Springtime is an excellent time to visit Scotland and I had the pleasure of doing just that over the Easter holiday weekend. The four-night and three-day trip was just enough time to get a taste of the Highlands region. There is so much more for me to see and I know I’ll be going back as soon as I can. I spent the majority of my time singing Loch Lomond and attempting to work on my gaelic accent, but I also made certain to enjoy the sights and attractions. Listen to this beautiful rendition of Loch Lomond while you read through my recommendations (click on the chorus below). Let it draw you in to the magic of the Highlands – my gift to you!
This magnificent luxury boutique hotel situated steps from the Royal Dornoch Golf Course offers excellent accommodations to make your Scottish experience one that you will never forget. Charming, elegant, and peaceful, this property will sweep you right off your feet and you may never want to leave. With a world class golf course at the foot of your bed, access to fishing streams, hiking trails, horse back riding, cycling, and hunting, any guest will feel spoilt by the huge array activities available to them.
I had the opportunity to meet visionary and proprietor, Todd Warnock, who took me on a tour of the property and the surrounding town. His love for the region was evident as we spoke and his friendly and approachable demeanor made the experience all the more delightful.
Todd and his wife, Liz, aimed to create an unpretencious five-star experience with a manor-home feeling. This vision was perfectly executed throughout the hotel’s two Georgian style buildings with the help of talented interior decorator, Helen Lyon. With just eight – but soon to be twelve – bedrooms, you’ll feel like you have the place to yourself.
The hotel is designed for guests to come and go as they please. Guests may wish to wander into the village of Dornoch or further out for a day of whisky tasting in the Highlands. Todd also set out to restore the old courthouse in town and it is now renamed the Carnegie Courthouse and is home to a beautiful tea room, the Carnegie Whisky Cellars, a full range Aspen Spa, and the Dornoch Visitor Centre.
I would be foolish not to mention the food and fine dining experience at Links House. Newly appointed chef, Jon-Paul Saint, who trained under Albert Roux, Derek Johnstone and Glen Watson, has created an outstanding menu and the attentive staff will look after your every need. The wine cellar is fully stocked and there is also an abundance of local ales and, of course, single malt whisky. Links House is really the perfect retreat and comes highly recommended by moi!
Known as the “pearl of the north”, the castle is located in Banffshire, Scotland. It has been the family home of the Macpherson-Grants since 1546. The grounds and a few of the state rooms are open to the general public during the Spring and Summer months.
Glenfiddich is a Speyside single malt Scotch whisky owned and produced by William Grant & Sons in Dufftown. The whisky is sold worldwide and is recognized as some of the best. Glenfiddich means ‘Valley of the Deer’ in Scottish Gaelic, hence the presence of a stag symbol on all of their bottles. The 90-minute distillery tour provides a unique insight into the age old traditional whisky making process and ends with a sampling of their most popular drams. Drink up!
This beautiful nature reserve is dotted with hiking trails and picnic locations and is a must do for any visitor. Glen Affric is a glen, or valley, south-west of the village of Cannich in the Highland region of Scotland, just about 15 miles to the west of the famous Loch Ness. I recommend the 4-mile Dog Falls forest walk where you’ll experience a stunning waterfall, the ancient Caledonian Pine Forest, and stunning views over Coire Loch.