From the lush rolling hills to the welcoming energy of its people, Scotland’s natural beauty and rich history draw millions of visitors to its’ stunning highlands ever year. However, why merely fly to Scotland and navigate the land on your own, when you could cycle the mesmerizing North Coast 500 or kayak through the Outer Hebrides? If you’re genuinely looking for off the beaten path experience, check out one of Wilderness Scotland’s coolest adventures of 2019.
Road Cycling: Cask & Castles
Cycle along the breathtaking river banks of the Spey, take a private tour of the Culloden Battlefield and enjoy the epicurean adventure with lunch at Cawdor Castle on this leisurely, seven-day cycle tour of Scotland’s whiskey country. Appealing to both novice and seasoned riders, the trip offers a flexible itinerary. The week is spent in a country house hotel outside the charming town of Grantown-on Spey, alleviating the need for unpacking daily. From there, enjoy leisurely mornings rides through quaint villages on your way to visit museums, castles, and distilleries.
Sea Kayaking-The Outer Hebrides
Combining the multifaceted worlds of the specular sea with the few hidden gems left in Europe, this tour takes guests on a kayaking adventure to some of the wildest islands in the country: the Outer Hebrides. Paddle through turquoise waters for an up-close look at the iconic Standing Stones of Callanish and catch a glimpse of playful pods of dolphins along the way. Spend the first two nights on the island in a bunkhouse at a thatched heritage village, on the west coast of Lewis. The following three nights are an adventurer’s dream. Spend days exploring the untouched beauty of the uninhabited islands of Scarp and Taransay, and the evenings setting up camp along the white sand beaches.
Road Cycling: North Coast 500
Travel one of the world’s most magnificent roads as you cycle the North Coast 500 in a week-long guided tour. From the beauty of the Coigach Peninsula, along with the rugged sea cliffs of Sutherland and John O ‘Groats you’ll stop for a treasure trove of expeditions including a boat journey of Scotland’s highest waterfall. Each night immerse yourself in the charm of a small hotel and taste the local flavors with fresh produce.
Wildlife Adventures: Mull, Staffa & Iona
Explore the Inner Hebriden islands of Mull, Staff, and Iona with curated guides and experience the vast wildlife of the remote islands. Spend the first two nights of the journey in the picturesque seaside village of Port Appin followed by four nights in Staffa, home to Fingal’s Cave where you’ll absorb the beauty of the sea spotting minke whales and basking sharks along the way. On your return journey, visit Whiskey Cave where the ruins illicit stills used to make moonshine are visible. Get your adrenaline pumping with a hike to the highest point of the cliffs – a perfect observation spot for viewing the UK’s largest bird of prey, the white-tailed eagles. The final night is spent nourishing the spirit on the mystical isle of Iona. Visit St. Oran’s Chapel, rumored to be the resting place for 48 kings of Scotland.
Wilderness Photography Highland Landscapes Tour
Grab your lens and head to the Scottish Highlands. Here you will capture the lush beauty of the fern green hills of Cairngorms National Park and the blue-green sea along the coast of Torridon. Spend three days encapsulated in the Caledonian Forest hiking the ‘jewel of the Cairngorms crown,’ Glen Feshie. After transferring to Torridon, guests will enjoy a dawn or sunset private RIB ride capturing the perfect lighting for photographers to snap dynamic photos of thundering waterfalls, sea eagles and seals.