When England was succumbing to the Romans, the Scots had other plans. The rebellious clans here were considered such a threat to the empire that Emperor Hadrian thought it prudent to build a 72-mile—long wall to keep then out. While the people are much more welcoming these days, somehow this mystical landscape still manages to fight the trappings of the modern world. Visions of fighting clans and echoes of the epic battles that happened beneath your feet will follow you as you explore vast glens, with mighty munros towering above. Hours can pass without seeing a soul, which is the kind of solitude often sought after but rarely found.
The flora and fauna
A tour of the mountains of Glen Affric and Glen Strathfarrar, some of Scotland’s finest Caledonian pine forests, will surround you with the sights and sounds of their distinct flora and fauna. Spot native red squirrel and red deer on a hike through the rugged wilderness or simply enjoy the area’s tranquillity and breathe in the crisp, fresh air. The indigenous pinewood forest of Strathfarrar and the regenerating wildflower grasslands in Strathglass offer ample opportunities for bird watching enthusiasts.
There really is nowhere else in the UK that can match the land and sea experiences found in Scotland. Travel west from Fort William to the beautiful stretch of water called the Sound of Arisaig. An exploration of this coastline by sea kayak will take in the myriad desert islands and introduce you to sea life such as seals, otters and dolphins who call this body of water home. Take a pit stop at one of the deserted islands for a picnic lunch and have a refreshing dip from your kayak – either planned or unplanned – in the clear waters.