"What A Lovely Little Place!" Helmsdale by nickandchris

Helmsdale Travel Guide: 20 reviews and 64 photos

First Port of Call.

We knew nothing of Helmsdale other than motorhomes were welcome. How right this was!

We called in to Helmsdale both on our journey north and then again on our homeward trip.

Our first stop in Helmsdale, we drove down to the harbour and parked in a carpark with picnic tables, right on the harbour side. Pleasant and easy enough.We had a wander around the harbour, admiring the colourful boats and thought "nice place."

On our return journey, we stopped in the village itself, in a small carpark with public toilets looking out to the river and hills behind. We wandered around the town and our overall impression was clean and tidy, plenty of free parking and lots of eating establishments.

Helmsdale sits on the eastern coast of Sutherland on the estuary of the River Helmsdale with the A9 cutting through the village on a new flyover type bridge.Although the town's existence dates back many years, 1814 saw the then planned village constructed by the Sutherland Estate for the re-settlement of communities ousted off lands during the Clearances.

The harbour was home to one of the largest herring fleets in Europe during it's heyday and today still plays a prominent part in the town, offering a safe haven to both pleasure boats and fishing boats.

From Helmsdale, a scenic road meanders along Strath Ullie and Strath Kildonan and northwards to Melvich. Well worth a trip on a sunny day for the stunning scenery.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Plenty of eating places!
  • Cons:None.
  • In a nutshell:A delightful harbour village set in lovely countryside.
  • Last visit to Helmsdale: Aug 2011
  • Intro Updated Aug 29, 2011
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Reviews (4)

Comments (1)

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Mar 2, 2012 at 2:15 PM

    I never knew there was even such a thing as a clearance village. When the Camerons were forced off their land in 1801, six hundred of them were packed onto a ship bound for Canada (where my grandfather was born several generations later).


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