew it was being used in Outlander but boy where we surprised to find crew set decorating for the filming that was to be done the next day! We all took a few pictures and got out of their way so they could continue with their work. What a treat though to actually see them preparing the area with props and decorations! All of the above happened in just ONE day on our tour! We made so many great memories and new friends.
Tawnya traveled with a small group of 5 plus guide Hugh Allison on her annual trip to Scotland. Traveling with a smaller group, we traveled by van instead of the larger motorcoach but on the same itinerary. It was a great group of travelers and we had some wonderful surprises along the way! On our day trip to Alnwick Castle the vehicle had some issues so we made an unexpected stop in Bamburgh where we took amazing photos of the castle, sampled local ice cream and did a little experiment with how many of us we could fit in a telephone booth! Hugh took us on a bit of a detour one day to an unnamed location that will forever be our little groups secret but for us Outlander Fans was the highlight of our trip (you never know what kind of surprises we might get while on tour!). In Fort William we had a wonderful meal at the Grog and Gruel and sampled local ales and beers including thistle beer! On Skye had an amazing lunch of fresh seafood. We braved the wind and cold on our afternoon in St. Andrews and day in and day out laughed in great company, made many wonderful memories and came home with new friendships.
"My husband and I took the Outlander trip to Scotland (with a bit of Harry Potter and Downtown Abbey thrown in) with Tawnya. From the planning stage through the trip to the end, it was a wonderful trip. Tawnya is well-organized and gives great "bang for the buck." It was a substantive trip; Tawnya doesn't just drop you off and leave you with a bit of tour and lots of shopping. The trip was well planned with full days of sight-seeing at well chosen sites. Tawnya is a hands-on guide. She stays with her group and sees that everyone gets the most of the visit. The Scottish guide Hugh, was also outstanding. Not only did he know his "stuff," but he made it extremely interesting and had a delightful personality. The accommodations were comfortable although we didn't always have elevators. There was always help with luggage, though, if you needed it. In fact, Tawnya was always there to help if needed. What also made it a fun trip was the other people." ~Jinx, Golden Valley
We made it! Explored Edinburgh castle and The Royal Mile. The next day was a bit soggy but fun nonetheless, with Rosslyn Chapel, Lindisfarne and Alnwick castle, as well as a walk across the border from England back into Scotland. Then on to another day packed with great sites, topped off with fantastic dinner and entertainment at the Taste of Scotland show at Prestonfield. Next was a day crammed full of sightseeing. Deanston distillery, Doune Castle, Culross, Callander House, Blackness Castle and Midhope Castle. A very full day but a great one! Then we went from Edinburgh up to Inverness, visiting Dunkeld Cathedral, Highland Folk Museum, and Tulloch Castle, where we stayed for the next two nights. Another fantastic day in the books! Started off the next day with Heather and Katie Morag, the adorable coos! Then Beauly, Hugh's weapons demonstration and tea at The Ord House hotel, Cawdor castle, Clava Cairns and finished the day off at Culloden Battlefield. We then journeyed from just north of Inverness west to Eilean Donan castle, out to the Isle of Skye, back to the mainland by ferry and then in to Fort William via some amazing beaches, the Glenfinnan church and more. As always, the scenery was simply breathtaking everywhere we went. We had some days that were chilly and cloudy but it wasn't all gloomy though and we had some beautiful sunny times as well!