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With its soaring mountains, glimmering lochs and endless wilderness, Scotland seems a world away from London, but it’s not as tough to get there from the capital as you might expect.


By train

The train journey from London Kings Cross to Edinburgh can take as little as 4 hr. 20 min. and cost as little as $50 one way if you book in advance. Regular rail services also run to Glasgow (4 hr. 30 min.), Dundee (5 hr. 50 min.), Aberdeen (7 hr.), and Inverness (8 hr.), with connections to regional stops as well.

For the best prices, plan in advance directly through rail operators Virgin Trains and East Coast. Or purchase a BritRail GB Pass that offers unlimited rail travel on any train service in Britain. A flexible version of the pass is also available.

By sleeper train

Yes, that’s right, there’s a way to travel in the UK where you can board in the evening hubbub of London, wine and dine in a lounge car, head to your cozy compartment for a night’s sleep, wake up with a cup of tea brought by your steward, and then look out the window to see you’re in the Highlands. The Caledonian Sleeper train runs 13 hours from London Euston to the heart of Scotland every night of the week apart from Saturdays, and there are reclining seats for a cheaper alternative to the compartments.

You can book tickets on the National Rail website and The Trainline, as well as at any railway station in Britain. 

By car

The Lake District serves as a perfect midway stopping point and will warm you up for the mountains of Scotland. Be sure to make a playlist that includes plenty of Chvrches and Frightened Rabbit. The drive from central London to Glasgow takes around 7 hr.; to Edinburgh around 7 hr. 30 min.; and to Inverness around 10 hr. 30 min.


By coach

National Express runs from London Victoria Coach Station throughout the day with travel times of 8 hr. 15 min. to Glasgow, 9 hr. to Edinburgh, and 12 hr. 35 min. to Inverness. Budget provider Megabus operates routes to Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Inverness and Perth, and offers a sleeper coach with beds on the Glasgow route.

By plane

Possibly the quickest and sometimes cheapest option, though remember to take into account any travel to and from the airport, additional luggage charges and so on. British Airways has regular, daily flights leaving from London’s Gatwick, Heathrow and City airports to Glasgow and Edinburgh, and from London’s Heathrow and City airports to Aberdeen.

By foot...

Maybe not such an easy way...it would take about 115 hours to walk the 403 miles from London to Glasgow – without a break. But hey, it would be cheap!


Find out more about traveling around Britain by bus, train or car.

Posted in Scotland