Heading from London to Inverness, there are just two direct trains each day, LNER’s ‘Highland Cheiftan’ which leaves King’s Cross at 1200 and the Caledonian Sleeper’s ‘Highland Sleeper’ which leaves Euston at 2115. Having decided to tick off a bucket list item on this trip, I was booked on the latter, a journey that would take just over 11 hours and cover almost 600 miles through the night.
After an excellent week in Scotland, we took a train from Glasgow Queen St, back to Edinburgh with enough time for us to have an enjoyable lunch at our favourite restaurant in the capital (Maxies!) before catching our LNER service back south of the border and home. Having paid to leave our bags at left luggage (this one was open, however as it’s staffed it costs a fortune), we made sure to pick them up within the 3 hour time period and so headed to the first class lounge for somewhere to dump them and sit in the warmth until our train.
Glasgow, Scotland’s second city, but the country’s most populous, is located on the banks of the River Clyde and, in rail terms at least, is the Gateway to the Highlands. With us passing through the city to get to and from our Highland Adventure, we decided we needed to spend some more time in the city and so, split between the start and end of the holiday, we did just that.
After a night in Fort William, a ride on The Jacobite and a wonderful couple of nights in Corrour, we were back on the West Highland line (WHL) and a ScotRail service, initially heading south to Crianlarich before changing trains and heading down the WHL’s western branch to Oban.
Corrour, Britain’s highest and most remote railway station, more than 1300ft above sea level and 20 miles from the nearest public road. We were inspired to visit here after watching ‘All the Stations’ in 2017 and their more recent returns to Corrour. Within a couple of hours of stepping off the train, we were in love with the place and beyond glad we came.
In 2002 Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets was released in cinemas and from that point the Glenfinnan Viaduct became world famous as ‘the Harry Potter Bridge’. Operating since 1984, The Jacobite is a steam locomotive-hauled service that runs from Fort William to Mallaig, crossing the famous viaduct, and giving tourists the amazing view of a steam train passing over ‘the Harry Potter Bridge’.