Scottish Highlands – Land for walkers

Sunset in the Highlands - Photo taken by Pack Your Bag

Sunset in the Highlands – Photo taken by Pack Your Bag

The Highlands really is the Scotland of your imagination. It’s a beautiful and inspiring land with a rich and dramatic history. Whatever time of year, the Scottish Highlands are well worth a visit. Discover in this article magnificent lochs, the UK’s highest mountain as well as one of the largest national pathways.

My experience across the Highlands was definitely one of the best of my life so far; the fact of walking 11 days along the Loch Ness, also climbing the Ben Nevis (UK’s highest mountain) and walking again across the West Highland Way made me discover deeply the highlander culture as well as the beauty of this land. If you are an enthusiastic walker, the Scottish Highlands are definitely a place to go, at least once in your life.

1.- The Great Glen Way

It stretches for 117 km from East Coast to West Coast, linking the main regional towns, Inverness and Fort William. Most of the route keeps to lower levels and offers a good introduction to the Highlands running along the shores of the Loch Ness, the Caledonian Canal and the Loch Lochy. You can complete the Great Glen Way wether in 5 or 6 days, depending your strength and the time you have to, with an average mileage of 13 miles per day. What the Great Glen Way offers to you? History, nature, waterfalls, lakes, castles, forests and a huge range of wildlife.

  • Inverness, the capital of the Scottish Highlands.
  • Loch Ness, the most popular lake in the world.
  • Unquart Castle, in the northern shore of the Loch Ness
  • Fort Augustus, the beginning of the Caledonian Canal
  • Loch Lochy, high mountains and magnificent waterfalls.
  • Fort William, the UK’s outdoor capital and base camp to climb the Ben Nevis.

Further info about the Great Glen Way in the following link Great Glen Way

Great Glen Way Map - Provided by Contours.co.uk

Great Glen Way Map – Provided by Contours.co.uk

Loch Ness

Loch Ness – Photo taken by Pack Your Bag

2.- Ben Nevis, the UK’s highest mountain

Fort William, the UK’s outodoor capital, is also the “base camp” to climb the Ben Nevis. A tourist route, also known as the Donkey Path, heads up from beautiful Glen Nevis to reach the top of Ben Nevis, Britain’s highest mountain. The route, although easily seen, is challenging due to its length and height (1344m). Ascend in a South East direction to join the path from the Youth Hostel. Continue the path to a junction above Loch Meall, then continue South to start the zig-zagging section. Eventually you will reach the boulder slopes that head to the summit. Beware the cliffs of the paths. On a cloudy-free day the views from the top are astounding. Then to return walk back the way you came.

Ben Nevis Map- provided by canvis.com

Ben Nevis Map- provided by canvis.com

Ben Nevis zig-zag path

Ben Nevis zig-zag path – Photo taken by Pack Your Bag

3.- The West Highland Way

This was Scotland’s first long distance route, stretching for 154 km from Glasgow to Fort William. Well-waymarked throughout, the route is within the capabilities of most walkers. It offers tremendous variety such a pastoral landscapes, the beautiful Loch Lomond and on into increasingly rugged Highlans. You can also enjoy a glimpse of Glen Coe, probably the most popular Scottish’s landscape. It still has enough challenge to inspire the imagination of the walkers; one of the hardest and most challenging parts is unexpectedly the journey along the Loch Lomond although the fact of walking the major part next to lake makes the day absolutely unforgettable.  You can complete the West Highlands Way in a minimum of 8 days with a daily average walking distance of 20 km. Lots of lodges and B&Bs are found along the way, but if you are brave enough you could sleep in tent anywhere you desire as it is permitted in Scotland.

West Highland´s Way Map - Provided by

West Highland´s Way Map – Provided by Contours.co.uk

Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park - West Highlands Way

Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park – West Highlands Way

img_5224

 

 

7 things you must do if you visit Edinburgh

Edinburgh is probably one of the most beautiful cities in Europe due to its well conserved medieval architecture, its well-designed streets as well as its charmed people. For those reasons Edinburgh is also one of the most visited cities in UK and Europe. Million of tourists visit this charming city every year as the city offers to the visitors a huge wide range of things to do and enjoy. Pack Your Bag wants to give you some tips about what you should’t miss in your visit to Edinburgh.

Edinburgo es probablemente una de las ciudades más bonitas de Europa gracias a su arquitectura mediaval tan bien conservada, su  diseno urbanístico así como su encantadora gente. Por estas razones Edimburgo es una de las ciudades más visitadas en UK y Europa. Millones de turistas visitan la ciudad cada año ya que la ciudad ofrece al visitante un gran abanico de posibilidades para disfrutar. Pack Your Bag quiere daros algunas recomendaciones de qué no deberías perderte en tu visita a Edinmburgo.

FullSizeRender

Edinburgh Castle overview

  1. Edinburgh Castle. This is the most visited monument in Scotland. The price is £16.50 and you might spend up to 4 hours visiting all its rooms. Es el monumento mas visitado de Escocia. La entrada cuesta £16.50 y podrías llegar a necesitar hasta 4 horas para visitar sus estancias.

    FullSizeRender (1)

    Edinburgh Castle

  2. Royal Mile. This is probably the most popular street in Edinburgh. Lots of traditional shops are based in this street as well as St Giles Cathedral. This street heads up to the Castle so basically it is situated in the heart of the Old Town. Es probablemente la calle más famosa de Edimburgo. Diversas tiendas tradicionales se concentran en esta calle así como la Catedral de San Giles. La calle te lleva directamente hasta el castillo y está situada en pleno corazón de la Ciudad Vieja. 

    FullSizeRender (2)

    Royal Mile Street

  3. Find William Wallace. You will find this popular historical Scottish personage at any place in Old Town. Don’t be shy and take a funny picture with him, you also will donate and support a children’s charity. Encontrarás este famoso personaje histórico escocés en cualquier parte de la Ciudad Vieja. No seas tímido y hazte una foto con el, también estarás colaborando con una asociación dedicada a niños.

    FullSizeRender (3)

    William Wallace

  4. Calton Hill. If you want to enjoy a beautiful panorama of Edinburgh don’t miss Calton Hill. It is situated only few steps far from city centre and the views over Edinburgh and its Old Town are amazing as well as the views over the sea. If you are a lucky person and the weather is nice, I mean, it is sunny,  don’t miss the sunset from up there as it’s stunning. Si quieres disfrutar de una preciosa panorámica de la ciudad, visita Calton Hill. Esta pequeña colina está situada a tan solo algunos pasos del centro de la ciudad y las vistas sobre Edinburgo y la Ciudad Vieja son fantasticas así como las vistas al mar. Si eres una persona afortunada y el tiempo te acompaña, quiero decir, que esté soleado, no te pierdas la puesta de sol desde arriba de la colina ya que es preciosa. 

    FullSizeRender

    Edinburgh sunset overview from Calton Hill

  5. Eat Haggis. Comerte unos Haggis. This traditional Scottish plate is made basically with black pudding, although is popularly served with mashed swede and potatoes . One of the best places to eat a Haggie is MUMS Restaurant, situated in Old Town, only few steps from the National Museum. Absolutely the perfect option to fight against the Scottish coldness. Click the link bellow for further information.  Este plato escocés esta hecho basicamente de lo que nosotros conocemos por morcilla, aunque suele estar acompañado con pure de patatas y nabo. Uno de los mejores restaurantes donde podrás comerte un buen haggie es MUMS Restaurante, situado en la Ciudad Vieja y a escasos pasos del Museo Nacional.Sin duda la mejor opcion para combatir el frío escocés.  Si quieres saber mas sobre este restaurante, pincha el link de abajo. Restaurant Info

    IMG_9342

    Haggis

  6. Go for a  folk music party in a traditional Scottish Pub. Participar en una fiesta escocesa con música tradicional. If you want to feel the real sense of the Edinburgh’s night life, don’t miss one of the different live music performances you will find in the pubs of Edinburgh. My favourite one is Sandy Bells, a traditional Scottish Pub situated in Old Town, just in front of MUMS Restaurant. There is a wide range of whiskies to drink and taste and you also will be surrounded by local people. This pubs offers folk live music every day a week and the atmosphere is incredible for a night out. Further info, click the link below. Si quieres sentir la verdadera esencia de la vida nocturna de la ciudad, no te pierdas uno de los diferentes conciertos de musica local que encontrarás en cualquiera de los pubs de Edimburgo. Mi Pub favorito es el Sandy Bells, un pub tradicional situado en la Cuidad Vieja, justo en frente del Restaurante MUMS. Hay un amplio abanico de wiskies para degustar y podrás disfrutar de un ambiente completamente escocés con gente local. El pub ofrece música en directo todas los días de la semana y la atmósfera que se respira es genial para salir una noche de fiesta. Para más información, dale al siguiente link Pun Info

    _DSC7944

    Sandy Blues Scottish Pub

  7. Walk along Princess Street Gardens. Un paseo por los Jardines de Princess Street. Situated in city centre, these gardens are probably the best option for a short walk during your visit at Edinburgh. You will enjoy, not just the pleasure of a nice walk, also a magnificent views of the Castle as well as Old Town from below as the gardens are situated mountainside of the Castle. Don’t miss them! Situados al centro de la ciudad, estos jardines son probablemente una de las mejores opciones para un corto paseo en la ciudad durate tu visita a Edimburgo. Disfrutarás, no sólo de una agradable paseo, si no también de unas vistas fantásticas del Castillo y de la Cuidad Vieja ya que los jardines se encunentran en las faldas de la colina del castillo. No te los pierdas. 

    FullSizeRender (4)

    Princess Street Gardens and Edinburgh Castle