As you'll have seen (maybe) from my homepage, Pitlochry is on the A9. That's the only direct road between central Scotland and Inverness (in fact it goes way up north beyond Inverness, but that's irrelevant for the purpose of this little tale).
If you are travelling from Edinburgh, the road is motorway (or as near as) all the way to Perth. That's the bulk of the trip. Fast. Easy. Glasgow to Perth is similar.
After Perth, you'll find 3 short stretches of dual carriageway interspersed with "normal" road. There lies the problem. You can get stuck behind 1 slow vehicle (bus, truck, tractor, campervan, 4x4 with caravan, Nissan Micra) and the trip will be bad.
At certain times (Sunday afternoon, for example... and I mean most of the year, not just summer) the road is so busy on this stretch that 40 mph (say 55 kph) may be top speed.
So choose your time carefully - early morning and late evening are best. And be patient.
The A9 is reckoned to be Scotland's "most dangerous road". It is actually a very good road, but populated by other drivers who conjure up all kinds of hazards.
Oh, and finally. Check the weather if you're going on the road in winter. Snow is unlikely to be a problem that far south, but I have known it to happen.
- Road Trip
- Business Travel
The town is on the railway line from Perth to Inverness, so it is served by trains north out of Edinburgh and Glasgow - and (obviously) by trains south out of Inverness.
The station is right in the town centre, so very convenient.
If you're willing to change trains in Perth, that will increase your choice of services.
Those trains can all be pretty busy in summertime and on holiday weekends, so I'd recommend reserving a seat.
Journey time from Edinburgh is just under 2 hours - more than you'd expect, but the line takes a rather long route between Edinburgh and Perth.
Prices vary enormously on our bizarre system, but the website quoted me £27 return on a Friday/Monday trip. Check for special deals - and think laterally. It is possible that 2 single tickets may be cheaper than 1 return. Believe me, it happens!
- Family Travel
- Hiking and Walking
Not so far away now
The easiest way to get to Pitlochry is by train [or bus]. The East Coast railway from Kings Cross in London takes 8 hours to Inverness instead of the previous long 12+ hours.
I took the 12 noon train which was comfortable and had a buffet to buy snacks and drinks. It is always preferable , if possible, to book a seat in advance as the trains can be very busy. The scenery as you travel up the country becomes more spectacular as you approach the Highlands,
Scotland by Train!
Pitlochry is about halfway between Edinburgh and Inverness (so about 2 hours from either of those cities). There are frequent trains daily. When I travelled I was on a 4 day Britrail-flexipass - although I did travel for 4 days by train - my ticket was only checked by conductors on 2 days (so I could've used it a further 2 days, but I didn't need to).
I've heard some people complain about travelling by train in the UK, but I found the train to be comfortable and the scenery from the train in Scotland is incredibly beautiful, passing open fields, forests and streams - wouldn't have given that up - not even for a shorter plane trip!
- Family Travel
Pitlochry is situated on a main train line and the station is a short walk from the main town area.
I left by train and for a bit of trivia which might be of some interest to travellers you can catch a straight line to York with no changes. Cost was around 50 pounds.
- Theater Travel
- Hiking and Walking
I didn't have a car and was too much of a chicken to hire one so public buses were my means of transport.
I mean some of the roads were very narrow and how those drivers negotiated them was a constant source of wonder.
You only have to look at the photo to see what I mean. Bus drivers in the UK are called Steerologists by the way.
The art of driving is a science in itself!