Scottish Highlands and Islands Visitor information
An Introduction to the Scottish Highlands
The Scotland Highlands and Islands are areas of natural beauty, which contain an eastern shore and a west coast mountain range with a variety of landscapes in the region. The area is sparsely populated and home to Ben Nevis, the highest mountain in the UK.
Things to do in the Scottish Highlands
The Highlands are home to Loch Ness, the loch steeped in myth and mystery. The region is also home to many battlefields and castles, including the famous Culloden Battlefield and Dunrobin castle, dating back to the 1300's. Fort George is the mightiest artillery fortification in Britain. The Highlands also contain many distilleries such as The Famous Grouse Experience.
Getting to the Scottish Highlands
Inverness is the gateway airport to the Highlands, and just over 1½ hours from London. The higlands airports also include links to some of Scotlands islands such as Kirkwell and mainland Scotland.
Daily services to and from Inverness and Fort William connect the Highlands with Aberdeen, Glasgow, Edinburgh and all the major UK cities. London to Glasgow or Edinburgh can take as little as 6 hours. ScotRail run most of the train services in the region.
The two main driving routes to Scotland from the south are via the east of England on the A1, or via the west using the M6, A74(M) and M74. Travelling from London takes over 8 hours via these routes. The region of the Highlands has no motorways and is instead served by many A roads, such as the A9, A96, A85, A87, A86 and the A82.
Caledonian MacBrayne operate car and passenger ferry services to the islands on the west, while the Glenelg ferry links Skye with Lochalsh. NorthLink Ferries and Pentland Ferries operate car and passenger services from Scrabster (near Thurso).
By Coach and Bus
Many services run from major towns and cities all over the UK including NationalExpress. Other bus services are run by Scottish Citylink and Stagecoach though larger towns may operate their own services.