Category Archives: Scotland

What to do in Scotland; attractions in Scotland and the best places to visit in Scotland.

cullochy lock boat enters lock

Cullochy Lock on the Caledonian Canal

Cullochy Lock, near Loch Oich, lies on the Caledonian Canal which stretches for sixty miles from Corpath, near Fort William, to Inverness in the Scottish Highlands. The canal, which opened in 1822, was designed by Thomas Telford. We were fortunate to be walking near Cullochy Lock, just down from Bridge of Oich, as three boats approached to go up through the lock to head for Loch Oich, the highest point of the Caledonian Canal.

Cullochy Lock on the Caledonian Canal

Cullochy Lock

Cullochy Lock on the Caledonian Canal

Boat approaching Cullochy Lock

Cullochy Lock on the Caledonian Canal

Boat entering Cullochy Lock

 

Cullochy Lock on the Caledonian Canal

Three boats lined up in Cullochy Lock

Cullochy Lock on the Caledonian Canal

Looking south from Cullochy Lock

Cullochy Lock on the Caledonian Canal

The lock-keeper’s cottage at Cullochy Lock

Cullochy Lock on the Caledonian Canal

The old winding machinery at Cullochy Loch

Some canoeists had to take the more physical option of carrying their vessels down the towpath. It’s deemed unsafe for canoes to use the locks, due to the deluge of water when the lock gates are opened.

Cullochy Lock on the Caledonian Canal

Canoeists north of Cullochy Lock

Lynachlaggan Trail near Insh in the Scottish Highlands

Lynachlaggan Trail is one of the walks in the Insh Marshes Reserve near Aviemore maintained by the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds. There’s a layby with parking for three cars opposite the entrance to the trail.

Lynachlaggan Trail near Insh in the Scottish Highlands

Map of Lynachlaggan Trail

The trail is a 1.5 miles long with some rough ground and slopes. The worst parts of the marsh have wooden walkways. It’d been dry for weeks when we visited in July 2013, so I was able to do the walk in trekking sandals, but wellies or hill walking boots would be advisable for most of the year.

Lynachlaggan Trail near Insh in the Scottish Highlands

Hare’s Tail Cotton Grass meadow on Lynachlaggan Trail

We walked around the whole loop in a clockwise direction, there is a slightly shorter loop, and only spotted one picnic bench on the northern stretch of the trail.

Lynachlaggan Trail near Insh in the Scottish Highlands

Me on the picnic bench

We really enjoyed walking around the Lynachlaggan Trail and were glad that we’d taken the B970 detour off the A9.

falls of braan autumn

10 Things to Do in Perthshire, Scotland

Perthshire is one of my favourite regions of Scotland; there’s an abundance of rivers. lochs, mountains, pretty villages and towns, yet is easily accessible from the central belt of Scotland.

10 Things to Do in Perthshire, Scotland

Piper sculpture in Dunkeld

Famous Grouse Experience at the Glenturret Distillery

The Famous Grouse Experience is located close to Crieff at the Glenturret Distillery, Scotland’s olderst distillery. It’s probably best to book your tour in advance during busy periods.

10 Things to Do in Perthshire, Scotland

10 Things to Do in Perthshire, Scotland

Birks of Aberfeldy

Scotland’s best known poet, Robert Burns, wrote about his visit to the Birks of Aberfeldy. You can get up close and personal with him, soon after the start of the aforementioned walk. The walk is quite steep in some parts and you’ll need shoes with a decent sole to get a grip on the wooden steps constructed to avoid the worst muddy slopes.

10 Things to Do in Perthshire, Scotland

Robert Burns sculpture

The Falls of Moness lie at the top of this circular walk.

Elcho Castle

Elcho Castle is not as well known as the likes of Scone Palace and Blair Castle, but that’s why I like it. It’s quite possible that if you visit outside peak times, you’ll have this 16th century castle to yourself. The castle is signposted to your right, in the Rhynd directiion, soon after turning off for Perth at J10 on motorway from Edinburgh.

10 Things to Do in Perthshire, Scotland

Elcho Castle in the Spring

The Knock, Crieff

The walk up the Knock in Crieff isn’t too steep if you drive up past the Crieff Hydro Hotel to park. There are a few benches at the top, so take your flask with you, so you can savour the views while sipping your tea or coffee..

10 Things to Do in Perthshire, Scotland

View from the Knock

10 Things to Do in Perthshire, Scotland

Buttercups on the Knock

The Hermitage

The Hermitage is located a couple of miles north of Dunkeld, just off the A9. Some of the best views of the Falls of Braan are from Ossian’s Hall, a folly built in the 18th century by the Duke of Atholl.

10 Things to Do in Perthshire, Scotland

Ossian’s Hall at the Hermitage

I think that Autumn is the prime time to visit Perthshire, as the colours can be wonderful. It’s hard to time exactly when they’ll be at their most magnificent.

10 Things to Do in Perthshire, Scotland

Looking down on the Falls of Braan from Ossian’s Hall

The Cauldrons Walk, Comrie

You can start this circular walk at the Laggan Wood car park which is on your left just outside Comrie as you drive from Crieff. You’ll pass the Wee (Small) Cauldron and the larger Deil’s (Devil’s) Cauldron. If you’re feeling very energetic you can climb up to Melville’s Monument for panoramic views.

10 Things to Do in Perthshire, Scotland

The Wee Cauldron

River Ericht Sculpture Walk, Blairgowrie

If you drive from Perth to Blairgowrie you’ll find the car park for this walk; look out for a sign to your left just before the traffic lights to turn left over the bridge towards the road to Braemar.

10 Things to Do in Perthshire, Scotland

A salmon relief sculpture by the River Ericht

10 Things to Do in Perthshire, Scotland

The River Ericht in Blairgowrie

Loch Faskally, Pitlochry

Loch Faskally was formed when the dam to power the hydro-electric power station was constructed in the late 1940s. There’s a circular walk around Loch Faskally.

10 Things to Do in Perthshire, Scotland

Loch Faskally in Autumn

It’s claimed that over 5,000 salmon per year ascent the fish ladder at the side of the dam, but I’ve only seen a couple in my visits over the decades.

10 Things to Do in Perthshire, Scotland

The Fish Ladder in Pitlochry

Dunkeld Cathedral and White Houses

Dunkeld Cathedral dates from the early 14th century. However, the original cathedral was destroyed during the Reformation in the 16th century, The Choir of the cathedral was re-roofed and it’ still in use as a parish church. The remainder of the building has been left as a ruin.

10 Things to Do in Perthshire, Scotland

Dunkeld Cathedral

The National Trust for Scotland underook renovation of twenty of the “Little Houses” in the High St and Cathedral St in the 1960s. These properties were then sold on the open market with the proviso that owners maintain them in the traditional style.

10 Things to Do in Perthshire, Scotland

The restored Little Houses in Dunkeld

Stanley Mills

Historic Scotland has renovated this 18th century cottom mill complex by the River Tay. The original Bell Mill was built in 1786 to harness the power of the river. The factory finally stopped the manufacture of textiles in 1989.

10 Things to Do in Perthshire, Scotland

Stanley Mills

Getting to Perthshire

It takes under 90 minutes to get to Perth from Edinburgh by train or car. There are railway stations in Perth, Dunkeld. Pitlochry and Blair Atholl. However, if you want to fully explore the beautiful Pertshire countryside, it’s best to have a car to get around.

Where to Stay in Perthshire

If you want to use public transport, staying in Perth is a good option, as you can do various day trips by train or bus.There’s a fair selection of hotels and guest houses within walking distance of the city centre. Having a car also gives you more accommodation possiblities, e.g. you could stay in a more rural Bed and Breakfast or at self catering accommodation; Sykes Cottages have some attractive properties in Perthshire.

Your Tips for Things to Do in Perthshire

Please leave your tips as a comment.

You can get some more tips for your Scottish trip in our ‘25 Unusual & Fun Things to Do in Scotland‘.

 

ruthven barracks

Ruthven Barracks in the Scottish Highlands

Ruthven Barracks was one of the four barracks built to secure the Scottish Highlands for Government forces after the 1715 Jacobite rising, during which James Francis Edward Stuart, the son of James II of England (James VII of Scotland) had unsuccessfully attempted to claim back the British throne for the exiled House of Stuart.  The barracks were captured and burnt down in 1746 by the army of Princes Charles Edward Stuart, son of James Francis Edward Stuart,  during the second ill-fated Jacobite Rising, which ended in defeat at the Battle of Culloden.

Ruthven Barracks in the Scottish Highlands

The path up to Ruthven Barracks

Ruthven Barracks in the Scottish Highlands

Information board about Ruthven Barracks at the car park

Ruthven Barracks in the Scottish Highlands

Courtyard at Ruthven Barracks

Ruthven Barracks in the Scottish Highlands

Information board in the courtyard at Ruthven Barracks

Ruthven Barracks in the Scottish Highlands

The stables at Ruthven Barracks

Ruthven Barracks in the Scottish Highlands

Ruthven Barracks from the viewing point opposite the car park

Ruthven Barracks lie just off the A9 at Kingussie. There’s a car park opposite the entrance and it’s free to enter.

inveruglas

Inveruglas on Loch Lomond

The free car park at Inveruglas on the northern bank of Loch Lomond is clearly signposted from the A82. There are some paths for a short walk with some great views, toilets, a cafe and a pontoon for loch cruises.

Inveruglas on Loch Lomond

Inveruglas sign

Inveruglas on Loch Lomond

Loch Sloy Power Station

Inveruglas on Loch Lomond

Blueberries growing in the heather at Inveruglas 

Inveruglas on Loch Lomond

Looking over Loch Lomond

Inveruglas on Loch Lomond

Me by the heather at Inveruglas

   Inveruglas on Loch Lomond

Looking down over the pontoon on Loch Lomond

Inveruglas on Loch Lomond

Inveruglas Isle in Loch Lomond (in the back right of the photo)

If you’re driving between Glasgow and Crianlarich on the A82 I recommend a stop at Inveruglas on Lohc Lomond.

alexander dow walk burnouth

Alexander Dow Walk in Eyemouth in the Scottish Borders

Part of the North Sea Trail south of Eyemouth has now been christened the Alexander Dow Walk in honour of the historian who worked at Gunsgreen House in Eyemouth. Dow wrote the first English versions history of India in the 18th century.. The Alexander Dow Walk is one of the five Border Brains Walks in Berwickshire.

Alexander Dow Walk in Eyemouth in the Scottish Borders

Alexander Dow Walk  post

Alexander Dow Walk in Eyemouth in the Scottish Borders

Looking down to one of the inlets

The cloud formation made it look as though there was a dark band along the horizon.

Alexander Dow Walk in Eyemouth in the Scottish Borders

Looking towards Eyemouth Golf Club & St Abb’s Head

Alexander Dow Walk in Eyemouth in the Scottish Borders

The rocky coast

Alexander Dow Walk in Eyemouth in the Scottish Borders

Dark strip on the horizon

Alexander Dow Walk in Eyemouth in the Scottish Borders

Directions sign on Alexander Dow walk

Alexander Dow Walk in Eyemouth in the Scottish Borders

Looking towards Burnmouth

Alexander Dow Walk in Eyemouth in the Scottish Borders

Close up of Burnmouth

We headed back to Eyemouth on a circular route through Rosehip Alley.

Alexander Dow Walk in Eyemouth in the Scottish Borders

An abundance of rosehips in flower at the side of the path

Alexander Dow Walk in Eyemouth in the Scottish Borders

Close up of rosehip flowers

I hope that you’ve enjoyed my photo tour of the Alexander Dow Walk.

 

forth rail bridge two arches

Forth Rail Bridge from South Queensferry

Although I’ve visited South Queensferry and admired the Forth Rail Bridge many times over the decades, the mighty bridge was looking at its best bathed in the evening Summer Solstice sun.

Forth Rail Bridge from South Queensferry

Excursion boats under the Forth Rail Bridge

Forth Rail Bridge from South Queensferry

The magnificent Forth Rail Bridge

Forth Rail Bridge from South Queensferry

Inchgarvie Island from South Queensferry

Forth Rail Bridge from South Queensferry

Southern end of Forth Rail Bridge from South Queensferry Harbour

Forth Rail Bridge from South Queensferry

South Queesferry Harbour with the Forth Rail Bridge in the background

Forth Rail Bridge from South Queensferry

“The Binks” jetty, former landing point for the Forth Estuary ferry from Dunfermline, Fife

Forth Rail Bridge from South Queensferry

Two arches of the Forth Rail Bridge

South Queensferry is a great day trip from Edinburgh either by hire car, train or bus.