Planning my Scottish road trip. Will I find the elusive Loch Ness monster?

In many ways, I’m hoping that Nessie will be harder to find than a sunny day in Scotland! The thing is that when planning a holiday and booking things to do, there’s no certainty about the whether. All I can do is to come fully prepared for all seasons!

So, for those of you who’ve read my last few posts, you’ll know that I’ll be travelling up to Scotland in June. If you have missed my posts about how I’m spending the first 4 days, feel free to check them out here: Loch Lomond, whale watching, Harry Potter and going up a mountain.

The next stage of my road trip will take me to Inverness. Now, living in the south of England, I know very little about Scotland and I would think of Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Glasgow as being the main cities but Inverness is the most northern city in the whole of the UK where the River Ness and the Moray Firth come together. As well as a castle, there’s the old town with enchanting architecture, old churches, etc. It’s also really well placed for some activities planned for my two night stay in the city. So, what am I going to get up to?

John O’Groats is often thought to be the most northerly point of mainland United Kingdom and many people do all kinds of charity fundraising events by cycling, walking, etc. from John O’Groats in the north of Scotland to Land’s End in Cornwall, England. As the map here shows, it’s really quite a journey over 874 miles which usually takes cyclists between 10 and 14 days to complete. Very much a bucket list challenge! However, John O’Groats isn’t actually the most northerly point. That status goes to Dunnet Head which is just a little bit further west and up. Until a few months ago when I was planning a trip to Cornwall, I thought that the infamous signs at John O’Groats and Land’s End were there permanently, ready for thousands of visitors to take photos. But the signs are actually owned by a company and you can only pose next to them by paying! Each day, the company brings the signs along, guards them to make sure that they take the money and then stores them away overnight. Mmmmm, seems like lucrative way to make money!

Apart from the sign at John O’Groats, there are shops and ferries that take you over to the Orkney Islands. I might ‘pop’ over to Orkney (as you do!) but I’m still figuring out that bit. However, once I’ve seen John O’Groats and explored the surrounding area, I’ve got a very cool activity planned: an evening cruise on Loch Ness to hopefully capture sunset!

Doesn’t this photo look amazing! For all I know, I could have an evening spent on a boat being whipped up by the winds and being peltered by torrential rain! A stunning sunset may be hard to come by but I thought I’d book the cruise just in case we end up with a repeat of last year’s heatwave and tickets sell out. And perhaps I’ll see Nessie!

Once I’m back in Inverness for my last night in Scotland, I’ll be getting ready for a special stop off in England as I head back down to my home in Sussex. But check in on Wednesday and I’ll let you know exactly where!

Happy weekend, everyone xx


  1. Good luck with your Nessie spotting! I went out on a boat once, and although the legendary monster evaded me, my daughter swore she caught a glimpse. Good post, and that sunset picture is truly stunning.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Have a great time. If you can go to Orkney, I recommend it, because you will already be nearly there, and it is lovely – from Kirkwall to the many neolithic sites and reminders of viking days. See link, for example. School holidays start at the end of June.
    When I make the effort to go to the Highlands / Islands I always feel like I’m on the very edge of all of Europe, not merely on an island called “Great Britain” that floats just off the continent. From that edge, the English Channel can look more like a minor inconvenience for travel that separates two cultures that are pretty indistinguishable; while neither of them can immediately grasp what things are like in those more remote areas. I like my personal view of and from the remote fringe. It takes me back in time, and makes me imagine.
    Yes, of course I live in a city 🙂 What would holidays be if they didn’t include some romantic escape from reality?!
    My early spring trip: a wee visit between Strathspey and the Cabrach, with daytime activities to be purely weather dependent.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s an excellent point about the schools breaking up earlier than England. Fortunately I’ll be there mid-June. Photos online of the highlands look beautiful and even if I can’t stop to take photos, I’ll be taking ‘photos’ in my mind to recall for many years to come. Thank you for the link 😊


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