Highlands and Islands

Scotland’s Highlands & Islands cover a large area in the north-west of Scotland and the surrounding islands. A combination of mountains, lochs, and coastline, it has a diverse landscape with stunning scenery.

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Highlands and Islands Overview

Welcome to Highlands & Islands

Covering such a wide area, the Highlands & Islands have a lot to offer. The Isle of Skye is a popular holiday destination due to its beautiful mountains and coastline, while the Isle of Mull is home to a fantastic array of wildlife. From Eurasian Otters and Killer Whales to Golden Eagles and Red Deer, there are some beautiful creatures to spot.

The city of Inverness sits amongst the Highlands, along with the famous Loch Ness, home to the legend of the Loch Ness Monster.


History

The Isle of Lewis is home to the world famous Calanais Standing Stones, which are around 5,000 years old. Visitors can learn more at the interactive Story of the Stones exhibition.

The Neolithic village of Skara Brae provides a snapshot into what life was like in the Stone Age. The village dates back to before work began on Stonehenge, and it has been preserved remarkably well- making it an interesting place to visit.

Located within the working military barracks of Fort George, The Highlanders’ Museum houses a comprehensive collection of military artefacts which help to tell the story of the Highland Regiments.


Places to Visit in Highlands & Islands

A must on anyone’s list when visiting the Scottish Highlands should be Loch Ness. The freshwater loch has long been a source of mystery thanks to the legend of the Loch Ness Monster (also known as ‘Nessie’). The Loch Ness Museum is divided into seven themed exhibition areas which tell the story of Loch Ness and the mystery surrounding it. Visitors can explore each area to discover 500 million years of history.

The Inverness Museum & Art Gallery also makes an interesting day out and a chance to learn about the history of Highland life. The gallery displays art created by local artists, in both temporary and permanent exhibitions.

Those who have an interest in History can visit the Jarlsholf Prehistoric and Norse settlements in Shetland, or the Ring of Brodgar and the famous Standing Stones of Stenness in Orkney.

The main ferry runs from the fishing town of Ullapool on the mainland, up to Stornoway on the Isle of Lewis and Isle of Harris. Contrary to what you may assume, the Isle of Lewis and Isle of Harris are actually two parts of the same island. Lewis and Harris are known for their mixed landscapes of meadows, mountains, and coastlines- providing plenty of opportunities for hikers and photographers.


Getting There

The M90 provides a strong transport link from Edinburgh up to the A9, which leads all the way north to Scrabster.  The A835 reaches to Ullapool, and the A87 runs across the Skye Bridge, providing access to the Isle of Skye. The A82 stretches down alongside Loch Ness towards Fort William, with the A830 leading east towards Mallaig.

The best way to visit the islands is by travelling from the mainland via ferry or air, while the islands themselves can be navigated via bus or car.


Businesses in Highlands and Islands

Check out these great places to visit in Highlands and Islands

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What to see and do…

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Achmelvich View self catering

102 Achmelvich, Lochinver, Highlands and Islands, IV27 4JB

Hillside Camping Pods

Ceol Na Mara, Hillside, Auckengill, Wick, Caithness, KW1 4XP

Otter Bay Pods

65 Claypark Road, Stornoway, Eilean Siar, Highlands and Islands, HS2 0PJ