While living in Glasgow, my girlfriend and I spent ten days trying to visit as much of Scotland as we could. We encountered windy mountain passes, narrow single lane tracks and stretches of road without petrol stations but still managed to achieve a hell of a lot in a little over a week. Here’s how we did it.
Driving in Scotland
It doesn’t take long from when you leave Glasgow for the scenery to dramatically change into some of the most glorious landscapes the country has to offer. Mountains, valleys and rivers get more rugged and more spectacular the further north you head into the Highlands. Further north still the land flattens out and the roads give way to windy single lane tracks with passing places every few hundred metres. People, buildings and phone reception are often in short supply so be aware before you head off! It’s worth it though for the stunning pristine white beaches of the north coast and west coast which feel more Mediterranean than Scotland.
Day 1 – Glasgow to Loch Insh (Aviemore)
Day 2 – Lecht Snowboarding
Day 3 – Loch Inver to Cannich via Loch Ness and the Cairngorm Mountains
Day 4 – Cannich to Wick via Glen Affric & Black Isle
Day 5 – Wick to Durness via Dunnet Head
Day 6 – Durness to Ullapool via Sandwood, Achmelvich Bay and Loch Inver
Day 7 – Ullapool to Portnalong via Gairloch, Torridon and Applecross
Day 8 – Portnalong to Kinlochleven via Portree and Fort William
Day 9 – Kinlochleven to Arrochar via Oban
Day 10 – Arrochar to Glasgow via Loch Lomond
Total: 1239 miles
Accommodation – £316 for 8 nights, two people sharing (our last night’s stay was offered for free)
Food/Drink – £161
Petrol – £301
Parking – £2.20 – The only place we had to pay for parking was Oban because we visited in the off season, most places charge April – October.
Extras – Lift passes and snowboard hire over two days – £89
TOTAL = £869.20 for two people for 10 days
TOTAL PER DAY = £43.50 each
Loch Insh – Loch Insh Chalet – lochinsh.com
Cannich – Cannich Caravan Park – Camping Pod
Wick – Wigwam Holidays – Wigwam
Durness – Lazy Crofter Bunkhouse
Ullapool – Point Cottage B & B
Portnalong – Wigwam Holidays – Wigwam
Kinlochleven – Blackwater Hostel – Micro Lodge
Arrochar – Lochside B & B
What was it like?
We had an incredible time, saw some amazing places and drove some scary-ass roads like Pass of the Cattle, which resembled a Monte Carlo Rally stage. The north coast was beautiful and I thought it couldn’t be topped until we hit the west coast which blew me away.