2020 Baden-Powell Council Scotland Group Touring Itinerary

Note: The 2020 Blair Atholl Jamborette has been canceled, and, reluctantly, so has our trip. 
We'd hoped to do the touring part of the trip anyway, but in the end, it just wasn't possible. 
This page shows what our touring itinerary would have been for the trip-without-a-Jamborette, had it not been for the restrictions caused by Covid-19 pandemic. 

All locations are saved on a Google Map

Date Morning Afternoon Evening Overnight
Monday July 13th  

Aer Lingus Flight 100 - Leave Newark (EWR) 17:05 - Arrive Dublin (DUB) 04:45

Tuesday July 14th
London
(East)
Aer Lingus Flight 152 - Leave Dublin (DUB) at 06:30 - Arrive at London Heathrow (LHR) at 08:05

We'll have a cab company pick up our bags at Heathrow and take them to Dockland Scout Project, so we can hit the ground running. 

We'll start by riding the London Underground to the
Tower of London

Begun by William the Conqueror nearly a thousand years ago, the Tower of London has been a fortification, Royal residence, prison and place of execution. We'll take a tour with a Yeoman Warder (a/k/a "Beefeater"), and see the Crown Jewels. 

Walk across Tower Bridge

Yes, that's "Tower Bridge", not "London Bridge", even though it's the most iconic bridge in London. London Bridge is either long destroyed, moved to Arizona or upstream, depending on which one you're talking about. None of them are "falling down". 

HMS Belfast

We're booked for a visit to the HMS Belfast at 15:00. Now part of the Imperial War Museum, the cruiser HMS Belfast is the most significant surviving Second World War Royal Navy warship. Explore all nine decks of HMS Belfast to discover what life was like on board for the crew at war and at sea. From the guns that fired some of the first shots on D-Day right down to the engine rooms 15ft below sea level, get up close to the inner workings of a warship and hear hundreds of powerful stories from those who worked on board.

Ride the London Eye

The London Eye is the world's tallest observation wheel. It's not a "Ferris wheel", where the passenger cars are free-swinging and spend time inside the structure on part of the trip. Rather, the school bus-sized cars of the London Eye are always on the outside of the wheel so you always get a great view of London during the half-hour of the ride. We'll view the "4D experience" on the shore of the Thames around at 20:00, then board the wheel to see London at twilight. 

Dockland Scout Project

We'll be staying for two nights on the Lord Amory, a boat moored in the City Canal at Docklands, which forms the center of the Dockland Scout Project.. 

Time and weather permitting, we might ride a Thames Clipper riverboat back to Dockland.

Dockland Scout Project

 

 

Wednesday July 15th
London
(Central)
Imperial War Museum

Located in the former Bethlehem Mental Hospital ("Bedlam"), the Imperial War Museum has exhibits on the British experience in World War One and later. From the moment you step into the world-famous atrium to the countless discoveries awaiting you in the award-winning galleries, IWM London is a place to experience the continuing influence of war on the world – an experience that is as compelling and thought-provoking as it is unforgettable.

Sherlock Holmes Museum at 221B Baker Street
(maybe - time permitting)
The world famous consulting detective Sherlock Holmes lived at 221b Baker Street between 1881-1904, according to the stories written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Mr Holmes shared his rooms with his loyal friend and colleague Dr Watson. The house is protected by the government due to its "special architectural and historical interest" and the 1st floor study overlooking Baker Street is faithfully maintained for posterity, just as it was kept by Mrs Hudson in Victorian times.

Novelty Automation

A new London arcade of satirical home-made machines from the fertile mind of Tim Hunkin, the machine-maker and one of the presenters on the TV series
 The Secret Life of Machines

British Museum

The British Museum is one of the greatest museums of art and history in the world. We'll see the Elgin Marbles from the Parthenon, the Rosetta Stone that enabled the first translations of Egyptian Hieroglyphics... and so much more. Their website lists a three-hour object trail covering the highlights, to give you a flavor of what's there.

We will have a guide from London Walks, who will meet us at the museum and take us around for a two-hour private tour. 

Shakespeare's Globe Theatre

"All the World's a Stage", and this one is (nearly) where Shakespeare had the debuts of his new plays at his theatre. We have tickets purchased to take in a play as the Elizabethans did - as "groundlings", standing right next to the stage and the performers. 

The play being offered on July 15th is Much Ado About Nothing, one of Shakespeare's comedies. There's a very comprehensive Wikipedia article about the play, and you can read the entire play on MIT's website if you like. 

Dockland Scout Project
Thursday July 16th
London
(Westminster)
Churchill's Cabinet War Rooms


We're booked for a visit to the Cabinet War Rooms at 10:00

At the end of the Second World War, the Map Room was sealed up against future need, and forgotten. In the 1980's it was found, and opened as the Cabinet War Rooms, part of the Imperial War Museum. 

History was made in Churchill War Rooms – the underground nerve centre that allowed Britain’s leaders to plot the allied route to victory during the Second World War. Step back in time and walk the top secret corridors of the Cabinet War Rooms. Get up close to artefacts revealing Churchill’s personal and political journey in the interactive Churchill Museum, which uncovers the influences and pressures that shaped his life, leadership and legacy.

 

 

 

Walk around London, from the Westminster area up the Mall toward Trafalgar Square, and maybe onwards... who knows?

Big Ben/Houses of Parliament

Big Ben is the bell, not the tower - that's "Elizabeth Tower". 

Buckingham Palace

Where the Queen lives. She's unlikely to invite us in, so we'll just walk past.

No. 10 Downing St.

Where the Prime Minister lives and works. Downing Street is closed for security reasons, but we'll be able to peek through the bars in the gate to catch a glimpse of Number Ten. 

Trafalgar Square

Trafalgar Square, with its statue of the Duke of Wellington up on his pillar, reclining lions, statues and fountains, is the home to the National Gallery and thousands of tourists (with pigeons). St. Martin-in-the-fields, the church in this photo, was the prototype for all those New England churches with their stacked spires. 

Westminster Abbey

Time permitting, we may take a tour of Westminster Abbey, or we can take part in a free Evensong Service at 17:00 - A Scout is Reverent, after all. Also, the Evensong service is free - A Scout is Thrifty. 

In the evening, we'll walk around London for a while - it's one of the world's greatest walking cities. 

Harrods

Harrod's is the department store in London - if not in the world. Its more than 300 departments sell everything from fossils to fish, clothing to candy, paintings to pickles. If it exists, it's somewhere in Harrods. The Food Court alone is worth a visit, if only for a snack or to pick up a box of Harrods' Tea as a souvenir or gift for the folks. 

Maybe we'll swing by Picadilly Circus to see the iconic lighted signs. 

Caledonian Sleeper

As it gets dark. we'll get our bags from Dockland and proceed to London Euston Station to meet the Caledonian Sleeper train. We can board after 22:00, and the train leaves at 23:50. We'll have two-person compartments with bunk beds to sleep the night away, until we wake up in Edinburgh on Friday morning. 

Overnight on the Caledonian Sleeper Train
Friday, July 17th
Glencoe
Jacobite

Arrive at Edinburgh Waverly Station at 07:30
Pick up rental vehicles and drive to

Glencoe

(time permitting), visit Glencoe, the "Vale of Tears". This was the site of the famous 1692 massacre of MacDonalds by the forces of King William. The MacDonald chief delayed until the last minute to take an Oath of Allegiance to the King, and when he showed up in Fort William to take the oath he discovered that he could not do so there. By the time he took the oath at Inverary, the deadline had passed. The Earl of Stair sent a force of lowland Scots  (mostly members of the Campbell clan) to be housed by the MacDonalds in Glencoe. At a prearranged signal, the soldiers attacked their hosts, killing many and forcing many to flee into the winter harshness of the Glen.  

Drive to Fort William (lunch), then board the
Jacobite Steam Train

a/k/a The "Hogwarts Express", the Jacobite Steam train runs from Fort William to Mallaig along the beautiful scenery of the West Highland Line. Along the way, it crosses the Glenfinnan Viaduct (above) - can you see Ron Weasley and Harry Potter in their flying Ford Anglia?

We have tickets purchased for the 14:30 departure. 

Dinner - fish and chips at the scenic fishing village and ferry port of Mallaig

Return to Fort William at 20:30 and drive to Oban.

Scout Hall in Oban
Saturday, July 18th
Isle of Arran

 Unfortunately, the Highland Games we'd planned to attend have been canceled, as have most of the games this summer. 

We'll drive from Oban to take the ferry from Claonaig on the Kintyre Peninsula to Lochranza on the Isle of Arran. The ferries leave at  10:05, 11:20, 12:35, 13:50, 15:05, 16:20 and 17:40 and take about 30 minutes. We'll aim for the earliest possible ferry. 

Isle of Arran Heritage Museum

Originally the site of a small school, the present group of buildings were a croft and smiddy, and include a farmhouse, cottage, bothy, milk house, laundry, stable, coach house and harness room. The exhibits reflect the social history, archaeology and geology of the island.

Brodick Castle and Gardens

Teeming with history and surrounded by mountains, Brodick is every inch the quintessential island castle. The present building was fashioned in 1844, but the seat dates back centuries to when its strategic position overlooking the Firth of Clyde made Brodick a fortress to be reckoned with. The castle was the ancient seat of the Dukes of Hamilton and contains a fabulous collection of valuable artefacts.

Indoors, dark wood, heavy Victorian colours and sporting trophies hark back to an age of aristocratic leisure and luxury. After two years of extensive works, the castle has reopened with an exciting new visitor experience, focusing on the fascinating stories of the people who lived here, and with interactive activities to bring the building to life.

Machrie Moor Standing Stones

We'll walk out onto the evocative Machrie Moor, to look at the Neolithic standing stones. This rich archaeological landscape includes stone circles, standing stones, burial cairns and cists, as well as hut circles and an extensive field system, all dating to between 3500 and 1500 BCE.

More links for the Isle of Arran
http://www.relevantsearch.co.uk/rs-arran.html

 https://www.visitarran.com/ 

https://www.undiscoveredscotland.co.uk/areaarra/ 

Walk to The King's Cave

Evening would be a perfect time to take an after-dinner hike through the woods to the King's Cave on the shore of the Firth of Clyde. Historic King's Cave is one of several locations in which Robert the Bruce is said to have had his famed encounter with a spider. Of course, the whole spider story is generally considered to have been invented by Sir Walter Scott - but the cave, with its Norse graffiti and dramatic location, is still well worth a visit. 

Watch the sunset over Kintyre Peninsula from 
Blackwaterfoot
or Machrie Bay

Overnight at Corrie Hall in Sannox  
on the 
Isle of Arran
Sunday, July 19th
Isle of Arran
Lochranza Castle

Lochranza Castle enjoys a superb location on a spit of land projecting out into Loch Ranza from its south west side. The main block of the castle was divided in two, with the south end providing a single large room on each of three floors. The north end provided rather smaller rooms on its four levels. At first floor level the floor in the south end of the castle has long gone, but this would have been the castle's great hall, while the first floor of the north end was home to the kitchen. The third main element of the castle is its tower, attached to the west side of the south end and originally standing five storeys high.

Tour the Isle of Arran Distillery

Whisky is Scotland's National Drink (albeit one our Scouts can't partake in), and a tour of a whisky distillery is always fun. We have a tour booked for 10:00, first thing in the morning. 

After lunch, we'll drive to the south end of island. 

Largybeg: natural arch at Largybeg Point, standing stones, chambered cairns - Park at Car Park Waypoint which has enough room for three medium sized vans. "on a green knoll close to the beach, there are two standing stones placed in line and 10 feet apart. They are small blocks standing 2 feet 6 inches above the surface. The centre of the knoll, within an area which would have been enclosed by a corresponding setting on the west, shows an irregular heap of slabs and stones, which probably at one time formed a cist." From the Standing stones it is possible to see the Viking Fort at Kings Cross and Dun Fionn. There is a natural arch just below the Standing Stones and on the shore in front of the arch is a flat circular stone about 1.500 diameter which make a great place to take pictures of the natural arch. The Stones are in alignment with Ailsa Craig and the hills on Holy Isle. 

Kildonan

At the south eastern tip of Arran, Kildonan is accessed by a road that cuts down to the coast from the A841, and is a detour well worth making - if you miss Kildonan, you miss one of the highlights of any tour of Arran. The village stands out for two reasons: The first is that it is home to an excellent beach which offers stretches of sand, a relative rarity on Arran. The second is more immediately obvious as you approach it. The views south over the village to the Ayrshire coast and the islands of Pladda and Ailsa Craig are simply superb. Kildonan also boasts a castle, standing out on the old raised beach behind and above the village. The castle was originally built by the Lords of the Isles, but by 1406 was in the ownership of Robert III, who in that year passed it on to his illegitimate son, John Stewart of Ardgowan. In 1544 it was acquired by the Hamilton family, the Earls of Arran. 

Kilmory

It's a short walk to the beach at Kilmory, past Torrylinn Cairn, a cairn that acted as a place of ritual and burial for more than 1,000 years. Torrylin Cairn is much-disturbed today, having been robbed, ploughed and dumped upon for years. But its exposed burial chamber lies well-preserved, enabling us to examine a Neolithic resting place. The cairn’s a typical Clyde type tomb, and there’s evidence that ritual and burial activity both took place here. I

Take the 16:40 ferry from Brodick to Ardrossan

Drive by the Kelpies

 

Overnight at the 88th Craigalmond Scout Hall
Edinburgh 
Monday, July 20th
Edinburgh

Ride the tram to Princes Street in the city centre, walk to 

Camera Obscura

An example of Victorian High-Tech, the Camera Obscura itself is an optical system which projects images of Edinburgh on a flat table, where our guide will take us on a tour of the city, swatting tourists along the way. The rest of the building houses exhibits of optical illusions and holograms. We're booked for a 9:30 start. 

After the Camera Obscura, it's a quick walk to:
Edinburgh Castle

Edinburgh Castle is a historic fortress which dominates the skyline of the city of Edinburgh, Scotland, from its position on the Castle Rock. There has been a royal castle on the rock since at least the reign of David I in the 12th century, and the site continued to be a royal residence until 1633. As one of the most important strongholds in the Kingdom of Scotland, Edinburgh Castle was involved in many historical conflicts from the Wars of Scottish Independence in the 14th century to the Jacobite Rising of 1745. Research undertaken in 2014 identified 26 sieges in its 1100-year-old history, giving it a claim to having been "the most besieged place in Great Britain and one of the most attacked in the world".

Note: Edinburgh Castle has implemented pre-booked timed tickets in order to limit crowding. However, our Scottish Heritage Passes will allow us to scan directly in without having to pre-book for a time. Depending on when we finish with the Camera Obscura, we may grab lunch first or go directly to the Castle. 

Lunch on or near the Royal Mile

Royal Mile

The Royal Mile leads from Edinburgh Castle on Castle Rock down a volcanic ridge to Holyrood Palace at the lower end. We'll walk down the upper part of the Mile, at least, which is lined with gift shops where our Scouts can view and purchase all sorts of tourist stuff. 

National Museum of Scotland

The National Museum is really two museums in one. The galleries in the newer building present Scottish history in an essentially chronological arrangement, beginning at the lowest level with prehistory to the early medieval period, with later periods on the higher levels. The Victorian building contains four zones (each with numerous galleries), covering natural history, world cultures (including galleries on the South Pacific, East Asia, and Ancient Egypt), European art and design, and science & technology. The Grand Gallery contains a variety of large objects from the collections, with a display called the "Window on the World" rising through four storeys, or about 20 metres, containing over 800 objects reflecting the breadth of the collections. Beyond the Grand Gallery at ground level is the "Discoveries" gallery, with objects connected to "remarkable Scots ... in the fields of invention, exploration and adventure".

Ghost Walk

In the evening we will do Mercat Tours' Hidden and Haunted Treasure Hunt

We'll spend 30 minutes on a walking tour on the Royal Mile and its closes and wynds, then each patrol will have 30 minutes to solve some Treasure Hunt puzzles along the Mile. Then we'll head underground for a 30 minute tour of the Blair Street Underground Vaults. For the last 15 minutes the guide will take us into the Discovery Room from 21:00 to 21:15 to evaluate the answers from the Treasure Hunt.

Overnight
same as last night

Because of Covid-19, the 2020 Blair Atholl Scottish International Patrol Jamborette was cancelled. 

Our group will still be going to the UK, assuming that normal travel has resumed by mid-July. We have added three or four days to the touring, so that we will have a full week in Scotland. 

Tuesday 
July 21st 
Blair Atholl
Area
Blair Castle

A visit to Blar Castle is a "must" - given that two of our group leaders were Castle Tour Guides in past Jamborettes, we'll be sure to have a good private tour of the Castle 

Atholl Estates

The Atholl Estates cover 174,000 acres around Blair Castle. After lunch at the Castle Cafe, we'll take a walk around, visiting the graves of the Dukes at St. Brides, the Hercules Gardens, and explore some of the area into the highland scenery. 

Pitlochry

Stop off in Pitlochry for Dinner, at least.

Overnight
same as last night
Wednesday
July 22nd
East Lothian
Area
Scottish National Museum of Flight - East Fortune

Scotland's national aviation museum is housed in the original wartime buildings of RAF East Fortune which is a well preserved World War II airfield. The museum collections have expanded into one of the most important in the UK, covering all aspects of aviation including military, civil and recreational. The collection includes many warbirds from World War II through modern jets, as well as the first operational Concorde SST.

Scottish Seabird Centre (North Berwick)

The Firth of Forth is home to spectacular seabird cities. From late January the gannets return to the world-famous Bass Rock: with over 150,000 gannets it’s the biggest Northern gannet colony in the world. Puffins, guillemots, razorbills, shags, fulmars and kittiwakes return in spring to nest each year. Notably the area has the biggest puffin colony on the east coast of Britain. Here we provide information about some of Scotland’s most amazing seabirds – their traits, habits and of course where you can spot them.Dive in to our all new Discovery Experience and explore the wonder of Scotland's marine environment. Control interactive live cameras to zoom in on amazing local wildlife.

  Overnight
same as last night
Thursday
July 23rd
Kindom of Fife

St. Andrews Castle 

The ruins of the castle of the Archbishops of St Andrews, dating in part from the 13th century. On a headland to the north of St Andrews stand the ruins of the city's castle, the main residence of the bishops and archbishops of St Andrews and the focal point of the church in medieval Scotland. Explore the underground 16th-century siege mine and counter-mine, and the 'bottle dungeon', one of the most infamous castle prisons in medieval Britain, which was cut out of the solid rock. John Knox and George Wishart may have been imprisoned in this dank and airless space, and this is where its believed Cardinal Beaton's body was kept when he was murdered in 1546.

St. Andrews Cathedral 

The remains of St Andrews Cathedral, which was Scotland's largest cathedral and most magnificent church, show how impressive it used to be. The museum houses an outstanding collection of early and later medieval sculptures and other relics found on the site, including the magnificent St Andrews Sarcophagus of Pictish date. The precinct walls are particularly well preserved. St Rule's Tower, in the precinct, is part of the first church of the Augustinian canons at St Andrews built in the early 12th century. There are splendid views from the top.

Secret Bunker

Scotland's best kept secret.... Until now! Hidden beneath an innocent Scottish farmhouse lies Scotland's Secret Bunker. A 450 foot tunnel leads you to the blast proof doors which defend 24,000 square feet of secret accommodation which was built to help safeguard Scotland during the Cold War in the event of a nuclear attack. The Secret Bunker lies 100 feet underground and is the size of two football pitches, one on top of the other so there is plenty of exploring to do! Come and discover how Scotland would have been governed from the depths of Fife and how they would have survived a nuclear attack from the most deadly bombs!

 

Overnight
same as last night
Friday
July 24th
Edinburgh

 

The Royal Yacht Britannia in Leith - Step aboard The Royal Yacht Britannia, Her Majesty The Queen's former floating palace for over 40 years. Berthed in Edinburgh, follow in the footsteps of Royalty to discover the heart and soul of this most special of Royal residences.

 

Holyroodhouse Palace and Abbey

The Palace of Holyroodhouse is the official residence in Scotland of Her Majesty The Queen. Open throughout the year, the Palace of Holyroodhouse stands at the end of Edinburgh's Royal Mile. Explore the Palace's close associations with some of Scotland's most well-known historic figures such as Mary, Queen of Scots and Bonnie Prince Charlie, and learn how today it is used by The Queen when carrying out official engagements in Scotland.

Scottish Parliament

The Scottish Parliament building opened in 2004 and has since welcomed over 3 million visitors. Usually open from Monday to Saturday, visitors can join a free guided tour or see parliament in action, depending on which day you visit (booking essential).

Museum of Edinburgh

Discover Edinburgh’s fascinating history through the Museum of Edinburgh’s wide and varied collections. In exploring the Museum’s maze of 16th century buildings, you will see iconic items, beautiful objects and  learn fascinating facts and gruesome tales. The Museum of Edinburgh is the City's treasure box - a maze of historic rooms crammed full of iconic objects from the Capital's past. Find out about the history of Edinburgh from the earliest times to the present day. Discover more about the city, its people, crafts and trades and the beautiful objects they created.The Museum is also home to Foundation Edinburgh - The Story of a City, a fascinating and unique audiovisual presentation devoted to Edinburgh's turbulent history, from volcanic beginnings to modern day cultural Capital.

Walk up Salisbury Crags to Arthur's Seat

Arthur's Seat is one of four hill forts, dating from around 2,000 years ago. Situated within Holyrood Park, as well as it's rich cultural heritage, the park offers walks, solace, wildlife, volcanic geology and unparalleled vistas of the city from its many vantage points.

Overnight
same as last night
 Saturday, July 25th

Return flight home 
Aer Lingus Flight EI 3251 - leave Edinburgh (EDI) 08:20 - Arrive Dublin (DUB) 09:30 
Aer Lingus Flight 101 leave Dublin (DUB) 13:00BST - Arrive Newark (EWR), 15:35EDST

All locations are saved on a Google Map

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Last Updated 6/11/2020