Scotland’s main international airports are Edinburgh and Glasgow.
Located 11km or 7 miles northwest of the city centre.
Airport information: telephone: (01224) 722 331.
Facilities: These include bureau de change, duty-free shopping,
restaurants and bars, left luggage, parent and baby room, facilities
for the disabled and two airport hotels.
Train: Aberdeen and Inverness trains make stops at Dyce station
which is a short taxi ride from the airport.
Bus: There are bus services from the city centre to the airport.
For details, contact First Aberdeen (telephone: (01224) 650 065).
Coach: Stagecoach Bluebird services also run to the airport
(telephone: (01224) 212 266).
Taxi: Available from the airport (travel time to city centre
about 20 minutes). Car hire: Avis, Budget, Europcar and Hertz all
have desks at the airport.
Private car: Signs for the airport should be followed from the
A96 Aberdeen to Inverness road.
The main airport serving the Highlands, with transfer connections
available to airports in the north of Scotland.
There are smaller airports in the north of Scotland which are served
by flights from Glasgow and from Aberdeen, Inverness and Edinburgh
as well. These include Barra, Benbecula, Kirkwall (Orkney), Lerwick
(Shetland), Stornoway and Tiree. For further information, contact
Glasgow Airport (see above).
Ferry services run between the mainland and all the Scottish islands
but some of these may be infrequent.
MacBrayne runs the largest network of ferries on the river Clyde
and west coast, serving many islands including the Inner and Outer
Hebrides. During the summer, services operate hourly or half-hourly
but in the winter they are less frequent. For details of fares,
routes and timetables, contact Caledonian MacBrayne (telephone:
(01475) 650 100 (enquiries) or (08705) 650 000 (reservations); fax:
(01475) 637 607).
Ferries (telephone: (01856) 885 500 (enquiries) or (0845) 600
0449 (reservations); fax: (01856) 851 155) runs services to the
Orkneys and Shetlands; from Aberdeen to Lerwick daily, more often
in summer (travel time about 12 hours); and from Scrabster to Stromness
daily, more often in summer (travel time about 90 minutes).
Other routes include P&O Irish Sea ferry service between Cairnryan
and Larne up to 12 times a day (travel time about 1 hour 45 minutes;
telephone: (0870) 242 4777); and Stena
Line’s service between Stranraer and Belfast eight times
a day (travel time about 1 hour 45 minutes; telephone: (02890) 747
747; fax: (02890) 884 031). The Seacat
(telephone: (01624) 661 661 (UK only) operates between Troon and
Belfast Harbour two to three times a day (travel time about 2 hours
30 minutes). P&O Irish Sea and Stena Line offer jet boat services
from Stanraer to Belfast (travel time about 1 hour).
There are two main routes into Scotland from England: from London
Euston up the west coast to Glasgow Central and beyond to Perth
and Inverness; and from London King’s Cross up the east coast
to Edinburgh and beyond to Dundee and Aberdeen. For details, contact
Rail Enquiries (telephone: (08457) 484 950 (UK only).
In the Edinburgh–Glasgow area, there are good services connecting
all the main towns. Many of the routes which pass through the Highlands
(such as: Perth-Inverness; Inverness-Kyle of Lochalsh; Glasgow-Fort
William-Mallaig) are very beautiful. The network extends right up
to Thurso and Wick in the extreme north of the country. Sleeper
services are available on Scotrail’s Caledonian Sleeper (which
connects London Euston, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen, Inverness
and Fort William nightly; telephone: (08457) 550 033).
Scotland is connected to the main UK road network by good trunk
roads, and has several internal motorways. Access from England is
via the M74 (Carlisle to Glasgow), the A696/A68 (Newcastle to Edinburgh
via the Cheviots) and the A1 (Newcastle to Edinburgh via the coast).
The main motorways within Scotland connect Edinburgh with Glasgow
(M8), Edinburgh with Stirling (M9), and the Forth Bridge, near Edinburgh,
with Perth (M90). The main cross-country road, the A9, connects
Perth with Inverness and Thurso.
From London: Edinburgh 663km or 412 miles, Glasgow 654km or 406
miles, Aberdeen 884km or 549 miles, Inverness 923km or 573 miles,
Fort William 828km or 514 miles, Perth 696km or 433 miles and Thurso
1066km or 663 miles. From Edinburgh: Glasgow 72km or 45 miles, Aberdeen
211km or 131 miles, Inverness 261km or 162 miles, Fort William 231km
or 138 miles, Perth 69km or 43 miles and Thurso 439km or 273 miles.
All the major towns and cities have bus services. Glasgow also has
an underground and a suburban train network.