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No – we are not going to mention it!

The area that encompasses this region (yes we have been a little flexible with boundaries) has one major feature: Loch Ness. In case you never heard of it (!), the loch is the second largest in Scotland being 23 miles long, but the largest by volume. In fact, it contains more water than all the lakes in England and Wales combined!

Along the roadside there are many opportunities to stop to take photos and there are boat trips daily to see the castle, go fishing and enjoy the scenery. Urquhart Castle is a fascinating day out and the video at the start of the tour is very informative. Did you know, for example, the castle was destroyed by its owners, to stop Jacobite forces taking it for themselves.

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The Great Glen Way is a very popular route for walking. Stretching from Inverness to Fort William, it takes in some spectacular woodland and panoramic views over the whole of Loch Ness. If talking this walk, remember to be prepared for all weathers!

When traveling the A82 by car, do stop and take in the popular points such as Bridge of Oich, Invermoriston Falls and the canal locks at Fort Augustus.

Drumnadrochit and Fort Augustus are the two main villages along the route offering attractions and cafes.

Often overlooked is what is locally referred to as the “south side” of Loch Ness, but is in fact the east side.  A drive along the single track road is at a more sedate pace than the west side and equally as picturesque.  You will quite unexpectedly come across crafts shops and local artists, happy to chat a while and you could easily become side-tracked!

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Dores has become popular in recent years for the festival RockNess, drawing over 35,000 music fans to the area.  The Trail of the 7 Lochs is a recently identified 50 mile round walk, taking in some breath-taking scenery, lochs, hills and forestry.  The Falls of Foyers is a much shorter but steep walk, definitely worth the effort.

To the west of Loch Ness is the “most beautiful glen in Scotland”, Glen Affric along with Strathglass which enjoys huge blankets of bluebells in spring, green woodland, riverside walks as well as some exceptionally colourful dragonflies.

Guisachan Estate is a great place to spend a day, wandering the pathways, picnics in the woods and kids of all ages will love feeling the spray from the cascading Plodda Falls!

Oh ok – and you may spot Nessie!