Stunning Views: Scotland Road Trip

Road Trip Scotland

Find out what’s under the Kilt in Scotland

Who wouldn’t want to go on a Scotland road trip? Beautiful vistas await you at every turn, over every hill. You’ll be driving along the rugged coast, or a mysterious loch, or through a highland meadow popping with colorful wildflowers. You might not exactly have the road to yourself, but you won’t find too many others so you can go at your own pace, stopping for photographs whenever you want. In fact, this lack of traffic can be problematic for us right side of the road drivers. Turning into the road with no visual cues to remind you keep to the left often means pulling out and keeping to the right. This isn’t really a problem, until you come head to head with oncoming traffic wondering why you’re on their side of the narrow road.

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Scotland Road Trip

Highways and byways driving though the Scottish Highlands.

Aside from this, driving in Scotland and the rest of the UK for that matter, is very easy and safe. Roads are well signed, informational signs are all in English, and the roads are very well maintained. On many of these byways you won’t find much for shops, gas stations, and eateries, so plan accordingly. A good pub lunch is always nice so be sure and make reservations somewhere along the route.

Scotland Road Trip

The view of Eilean Donan Castle on Loch Duich

We have a few different strategies when we go road tripping. The first is the great circle route. On this road trip we’ll have a definitive starting point like our home or the airport where we pick up a rental car. Then we’ll travel along a long route for two or more days, stopping to spend the night in a new place along the way each day. This was how we did our week-long Iceland road trip.

Scotland Road Trip

The lakes in Scotland are deep and mysterious

Another plan we like to use is the classic star road trip. For these journeys we’ll head to a central location for accommodations for the duration of the trip and then take day trips out and back to the home base. Both ways have there merits, and for longer road trips we use a synthesis of the two. For instance, on our UK trip we drove from our home in Germany to the Lake District spending the night in a new place pretty much every day on our way. Then we spent a week exploring the Lake District from our base at Siobhan’s spectacular farmhouse caravans; taking several day trips out into the countryside and back. From there we drove on to our next home for a week, near Inverness.

Scotland Road Trip

If you go at the right time of year, Scotland will reward you with wildflowers.

I personally think that it’s impossible not to have stunning views anywhere in Scotland, but we found two particular drives that were just nonstop beauty from the first kilometer to the last. Both of these routes will lead you through the rolling hills, meadow lands, lakes, mountains, and forests of the Scottish Highlands. Along the way you’ll see sheep grazing on the emerald green hills, crumbling castle ruins, and mysterious lochs. So pack your bags, your camera, some drinks and snacks, download the map and get out and drive!

Enjoy a few more gorgeous views from these incredible drives in Scotland!

Scotland Road Trip

Looking across the water at the ferry landing point at Stromeferry.

 

Scotland Road Trip

The view at the Commando Memorial is thought provoking and inspiring

 

Scotland Road Trip

Early summer in Scotland is full of surprises like these!

 

Scotland Road Trip

You’ll still see a few of these whitewashed, thatch covered farmhouses in Scotland.

 

Scotland Road Trip

Harry Potter I presume? That could be the Hogwart’s express crossing the Glennfinnan viaduct in Scotland.

Are you planning a Scotland Road Trip? What are your must see sites?

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Scotland Road Trip

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

39 Comments

  1. Gorgeous pictures! Scotland is ridiculously picturesque. I only spent a few days in the Highlands but the scenery was unforgettable – I felt compelled to take pictures practically every second as we drove along! Can’t wait to go back.

    1. Thanks Michelle, it really is picturesque. The biggest danger of a road trip there is that you’ll never end up getting to your destination because there’s just so many beautiful photos to take!

  2. Nice post. I especial love that you described your two methods of approaching a driving trip. And love that you included a map. I’ll check out the Lake District post, too.

  3. We also loved Scotland. We didn’t do nearly as much driving as you did, but did go a bit further north. It’s just lovely. We, however had no problem with the driving, as it’s the side we are used to.

    1. I’ve driven so much on the left side of the road now that it’s almost second nature for me. But there are still times on completely empty roads where my brain refuses to do what it should.

  4. I heart Scotland! I took a very short road trip from Scotland to Fife a few years ago and have been dying to go back ever since. You are absolutely right that you are surrounded by beauty on all sides when road tripping in Scotland. I like that you included a map of your route!

  5. I have been through both Ireland and Scotland and it never ceases to amaze me how two islands so close to each other can be so completely different. And yet, I couldn’t choose a favorite; both are full of awe-inspiring scenery.

    You’ve created a wonderful road trip itinerary, Corinne. Such good planning. I can tell a lot of thought went into it.

  6. You guys are so lucky to drive through all these beautiful European countries! When do you find time to take all these road trips? Scotland looks stunning, I didn’t imagine it can be so beautiful. I’d love to visit it.

  7. Your photo with the purple wildflowers is awesome. I really love Scotland! I went when I was in college and was able to go up in to the Highlands – it was magical. It was one of the first “big” trips I took…of course your pictures are way better than mine!

  8. Many people write about road trips and wonderful drives, but not everyone maps them out like you did (you know, with a real map). It always seems to me that the outer edges of Britian are the most scenic.

  9. This brings back some incredible memories of Scotland. I would go back tomorrow. I agree that driving is the only way really to see everything, it’s such a lovely, small country with so much to see, stopping off for a night along the way, is the best way. Great post.

  10. The pictures are enchanting.Road trip in Scotland is like a dream road trip. The nature and the lovely landscapes are picturesque. The moors of Scotland really haunt me and urge me to get there fast.

  11. I did the same “west” tour than yours so I looking at your pictures brought me nice memories. Gorgeous landscapes, yes but when it rains (and in Scotland rains A LOT) the views are less stunning.

  12. Hooray! Your trip will be fantastic. I’ve done 11 days around Scotland and through the highlands. Quite a memorable trip. All too many castles, follys, scones, and sheep but it was a blast. Definitely stop in Fort William and you can see the Jacobite Express and then from that Glenfinian Viaduct you can see it drive by early in the mornings for the best view. Don’t miss Fettus College in Edinburgh either if you are a HP fan.

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