The Northern Highlands and the Western Isles

We’ve compiled the best of the best in The Northern Highlands and the Western Isles - browse our top choices for the top things to see or do during your stay.

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  • 1. Applecross

    Scenic Drive/Tour

    The most exciting way to reach this small community facing Skye is by a twisting, turning coastal road, which leaves the A896 just a few miles...Read More

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  • 2. Assynt and Coigach

    Nature Preserve/Wildlife Refuge

    To the east and south of Lochinver, on the way to Ullapool, lies a different kind of landscape: a vast region of brooding mountains and languid...Read More

  • 3. Calanais Standing Stones

    Archaeological Site/Ruins

    The west coast of Lewis is rich in prehistoric sites, and the most famous of these is the Calanais Standing Stones. Believed to have been positioned...Read More

  • 4. Castle Varrich

    Castle/Palace/Chateau

    Standing on a high rocky outcrop, overlooking both the town and the Kyle of Tongue, Castle Varrich (or Bharrich) was built by Clan Mackay in...Read More

  • 5. Coldbackie Beach

    Beach–Sight

    This windswept bay, 3 miles north of Tongue, is a well-kept secret, offering powder-white sands, spectacular island views, and perfect peace...Read More

  • 6. Drumbeg Loop

    Scenic Drive/Tour

    Bold souls journeying from Kylesku to Lochinver may enjoy taking the interesting single-track B869 Drumbeg Loop. It has several challenging...Read More

  • 7. Eilean Donan Castle

    Castle/Palace/Chateau

    Guarding the confluence of lochs Long, Alsh, and Duich stands the most picturesque of all Scottish fortifications. Eilean Donan Castle, perched...Read More

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  • 8. Fairy Glen

    Geological Site

    What was once a hidden gem has now become just another stop on the ever-expanding Skye tourist trail. Still, come early or late to avoid the...Read More

  • 9. Fairy Pools

    Body Of Water/Waterfall

    One of the most magical sights in Scotland, the Fairy Pools are a spectacularly beautiful collection of waterfalls and plunge pools in the midst...Read More

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  • 10. Glen Torridon

    Viewpoint/Scenic Overlook

    The scenic spectacle of Glen Torridon lies east of Shieldaig; if you're following the A896 from Kinlochewe to Shieldaig, you pass right through...Read More

  • 11. Glenmorangie Distillery

    Winery/Brewery/Distillery

    The light color and delicate floral taste of the Speyside whiskies is exemplified in Glenmorangie, one of the best known of the Highland whiskies...Read More

  • 12. Handa Island

    Island

    Just off the coast of Scourie is Handa Island, a bird sanctuary that shelters huge seabird colonies, especially impressive at nesting time....Read More

  • 13. Inverewe Garden

    Garden/Arboretum

    A highlight of the area, Inverewe Garden has lush plantings tucked away behind a dense barrier of trees and shrubs. This is all thanks to the...Read More

  • 14. Isle of Harris Distillery

    Winery/Brewery/Distillery

    Opened in 2015, this island distillery rapidly gained a reputation for its distinctive gin, infused with coastal botanicals including sugar...Read More

  • 15. Loch Maree

    Body Of Water/Waterfall

    Southeast of Gairloch stretches one of Scotland's most scenic lochs, Loch Maree. Its harmonious setting, with tall Scots pines and the mountain...Read More

  • 16. Misty Isle Boat Trips

    Tour–Sight

    For fantastic views of the Cuillin Mountains and the Inner Hebrides, book a place on one of the Misty Isle Boat Trips. The expansive scenery...Read More

  • 17. Pulteney Distillery

    Winery/Brewery/Distillery

    Unusually for a distillery, Pulteney is situated very close to the town center, and it has been for almost 200 years. The spirit produced here...Read More

  • 18. Quiraing

    Geological Site

    A spectacular geological formation of rocky crags and towering stacks, Quiraing dominates the horizon of the Trotternish Peninsula. It is situated...Read More

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  • 19. Sandwood Bay

    Beach–Sight

    The very definition of off the beaten path , Sandwood Bay is one of Scotland's most spectacular—and most isolated—beaches. The only way to...Read More

  • 20. Smoo Cave

    Cave

    This atmospheric cavern, hollowed out of the limestone by rushing water, feels like something out of a fantasy novel. The combined sea-and-freshwater...Read More

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