Have an Inverness and Loch Ness adventure by Campervan!
More and more of us these days are looking to take on fun adventures, creating new memories and to do something a little different with our holidays and leisure time - Campervanning has become an extremely popular way of exploring, with the added bonus of having your accommodation with you.
Sometimes though, having the wheels to travel freely and not being held to arrive at your accommodation for a designated check in time, we can be guilty of trying to cram in huge amounts of miles, rushing through an adventure and in turn missing some of the best memories that can be made.
A good example of a campervan trip is one you can have with no need to take on huge mileage whilst incorporating lots of Scottish culture, history, stunning scenery and of course adventure. It really is quite incredible what you can discover on the banks of Loch Ness and the surrounding Inverness area, so read on and I am sure this will whet your appetite.
If you are flying into Inverness Airport, arriving by bus or train or even driving up to the Highlands, you can swap your mode of transport to a warm, cozy and modern campervan or motorhome from Highland Campervans based at Dalcross. This means you are conveniently positioned to start your Inverness & Loch Ness adventure at the Eastern side of Inverness, where within a few short miles you have a huge amount of history to begin with. The mighty artillery fortress of Fort George, the beautiful setting of Cawdor Castle and atmospheric Culloden Battlefield and visitor centre are just a few suggestions.
If local or family history is on your agenda a visit to the Highland Archive Centre would be a great addition to your journey, with this building being centrally located in Inverness by the fast flowing and scenic River Ness, this would be a great time to discover the vibrant Inverness city centre. The centrally located Bught Park caravan site means you can walk through the picturesque River Ness Islands into Inverness to sample the huge choice of shops, lively bars with traditional Scottish music and a great range of restaurants for all of your culinary desires.
Heading out of the hustle and bustle of Inverness towards the northern end of Loch Ness your journey will become a little more tranquil and a lot more breathtaking. Outdoor activities galore, from walking on the ever changing landscape of the Great Glen Way with spectacular views of Loch Ness from up high, following alongside the Caledonian Canal on foot or bike and even cruising Loch Ness with Jacobite, time spent outside the campervan would be highly recommended. That said, with your accommodation and kitchen travelling with you there is always time for a cuppa and relaxing in between activities with the added beauty of being able to safely park at a view you want to take in and enjoy!
There are many opportunities of “Nessie Spotting” along the banks of Loch Ness, but the picturesque village of Drumnadrochit is where to decide if you are a believer with the Nessieland experience and Loch Ness Exhibition Centre you will be provided with all the evidence and mythical stories of our beloved monster. If that isn’t enough for you to decide, you can climb the viewing tower of the impressive and wonderfully historic Urquhart Castle to give you a full and open view of the deepest part of the Loch where legend has it that the enigmatic Nessie is believed to dwell.
Taking the road away from the Loch and into the more remote local areas, you can wind your way towards Cannich and the stunning Glen Affric. With scenic walks aplenty and two impressive waterfalls to visit this is also a very “outdoor adventure” spot. If photography is your thing, this area in particular will have you snapping away constantly and all year round facilities available at the Cannich Woodland Camping means you have somewhere to stargaze overnight with next to zero light pollution.
Fort Augustus is where Loch Ness funnels back into the Caledonian Canal through the staircase of locks, which really are a pleasure to watch. The southern end of Loch Ness is also great forkayaking with its breath taking view north which sees the Loch stretch for miles into the distance. Out of the water you can take on the South Loch Ness Trail, an exciting trail for all types of user that was officially launched in August 2011. The trail stretches for approximately 28 miles between Loch Tarff near Fort Augustus to Torbreck on the edge of Inverness via Whitebridge, Foyers, Inverfarigaig and Dores.
The southern Loch Ness road from Fort Augustus takes you off the shores of the loch and up to some spectacular viewpoints. An impressive undulating road, single track in places (still campervan friendly) winds its way back to Inverness but there are some great spots to stop along the way and more adventures to be had! The fantastic Loch Ness Shores campsite is a great base for when exploring this area, with its 5 star facilities and views, you will want to stay longer for sure. A visit to this area is not complete without stopping at Foyers Falls, with a steep descent of many steps you will be rewarded with a marvellous view of the impressive 165ft waterfall. A very slow ascent is recommended taking your time to try and spot the illusive red squirrel that nest in the trees before rewarding yourself with tea and cake at the Foyers stores and Waterfall Café.
Before returning to Inverness making your round trip of Loch Ness complete, there is one last must see spot. A stop at the Dores Inn for breakfast, lunch, dinner or just a drink and a piece of delicious home baking you can take in the iconic view of Loch Ness that you see many pictures of. This view is magnificent and on a good day stretches as far as the eye can see, if a little breezy at times, you can sit on the beach and just take in the view or spend some time with a pair of binoculars trying to spot any signs of Nessie coming up for a breather!
Even with the amount of action packed adventure above, there is still so much more you can do just in this little loop of the Loch for all interests, including Horse riding, Golf, rock climbing and much, much more. The Highlands is a varied and extremely action packed place to visit, but don’t feel you have to take on huge mileage to make the most of it, a campervan trip to Inverness and Loch Ness for your initial taster is guaranteed to leave you wanting more!