A Highland Road Trip: Inverary & Glen Etive

One of my resolutions for 2018 was to see more of Scotland. Having finally bought a car last year, I’m determined to put it to good use – mainly through weekend road trips! Edinburgh is such a great base to explore from, and I’m so excited to see where this year takes me.

One of my dream bucket-list destinations has always been Glencoe so I devised a route that would take us up through Loch Lomond, Inveraray, Glencoe & Glen Etive, and finally back to Edinburgh. I’ve seen so many photos on Instagram of Glen Etive and the rather friendly deer that live there and I was determined to see them for myself! Here’s a rather photo-heavy account of what happened…

‘Some old-fashioned things like sunshine and fresh air are hard to beat.’ {Laura Ingalls Wilder}

We stopped for lunch at the tiny village of Luss on the banks of Loch Lomond (The Village Rest does a great burger if you ever find yourself in the area!) A short stroll to Luss pier, and a quick coffee stop at Tarbet was all we had time for on this trip, but Loch Lomond has always captured my imagination, and I know we’ll be back to explore properly.

Inveraray & Inveraray Castle

The drive up to Inveraray was absolutely stunning. Think sweeping landscapes, snow-capped mountains, and sapphire blue lochs sparkling in the sunshine. Mogli’s Expedition of Happiness album was the perfect soundtrack (I’d love to know your favourite road-trip playlists! Leave me a link in the comments.)

A contender for #IHaveThisThingWithBlueDoors?

Enjoying some unexpected sunshine, we had a quick wander around the town and then took a stroll up to Inveraray Castle, which turned out to be one of the most picturesque (think fairy princess) castles I’ve ever seen. The castle was closed, but we were still able to get a wonderful view from the gates, and I look forward to visiting again one day and seeing all the beautiful interiors.

We stayed the night in Inveraray, at a lovely guest house called Thistle House and had a fantastic dinner at The George Inn (in case you’re planning a visit, I’d definitely recommend these two spots!)

‘I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel’s sake. The great affair is to move…’ {Robert Louis Stevenson}

Kilchurn Castle

The next day, we drove up towards one of Scotland’s most-photographed beauty spots, Kilchurn Castle. An impressive ruin, Kilchurn sits proudly on the banks of Loch Awe – it’s quite a sight, especially with the snowcapped mountains towering behind.

 ‘I am well again. I came to life in the cool winds and crystal waters of the mountains.’ {John Muir}

I can just imagine how intimidating this fortress must’ve been once upon a time. It’s easy to picture it as a bustling garrison, fire roaring in the hearth… I saw recently that the Outlander cast have been filming in this very spot, so I’m excited to see how they bring it to life!

Glen Etive

When my friend told me about Glen Etive, I almost didn’t believe her. Until she sent the photos. Driving up towards Glencoe, take a right turn at the ski centre and you’ll find yourself on a single-track road which leads through some of the most heartbreakingly beautiful scenery I’ve ever seen. The wild deer are so tame and friendly, they come down from the hills to greet travellers as they go by – and try and scrounge as much food as possible! Some people had come prepared with apples and carrots, but I’ll never forget the sight of 3 deer with their heads through our car window, hearts firmly set on my bag of popcorn!

 Chasing the wild deer, and following the roe, my heart’s in the Highlands wherever I go.’ {Robert Burns}

‘The mountains are calling and I must go.’ {John Muir}  ‘All good things are wild and free.’ {Henry David Thoreau}

And that’s a wrap on our Highland road trip. I can’t wait for the next one!

If you could road-trip anywhere in Scotland, where would it be?

I’d love to get some inspiration for our next trip!

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  • Been really looking forward to seeing your full account of the trip. Just gorgeous photography & lots of ideas for a future trip to Scotland!

    • Ohh thank you Rachel! That’s so lovely of you to say! I’m really glad you enjoyed the post – feel free to drop me a message on Instagram if you need any advice for future Scotland trips! G x

    • Thanks Lily, so glad you enjoyed it! Scotland really is the most beautiful country. I’m very lucky I get to explore it the way I do! G xx

  • Hello! My name is Claudia and I write from Italy, I found your instagram profile by chance and there I found the link of your blog. I wanted to compliment you for the very interesting posts and wonderful photographs, use your smartphone or a camera? I’ll be in Scotland in a month for the summer holidays and I’ll go to the Highlands on the road like you, but I’ll start from Inverness and I’m studying a good route with the best things to see, if you have any suggestions, it’s welcome! 🙂 Have a nice day, Claudia