"From Argyll To Sutherland" Top 5 Page for this destination Highland by nickandchris

Highland Travel Guide: 1,679 reviews and 4,172 photos

The Remoter Parts of Great Britain

2012 holiday was a return to the beautiful island of Mull. Tips being updated.

2011 update; A re-visit to the far north coast of Scotland, this time travelling eastwards and as far south as The Black Isle. New tips to follow.

The area north and west of Glasgow right up to the top of Scotland is known as the Highlands. It consists of Argyll, Central Highlands, The Great Glen,North and Northwest Highlands, Skye and the Small Islands, the Western Isles, Orkney and Shetland. The landscape here was shaped over thousands of years by geological shifts, glaciers and the fierce weather. The Scottish Highlands make up about two thirds of Scotland but are very sparsely populated. Many people left when the highland Clearances occurred, being evicted from their houses and land and during the Industrial Revolution folks were lured away from the countryside to urban centres to find work.

Inverness is the largest place in the Highlands with a population of around 80,000 and is over a hundred miles from the next nearest major settlement. So, get your shopping in!!!

The Highlands is a wild, spectacularly beautiful region, consisting of mountain ranges (including Great Britain's highest mountain, Ben Nevis, 4406 feet) lochans, sea lochs, wild moorland and has a fantastic coastline, ranging from rocky coves to huge swathes of sand, to complete the picture. The world famous Loch Ness is also found here.Wild life abounds, on land and in water and fishing is a major pastime. Permits have to be purchased for freshwater fishing but sea fishing is free to anyone who wants to try their hand and can be very rewarding.

Don't come to the Highlands if you are party people and enjoy the bright lights. Come purely for the quality of the air, the beauty of the landscape and getting away from it all!! Oh, and the midges.........

Our Highland Holidays

The Scottish Highlands on Virtual Tourist unfortunately do not seem able to be broken down into corresponding regions. This means that this page will consist of places from Argyll in the south of the Highlands, up to Sutherland in the very north of Scotland. I do wish Vitual Tourist would get it's act together with Scottish locations!!!

All of my tips on the Highlands are taken from motorhome holidays in the last ten years and consist mainly of wild camping on loch sides.

Travelling from South Cumbria, we usually set off late afternoon and stop off somewhere enroute to enable us to have plenty of time to find a decent place to camp the following day.

We travel in our coachbuilt motorhome, complete with 3.3 metre inflateable boat and outboard and now have a motorbike which sits on the back of the van. We ALWAYS carry midge hats with us, as often midges can be a real problem in the Highlands, especially on the western coast. We usually stay away for 8 - 10 days, mainly free camping and so far, apart from 2008's holiday to the very north,always on the western coast as the sea lochs are ideal for the boat, not being so prone to the weather's elements.

We try and camp on sea loch sides to enable us to launch our boat easily, as it's quite a weight to manhandle and usually manage to get lots of fishing done from our boat, catching mainly mackerel and pollock, most of which we smoke on our portable smoker.

Where Next?

After nine years of Scottish holidays on the western coast, we realise we are running out of new places to visit! This year, 2008, we travelled to the far north coast, as far as Bettyhill and then drove westwards and southwards, covering places we had not already visited. This included a large chunk of the coastal western highlands, ending up just north of last year's final destination. Next year we will be searching once again for somewhere new. It may be we'll have to head east and forget about the boat, as the sea can be ferocious on this side of the country.

To me, the Scottish Highlands are a wonderful retreat, miles and miles of empty, spectacular scenery with mountains, lochs, rivers and coast all combined. Roads are mostly single track, which are actually great to travel on in a motorhome because although narrow, you know there are plenty of passing places!! Our holidays here are relaxed (on the whole) and some days we will do very little apart from sitting on a lochside and watching for wild life, or boating and fishing, then other days we will fit an enormous amount in and see so much, usually travelling for miles on the tiny roads on the motorbike.One of my great enjoyments is to sight seals and porpoises and this year we actually saw a basking shark, right inshore. What an amazing sight that was and how priveleged I felt to have seen this.Another year, on the island of Mull, we had porpoises swimming around our boat. So exciting!!

Touring the highlands is ideal in a motorhome, setting off and travelling wherever you fancy, stopping whenever you like. We are strange in that we like isolation and solitude and have been really fortunate to have found some beautiful locations to wild camp in and even the weather usually turns up trumps for us!

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Lochs and mountains and fish....
  • Cons:Rain and midges!!!!!!
  • In a nutshell:I suppose our type of Highland holiday is not everybodies cup of tea....
  • Last visit to Highland: Jul 2012
  • Intro Updated Jul 20, 2012
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Comments (20)

  • uglyscot's Profile Photo
    Nov 18, 2011 at 2:01 AM

    Your love of my beloved country shines through. You have travelled so far and produced such great photos. Why not go up the east coast. There some lovely places on the Black Isle and Easter Ross and then the wildness of Sutherland and Caithness.
    Glad to see you made the east coast. I took the new ferry across to Cromarty a few days after it reopened [2011]. Found the crewman is a relative!

  • xaver's Profile Photo
    Nov 27, 2010 at 11:44 PM

    As you said this area is not a cup of tea for everyone, I enjoyed a lot reading your tips, thanks.

  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo
    Mar 3, 2010 at 3:30 PM

    What a serene place and in the nature scene to boot. The sheer beauty is a sight I wish to see someday; in meantime your pictures suffice, though.

  • sourbugger's Profile Photo
    Jan 10, 2009 at 7:46 AM

    that fired a few memeories - especially the applecross drive in an open top MG - wow what a day. thanks for your comments on tuam/ mullingar btw.

  • Vanity666's Profile Photo
    Dec 8, 2008 at 7:20 AM

    Useful as always, with lots of great pictures.... Hey, is that moose roaming the village?

  • Vic5's Profile Photo
    Sep 2, 2008 at 9:32 AM

    Lots of useful info and lovely pictures. A wonderful place.

  • VeronicaG's Profile Photo
    Mar 11, 2008 at 8:55 AM

    Memorable pictures of the Highland area--the rich green grasses and picturesque mountains and lochs. You must have had a terrific time there!

  • cleomedes's Profile Photo
    Mar 8, 2008 at 6:05 AM

    Thanks for visiting my pages. Beautifull pictures of scottish highlands! 4 hours drive north of Kuala Lumpur there are Cameron Highlands (2000 m), tea and fruit plantations founded by scottish people who want to escape the hot humidity.

  • kokoryko's Profile Photo
    May 9, 2007 at 1:27 PM

    Wonderful Scotland; lochs lochs and lochs; I just want to hike there now on the hills above the water! And: nothing strange (to me!) not wanting to be with the crowds!

  • El_Sueco's Profile Photo
    Nov 24, 2006 at 12:53 PM

    Hi Christine, thanks for visiting my HP. I see you have a lot of beautiful pictures in your pages.

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nickandchris

“Take nothing but photographs. Leave nothing but footprints.”

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