The Highland Midge

Don’t worry about the famous Highland midge, with a bit of preparation and knowledge of this “beastie” it will not affect your Highland holiday

If you have never been to the Highlands before you may have heard stories of the dreaded Scottish midge out to terrorize unsuspecting visitors, but don’t worry, it’s not as bad as you may think!

Firstly, midge season is in the height of the summer, so if you are visiting us in autumn, winter, spring or even early summer you will not be bothered by midges.

Also, midges are tiny – much smaller than mosquitoes – so their bites if they do happen are usually more irritating than painful unless you tend to have severe reactions to insect bites. Their tiny size with a wingspan of just 2mm is probably the reason that midges usually appear in large numbers, you never get “just the one”!

Midges are most likely to be out and about looking for unsuspecting visitors to attack at dawn or dusk and in still, humid conditions. Even a slight breeze will chase midges away. They also can’t keep up with you when you’re walking, so while you’re out hiking or cycling you will be perfectly safe.

If it is “midgey weather” (i.e. cloudy, damp and no wind) and you are worried about these pesky insects bothering you, try a midge repellant like Smidge or Avon Skin So Soft.

In case you don’t like to use insect repellants or are allergic to them, you can also go for the very fetching “midge hat” (a wide brimmed hat with a net), which will protect your head and face from the midge menace.

Not all areas of Scotland are affected by midges, so keep an eye on the Midge Forecast in the summer so you can decide if you have to pack an insect repellant or not! In the Inverness and Loch Ness area, most places by the coast and along Loch Ness are pretty much midge free, but in other places like Glen Affric you are more likely to encounter these “wee beasties”.

So don’t be worried about the dreaded midge, stay active and avoid sitting still outside if it’s “midgey weather” and if you can’t avoid them (for example when you’re camping, fishing etc), stock up on tried and tested midge repellants and you will be able to enjoy the great outdoors!
There is a good page here about Scottish Midges and Ticks

Glen Affric