You made it to the final instalment in our Scottish roadtrip adventure! Thank you for indulging me in some serious reminiscing from a fabulous holiday so many months ago.
We were sorry to bid farewell to Skye, but we had an epic drive ahead of us, so we were excited too. After our brilliant ferry arrival on the island, we took a more conventional route off via the Skye Bridge which gave us the opportunity to stop and have a quick look at one of the most photographed castles in Scotland – Eilean Donan. It looks particularly dramatic against the moody skies!
We took our drive driving up the Great Glen, with the kids straining hard to see if they could spot the monster in Loch Ness – but no luck on this visit!
The weather brightened up a bit as we reached our final destination – the Black Isle, just north of Inverness. And with Matt in charge of the car navigation, no surprises where our first stop was… The brilliant Black Isle Brewery. While he couldn’t sample the selection as we still had a few more miles to cover, we came away with a fine collection to work through during our last few nights of the holiday!
We were staying in a cute little lodge in the countryside above Rosemarkie, a little village on the southern shore of the Black Isle. In the garden of the owners house, they’d provided everything we might need including garden games which the kids loved!
We spent some time on our first afternoon attempting (unsuccessfully!) to spot the famous Moray Firth dolphins at Chanonry Point nearby, before driving to Cromarty for a beachside supper. We ended up eating amazing haggis pizza right on the beach (if you’re in the neighbourhood, you must visit Sutor Pizza) looking out over the rigs. Loved it!
The next day, Sophie and I walked from our accommodation down into Rosemarkie via the Fairy Glen RSPB reserve while the boys investigated mountain biking. It was immediately clear how it got its name – the reserve was so pretty and Sophie immediately started imagining where fairies might live amongst the waterfalls and plants.
We met up with the boys in the village and continued our walk along the sandy beach until the incoming tide made us turn around!
The children spent ages exploring rock pools and trying to get splashed by waves hitting the rocks!
As we headed back into the village, the sun came out and the kids stripped off their clothes! We were both very impressed with our children splashing around in the North Sea – clearly they’ve got my Scottish blood!
This isn’t the kind of photo you normally expect from a summer holiday in Scotland:
The next day wasn’t quite so sunny, so we headed inland to watch salmon leaping at Rogie Falls. We loved the walking routes through the trees, and spent ages watching the salmon desperately trying to get upstream. It’s quite mad to watch. Can you spot the leaping salmon in the right hand picture below?!
We then headed back towards Inverness to explore Culloden where we visited the battle field from the 1745 Jacobite Rising. The visitors centre was absolutely brilliant, with a really immersive introduction to the battle and we wandered around the battlefield looking for the many memorials. Here they are at the Clan Cameron stones – my family name. After our battlefield visit, we enjoyed a lovely couple of hours visiting my family who live nearby. Of course I failed to take any photographs, but thank you to Ian, Susan and Heather for their hospitality (and for the amazing raspberries they gave us from their garden!)
We spent our evenings down at Rosemarkie beach enjoying the beautiful sunsets (and the delicious food at the Crofters Cafe!)
And the kids, of course, took every opportunity they could to play in the waves. I love this serious of photographs – everytime I look at them, I wish I was back there on the sand.
We had a truly wonderful holiday – I would genuinely repeat the entire thing again if I had an opportunity. And I’ve spent many an hour on RightMove since we got home imagining a new life on the Black Isle or Skye! Here’s to another roadtrip in 2022 – but where to?
Pingback: Exploring Skye [Scottish roadtrip 2021] | Diary of a Herne Hill mum