Tag Archives: Scotland

One Day in Glasgow | A Local’s Kick-Ass Itinerary

Statue of Wellington on horse with cone on head in Glasgow

Glasgow is the Scottish city with sass. Every visitor’s itinerary features the capital, Edinburgh, and rightfully so as it is beautiful and steeped in history but Glasgow is real and Glasgow is raw.

It’s the big city with contrasting neighbourhoods, deadly music and art scene and most importantly, people with banter.

Edinburgh is Paris, Glasgow is Berlin and here is your one day in Glasgow itinerary curated with love by me, Gemma, the Fifer who ‘grew up’ in Glasgow

Don’t Skip This City 

I (Gemma) moved to Scotland’s Dear Green Place at the age of 17 to attend the University of Glasgow and didn’t leave until my late 20s when I moved to the dark side, Edinburgh. I now reside in Fife.

Glasgow is where I met my life-long friends, formed my political views, danced around my handbag, gained weight by eating chips n’ cheese, lost the weight running around Kelvingrove Park – when I drive into Charing Cross the same feeling consumes me, that feeling that I’m home.

Personally, I don’t think one day in Glasgow is enough to really understand why it is special but I understand itinerary time constraints, I’ve been there.

This itinerary will recommend a variety of options for your day trip to Glasgow so you can pick and choose what suits your travel needs.

Covering Glasgow’s top attractions, the appeal of the five main neighbourhoods, food recommendations, which Glasgow pubs to party at and where to get the perfect shots.

This guide will also cover Glasgow’s past which some would like to hide, its involvement in the slave trade.

Glasgow Street Art

Glasgow’s Neighbourhoods 

In Scotland, we don’t really use the term neighbourhoods but from my extensive travel in North America, I understand categorising areas of a city is the easiest way to help visitors find their bearings.

Glasgow does have distinct areas that can be zoned off making it an easy task.

Beginning with the City Centre you will find both train stations, Glasgow Central and Queen Street at George Square, and the Buchanan Bus Station.

There are three main streets starting with Argyle Street, which runs from the West End to the East, Buchanan Street and Sauchiehall Street.

You will find Glasgow’s main shops on these three streets along with bars and restaurants.

One of the main drags of pubs and clubs for younger revellers is located at the top of Sauchiehall Street, after the shops.

Like with all cities, you want to veer off the big streets to discover the unique pubs like the Butterfly and the Pig which features mismatched furniture from your Gran’s house.

Behind Buchanan Street is the upmarket Merchant City bars, clubs and restaurants as well as Strathclyde University.

This is the area of Glasgow most associated with its slave trade involvement.

At the end of Argyle Street to the east is the Trongate, check out the 13th Note for vegetarian food, Clutha for a welcoming local bar and the Tron Theatre for shows, which takes you along the infamous Barras weekend market, a real Glasgow tradition and passed the Barrowlands, a true Glasgow establishment which houses music gigs, and into the East End.

Don’t miss Barras Art and Design (BaAd) internal courtyard for drinks and shopping, support the local shop owners by purchasing here.

The Barras Glasgow

The East End is also home to Glasgow Cathedral, Provand’s Lordship (oldest house in Glasgow), Glasgow’s necropolis, Glasgow Green (park), the People’s Palace and two breweries.

Running parallel to Argyle Street is Glasgow’s Canal.

Bridges take you over to our third neighbourhood, the Southside.

The Southside has its own parks, Queens and Pollok.

Most of the bars and restaurants are found around Pollokshaws Road, check out the Glad cafe for vegan cakes and intimate gigs.

The West End of Glasgow is where you will find most of the students in the city as well as a stylish crowd.

The main street is Byres Road, which is always busy with brunchers and shoppers.

Visit Oran Mor for gigs and don’t miss the cute cobbled street, Ashton Lane, for drinks under the fairy lights.

In summer, you can find a beer garden on Ashton Lane and there is also a small cinema.

Running along the back of Byres Road is Great Western Road, which is packed with vintage shops, furniture stores and food stops.

The University of the Glasgow is found behind Ashton Lane on University Avenue.

From there you can reach Kelvingrove Park, and museum or Woodlands Road, for comedy see The Stand, down to Charing Cross and back into town.

However, we are not quite finished with the West End yet because at the bottom of Byres Road you will find Argyle Street, which runs into the Finnieston neighbourhood.

Finnieston used to be known purely for the Teuchter or Highlander Triangle because of the three pubs, the Park Bar, The Islay Inn and Snaffle Bit.

Head here to listen to trad music, especially around Celtic Connections time but this area has exploded in the past years.

If you are in town for ethically sourced food, hop into the food trucks at Dockyard Social, and drinks or for dirty burgers and cocktails, try Strip Joint.

Finnieston Road leads to the Clyde, the Ovo Hydro, Glasgow SECC, Clydeside Distillery and the Transport Museum.

Getting Around Glasgow

Glasgow has an extensive network of bus routes, trains and also our beloved underground aka the metro or subway.

Our underground is not difficult to navigate.

It only goes around in one loop then back around the other way.

It is affectionally known as the Clockwork Orange and if you just want to spend your one day in Glasgow boozing you should play the Clockwork Orange drinking game.

The game involves getting off at each stop and having a tipple!

If you want to learn more about the city, save time and your feet, check out the Glasgow hop on/off tour bus with audio guide.

One Day in Glasgow – City Centre and the East End

Morning in Glasgow

Kick-off with a full Scottish breakfast or stacked French toast at Café Gandolfi (Albion Street) or eggs at the trendy Wilson Street Pantry in the Merchant City.

You’re going to need the energy.

Next, it’s a visit to one of Glasgow’s points of interest, the Gallery of Modern Art on Royal Exchange Square.

This museum is located in the former Cunninghame Mansion, home of the tobacco and sugar merchant and one of the prolific merchants of the transatlantic tobacco trade, William Cunninghame of Lainshaw.

In front of the GOMA is the iconic Duke of Wellington who often has a street cone on his head.

Glasgow Duke of Wellington Statue with cone on head

Next mooch through the Merchant City keeping your eyes peeled for the street art murals and more links to Glasgow’s slave trade involvement such as (Tobacco Lord, James) Wilson Street and (John) Glassford Street (tobacco plantation owner in Virginia and Maryland).

Glasgow is yet to recognise that these street names celebrate Scots who enslaved people for profit.

Other cities with similar involvement, such as Bristol, England, have created museums and made some changes.

Street art murals Glasgow

Afternoon in Glasgow Itinerary

Go slightly off-piste to grab a sandwich at the chic takeaway, Piece (100 Miller St), jamming to the tunes while you wait on your ‘Jerk Off’ or grab a vegan lunch at The Glasvegan at St Enoch Square.

Head back east via Argyle Street towards the Trongate and onto Barrowlands Park.

Count the bands you’ve seen, then promise to come back to watch one live at the Barrowlands.

Walk towards the Barrowlands; if visiting on a weekend, swing by the Barras Market to experience this Glasgow institution set up by Maggie McIver, who died a multi-millionaire in 1958.

If you love music, you will want to join the Glasgow City Music Tours run by music journalists complimenting Glasgow’s UNESCO City of Music status. Grab a bite to eat at BaAd or continue on to the next stop on your Glasgow itinerary.

From here you have two options – park, palace and a pint or God’s house, the graveyard and gin.

Barrowlands Park Glasgow

Option 1: Glasgow Green, Breweries and Lunch

Glasgow Green is where you will find the People’s Palace, which houses a really interesting exhibition on life in Glasgow throughout the ages.

Look out for the washing line poles in the Green too; these were used by locals to dry their clothes!

Take a well-deserved pit stop at West Brewery or Drygate Brewery. Both serve food, beer and other drinks.

The Palais on Duke Street (Denniston) is another hip lunch option.

Peoples Palace Glasgow

Option 2: Cathedral, Necropolis and Provand’s Lordship

Walk towards Castle Street to see Glasgow’s Cathedral; tours are available (one hour long), and donations are welcomed.

Behind the Cathedral, you will find Glasgow’s Necropolis, the giant graveyard that overlooks the city.

From up on the hill, you will get some of the best views of Glasgow, so have your camera ready.

End this history tour at the oldest house in Glasgow, Provand’s Lordship, across from the Cathedral and since you are here, it would be rude not to pop into St Mungo’s Museum to see the Egyptian mummy.

This 2-hour walking tour features the above Glasgow landmarks.

It is run by a real Glaswegian who is happy for you to ask them any question about life in the city!

Glasgow Cathedral blue sky

Take that extra 5-minute walk to see St Mungo himself sprayed on the end gable (not the official name of this street art mural).

Head back to the Merchant City to enjoy whisky cocktails at Buck’s Bar or classic drinks and bar food at Bar Home.

For a real culture shock, head to the charming Alpen Lodge (25A Hope St) for its banging jukebox and live music at the weekends, if you can squeeze in.

Sticking around for the evening? Is it Saturday?

Then get yer dancin’ shoes on because Saturday night is ceilidh night at Sloans.

Add a meal on to make a full night of it.

St Mungo Glasgow Street Art

One Day in Glasgow – City Centre and the West End

Morning Itinerary Options

Follow the above morning itinerary, but after street art spotting at the Merchant City, which continues throughout the city, there are over 22 murals to discover; make your way to Argyle or Buchanan Street underground tube station (subway/metro) to Hillhead Station arriving at Byres Road in the West End.

Alternatively, choose one of the afternoon options if you prioritise those Glasgow tourist attractions.

A few lunch suggestions here, depending on when you are visiting.

At the weekend, head to the Platform food market at the Arches on Argyle Street.

The ex-dance music venue is now home to food trucks selling locally sourced food from Indian food to haggis (Friday-Sunday). Image below.

I recommend the surf and turf slider burger!

Drinks are also available, and the venue is kid and dog-friendly.

During the week you can eat any type of food you want in Glasgow.

For mac and cheese, head to Sloans.

I love Japanese and can recommend Nippon Kitchen (91 W George Stree) for traditional meals/bento boxes and Mikaku (25 Queen Street), which is a modern, neon lights with smoking sake test tubes kinda place.

Fancy tapas? Cafe Andaluz is a consistently good Spanish small restaurant chain in Scotland.

Suga Pasta is a pasta specialist in the centre of town.

If you prefer some pizza, Nonna Said (26 Candleriggs) does Napoli-style pizza and frozen cocktails if starting early…

Or hold off for lunch until you hit the West End.

Platform Food in Glasgow falafel_

Afternoon Itinerary

Enjoy lunch at one of the many cafes/pubs such as Hillhead Bookclub or Hanoi Bike Shop.

Walk through Ashton Lane to University Avenue, aiming for the University of Glasgow’s cloisters for Hogwarts vibes.

Head down the hill and take a right to Kelvin Way, where you will find the Kelvingrove Museum.

Browse the 22 galleries, including work by Charles Rennie Mackintosh, Salvador Dali and my favourite, the Floating Heads by Sophie Caves.

It’s free to enter, by the way.

Love tea? Don’t miss Tchai Ovna (42 Otago Lane).

A tea hut going strong since the year 2000.

I used to spend a lot of time here when I studied at Glasgow Uni.

» Read next | 15 weekend trips in Scotland you have to do 

Floating Heads Installation by Sophie Cave at Glasgow Kelvingrove Museum

Take a stroll through Kelvingrove Park, then if hungry/thirsty, dine/drink at Lebowski’s; White Russians are a must!

If visiting over the weekend, reserve a spot at Dockyard Social for truck food and booze.

Locker 1012 is a pink cafe that sells crazily good cakes.

Alternatively, if finished before 15:30, head back into town for tea and cakes at the Willow Tearooms, which closes at 16:00.

Staying around to go to ‘the dancing’?

Glasgow Clubs

  • SWG3: Specialist nights such as Bongo’s Bingo, disco, techno, and live bands
  • Sub Club: Longest-running underground dance club in the world
  • Arta: live music in the Merchant City, mixed age groups
  • The Berkeley Suite: Thursday-Monday dance and alternative music
  • Pretty Ugly: Indie-pop since 2005
  • Speakeasy: LGBT+ nights Thursday-Sunday
  • Boteco Do Brasil at the Merchant City

Things to do at Night in Glasgow That Don’t Involve Dancing

  • Bowling, but cool kid strikes at VEGA Glasgow
  • Vintage movie house, Grosvenor Cinema
  • Drinks and films at Everyman Glasgow
  • Theatre at the King’s Theatre, The Pavilion, Citizens Theatre or The Tron
  • Bar hopping in town, check out Shilling Brewing Company for craft beer and Stereo for vegan options
  • Ceilidh at Sloans
  • Ice skating at Braehead
  • Bingo, not for the fainthearted

Final Words

So as you can see, Glasgow in a day really is a challenge, but it is a nice taste of what the city has to offer.

As we say in Scotland, haste ye back – and I’m confident you will return for more because of Glasgow’s miles better, a reference to the 80s Glasgow tourism campaign.

North Coast 500 Itinerary: Comprehensive, Honest + Free

North Coast 500 Itinerary Guide Scotland Achmelvich Beach

North Coast 500 spoiler alert. This Scot has a secret to share. I do not mean to alarm or upset but Scotland has been hiding something from you. The north coast has always been there. The turquoise beaches, the fresh fish from line to lips and the friendly locals looking to share a sing-song with you are not new but they definitely are unique and thanks to a strong marketing strategy, the secret is out and Scotland’s North Coast 500 itinerary is on the map. 

The North Coast itinerary is now followed by drivers, cyclists, locals and visitors ticking over the 500 miles (516 to be exact) of ‘Scotland’s Route 66’.

The popular adventure, with four seasons in one day, heading west from Inverness to the top of Scotland’s mainland, John O’Groats, and back down the east coast (or in reverse). This thorough and free NC500 route planner will get you on the road in no time.

Our NC500 Experience

Craig and I (Gemma) made a wise (last minute) decision to stay in the homeland and explore what the North Coast 500 has to offer. I am not a last-minute kind of girl, so cue frantic planning of potential route 500 options which you can now adapt to meet your own travel style and needs.

My Top Tip

Don’t be me, be cool. If you have time – plan ahead, go off the path, be flexible but mindful that the North Coast 500 has blown up over the past year and accommodation books up fast in the summer months. Check out our NC500 accommodation guide.

Oh and word of warning; the further north you go, the stronger the accent gets and the later into the night you drink with the locals, the harder it is to interpret! Ps. We have no affiliation with NC500 at this time. We travel independently and all opinions are our own.

North Coast 500 Map

Before we get started, let’s get our bearings of this Scotland driving route.

Inverness is the starting point at the red target which you can see on the NC500 below.

North Coast 500 Itinerary Route

North Coast 500 Scotland – How Many Days?

One of the most frequent questions I’m asked is – how long does it take to drive 500 miles?

The length of time you spend taking in the sights of this Scottish Highlands road trip really depends on how many days you want to spend in each location, the types of activities you would like to do while on Scotland’s North Coast 500 (hiking, boat tours, whisky?) and quite possibly the availability of accommodation.

We met visitors who zoomed around the route in two days; while VisitScotland suggests up to two weeks.

Do tell us how long you decide to take and why in the comments below.

Stac Pollaidh Ullapool | North Coast 500 Guide

North Coast 500 Itinerary

There is no strict North Coast 500 route – where you stop, stay and play is entirely up to you but here is a flavour of the villages and activities we think make up the best North Coast 500 places to visit.

There’s also no right or wrong direction to drive it.

One thing that is certain, you can’t predict the Scottish weather.

It is possible to experience four seasons in one day, so plan and pack accordingly.

Be sure to pack a good quality waterproof like my new Rupal by Mountain Equipment US / UK.

You may also like our NC500 packing list

John o Groats signpost bright North Coast 500 Scotland_

Inverness to Shieldaig, Torridon (99 miles)

North Coast 500 Itinerary Inverness to Torridon

Inverness is the gateway to the Scottish Highlands!

Visitors can check out the first of many castles on the North Coast 500 – Urquhart Castle.

You may also want to hop aboard the 88ft version of the Titanic or have a tot of whisky and dance at Hootenanny.

If you want to get on the water before the road, Loch Ness boat tours are also available from Inverness.

Culloden Battlefield is also close by (although veering to the east); stand on the ground of the last Jacobite rebellion in 1746.

In Inverness you will find large superstores so you can purchase food and gas/petrol before you hit the road.

The route starts going over the Kessock Bridge on the A9.

Where to Stay in Inverness

Inverness city skyline, bridge, sea, NC500 route

Bealach ‘na Ba, Wester Ross (yes Game of Thrones fans!)

From Inverness, we started our journey to the infamous Bealach ‘na Ba (pronounced Bell-ach-na-baa) in Wester Ross.

At the start of the Bealach ‘na Ba, which is Scottish Gaelic for Pass of the Cattle, there is a sign that warns new drivers not to attempt it!

Bealach na Bar Sign North Coast 500 Scotland_

Like many of the NC500 roads, the Bealach ‘na Ba is an A road also known as a single track road (only one lane for going and coming).

If you are the passenger and have the confidence to take your eyes off the hairpin bends, check out the scenery!

Don’t be surprised to see cyclists pedalling away or campervans trying to get by.

Car window Bealach na Ba Road Scotland Road trip

Our Scottish A roads have areas by the side of the road called ‘passing places’ – it’s customary to pull in and let someone by.

Please do remember that this road is everyday use for locals, not just a challenge for holidaymakers.

Bealach Na Ba NC500 Route


Everyone raves about the beauty of Applecross and rightly so.

Although remote, Applecross village is visited by many tourists and on a dry day they flock to the seated area outside of The Applecross Inn, which is a popular dinner stop (food served 12-9pm) for those who love game meat and fish.

Check out our guide on Scottish food, haggis is not a furry animal that runs about the hills!

At the Inn, I tried langoustine for the first time, while Craig struggled to eat (picky eater). I hope you are ready for delicious fresh fish on this Scotland road trip.

Langostine, Applecross Inn Scotland

Applecross is home to one of the North Coast 500 campsites (you have to reserve your spot, see our NC500 camping article).

Do not camp without purchasing Avon Skin So Soft US / UK as the midges are out in force from May until September in Applecross. Sands beach is approximately 4 miles from the Applecross.

Applecross Inn Scotland, people sitting at lunch

Stunning Shieldaig

Our final stop for the day was Shieldaig, Torridon. This small village is postcard perfect. We stayed at the top of the hill with views of Shieldaig Island on tap.

Shieldaig | North Coast 500 Hotels Guide

There is a campsite located here which I would consider in the future. We dined on a shared stone-baked pizza from the local pub and a few drinks to end day one of our Scotland road trip. 

Shieldaig Torridon | North Coast 500

Shieldaig to Ullapool (123 miles)

North Coast 500 Itinerary Route Torridon to Ullapool

Although the village of Shieldaig is sublime, you’ll be thankful to leave because next up is the experience of driving through the mountains of Beinn Eighe National Nature Reserve.

No, you’ve not taken a wrong turn into New Zealand or Canada – this is Scotland!

If you are looking for a unique stay, Shieldaig Lodge Hotel is one of the few remaining traditional Highland shooting lodges open to the public.


Gairloch is a small village with a couple of sandy beaches (Big Sand and Red Point) and another couple of coffee shops.

Gairloch is home to one of the most scenic golf courses in the country (world), good luck focusing on your swing with views of the Isle of Skye ahead.

There are also boat tours in Gairloch for those looking to try to catch a glimpse of minke, humpback or killer whales.

One of the boat tours available is offered in a glass-bottom boat so you can see what lurks beneath the shores!

Keep an eye out of Bob, the resident seal.

The Gairloch Hotel offers free parking and breakfast and is less than 10 minutes walk to the beach.

Myrtyle Hotel is another popular choice in Gairloch.

NC500 Scotland Beaches

From Gairloch to Ullapool you are spoiled for beaches on the NC500.

Mellon Udrigle Beach (Wester Ross) is the first of that white sand and turquoise waters that legends talk of and I can confirm, it is no myth, they do exist. Bring a picnic and your camera, and kayak?

Mellon Udrigle NC500

Gruinard Bay (Ross and Cromarty) is slightly redder toned and larger. Both beaches have car parks close to the entrance point. Gruinard Bay requires a short walk downhill.

Gruinard Bay, Scotland, sand, sea North Coast 500 NC 500

Ullapool – The Big Village in Ross-shire

Ullapool is the biggest village on the west coast of the North Coast 500, 1500 inhabitants call this place home and many of them have not so hidden talents.

Ullapool is a mecca for music lovers, especially those on the ‘trad scene’, like my good friend Kim. You can see/hear her sing here!

There is always some form of performance, planned or not, kicking off at The Ceilidh Place, The Arch Inn or the Argyll Hotel.

Ullapool is also home to the Stac Pollaidh for visitors hoping to do a self-guided North Coast 500 hike.

Stac Pollaidh Ullapool | NC500 Route

This easy hill walk takes approximately two hours and the views from the top are now amongst my favourite in Scotland.

Car park spaces are available at the bottom of Stac Pollaidh, please keep to the designated hike trail for your safety.

If you have ample time and fancy a sidestep to the Outer Hebrides there are daily ferries to the Isle of Lewis (Stornoway) from Ullapool. We visited Harris and Lewis recently, it really is a special place.

Stac Pollaidh hill, Ullapool Scotland

Where to Stay

For more NC500 accommodation options, check out our guide here.

Ullapool, houses, sea, sky, mountain_

Ullapool – Kylesku Bridge (66 miles)

North Coast 500 Itinerary Route Ullapool to Kylesku Bridge

Ardvreck Castle, Loch Assynt

Within a short drive from Ullapool, you will reach the ruins of Ardvreck Castle and Calda House on the banks of Loch Assynt.

This 15th-century castle was once home to the Macleod Clan then taken over by Mackenzies who then lost the three-story Castle to the Crown.

Calda House, which is closer to the road, was the modern home built by the Mackenzies.

Ardvrek Castle NC 500 Route 500

Lochinver on the Route 500

The main reason people visit Lochinver is to purchase a pie from the Lochinver Larder.

These pies come in sweet and savoury fillings, can be eaten in (£8.45 with salad/£14.35 as a main) or out (£5.35-5.55) or even posted home.

Craig, the pie connoisseur feels that Lochinver pies are overpriced thus leaving a bad taste in his mouth.

The NC500 trip is not cheap; expect a 1/3 mark up on food and on central belt prices. Check out what we spent via our NC500 budget below.

B869 – It’s Incredible

Wow, this road (or loop for us) is special and well worth taking the time to drive along the coast.

This area feels like Star Trek has beamed you up (Scotty) and you’ve landed on the lunar surface. 

The surrounding hills swallow you whole but your escape is possible if you head for the water.

Yes! More of those Highland beaches (Achmelvich Beach and Clachtoll Beach) are tucked away amongst the winding roads and engulfing hills.

Experienced hikers may want to consider the striking Suilven Mountain in the Inverpolly National Nature Reserve which is close to Lochinver.

Personally, I felt that this part of our NC500 itinerary covered plenty for one day. However, we headed to Kylesku Hotel for a coffee, food comes recommended by others but the kitchen was closed so we could not sample it.

Kylesku Bridge

Kylesku Bridge is built over the Loch a’ Chàirn Bhàin, replacing the ferry service in the 1980s.

This is only my opinion but I wouldn’t go out of my way to visit the Kylesku area, you can blame the outrageously overwhelming beauty of the B869 for this advice! 

On night three, we actually returned to Ullapool as we struggled to find accommodation available on the route to Durness.

However, you may want to consider the options detailed in our North Coast accommodation guide.

(Ullapool or) Kylesku Bridge – Durness (42 miles)

North Coast 500 Itinerary Route North Coast 500 Itinerary Route Ullapool to Kylesku Bridge to Durness

Leaving Ullapool (again) head north to Cape Wrath, leave early (and be flexible) if you plan to take the ferry ride over the Kyle of Durness and then the bus to the most northern-westerly lighthouse on the mainland.

Ferry times vary depending on the time of year, and weather throughout the day.

There was no afternoon ferry when we arrived. Check the Cape Wrath website for details.

The trip lasts three hours and there are no bathroom facilities so be prepared before you leave. The closest facilities in Durness.

Did you know that the MOD owns a large part of Cape Wrath and use it for training?

Craig’s Dad is an ex-MOD diver and has spent a fair bit of time in the waters up here!

Balnakeil Beach

As you drive up the northwest you will see this massive stretch of white sand poking out in the distance.

On approach you will discover that Balnakeil Beach is different from the others; it has sand dunes layered up at the back of it with cows grazing on any spare grass! 

Balnakeil Beach North Coast 500


Durness is known for two things – Smoo cave and Chocolate Mountain. Smoo Cave is free to enter and open every day of the year.

It costs £5 to take the small boat ride deeper into the cave where the tour guides tell you about their successful discoveries and scary encounters (May-September). Wear closed-toe footwear.

To get to Smoo Cave, drive past the tourist information centre and park at the YMCA hostel or the cave car park (can get busy). Walk down the pathway to the beach and cave entry.

Chocolate Mountain is tucked away in Durness’s Balnakeil Craft Village and sells ‘the world’s best chocolate’ and truffles at tourist prices.

Hot Chocolate, cup, plate, table, Chocolate Mountain North Coast 500 Durness_

The village is also home to the John Lennon Memorial Garden, the Beatles singer used to holiday in Durness with his family as a kid and visited again with his own. 

Durness has one of the most beautiful campsites I’ve seen but if windy there is limited coverage. The site has a restaurant/pub on the side of it (was closed until 18:30 when we visited).

Sidestep Trip: Handa Island

Tarbet of the northwest, not to be confused with Tarbert on the west coast near Oban, is the gateway to Handa Island where you can do a spot of puffin watching (we ran out of time, let us know how it goes).

Tarbet is reached after Unapool (near Kylesku) and Scourie but before Cape Wrath and Durness.

Durness – John o’ Groats (90 miles)

North Coast 500 Itinerary Route Durness - John o Groats

Borgie Glen

For a really unique thing to do on the North Coast 500, visit Borgie Glen to meet The Unknown.

The sculpture by artist Kenny Hunter can be found on the Lonesome Pine Trail which is a short 3/4 mile trail.

Thurso (Caithness)

The northernmost town of the Scottish mainland, Thurso, is known for its surf!

Yes, surfing in Scotland. Thurso East is located at the mouth of the Thurso River and has hosted surf competitions.

Move over Gold Coast * waves *, the east coast is in town. Naturally, we don’t get the sun like Australia so dress accordingly (suits not shorts).

For more on what to pack – read our NC500 packing list.

Thurso North Coast 500 Scotland_

We stayed at the Thurso Camping and Caravan Park which we managed to get a spot last minute.

The site facilities are basic but the shower water is hot.

You can see Orkney from the campsite!

This private 2-bed apartment is ideal for couples or families. It has a sitting room and washing machine which is great for this stage of the NC500 route.

Thurso Campsite Campervan North Coast 500 Scotland_

Dunnet Head (Caithness)/John o’ Groats

At Dunnet Head, you’ve reached the ‘end of the road’ – the most northern tip of mainland Scotland! 

There isn’t much to see here bar a sign telling you you’ve reached this Scotland highlight.

The drive up and down is nice but if you’re short on time, you could skip it.

Dunnet Head North Coast 500 Scotland_

Visitors can take the scenic coastal path from John o’ Groats to Duncansby Head (reminds me of the Isle of Skye) and the Stacks of Duncansby.

If the visibility is poor, is quite easy to miss the Duncanbsy Stacks and if you do you will be gutted!

We had whiteout then rain, a double rainbow then sunshine within 15 minutes up there!

Duncansby Lighthouse Rainbow North Coast 500 Scotland_

To get to the Stacks, face the lighthouse and walk over the field with sheep to your right.

You’ll walk for around 5 minutes until the tear-shaped stacks come into sight.

The Castle of Mey is a fortress dating back to the 16th century located between Duncansby Head and your next stop, John o’ Groats.

Duncansby Stack on North Coast 500 Scotland_

John o’ Groats – Wick (16.4 miles)

Alight at John O’Groats for a sidestep to Orkney or just take a picture of that famous white sign and hit the road again.

There isn’t too much to see at John o’ Groats itself but you can grab lunch, an ice cream and a picture at the iconic sign then hop back in the car or take a ferry to Orkney.

You can do a day trip to Orkney if you are limited in time but really you’d want at least two days on the island.

John o Groats Boats Houses North Coast 500 Scotland_

Note: Feel free to stop at John o’ Groats before Duncansby Head if you are driving the anti-clockwise. It doesn’t really matter which attraction you do first.

Driving down the coast from John o’ Groats to Wick look out for Old Keiss Castle overlooking Sinclair’s Bay and Ackergill Tower which used to be a 5-star hotel.

If you prefer to stay in the area, check out these options.

John o Groats signpost Gem North Coast 500 Scotland_

Wick – Golspie (52 miles)

There are handful for cafes, restaurants and takeaway shops in Wick if you are ready to eat.

Wick is separated into Wick proper, and Pulteneytown and a river called Wick River runs through it.

If using public transport, Wick has a train station.

Wick Bridge Flower North Coast 500 Scotland_

Back on the A9 road again, if coming from west to east, keep an eye out for the striking white building on the cliff around Dunbeath. That’s Dunbeath Castle, a luxury wedding venue.

Stop for food or tea and cake at the adorable River Bothy in Berriedale.

This cafe as indoors and outside seating, incredible cakes and a gift shop.

River Bothy Cafe Berriedale North Coast 500 Scotland_
River Bothy Cafe in Berriedale North Coast 500 Scotland_
Pancakes River Bothy Cafe in Berriedale North Coast 500 Scotland_

Helmsdale (Sutherland) town itself has a parking, a couple of pubs with beer gardens and a harbour.

This was a resettlement town built in 1814.

Helmsdale North Coast 500 Scotland_

On the road to Golspie, the water by Victoria Road has patches of turquoise, a reminder you are in the Scottish Highlands! Brora is the next village

Just before entering Golspie you must stop at Dunrobin Castle!

This fairytale stately home on the east coast of the Highlands has 189 rooms, some of which the public can view.

Dunrobin Castle pond gardens North Coast 500 Scotland_
Dunrobin Castle Dining Room North Coast 500 Scotland_
Dunrobin Castle Painting North Coast 500 Scotland_

Its the gardens which win it for me. Huge rhubarb plants, ponds with fountains, well-manicured grass and tree tunnels.

A photographer’s dream!

The gardens and castle overlook the Dornoch Firth.

This area isn’t just about beauty though.

This is where locals were forced to move from their fertile land during the Highland Clearances.

Some left voluntarily, others had no choice when their homes were burnt down with their possessions still in it.

Dunrobin Castle Craig Gemma Fountain gardens North Coast 500 Scotland_
Dunrobin Castle Gardens North Coast 500 Scotland_
Dunrobin Castle Gemma Holding Hat North Coast 500 Scotland_

Golspie – Inverness (52 miles)

The last leg of the east coast of the NC500 takes you down to The Black Isle which is a collection of villages and hamlets.

Head over the Dornoch Firth Bridge, popping into The Glenmorangie Distillery for a tour.

If you like golf, enjoy a game at Tain Golf Course.

Drive over Cromarty Bridge to the town of Cromarty for a coffee or a meal at Sutor Creek and check out the Scottish geologist and writer, Hugh Miller Cromarty Trail for heritage homes and buildings.

Cromarty is a great base for the Black Isle, check out this garden studio for availability.

Cromarty Bridge Fields North Coast 500 in Scotland_
Hugh Miller Trail Cromarty on North Coast 500 in Scotland_
House Cromarty on North Coast 500 in Scotland_

I like this area of the Highlands as it feels like real life with the North Sea oil rigs resting in the Cromarty Firth.

Cromarty Oil Rigs North Coast 500 in Scotland_

Next stop is Rosemarkie (Fortrose) for the family-friendly Groam House Museum to find out about Pictish life.

Fairy Glen is close to Rosemarkie which is 3K hike with waterfalls.

Groam House Museum Flowers Fortrose on North Coast 500 in Scotland_
Groam House Museum Mosiacs on North Coast 500 in Scotland_

Finally, put on a layer and pull up at Chanonry Point to see the local dolphins who like the shallow Moray Firth waters for fishing!

There’s a pebble beach which looks over to Fort George, this is where we spotted the dolphins doing some relaxed diving in the distance.

There is also a golden sand beach for sandcastles.

Parking is available at Chanonry Point.

Chanonry Point Lighthouse Scottish Highland NC500
Chanonry Point Lighthouse Craig Scottish Highland NC500
Chanonry Point Beaches Scottish Highland NC500

NC 500 Itinerary – Castles

If one of the main reasons you’ve chosen the NC500 route is for its castles and ruins you are in for a treat. From Inverness clockwise here is a list of some of the castles you may want to explore or look out for.

  • Inverness Castle visitor attraction
  • Ardvrek Castle ruins     
  • Old Keiss Castle ruins
  • Castle of Mey visitor attraction
  • Dornoch Castle Hotel which you can stay in
  • Mansfield Castle
  • Dunrobin Castle

You can actually stay in the castle on the east coast! There are four options to choose from and they are affordable starting at £120 in low season. Read our guide to hotel castles here.

» Hey, Outlander fans! Click here to read about the hit TV filming locations

North Coast 500 Itinerary Route John o Groats to Inverness

Distilleries on the North Coast 500

The water of life, whisky, plays such a large part of Scottish culture and tourism.

For those who like a dram and/or a wee story during their holiday should check out one of the many whisky distilleries dotted around the east coast of the NC500 such as Dunnet Bay Distillery (Dunnet near John o’ Groats), the Balblair Distillery or Glenmorangie (close to Tain), Dalmore Distillery, GlenWyvis, and Glen Ord Distillery (near Dingwall).

Glenmorangie Distillery North Coast 500 in Scotland_

If you are limited on time and whisky sampling is your goal, I would suggest heading east first!

There is a zero-tolerance for drink driving in Scotland.

This means that the ‘day after’ is just a big of an issue as the night before.

Please ensure you have a designated driver or dip into the distilleries with a pre-arranged bus/driver tour.

If whisky wets your whistle you want to head west to the Isle of Islay and pay homage to her eleven distilleries (best make it a long weekend trip). 

» Read next | How to plan a road trip in Scotland

North Coast 500 Itinerary Distilleries


500 (ish) miles later your NC500 tour is over, get out of the car and consider bagging one of our many Munros to stretch out the legs.

Camper Fortrose on North Coast 500 in Scotland_

North Coast 500 Tips
GPS, Mapping and Not Killing Each Other

We trialled using Google Maps to guide us through the NC500 and with a bit of planning it worked well.

For the most part, your 3/4G will not work (write out/screenshot accommodation addresses and telephone numbers) when in WiFi and the areas you would like to visit using the directions function of Maps, hit the three dots and select ‘add the route to home screen’.

Before you leave your accommodation, start the directions; you can’t do this out of WiFi/4G.

The blue dot will become your best friend.

Note, we could not add Cape Wrath or Balnakeil Beach to our North Coast 500 map.

It is against the law to use your mobile/cell phone while driving in the UK and the roads you are navigating are going to be tough at times so I would recommend a phone holder attached to your dashboard.

Try one with a magnetic part you place in between your phone and cover which keeps the phone neatly attached to the holder.

You can also download this free NC500 map.

Wheelchair users, you may find this guide useful. 

» You may also like out guide | How to plan a road trip in Scotland

How Much Does the NC500 Cost?

Dig deep Scotland lovers; this can be an expensive ride! Here’s an example of pricing along the route.

  • Accommodation: Ranging from £68+ per night
  • Campervan pitch on campsites: £28-35
  • Food: Plated fish and chips £8-10
  • Ice cream cone: £2
  • Dunrobin Castle: £12

Naturally, you could do this cheaper by opting for the youth hostels and campsites on the NC500 or you could go all out and stay in castles. Our accommodation guide has options for every budget.

This was an independent trip. This means we were not hosted by Visit Scotland, regional tourist boards, hotels or any tours.

Animals on the NC500

This route is rugged which means you will not only be sharing the road with locals but also wildlife.

Expect to see sheep, deer, cows, Heilan coos if you look hard, and puffins if you do the Handa Island day trip.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Driving in Scotland Difficult?

We drive on the left in the UK, which I’m sure you are aware of. It is more common for drivers in the UK to use manual (shift stick) cars however it is not uncommon to hire an automatic car.

Unbelievably, there are no road signs indicating that you are on the North Coast 500 route, which baffles me since it is so heavily marketed.

However, there are the typical brown tourist information signs which indicate where tourists hotspots are.

Remember to check your oil, water and air tyre levels before you leave each day.

Petrol stations are available on the NC500, petrol is obviously more expensive than other areas of the country and it is wise to fill up whenever you see a station (some are manned, others are self-use machines like in Durness). 

If this itinerary seems daunting, let someone else do the driving! There are now three NC500 tours.

What About Hiring a Car?

Car hire is available in the main airports or cities.

Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen, Inverness city and airports all have car rental pickups, Dundee city also has options.

You will need your driving license and a credit card to hire a car in the UK. I used to work for Avis Rent Car in Edinburgh and Glasgow (while I studying at university), I always recommend taking out the additional insurance.

Car rental companies bump up the charge of damage. Here’s more advice on international car hire

Arriving in Edinburgh? you may like our guide to 101 things to do there.

Scotland flag, skyline, shadow Craig, Stac Pollaidh, Craig, Ullapool Scotland_

Which Way Should I Do the North Coast 500

This is a personal preference. If you are a whisky lover, start at the east and hit the many distilleries with a designated driver then you will have the thrill of the west coast as you hit the second half.

If you love turquoise seas with white sands start at the West Coast and take on the Bealach na Ba into Applecross!

Which way to do you go? Tell me in the comments below!

Is the North Coast 500 Signposted?

There are signs but these don’t mention the NC500 so you will need to know what location you are looking for.

The signs are the general brown tourist information signs (because the NC500 was set up by a collection of private companies and not Visit Scotland).

John o Groats signpost North Coast 500 Scotland_

Where Does the North Coast 500 Start?

The official start is at Inverness but there are many areas you might want to explore before you go such as Glenfinnan (Harry Potter train viaduct), Kyle of Lochalsh (Eilean Donan Castle) and the Cairngorms.

What is Camping Around the NC500 Like?

The NC500 can be done on a budget thanks to hostels and campsites dotted around the route.

There are many well-equipped campsites dotted around the NC500 route, some need to be booked in advance, others are a free-for-all. Many welcome motorhomes, as well as tents and, have electrical spots for rent.

Please consider that the NC500 camping grounds have been holiday destinations for families long before the route was created.

You can wild camp on the NC500 too! Do we aware of the wild camping rules which we discuss extensively in our guide to camping on the North Coast 500.

Oh, I can’t forget to mention the wee problem of midges! Keep reading to find out more.

Thurso Campsite Campervan Window North Coast 500 Scotland_

Is the North Coast 500 suitable for motorhomes?

Yes, it is but they are an annoyance to locals. Work on driving your motorhome (rented or owned) before heading north and do be cautious of how tricky the Bealach na Bá is to drive in a small car never mind large motorhome.

Check out our guide to camping and motorhomes on the NC500

Tractor Road North Coast 500 Scotland_

When is the Best Time to Visit NC500?

Yes, it’s true; Scotland’s weather is temperamental.

The spring to summer months of April to July enjoys more sunshine but the weather can change quickly to rain and the wind.

The winter months of November to February are best to be avoided.

The weather can have a great impact on Scotland’s infrastructure, A roads become more dangerous and ferries are prone to closure.

Naturally, Scotland sees more daylight in the summer months where you can expect up to 17 hours, this drops to as low as 6 hours in winter so consider this when planning your Scotland NC500 trip. Then there are our local fiends, the midges.

What are Midges?

Nicaragua has Mosquitos; the North Coast 500 has midges! Midges are small flying insects that nip the skin and leave a mark.

These bites are often itchy, some people swell up in reaction to the bites (bizarrely I react like Quasimodo to mosquitos abroad but not midges in Scotland), others do not even notice them.

How do I Avoid Midges?

You can’t, they are attracted to the C02 in your breath, so unless you stop breathing (I don’t suggest this option) you are most likely to meet one and then their pals along the way. After they recognise the CO2 they look for other things like odour, heat, movement, until they find your juicy skin.

You can, however, avoid areas of high midge count like still and humid conditions at dusk (like you would with mosquitos).

They don’t like the wind so although it may be ruining your holiday photos, it is keeping the mass midge party at bay.

They hate hot summers, we don’t but they don’t happen often unfortunately although we cannot complain since we have that lush green landscape.

How Can I Repel Midges?

There are two options, avoid the above conditions and times of year (tricky if you are camping or even moving out side a car) or purchase a repellent such as Avon So Soft US / UK.

That’s Midges Sorted, How Do I Avoid The Crowds?

The Scottish schools go back the second week in August so Summer officially ends for families then.

The holidays begin at the end of June so, to avoid the route as its busiest I would suggest crossing out July.

Avoid the busier towns like Ullapool (I don’t really want to say that because I love Ullapool) and opt for camping stead of booked accommodation.

The Dark Side of the North Coast 500

I was elated to see my home country gain so much attention through the North Coast 500 advertisement however not everyone is.

Many locals feel that the infrastructure around the Highlands is not set up for this number of family cars, sports cars and campervans.

A park ranger we met in Ullapool showed disgust to the way that holidaymakers were treating the NC500 environment especially to those who are using the side of the road as a toilet (for a number two).

They said that there is a greater need for facilities. So please be cautious that you are using the roads that locals use every day, treat nature with respect and use the flipping loos on your coffee stops.

Scotland operates on a ‘leave no trace’ policy. Please respect that. Take everything with you, including fruit skin which takes time to decompose.

Littering is a criminal offence so you will be fined if caught. Just don’t be a moron.

Motorhomes and campervans should dispose of waste at one of the designated campsites on the NC500. Read more here.

Duncansby Lighthouse Rainbow Craig Campervan North Coast 500 Scotland_

Our NC500 Guides

We have written extensively about the NC500 to help you during your planning:

Go Slow Cromarty North Coast 500 in Scotland_

Final Words

Whether you are in browsing or in planning mode, I hope you’ve enjoyed our free North Coast 500 itinerary.

The beauty of the NC500, and Scotland overall, is that there’s so much to see, whether you have two days or two weeks, you’ll be left wanting more so… haste ye back!

Achmelvich Beach Scotland NC500

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Outlander Tours Scotland Review For 2023

Outlander Tours Scotland Outlander Locations in Scotland

Get transported to your favourite Outlander locations! Outlander tours (Scotland) will whisk you away to walk in the footsteps of Jamie and Claire at the grand entrance of Castle Leoch, maybe pick herbs in Claire’s herb garden and stroll the cobbled streets of Cranesmuir.

Our guide to Outlander tours in Scotland includes day trips and multi-day tours from Edinburgh and Glasgow as well as a popular Edinburgh walking tour.

Outlander, originally a series of books by author Diana Gabaldon, has taken the world by storm since being made into a British-American hit TV show.

Outlander has fans worldwide and sees visitors flocking to Scotland to tour the sites used during filming. Starting in 1945 Scotland Claire, played by Catriona Balfe, is a wartime nurse who returns to her husband Frank (Tobias Menzies) who whisks her away to ‘Inverness’ for a second honeymoon.

Here, after finding a collection of standing stones, Claire is hurtled back in time to Jacobite Scotland where she meets Highlander Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughan).

The Outlander filming locations, mainly in Scotland, have seen their visitor numbers double, even triple and you too can see the sights of this hit show with Outlander tours from Edinburgh and Glasgow.

But aren’t some seasons set in the US? Don’t be fooled by Jamie and Claire’s immigration to North Carolina, Scotland’s locations were still used for filming!

Outlander tours Scotland

Best Outlander Tours Scotland

Why should you book a tour of Scotland’s Outlander sites? There are a couple of reasons why visiting the hotspots as part of a tour is better than doing it alone.

Tranport in Scotland

Although Scotland’s cities are well connected by train lines, many of the Outlander filming locations are not in the city.

For example, the stunning Hopetoun House’s (season one, two, three and four) closest train station is Dalmeny (South Queensferry) but it takes at least one hour to walk from Dalmeny to Hopetoun House. Scotland’s infrastructure is notoriously poor.

The further north you go, the worse it gets. Expect Sunday service for buses every day of the week.

Our ‘A’ rounds (single track) in the Highlands and on the West Coast are not for everyone, cautious drivers may not enjoy the experience.

The Outlander Effect

The Outlander Effect is real, most locations have seen an increase in footfall (more people visiting = busy), Doune Castle enjoyed a 91% increase in customers!

Tours often have pre-arranged time slots so you don’t have to fight your way through the crowds.

Expert Guides

You get more bang for your buck with Outlander tours. They include transport, knowledgeable and passionate guides and often entry fees.

Local History

Tour guides will give you more than just Outlander information, you get to spend time with a real local. One of my favourite things about tours is being able to ask questions about real-life topics!

Outlander Community

Bonus reason – you get to spend the duration of the trip with fans, I’m sure you can find at least one thing in common (Jamie?)

Quick Look – Outlander Tours

Mrs Baird B&B Jamie Outlander Falkland Scotland_

Outlander Tour Edinburgh 

Tours from Scotland’s capital leave daily which means visitors do not need to attempt to tackle our infamous A roads or drive on the left.

There are a few options for Outlander day tours from Edinburgh so you can prioritise what you want to see.

Affordable Outlander Day Tours from Edinburgh

This full-day tour by a very respectable tour company in Scotland is not private but kinder on the purse strings and touches base at the following Outlander scenes:

  • Visit Doune Castle aka Castle Leoch.
  • Culross starring as Cranesmuir.
  • Falkland – Inverness 1940s (see me doing the Jamie pose below!)
  • Dysart Harbour – Le Havre Port.
  • Meeting point: 60 High Street, Edinburgh, Scotland, EH1 1TB.
  • Price £50 per person.

It’s not just an Outlander tour but also a Scottish history tour. You hear about the wars and celebrities that inspired Diana Gabaldon in her writing. You can read about my tour experience here.

» » This tour sells out – Book your spot now « « 

Outlander Edinburgh Tour (In The City)

Short on time but still want some Outlander fun?

This Edinburgh Outlander walking tour might just scratch that itch.

Although no substitute for seeing the real filming sites, still popular with our readers.

  • Starting at Edinburgh’s Royal Mile, your guide (in clan character) will take you through the Old Town telling tales of the Jacobite Rebellion.
  • See the famous Tolbooth Jail and Canongate Kirkyard.
  • Price £25.

» » This tour sells out – Book your spot now « « 

Private Tour Guided – Good for Small Groups

Enjoy this eight-hour small bus tour of Scotland’s Outlander literary locations.

Highlights include:

  • Castle Leoch, home to Colum MacKenzie.
  • Captain Jack Randall’s Stronghold.
  • The train station where Claire and Frank said their goodbyes.
  • Price: £900 for 6 member group.

» » Check availability of this tour led by a former member of Scottish BAFTA « 

Outlander Tours Glasgow

This Outlander day tour leaves from Scotland’s biggest (and best?!) city, Glasgow and not only focuses on the show locations but also the Jacobite story.

The 4th oldest university in the English speaking languages is used as the show’s Harvard University where Frank teaches.

Close to the University, you will find Kelvingrove Park aka Outlander’s Boston Park. In the city centre, head to the Glasgow Cathedral to see where Claire volunteers as a nurse at L’Hospital Des Anges in Paris.

Highlights include:

  • Doune Castle, home of the Clan MacKenzie as well as Deanstoun Distillery, Jamie’s cousin’s warehouse.
  • Culross (Claire’s garden) and Falkland (Inverness) in the Kingdom of Fife.
  • Blackness Castle headquarters of Black Jack Randall.
  • Meeting point: 266 George Street, Glasgow (08:30).
  • Notes: refreshment stops along the way including a stop at Deanston Distillery.
  • Price £39 per person.

» » Popular Glasgow tour check availability and book here « « 

Culross Palace Fife - Outlander Scotland Locations

Inverness Outlander

So you’ve made it to Scotland’s real Inverness and now you are looking for an Outlander tour?

There is a one-day tour which shows you where Outlander got its influence from.

This Full-Day Outlander features the real Culloden (the filming location was Glen Affric) where Claire and Jamie said their tearful goodbyes. 

It is also where the Jacobites, who were supporters of the Roman Catholic James VII of Scotland and II of England, took their last breath as they fought for their country on 16th April 1746.

The tour also includes a stop at Clava Cairns, a Loch Ness cruise (optional), lunch at Beauly and then a dram at a Highland whisky distillery.

Culloden Scotland
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10 Outlander Filming Locations – Where is Outlander Filmed?

1. Clava Cairns/Culloden

Although Culloden wasn’t officially used for filming, the event is such a major part of the series so visiting the battlefield is an emotional and saddening experience.

The award-winning visitor centre has brilliant exhibitions and a 360-degree immersion theatre puts you right in the centre of the battle.

There is an audio guide to listen to while you walk the battleground so you can listen to Gaelic, songs and tales and immerse yourself in the story of this momentous battle.

Nearby are the amazing Clava Cairns standing stones, including a majestic cairn with an atmospheric split.

However, it must have lost its magical power as there have been no reports of transportation, only visitors staying firmly in this century, disappointingly.

You may also like our Scotland-inspired gifts including Outlander ideas!

Clava Cairns Outlander
Clava Cairns Outlander

2. Highland Folk Museum

The Highland Folk Museum in Newtonmore is a favourite location used by the Outlander production team.

With the mighty Cairngorm mountains set as a backdrop, the 17th-century township really makes you feel like you are in the heart of the gritty Jacobite Highlands and lucky for us, it is live all year around.

You can witness how people used to live.

The township was used in the rent episode where Claire helped Dougal to collect the rent.

Every year the museum holds an Outlander day where you can “waulk the wool”, sing traditional songs and meet traditional crafters, Highland cows and fellow fans.

3. Doune Castle, Outlander 

Another of the most popular locations, Doune Castle in Perthshire, was the setting for Outlander Castle Leoch, home to Colum MacKenzie and his Clan.

This 14th-century courtyard castle was also used for Monty Python and the Holy Grail and (this is a lesser-known) it was Winterfell in the pilot of Game of Thrones.

A castle of many talents! Update 2018, Netflix Outlaw King also used Doune Castle as Black Douglas’s home. Find out more here.

Doune Castle Scotland
Doune Castle, Outlander

4. Falkland Outlander

Falkland, in the Kingdom of Fife, stood in for 1945 and 1960’s Inverness. The original thatched roof houses, cobbled streets and the pretty square made it the ideal location. Here you’ll find

  • Mrs Baird’s B&B (which is actually functioning accommodation, check out availability at The Covenanter Hotel).
  • Bruce Fountain where Jamie watches Claire in the window.
  • Campbell’s Coffee Shop (same name in real life).
  • Farrell & Sons Hardware store [Fayre Earth shop – repainted] is where Claire sees the blue vase.

Pre-Outlander effect, Falkland was a lovely village to visit, it’s great to see the show give visitors a catalyst to visit.

Falkland features as the 1940’s location in season one and then is revisited in season two when we skip to the 1960s Inverness.

Mrs Baird B&B Outlander Falkland Scotland_

5. The Reaper Tall Ship

Sailing off into the distance on the Cristabel might not be possible but you can see the two-masted ship itself in the harbour of the fishing village of Anstruther in Fife.

Anstruther is a popular Summer village in its own right, famous for its fish and chips!

Le Harve Port is actually located at Dysart Harbour near Kirkcaldy and also worth a visit to see where Claire and Jamie escape to France from.

Heading to Fife? Don’t miss our ultimate guide on what to do there.

6. Culross

If you want to see first hand what Scottish villages were like in the 17th-century visit Culross in the Kingdom of Fife.

This time warp is often said to be one of the most picturesque villages in the UK. Culross was used a lot during filming as Cranesmuir.

The ochre (yellow) Palace was used in filming and Claire’s herb garden is, in fact, the palace’s gardens, which you can explore.

The Mercat Cross was where the little boy had his ear nailed to the post and Geillis Duncan’s house is behind it.

A lot of Outlander action for such a small (but cute) village.

Dunfermline, next to Culross made it into the best places to visit in Scotland this year. Find out more here.

7. Bo’ness Railway               

If you fancy a trip on a steam train while you are in Scotland why not visit Bo’ness Railway Station and take a journey on the same train Claire waved from? You can even have afternoon tea on board!

Boness Railway Station - Outlander Tours

8. Blackness Castle

The formidable Outlander Blackness Castle, overlooking the Firth of Forth was the perfect choice as the show’s version of Fort William.

The castle was once used as a prison and a military fort and was built purely for defence.

The courtyard was the setting for the horrific scene of Jamie’s whipping and where Claire and Jamie ran along the walls to escape.

Blackness Castle Outlander

9. Midhope Castle aka Lallybroch

Yes, you can visit the home of Jamie at Lallyborch and see where he was flayed (whipped) at the archway.

This spot is usually very busy with tourists so you have to be patient!

The building cannot be accessed, only the exterior was used in filming Outlander, like many of the locations on the Outlander tours.

Midhope Castle Lallybroch Outlander

10. Outlander Standing Stones 

So where is Craigh na Dun? Unfortunately, it doesn’t exist, but you can see where it was filmed if you look hard enough.

On the long, winding road between Queens View, near Pitlochry, to the village of Kinloch Rannoch, you may spot the hill, with the trees.

The producers added the stones. I have travelled this road at least ten times since I knew of the filming and I’ve yet to find it but I know others have. I know it’s on the left-hand side, that’s about it, so if you happen to spot it let me know.

Bonus: Glencoe

Glencoe is shown off beautifully at the very start at the opening credits and it’s the perfect place to truly see what makes Scotland so special.

If you ask any Scottish travel lover what their favourite place is in Scotland most will say Glencoe.

The huge, majestic mountains tower above you as you travel through and the scenery around you is truly stunning.

Looking to meet a man in a kilt? Here my guide on where to find them.

Glencoe | Haggis Adventures Skye High 3 Day Review

Frequently Asked Outlander Questions

  • When will the next season of Outlander be aired? The next season will air in June.
  • Where is the Outlander studio? Outlander is filmed at Wardpark Studios at Cumbernauld near Glasgow.
  • Outlander Craigh na Dun – is it real? Unfortunately not, you would have to use your imagination near Kinloch Rannoch to find the location.
  • Where are the standing stones used in Outlander? Like many good things in life, the standing stones are fiction but you can see similar standing stones around the UK.

Outlander Virtual Tour

Follow the steps of Jamie and Claire around Scotland without leaving your home.

All you need is access to Zoom and 1-2 hours to devote to Jamie. Not hard, right?

The super sweet Anne and Emma from the award-winning Mary’s Meanders have lots of experience of running Outlander tours, six years to be exact.

In this online Outlander tour, you join your guide and fellow Outlander fans/friends via conference call and enjoy a tour of some of the below Outlander locations in my home country, Scotland!

For more information and the booking form, click here. Tell them Two Scots Abroad sent you! 

Final Thoughts

These locations are just the start. With more Outlander locations being added every year and Outlander Season 7 confirmed there will always be more.

You can download an Outlander locations map from Visit Scotland and why not consider an Outlander style wedding?!

Save for later + share with others Pin our Outlander map of Scotland

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Are you an Outlander fan?

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» » Not found what you are looking for? Here are all of the Outlander tours in Scotland  « « 

This Outlander tour review is a collaboration with Gemma (Two Scots Abroad) and Nicola (FunkyEllas Travel). Nicola is a Scottish Travel blogger from, you guessed it, Scotland. She likes to inspire people to visit with epic tales from around the country. Nicola explores with daughter and pup and loves nothing better than a forest walk, a castle ruin or a beautiful beach. She loves the outdoors, colourful villages, quirky places to stay and good food to eat. A little Outlander obsessed and thrilled that it’s being filmed in Scotland so she can visit the filming locations. She’s also over the moon that it’s promoting Scotland’s stunning scenery.

50 Gifts From Scotland Recommended By a Scot [New Items]

Scotland gifts idea, presents inspired by Scotland - Edinburgh landscape

Affectionately known for its tartan, Tunnock’s teacakes and tots of whisky, gifts from Scotland are an obvious choice for friends and family who pine for Pitlochry or go gaga over Glencoe.

Here is a jam-packed guide to gifts from Scotland as well as Alba-themed gifts for homes, wardrobes, bellies and bodies. Featuring gifts for women, men, new babies, weddings, and Outlander fans! Consider the following items when planning care packages for loved ones too. Stick around until gift item number 50, I think you’ll like it… 

New! I’m very excited to announce that I’ve created a six-round Scotland trivia quiz for you to play with friends and family over Zoom and other video call software.

The quiz includes six rounds, three bonuses, one free lookbook and a free Spotify playlist for you to get ready to! Find out more here.

Desktop, laptop, tablet and phone advertising Scotland trivia quiz

Scottish Gifts For Her

1. DNA Testing

So how Scottish are you?

This DNA testing kit (click here for US and here for UK) takes two minutes to conduct and you receive your results within 3-4 weeks!

The results reveal the paths of your ancestors from over 42 regions.

All you have to do is swab your cheek and send it away to the experts.

2. Plaid Poncho/Cape/Shawl

I absolutely adore the versatility of ponchos, capes and shawls. They can cover up in cold weather, be used as blankets for picnics or cars, and bags when cut short at the shop (avoid paying 5p!)

Check out this striking red tartan poncho. If you follow Two Scots Abroad you will know that we are mad for the plaid!

Scotland Gifts - Tartan Plaid Poncho

3. Harris Tweed Bags and Masks [No Pipes!]

Harris Tweed Bags US / UK are an immensely popular gift idea from Scotland.

The sturdy yet stylish Harris wool material is teamed up with leather straps, brass rivets, and a magnetic fastener to keep the contents of the handbag safe.

We bought my Mum one a few years ago with harris tweed gloves to match.

Tweed masks are super popular in Scotland. My friend and TSA writer, Ruth, has this one and highly recommends it.

» You may also like | 36 tweed items for her, him and the home

Harris tweed Scottish gifts for her

Tweed Face Covering

Tweed masks are super popular in Scotland. My friend Ruth personally recommends this one.

Made from authentic Harris Tweed, it is stylish and breathable.

It comes in 15 colors. Click here to let the maker know which you prefer.

Harris Tweed Face Covering Mask

4. Scottish Themed Soaps

Scottish Fine Soaps US / UK  blend delicious ingredients with a contemporary Scottish style to create bath and beauty collections perfect of Scottish gifts.

Soaps are perfect for travel as there are no spills.

 » I attempted to go plastic-free | Click to read how we go on

5. For Yer Whisky-lovin’ Wimmin

These silly message socks gave me a giggle. The soles of the socks say – if you can read this bring my whisky.

My Gran thought these were hilarious! They came are ‘whiskey’ just so you know. Buy US / UK.

6. Scottish Slang T-shirts

Scottish clothing doesn’t have to be boring.

Scottish slang t-shirts designed by yours truly! Put your guid vibes or your favourite Scottish city on an ethically produced t-shirt or tote bag.

Scottish or a Scotland lover and want to show your support abroad? Check out the One Scot and Two Scots Abroad tops here

7. Become a Lady

Grant your loved one the title of lady, or laird, with this gift package.

The experience includes the title, an email address with the title for example yournam[email protected] and a tour of your new land at Castle Dunans.

Cool, eh? A very unique Scottish gift.

Bonus. Dreaming of Scotland Hats

Hello Dreamers! 

Are you missing Scotland? 

Pop on this Dreaming of Scotland hat and feel right at home. 

Made in the UK and designed by Scotland Travel Blogger, The Chaotic Scot. 

For 20% off, use the coupon DREAMERS20.

Scottish Gifts For Him

8. Donald Where’s Yer…

Craig’s favourite, tartan ties US / UK.

I bought him one for his 30th birthday and his brothers followed suit (I’m on a roll!) for our wedding party at the Leith Theatre in Edinburgh.

A modern alternative to the stuffy old wide ties worn by mad tour guides on the West Coast is the skinny tartan tie.

Craig has worn his tartan tie to many weddings and festive events. Looking to meet men in kilts during your visit? Here are 5 ways to do so.

♥ You may also like our gift guides for London fans and Paris lovers.

Austin Elopement | Unique Bucket List Ideas

9. Saltire Souvenirs

Sometimes the St Andrews Cross items make the best Scottish souvenirs. We travel with our Scotland flag all over the world and use it in our images.

Other alternatives include saltire cuff links US / UK and for the foodies – a coffee/tea mug.

What about a plaid shirt? Here’s our guide to tartan shirts.

Stac Pollaidh Ullapool | North Coast 500 Guide

10. Cashmere Socks

Graham cashmere men’s ribbed socks USUK are breathable yet luxurious and hand-knitted in Hawick, Scotland. 

11. Oor Wullie Colouring Book

Every year my uncle used to get the annual Oor Wullie book for Christmas, it brings back fond memories of festive times. Did you know the Oor Wullie was featured in Dundee’s D.C. Thomson newspaper, The Sunday Post? You do now!

There are two different types of nostalgic colouring-in books available, Oor Wullie US / UK and The Broons.

12. Cute Nessie Clothing

Do you believe? Not just Father Christmas needs your faith, Nessie the Lock Ness Monster does too.

Check out this modern Nessie t-shirt or cool Nessie socks.

""“>Nessie Tshirt

Scotland Presents For the Home

13. Tea for Two

We all know how much us Brits love a good cup of tea so what about these Nessie tea strainers UK / U.S)? The silicone strainers break apart at the bottom for tea to be inserted. Guess what?

There hasn’t just been one Nessie spotted in the Loch! This gift comes in a family of three! Team up with tea and shortbread for the true Scottish teaxperience.

Nessie Tea Strainer

14. Line in the Sky

I connected with Becca on Instagram and instantly fell for the simplicity in her line drawings.

You can see the example of her North Coast 500 map here and explore other examples of Munros and hiking paths at her Etsy shop. UK and USA delivery.

Line Drawing Map Scotland Etsy Poster

15. Gin Bottle Light Shade

Gin is allll the rage in Scotland just now and what better way to recycle an empty bottle than to pop at Harris Tweed lampshade on top?

Since gin bottles from the likes of Edinburgh Gin and  Isle of Harris gin are super attractive these days (sorry Gordon’s), they really compliment the bold coloured light shades.

We got the green shade for my Mum’s birthday (she has mustard decor). The kit comes with the shade and light fittings, all you need to add is the bottle – empty of course. Winning combo present for Scotland gin lovers! I’ve YouTubed how to do it yourself, not worth the effort.

16. Thistle do nicely

No Scotland themed gifts guide would be complete without some mention of the national flower! This wood metamorphosis art piece displays the thistle silhouette cut out of wood (obviously) and framed.

This piece is 11 inches in height and 15.3 in width. UK shipping only annoyingly, sorry.

17. Scotland Prints

My friend Kathi actually took these images. She’s a very talented Glasgow-based creative. Check out the highland coo print and many others at her store on Etsy here.

Highland Coo

18. Scotland Beer Map

I first saw the American States version of this a year or so ago and thought – genius. I’m really pleased to see a Scotland edition now since the country is craft beer daft! Pop your beer tops in the correct location slots and display the Scotland beer map with pride.

Scotland Beer Bottle Cap Map Beer Gifts

Whisky Gifts

19. Complete Guide to Malt Whisky

The Complete Guide to Malt Whisky by whisky authority, Michael Jackson, hosts a wealth of knowledge for whisky fans.

This go-to resource, covers a variety of whiskies from all over the world and includes ingredients and a score.

Will your loved one agree?!

20. Whisky Cocktails Recipe Downloads

My friend Nicola has created these cute whisky cocktail recipe cards which you can download instantly on Etsy.

Nicola is a Fife-based creative like me.

Scotland Whisky Cocktail Recipe Cards

Glasgow Gifts

21. Glasgow T-shirts!

This is right up my Sauchiehall Street. Plain white T with black text on the chest.

Perfect Glasgow gift for your hipster pals. Click to check availability.

Gie It Laldy Tshirt

A topical t-shirt which is typical for Glasgow, we are LOVING the new ‘Yer Da Guards Statues‘ t-shirt throwing shade at those who hate in our tolerant country.

#BlackLivesMatter in Scotland and around the world. Make a statement with a side of sass with this new design.

Agree that BLM matters in Scotland? Donate directly to the Black Scottish Business Fund.

22. Glasgow Monopoly

Move over Mayfair! The mean streets of Glasgow have their own version of Monopoly UK.

Advance to Princes Square, Renfrew Street or George Square but avoid the clink!

23. Colouring Glasgow

Lose hours colouring in Glasgow’s top attractions such as the Glasgow City Chambers. Colouring Glasgow US / UK.

Music lovers – check out the Glasgow gig venue colouring in book on Etsy! Only two available at the time of writing (U.K delivery only).

Glasgow Experiences

24. Glasgow Music Tours

Since Glasgow is the city of music why not test your knowledge of Scottish rock, pop and indie at the Glasgow Music Tour?

Jonathon and the team really put on a good show while sharing their stories of music journalism and their experience of the Glasgow music scene while taking you around the cool venues in the city. I learnt a lot during my tour which I was genuinely surprised at!

Barrowlands Park Glasgow

25. Glasgow West End Whisky Tour

Although Edinburgh may be better known for its tours, Glasgow really packs some punches with its uniqueness, and we wouldn’t expect anything less of Scotland’s coolest city.

Moving away from the city centre landmarks, this whisky tour takes you to bars with personality to taste a tott or two (four whisky bars to be exact).

Edinburgh Gifts

26. Edinburgh Map Art

I can’t advertise Scotland gifts for the biggest city without discussing the capital, Edinburgh! Meet this high-quality art print of an Edinburgh map US / UK. It really is a neat and stylish present which would go with many decors.

27. Edinburgh Castle Rock(s)

Not to be confused for a box of chalk crayons, Ross’s Edinburgh Castle Rock [UK/US] comes in pastel colours and a variety of fruity flavours (not like your traditional mint rock). This childhood throwback is guaranteed to crumble and also get stuck in your teeth!

28. Beer Soap – Tae Wash Yer Mooth Oot Wi

Edinburgh Beer Soap (U.S only) is made with Innis and Gunn Scottish Ale.

Other ingredients include sandalwood and musk, balanced with lavender, jasmine, and oakmoss. Can be used to bathe, shave and wash to wash your hair.

U.K readers, check out this natural beer soap with goats milk, argan oil and whisky on Etsy.

Disclaimer, not actually for consumption. 

29. Colouring Book of Edinburgh

23 of Edinburgh’s iconic landmarks including Edinburgh Castle, the Grassmarket and Calton Hill are featured in this delightful paperback colouring-in book US / UK. Edinburgh souvenirs don’t have to be tacky!

Edinburgh Experiences

30. Harry Potter Walking Tour

Diagon Alley, Hogwarts, Quidditch! This 2-hour Harry Potter walking tour of Edinburgh brings the books to life and takes you to the original locations where J.K. Rowling started the story!

31. Ghost Tour and Whisky!

Edinburgh is not shy of a ghost tour or two but this two-hour walking tour is quite unique!

Expect tales of grave robbing, plague victims and spooky stories based around Edinburgh Castle, the Grassmarket, and the Royal Mile. Plus a celebratory drink to calm the nerves.

32. Old Town Brewing Heritage Tour (with Beer Tastings)

Edinburgh is craft beer daft now and luckily for you, there is an Old Town walking tour that tops you up with history and craft beer!

Learn just how much Scotland’s capital has relied on the beer revenue and how it shaped the city we know today. Multiple beer stops included of course!

Fierce Beer Aberdeen

33. Edinburgh Castle

Give them access to one of the top things to do in Edinburgh, visit the Castle. Get the line skip here.

Edinburgh Castle from the Vennell

34. Edinburgh Secret Food Tour (Whisky Included)

Fancy more than just beer?

Don’t be put off by the sound of haggis, Edinburgh has an eclectic dining scene and this 3-hour guided food tour will introduce you to the traditional Scottish food and something extra special.

Whisky fans will like this tour, malt tasty is included.

More Whisky Gifts

35. Scratch + Sniff

Please don’t hang me for advertising a whiskey with an ‘e’ product but this book was too good not to share – Scratch & Sniff book US / UK.

The witty, illustrated book takes you on a path of discovery – not self-discovery quite yet (three tots in maybe) to educate you on Scotch, Rye, Irish and Scottish. A fun way to become a connoisseur.

36. A Bar on a Barrel

The whisky cask is sought after for home interior design and this barrel is nicely decorated with a map of the whisky regions so you can plot your next ‘water of life’ road trip (with a designated driver) while you have a swally.

The glasses sit on the Outer Hebrides sourced Harris Tweed mat to avoid harming the barrel and to add that splash of Scotland.

 » » One left: buy now or regret —> click here (U.K only) « «

Funny Scottish Gifts

37. Cheeky Claire Draws

One of my favourite artists is a Scottish lass called Claire Draws. She creates a whole catalogue of funny Scottish gifts such as tote bags with ‘top ginger’ on them and ‘Aye’ necklaces in bold colours. Very cheeky and full of Scottish banter.

Claire Barclay Draws Etsy

38. Pants!

These fetching Bawbags US / UK brought about a laugh in Japan! Meet my husband Craig…

Craig wearing Scotland Bawbags in Japan

39. Whisky Flavoured Condoms

McCondom US only fun products of a serious nature’ – enough said! I threw a packet in with my friend’s new baby gift 😉

Don’t miss this | Best places to visit in Scotland

40. Gie It Laldy

These West End of Glasgow ‘Patter Merchants’ have a lot to say through:

U.K delivery only – sorry folks.

41. Scotland Bauble

These striking Scotland Christmas baubles are lovely minders for a  tree. Click here to see the alternative tree decoration.

Scottish Wedding Gifts

42. Quirky Wedding Portrait

If you are looking for an unusual yet unique wedding gift consider a custom drawn couple portrait. This quirky gift was my new sister in law’s favourite (winning!) wedding present.

All you have to do is send Claire Barclay Draws some images of the happy couple and a list of things that mean something to them.

I requested that their dog, Lacy, was also featured as well as the wedding proposal location, wedding venue, date and first dance.

You can choose how ‘Scottish’ you want it so if tartan isn’t their scene (you should disown them now), you can go for pastel instead.

Portraits aren’t just for weddings, Claire covers a variety of life milestones. Just give her a message.

Claire Barclay Draws Portraits

43. Congratulations Tae A Right Couple O’ Belters…

This is the card we bought for my brother in law’s wedding. I think it sums up Kyle and Ashley very well! Created by the Gie It Laldy fae Glasgow.

Outlander Gifts

44. Outlander Colouring Book

Feel the curves of Jamie and Claire as you render the blank scenes from Outlander.

Made from good quality paper which can withstand water pens (but not Sharpies).

I got my Mum this with a self-made certificate for an Outlander Tour.

Click to check availability US / UK.

45. Outlander Cookbook

If the colouring booking didn’t whet your appetite consider the cookbook! Forget the lonely bowl of porridge Claire consumed and turn the pages for pancakes, beer-battered cord fritters and Black Jack Randall’s Dark Chocolate Lavender Fudge.

Outlander Kitchen US / UK is created by professional chef Theresa Carle-Sanders.

46. Outlander Calendar

What are the odds of getting an Outlander fan in secret Santa at work this Christmas? Be ahead of the game and order your Outlander Calendar.

""“>Outlander Calendar

47. Outlander Note and Card Set

Swept off your feet with the romance in Outlander? Now you can create your own love story with this Outlander deluxe note card set US / UK.

The set includes 192-page ruled journal, 20 elegant notecards and envelopes, and 20 stickers – all inspired by the show.

» You may also like | 15 dreamy weekend trips in Scotland

Scotland Books

Can you go wrong with a coffee table book about their beloved Scotland?

  • 48. Pockets of Pretty (Edinburgh) by Shawna Law. She’s really lovely
  • 49. Clanlands: Whisky, Warfare, and a Scottish Adventure Like No Other by Sam Heughan & Graham McTavish

50. Scotland Shower Curtain

Well done on making it to the end of our Scotland gift guide! I told you it would be worth it.

Shower with nature, in the shape of a Highland cow shower curtain!

Look forward to your guests asking where you got it from!

""“>Highland Cow Shower Curtain Grey

Don’t forget to check out our
Scotland Trivia Quiz!

Desktop, laptop, tablet and phone advertising Scotland trivia quiz

Final Thoughts

I could honestly go on and on researching and recommending Scotland inspired gifts, especially the ones from the young creatives like me!

I hope you have enjoyed reading this guide to Scottish gift ideas and have managed to purchase something for your loved ones. Apologies that most of the Scottish gifts made in Scotland don’t deliver outside of the U.K but now you have (yet another) excuse to come and visit Caledonia.

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Bungee jump in Scotland – Killer footage with GoPro

Bungee Jump Scotland killiecrankie

Nothing says love like wiping the snot from your husband’s face whilst dangling upside down. Move over Spiderman, this is true romance. Craig and I (Gemma) took the plunge, falling 132 feet from a bridge, faces painted with the saltire; bungee jump in Scotland style. Don’t believe us? We have the GoPro Hero 6 footage to prove it, snots and all.

Bungee jump Scotland 

This was my second bungee jump (bunjee jump? Who knows how to spell it) and Craig’s initiation into the world of ‘swinging’. I first joined the club over a decade ago in New Zealand, throwing myself off Auckland Bridge. During the run-up to this adventure day out, I was more horrified about the time which had passed since my last jump than the actual activity itself. This was Craig’s first bungee so I thought I’d give him some moral support via a hug – an involuntary one in the form of a tandem bungee.

River Garry Bungee Jump Scotland

Bungee jump Perth

Was is a Tandem Bungee Jump?

Most jumpers fly solo, which allows you to dive forward or fall backwards. A tandem bungee is when you are attached to another person, side by side, not layered like a skydive (next on my itch-list). During a tandem you cannot dive, you wrap your arm around your sidekick’s back and hold on for dear life. It’s inevitable that you will end up cuddling during the flight.

Was the Killiecrankie Bungee Terrifying? 

Craig, as cool as ever, had no qualms about the jump, until…

He was creeping towards the edge. The jovial support workers hooked us up, shuffled us along then Craig froze while tilted over the near-frozen River Garry in Perthshire! Too late, we were off. The flight was exhilarating, and like all good things, over too quickly. We giggled a lot as we came to, there’s no getting away from that embrace.

The dangling bit is never pleasant, both faces resembling a beetroot as the pulley was dropped and we were on our way up again.

GoPro – An Actual Hero 

During a massive 18-month career break to travel the Americas and Europe, we filmed ourselves boarding down an active volcano, diving in Cuba and trekking to Machu Picchu with a lesser-known model of action cam and man, the difference is night and day.

There’s a reason that GoPro is top of their game. The bungee jump footage was crystal clear, regardless of potential flailing arms (well done Craig, you excelled yourself filming our jump). We were able to film in a ‘wide mode’, which meant we could capture both of us jumping, and some of the landscape.

Regardless of filming in 1080 resolution (best for phones), the image still looks fantastic on our mammoth iMac screen.

I can’t lie, I was really nervous about filming with the GoPro in case we (Craig) messed up the footage or the GoPro didn’t play ball. It’s very obvious when it is filming as a red flashing light appears.

I also like that it tells you how much battery and file space you have left.

Best GoPro Equipment for a Bungee Jump?

Anxious, as always, I asked online ‘what type of GoPro mount should I use for a bungee?’

1. Chest Harness

Attaching the GoPro to the chest would mean that the video footage filmed the flight and landscape but not our faces. I wasn’t massively keen on this because I wanted to see Craig’s reaction/fear. A positive of the harness is that the GoPro is not at risk of falling off and the footage should be steady. The company at Killiecrankie bungee recommended this option.

2. Selfie Stick

If you can hold the selfie stick straight during the jump and remember to position the camera at your face, this would be a great option and there are definitely great YouTube videos of jumpers doing it well. We decided against the selfie stick since it was our first time using the GoPro Hero 6 and there was no attachment to connect to the wrist; cue panic, letting go and losing the camera to the River Garry.

Note: we used a cheaper selfie stick with our crappy old action cam and you can really feel the difference in quality. The GoPro selfie stick is sturdy, the moving sections allow for more flexibility and better angles. The camera grip is strong. You could knock someone out with it but it’s not too heavy for storage. We used it for the car ride imagery and the interview.

3. Wrist mount GoPro

This is the option we opted for. The GoPro wrist mount felt secure, we could angle the camera to face us and because Craig held his arm straight like a bird with wings we were captured during the jump. I am really happy with the footage. What do you think? Tell us in the comments below.

Editing the GoPro video

The Quik video-editing app is as good as your WiFi is and unfortunately in our house, the WiFi is poor.

A workaround is to download the videos to my phone from the GoPro app then upload via the Quik app, this worked better than the Quik app locating the footage from the GoPro.

Quik allows you to snip, edit, add/remove sound, add music and text as well as packages it up in a theme for you.

It’s easy to use for short videos, it recommends how long they should be and has a fast and slow-motion function too, which is great for building momentum! Here’s our first attempt. Watch out for the snot! Volume up to hear Craig scream…

Final words

Would we bungee jump again, hell yes! Will we be filming another adventure activity in Scotland? I really hope so. Scotland is so much more than just Outlander, bus trips to battlegrounds and the Isle of Skye and we can’t wait to explore more, camera in hand (or on the hand!)

Are you brave enough? Tell us in the comments below.

Thanks to Currys and PC World and GoPro for asking us to put adventure Scotland on the map! Our honest opinion as always, regardless of who is footing the bill. Check out the
UK adventure map here.