Hardcore fans of Diana Gabaldon’s epic fantasy romance series, “Outlander,” are seriously being spoiled this year.
Following the hotly anticipated TV series of the same name (premiering Aug. 9 on Starz, just in case you’ve been living under a set of Standing Stones), “Outlander” enthusiasts can now travel to Scotland and completely immerse themselves in the world of time-traveling lovers Jamie Fraser and Claire Beauchamp Randall by way of a specially designed, seven-day “Outlander” tour.
Beginning in Edinburgh, fans will be taken on their own Scottish adventure, visiting some of the key locations used in filming the series and sites that inspired Gabaldon while writing the books. Highlights of the tour include exploring the cobblestone streets of the Royal Mile and Edinburgh’s Old Town, a visit to Doune Castle (Castle Leoch in the novel) and a trip to Loch Ness. There are also tours of Glencoe and Fort William.
Of course, it wouldn’t be an official “Outlander” tour without sampling some of what the Scottish like to call The Water of Life (also Jamie’s favorite drink) with a visit to a whiskey distillery.
It’s the closest fans will get to experiencing Claire and Jamie’s journey without having to find their own magic stone circles to teleport through — and, let’s be honest, it will be substantially more comfortable with running water and cushy hotel rooms. Plus, "Outlander" aficionados will have the chance to share this unique experience with like-minded people, to discuss the story and swap favorite quotes, all the while soaking up the mystical and romantic atmosphere of bonny Scotland in the fall.
Tours are limited to a maximum of 16 people, so no doubt tickets will sell fast (double rates start at $1,005). The first trip is scheduled for Oct. 31, but six trips have just been added for 2015 (May 11, June 8, July 13, Aug. 17, Sept. 14, Oct. 12; booking for next year begins in early October). For further information, head over to the website.
Meet the 'Outlander' tour guide: Jamie Smith
Jamie (no, not THAT Jamie) Smith is a born and bred Scot.Born in Edinburgh, he grew up in the small town of Longniddry, which is 14 miles east of Edinburgh. He attended George Heriot’s School (founded in 1628).