Travel Tips for a Perfect Stay

Top Tips for your Scottish Highlands Adventure

Eilean Donan Castle - A favourite day out from our Inverness B&B

Of course, every good guide book has a section dedicated to useful hints and travel tips, and we are sure that they have plenty of advice about all sorts of things to help you during your stay. However, we have found that they usually miss out some of the most useful information that you really need to know. So, in an attempt to fill in some of the gaps, here are a few tips based on the experience with our guests at Inverglen Guest House. We hope this will help you during your travels in Scotland. If you think there are other things we should include in this guide then please let us know.

Travelling Around Scotland

If you are spending most of your time visiting the large cities or towns then it is perfectly possible to do so by public transport. Good links exist between major cities like Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dundee, Aberdeen and Inverness, and once there you will also find that getting around the city by public transport or taxi is relatively easy. However, if you intend to explore our wonderful countryside then you will either need a car or the services of a specialist tour provider.

Many people are worried about driving on the “wrong”  side of the road, but be assured that it is simple and you’ll be fine as long as you take it carefully. We only have 5 million people living in the country so away from the major cities, you will rarely be in heavy traffic.

Day tours to Skye with WOW Scotland - Highly recommended by Inverglen Guest House
Day tours to Skye with WOW Scotland

Don’t despair if the thought of driving is a little too much for you. There are many specialist tour operators who will gladly take you to all manner of places. These tours can range from pre-determined schedules right through to fully bespoke tours designed specifically for you. Why not check out some of our local operators on our website – http://www.inverglenguesthouse.co.uk/boat-trips-and-tours

Just a word of caution if you intend sampling some of our fine whisky or delicious beers – Scotland has strict drink drive laws and at the time of writing the legal limit is just 50mg in every 100ml of blood. This means even 1 drink can put you over the limit. Our advice is to not drink at all if you are driving.

A Sat Nav / GPS or Paper Map

So you decided to go with the car option. The first thing you may notice is that Scotland is bigger than most people realise, and many places are remote and sparsely populated. Consequently, it isn’t always possible to stop and ask someone for directions, and road signs may be in short supply. Luckily modern technology in the form of a Sat Nav or GPS can pinpoint your position to within a few meters, and keep you on the right track. However, they aren’t foolproof and you should treat their advice with a degree of caution. Also be aware that if your system works via the mobile phone network, you may find that some areas have less than perfect coverage.

In the UK we use Postcodes (see tip below) to pinpoint locations, and in main towns, a postcode will often be all you need for the Sat Nav. However, outside of the main population areas, you may find that the postal code is a little vague (possibly covering a large area rather than an exact location). Therefore always enter the full address if possible. We certainly recommend a Sat Nav or GPS for getting you from A to B, but you can’t beat a good old-fashioned paper road map for giving you the bigger picture.

If you only focus on the route from one place to another, you may well be missing some fantastic places that lie just a few miles off the direct route. If you would like some inspiration on places to visit why not take a look at our Things to Do Pages.

The locations pictured below are hidden gems that are so easily missed if you stick to just the main routes.

Bow Fiddle Rock
Bow Fiddle Rock
Buachaille Etive Mor
Buachaille Etive Mor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What is a Post Code

If you are using a Sat Nav or GPS then you are going to become very familiar with postcodes as they are an integral part of finding a specific location. Every address in the UK has a Post Code.  These are specific to a small number of addresses and within large cities a full postcode will cover a relatively small area (just a few properties).  

Postcodes comprise a combination of letters and numbers – for example our postcode is IV2 3NW. The first part of the code “IV2” tells you two things. Firstly the IV letters refer to Inverness (as EH would be Edinburgh, and GA refers to Glasgow). The number then gives an indication of how close an address is to the main city. So, IV1 would be right in the very centre of Inverness, whereas IV2 is just a little further out. At the extreme end, for example, Portree on the Isle of Skye (over 100 road miles from Inverness) is IV51.

Whilst in most towns and cities a full postcode (comprising between 5 and 8 characters) will give you a very specific geographic location, in rural areas a single postcode may cover a much larger geographical area.

Route Planning

When planning your trips it is often advisable to consult with one of the online route planning services. Google maps is definitely worth looking at, as are the services provides by The AA and The RAC. Distances and journey times can be difficult to predict, especially in the more remote locations where roads may be single track requiring you to stop at regular intervals to allow vehicles coming in the opposite direction to pass.

Whilst the online resources attempt to give you an idea of how long a journey may take, the reality may prove a little different. Always expect the journey to take longer than you are told, and if it turns out to be quicker you have more time to enjoy being there.

Negotiating Roundabouts

For those not used to driving in the UK a roundabout can be very daunting. We have spent many a morning after breakfast trying to explain how they work. The basic rule is that you always stop before entering a roundabout and you always give way to traffic coming from your right. If in doubt wait until there is a good gap before entering the roundabout and always give a clear indication of where you intend to exit. If you spot your exit late, don’t try to turn off quickly, just go around again and get it at the second (or third) attempt.

If you want to get properly ready to drive in the UK you can familiarise yourself with the rules for driving by checking out the Highway Code

Have a Mobile Phone

In all but the remotest locations Scotland has good mobile phone coverage, and as public telephone kiosks are become rarer you will be grateful for the convenience. We recommend you bring your mobile/cell phone with you, or you can buy one when you are here – a basic pay as you go phone can be purchased for around £25.00  (or even less) and many shops sell “top up” vouchers for calls.

Pre-book the things on your ‘Must See’ List

Shinty MatchScotland in the height of summer can be incredibly busy. Major events like the Edinburgh Military Tattoo, Belladrum Tartan Heart Festival and T in the Park, to name but a few, need to be booked well in advance to avoid disappointment.

Also don’t risk just turning up at the ferry port hoping to catch a ferry to one of our many islands as you may be disappointed! You should also think about pre-booking for key visitor attractions such as Edinburgh or Stirling Castles, or if you want to enjoy the 3D and interactive elements at the Battle of Bannockburn site. At the very least pre-booking can save you a lot of time otherwise spent waiting in line.

In Inverness it may be advisable to pre-book if you wish to take the popular train journey to Kyle of Lochalsh, or for a cruise on Loch Ness.

Why not check out some of the main events happening in and around Inverness and Loch Ness on our Events Page.

Highland Piper
Highland Piper
Highland Dancing
Highland Dancing Competition
Highland Games Event
Highland Games

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Restaurants and food

The White House
The White House
Rocpool Restaurant
Rocpool Restaurant
Heathmount
Heathmount

In the major cities like Edinburgh, Glasgow and Aberdeen you will find that there are many restaurants of all types that open all day and will continue late into the evening. However, in other places the choice of restaurants may be very limited and they are likely to stop serving at 9pm (or earlier).

If visiting Scotland in the winter months do check with your accommodation provider to see what the local restaurant situation is like. In some places you may have a very limited choice.

Inverness has a wide selection of excellent restaurants (check out our recommendations page – http://www.inverglenguesthouse.co.uk/local-restaurants-cafes-and-pubs ) but many of these stop serving at about 9pm. You will also find that some are closed on a Sunday and Monday. From about May through to October the most popular restaurants are very busy and reservations are essential.

Year of Food and Drink Scotland 2015

Scotland has a truly wonderful larder of produce and you can be assured of some fantastic food and drink on your travels. Almost everyone knows about haggis (try it and you may be pleasantly surprised), and our salmon is world famous, but why not try Cullen Skink (a smoked fish chowder), Cranachan (a desert of oatmeal, raspberries, cream and whisky), or Crowdie (a delicious cream cheese). We have a fantastic range of  food and drink and we love helping you discover new things to delight your taste buds.

 

Check Opening Times

We may enjoy long summer evenings (it stays light up until almost midnight in the far north at the end of June), but many attractions still close at around 5pm. This comes as a surprise to many and means that they miss out seeing some of the best places. The long daylight hours can fool you into thinking it is earlier than it really is so keep an eye on your watch. Always check the opening times for key attractions you wish to visit.

Also check for seasonal opening variations. Some attractions may be closed over the winter months, and indeed one of the best castles near Inverness (Cawdor Castle) doesn’t open until May.

Visiting a Distillery

Scotland is world famous for its Whisky, and there are many distilleries you can visit to learn about the production process and also sample some of the produce. Not all distilleries offer tours, but many do and if this is something you wish to do then you will find plenty of choice within easy reach of Inverness. Whilst there are no distilleries within Inverness itself, within 25 miles there are 4 distilleries (Glen Ord, Tomatin, Dalmore and Benromach) all offering tours. If you are travelling north of Inverness, you may wish to check out Glenmorangie distillery in Tain, or just a little further north is Balblair distillery.

If you are looking for more choice then the epicentre of the Speyside whisky industry is around Dufftown which is just over 50 miles from Inverness and here you will find plenty of distilleries, large and small, all waiting to impress you with their amber nectar.During the summer months most distilleries are open from Monday to Saturday (many also open on Sunday). The first tours are usually around 10am with the last tours at around 4pm. Outside of Summer you may find much more restricted opening times, and many do not open at weekends.

Please remember that Scotland has strict drink drive laws and we recommend that you do not combine the two. There are many companies offering Whisky Tours so you can fully enjoy the experience without having to do the driving.

Seeing Dolphins, Red Deer, Red Squirrels & Other Wildlife

Moray Firth DolphinScotland is a haven for wildlife and there are several species that should be on the must see list. Scotland’s big 5 are, Golden Eagles, Red Squirrels, Red Deer, Otters and Harbour seals, all of which can be found in the Highlands.

Near Inverness on the Moray Firth we have a resident population of Bottlenose dolphins. These dolphins regularly appear near the city and land based dolphin watching at Chanonry Point is a popular pastime. The best chance of seeing the dolphins is on a turning tide as it moves from low tide. Just ask us and we’ll let you know the tide times.

Another popular species that can be seen in Scotland is the Osprey. This magnificent bird is a summer visitor to the UK and they can be regularly seen fishing in the local area. There is a specialist viewing point at Loch Garten where Ospreys can be seen nesting.

Of course there are lots of other animals for you to enjoy such as Red Kites, Basking Sharks, Pine Martins, Grouse, Scottish Wildcats (rarely seen), Roe and Sika Deer, Mountain Hares and many others. If visiting Loch Ness you may even be lucky enough to see our very own Nessie!

Live Music

Scotland has a rich tradition of music and you are never too far away from the skirl of the bagpipes. However, we have much more to offer and in Inverness there is a wide variety of live music with performances taking place on every night of the week.

Regular folk sessions take place at several pubs in the town centre and music is often a main attraction at Eden Court Theatre and The Ironworks.

How many photographs will I take?

Guest often ask us where they can buy additional memory cards for their cameras. We can only conclude that people under-estimate how many pictures they will take. Our advice is that you should plan on taking at least twice as many memory cards as you normally expect to need. Cards are fairly cheap these days but it is better to have spare capacity rather than run out of room just as the most spectacular scene opens up before you.

For inspiration on places to visit why not check out our webpage showcasing some of our wonderful wildlife and scenery. http://www.inverglenguesthouse.co.uk/highland-scenery

Favourite Photo Locations

As you may know, we also run photography workshops (single and multi day trips), and on our photography website we have started a blog giving details of our favourite photo locations. Why not visit our blog for a little inspiration as we add more locations – Inverglen Photography Blog

Enjoy every day! – This is our best piece of advice.
With so many things to see and do an early start and a well-planned route will ensure you have treasured memories and spectacular photographs!

We want all our guests to get the most out of their visit to Scotland. We really enjoy helping you  plan your day so just ask if there is anything you want to know.

Inverglen Guest House is the ideal base from which to explore the highlands of Scotland.
We look forward to welcoming you to our home, where we hope you will also feel like it is your home as well.

A Very Special Afternoon Tea

Afternoon Tea with a View

 

Bunchrew House

A short drive from Inverness will bring you to the spectacular Bunchrew House situated right on the shore of The Beauly Firth.

The House originates from the 16th century and is a superb example of the architecture of the day. At over 400 years old, Bunchrew House is a clear reminder of the rich history of the Scottish Highlands.

These days the house is a hotel with a restaurant that is open to non-residents.

Another aspect of this grand house is that it has one of the best afternoon teas you’ll find anywhere. Indeed, it was a sunny afternoon in July that saw up decide to treat ourselves and while away a few hours in the simple pleasure of afternoon tea complete with delightful cakes, sandwiches and pies. We actually struck lucky, as at the time of our visit they were including a free glass of Prosseco which just added to the satisfaction.

As you can see from the pictures below, the lounge combines original features with sumptuous furnishings, giving you a real sense that this is a luxury to be savoured.

Susan at Bunchrew House

John at Bunchrew House
John has delusions of grandeur

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The afternoon tea itself was absolutely fantastic, and you will certainly need to bring a healthy appetite. As well as a bottomless pot of Tea (or Coffee if preferred), and the complimentary glass of Presseco, we enjoyed a platter that included homemade mini rolls, savoury choux buns, mini pork and apple sausage rolls, homemade warm scone with clotted cream and strawberry jam and today’s delicate array of homemade cakes and patisseries.

If like us, you enjoy the occasional treat, then a visit to Bunchrew house for afternoon tea may be just the thing for you. Just a word of caution – it is very popular so advance booking may be needed.

John with Afternoon Tea
A fine spread

Choux Swans Afternoon Treats Heart Shaped Delight

Falls of Shin Reopened

New Visitor Centre at Falls of Shin

Falls of Shin Visitor Centre
The New Falls of Shin Visitor Centre

In May 2013, a fire swept through the Falls of Shin visitor centre completely destroying it. This was a major tragedy for the area as it was a significant attraction for tourists and provided a source of employment for the local community.

Four years after this devastating event, the new Falls of Shin Visitor Centre is now reopened. There is a superb restaurant serving delicious meals, snacks refreshments and cakes, as well as a gift shop that has an excellent range of quality products from local suppliers. There are also woodland walks, a play-park and viewing areas for the falls and, of course, the leaping Salmon as they head upstream to their spawning grounds.

The falls are an easy day trip from Inverness and can be combined with visits to several distilleries (The Dalmore, Glenmorangie and Balblair), potteries (Tain and ANTA) and artisan glass makers Glasstorm

More details about The Falls of Shin

 

 

 

Leaping Salmon at Falls of Shin
Leaping Salmon at Falls of Shin
Leaping Salmon at Falls of Shin
Leaping Salmon at Falls of Shin

Jacobite Uprisings

Scottish History – Jacobite Uprisings

Jacobite Charge

When visiting the Highlands of Scotland, and Inverness in particular, you can’t help but be aware of the various Jacobite uprisings. Although the uprising of 1745 is perhaps the best known, there were earlier uprisings, rebellions and battles in earlier years. The various conflicts follow on from the from the deposition of James II (or James VII as he was known in Scotland) in “The Glorious Revolution” of 1688 until the death of Bonnie Prince Charlie in 1788.

The 1745 uprising is best remembered for it culminating in the Battle of Culloden, a sodden battlefield on the outskirts of Inverness, on 16 April 1746. This bloody conflict left over 1,200 dead in just one hour. It was the last battle to be fought on British soil.

The Risings of 1689 – 1690

Snow capped mountains beside Loch Cluanie
Loch Cluanie

 

The first risings broke out in 1689, when Viscount Dundee, an ardent supporter of James II, rallied troops and turned to military action against William and Mary’s government forces.

The most famous battle of this uprising was at Killiecrankie where the Government troops were routed by the Jacobite forces. Both sides suffered heavy losses and Viscount Dundee was killed. Despite the victory at Killiecrankie, the Highlanders were unable to capitalise on their success and were decisively defeated at Dunkeld just three weeks later.

The Risings of  1708, 1715 and 1719

Eilean Donan Castle
Eilean Donan Castle

In 1707, The Acts of Union were passed by the English and Scottish Parliaments. This allowed the creation of the United Kingdom of Great Britain on 1 May 1707. This union dismayed those who supported the Jacobite cause. Following the Acts of Union, James VIII/III made two attempts to claim the throne in 1708 and in 1715. 

The ‘Little Rising’ of 1719, saw a force of 300 Spanish soldiers land at Lochalsh. They joined fewer than a thousand Highlanders and based themselves at Eilean Donan Castle. The Spanish force was originally much larger, but many ships had been destroyed by a storm. Unfortunately, for them, Hanoverian ships shelled the castle and the only battle was at Glen Shiel where the Jacobites were defeated by a Government army led by General Joseph Wightman.

The Rising of 1745

Old Leanach Cottage - Culloden Battlefield
Old Leanach Cottage – Culloden Battlefield

Fans of Outlander (books by Diana Gabaldon, and recently a major TV series) will be familiar with this period of Scottish history. The stories revolve around the period leading up to the rising of 1745, and the recently shown series 2 has our heroes in France where they encounter Bonnie Prince Charlie seeking to raise funds for his uprising.

In reality, after failing to persuade the French government to commit to another invasion, Bonnie Prince Charlie, the ‘Young Pretender’, decided to fund his own rising. He sailed from France to Scotland, arriving on Eriskay in the Outer Hebrides in July 1745 and then travelled across the Highlands, to assemble a Jacobite army.

Initially, the uprising met with considerable success. Most of its support was from the north-east and the Highland clans. The Jacobite army captured Edinburgh and managed to advance as far south as Derby in England. Prince Charles was hopeful that their success would encourage French support, but it never materialised, and the army retreated back to their stronghold in the Highlands and was finally defeated at Culloden Moor near Inverness in 1746.

The slideshow below consists of images from a Jacobite uprising re-enactment that took place at The Highland Folk Museum.

 

Inverness Highland Games & Gala Day 2017

Inverness Highland Games & Gala Day 2017

Highland Games Event
Highland Games

Two of the most popular events in the Highland calendar come to Inverness this weekend.

Saturday 15 July – Inverness Highland Games

The Inverness Highland Games will take place at Bught Park commencing at 11 am. Founded in 1822 the Inverness Highland Games is one of the most spectacular traditional gatherings staged in Scotland and is one of the highlights of any visit to the Highland capital city of Inverness.

Events include a full programme of running, jumping and throwing events, as well as Scottish Country Dancing and the spectacle of Massed Pipes and Drums. Of course, for may, the highlight will be the “Heavies” events including everyone’s favourite “Tossing the Caber”.

You can learn more about the Highland Games in our blog post – A Brief Introduction to the Highland Games

 

Sunday 16th July – Inverness Gala day

The major attraction for the 2017 Inverness Gala Day will see over 10,000 folk heading to Bught Parkto see the Bryan Adams concert. However, this is only part of what promises to be the Summer of 2017’s biggest party in the Highlands. 

The Gala Day opens with the Inverness Shinty Sixes in Bught Park Stadium from 11 am  (learn more about shinty in our blog post –  Highland Games & Other Sports)

 From 3 pm centre stage turns to the  Highland’s Strongest Man and Strongest Women events.

If you are feeling courageous you can take part in the Zip Slide over the River  Ness, or you can explore our Giant Craft Fair or Highland Games Traders village. Admission is free and everybody is welcome.

 

Inverglen Guest House wishes all those competing in the various events the best of luck, and are sure that many of our guests will be cheering you along.

 

A Monster Drama for Loch Ness

Drama comes to Loch Ness

Loch Ness has long been a must-see destination in the Scottish Highlands. Some visitors come for the gorgeous landscape, some come to explore the rich history, and some come to see if they can see (and photograph) the elusive Loch Ness Monster (or Nessie as she is affectionately known). Now there is another reason to come to Loch Ness – the hugely successful ITV television drama “The Loch” showcases the wonderful scenery of this Highland Gem as Fort Augustus (at the western end of Loch Ness) is used as the location for the fictional town of Lochnafoy.

The sun is setting over Loch Ness
Sunset at Loch Ness

If you want to see why the Scottish Highlands is a favourite with film and tv companies why not stay at Inverglen Guest House in Inverness. Thus provides the perfect base for exploring locations not only used in this latest TV drama, but also locations used in Outlander, Harry Potter, Skyfall, Rob Roy, Highlander, Game of Thrones, and much more.

Experience the History of the Highlands – Hugh Miller’s Birthplace

Sign that says "Learn to make a right use of your eyes"Many guests staying at Inverglen Guest House like to visit Chanonry Point on the Black Isle to spot the resident pod of Moray Firth dolphins. Home to Chanonry Point Lighthouse, the peninsula extends into the Moray Firth and is one of the few places in the mainland UK where you can easily see dolphins from the shore. Whilst you are there, take time to drive further along the A832 to Cromarty where you can visit Hugh Miller’s Hugh Miller's Writing Deskbirthplace and museum.

 

The cottage of his birth was built by his great-grandfather (reputed to have been a pirate) in 1802.With it’s thatched roof, low ceilings, tiny doorways and period interior, Hugh Miller’s Cottage provides a fascinating insight into life at that time. 

Next door to the cottage, the museum is located in an elegant Georgian house that was built by his father and later occupied by Hugh Miller, his wife and family. The museum is home to many interesting exhibits that tell the story of the life of Hugh Miller, who was a renowned geologist and fossil hunter, as well as being a devout Christian who campaigned against social inequality. As a young boy he explored the local area learning about the rock forms, flora and fauna, frequently playing truant from school. However later in life he had a variety of careers including becoming a stone mason,  book-keeper at the local bank, and newspaper editor. The museum houses many artefacts and writings from throughout Hugh Miller’s life and work, which make for a really interesting and informative visit. 

Take time to step outside into the courtyard garden where there is a fabulous ammonite sculpture, and examples of typical local stone, fossils and plants from the area.

Now cared for by the  National Trust for Scotland admission is free to National Trust members, and is currently £6.50 for adult non-members. Although some geological exhibits are on loan to the Hugh Miller Museum, his vast collection of over 6,000 fossils is permanently located at the National Museums of Scotland in Edinburgh.

Ammonite Scuplture

Inverness Bike Tours

New Inverness Tour

Trees in autumnal colours beside the river Ness
River Ness In Autumn Colours

From June 2017 there is a new tour to enjoy in Inverness, and this is a little different.

Whilst staying at Inverglen Guest House why not check out Inverness Bike Tours who will take you on a 2 hour 15 minute guided bicycle tour of beautiful Inverness. Starting from the City Center the route visits Ness Islands, the Botanical Gardens, the Caledonian Canal, Muirtown Locks and Merkinch Nature Reserve.

This tour is for adults only and should be booked at least 4 hours in advance.

Tours run from June through to September, with departures every day at 10 am 1 pm and 4 pm.

Northern Roots Music Festival – 2017

Northern Roots Music FestivalNorthern Roots Festival 2017

Music fans staying at Inverglen Guest House on 23rd and 24th June 2017 will have the chance to attend the Northern Roots Music Festival. Over the course of two days, and using 3 stages, over 30 artists will be performing.

This boutique festival is gaining quite a reputation. It brings you a fabulous and eclectic mix of Scottish performers in the quirky setting of Bogbain Farm (just a few miles outside Inverness). Not only is there a feast of Scottish music to enjoy, but also a range of craft beers and spirits, and artisan foods.

A great event at a great venue.

Find out more at Northern Roots Festival 2017

Want to stay at Inverglen Guest House – Check our availability

See what else is happening in Inverness during 2017 – Inverness Events

Scotland’s Water of Life

Scotland – The Home of WhiskyInverglen Whisky

When thinking about Scotland, there is a fair chance that whisky will be a prominent feature. Indeed, it is so synonymous with Scotland that it is often simply referred to as “Scotch”. Those in the know also refer to it as uisge beatha or ‘the water of life’

A Simple Recipe – So Many Subtilties

From a simple recipe of malted barley, yeast and water, the skilled distillers can create a myriad of subtle flavours from the sweet notes of Speyside to the powerful pungent smokiness of Islay.

Each distillery has its own unique way of producing flavours that are distinct to their own products. This will be down to the precise nature of the individual ingredients, the malting process (especially where peat smokiness is involved), the type of barrels used to store the whisky (some whiskies will be stored in multiple different barrels), and how long the whisky is allowed to mature.

Single Malt or Blended Whisky?

There is sometimes a misconception that by their very nature, single malts must be better than blended whisky. Now whilst blended whisky tends to be a little less expensive than single malts, there are undoubtedly some excellent blends to be found. For many people, it is a question of personal preference that will lead you to your favourite whisky, and if that happens to be a blend then that is just fine.

If you want to learn more about the differences between single malt and blended whisky (and this is more complex than it may at first seem), then check out – What Is the Difference Between Single Malt and Blended Whisky?

Distilleries Close to Inverglen Guest House

Inverglen Guest House is situated in Inverness and is an ideal base for visiting a variety of distilleries. The distilleries closest to us lie in the area classified as Highland whisky. From the light fruity finish of whisky from Aberfeldy to the big body and boldness of The Dalmore in Ross-Shire, this region offers more variety of flavours than any other.

We are also on the doorstep of the famous Speyside area – the area with the most distilleries and a must visit region for all whisky enthusiasts.

Just a few miles south of Inverness and Loch Ness lies Tomatin distillery. Whiskies produced here have received much acclaim for their mellow, fruity tones showing that there is a softer side to the Highlands.

Another great distillery close to Loch Ness and Inverness is Glen Ord where they create a magical malt whisky which is sweet and fruity with a subtle undertone of spice. The Singleton of Glen Ord is the signature whisky and is produced exclusively for the Asian market. The only place you can buy it in the UK is at the distillery itself.

Both Tomatin and Glen Ord offer a variety of tours where you can learn about how whisky is made, witness the process at first hand, and of course enjoy a dram or two to complete the experience.

Other local distilleries you can visit include:

Highland Distilleries

Speyside Distilleries

The above is only a small selection of the distilleries in the area.

Whisky Tours

Visiting a distillery is a real pleasure, however, Scotland has strict drink driving laws and it is essential for your safety and the safety of others that you do not drink and drive. Whilst you could nominate a designated driver, this isn’t always a fair solution. If your group want to fully enjoy a visit, and tasting, at a few distilleries then you could take a specialist Whisky Tour where an experienced guide will do the driving. At Inverglen Guest House we have relationships with several tour operators who have specialist whisly tours, including:

Time for the Ride of Your Life

GreatNESS meets ActiveNESS – The Etape Loch NessEtape Loch Ness

  • Sunday 23rd April 2017
  • Over 5,000 participants
  • 66 Miles / 106 Km
  • Complete Circuit of Loch Ness
  • Fastest Riders aim to complete the course in under 3 hours
  • King of the Mountains – 380 Metres of climbing in 9 Km (including gradients of up to 12%)

A cycle sportive taking place around iconic Loch Ness. Riders cycle 66-miles / 106-km on traffic free roads all the way around Loch Ness. This 360° closed-road route starts and finishes in the Highland capital of Inverness. The 2017 event will take place on Sunday 23 April with a record 5200 riders taking part.

Spectators

If you live in or are visiting the following villages, why not get your friends and family to give riders a cheer as they go past, it really does make a difference.

  • Drumnadrochit – riders expected 06.50-08.00
  • Invermoriston – riders expected 07.20-09.00
  • Fort Augustus – riders expected 07.35-09.25
  • Foyers / Inverfarigaig – riders expected 08.10-11.00
  • Dores – riders expected 08.40-11.45
  • Inverness – riders expected 09.00-12.30

The final 2 miles through Inverness alongside the River Ness provide the best vantage points for spectators and at the Event Hub at Eden Court Theatre.

Here are some images from the 2016 event.