Been wanting to do a “road trip” through the highlands for years now and finally made it last week. Despite the atrocious weather and the fact that I wasn’t driving my 5 (as there were 3 of us), Scotland, the Scottish and their roads made the trip an absolute joy.
We drove from Inverness airport to Fort William then near Mallaig on the first day then back to Drumnadrochit via Glenfinnan the next day. The following day we drove down to Loch Morlich then up to Nairn via the A939 then up to Ullapool via the A835 then back to Drumnadrochit. Next day over to Kyle of Lochalsh and Portree then up to the parking spot for Old Man of Storr before driving back to our accommodation near Drumnadrochit
At the risk of repeating the many cliches already written about the scenery, it is breathtakingly beautiful. The quality of the roads (apart from a short stretch of the A855 near Torvaig) and availability of conveient parking places leaves the “South” for dead.
Every petrol-head should do a Sottish road trip - we’ll be going again in Spring!
We enjoy it
Glad you had a great time, it’s definitely the best country in the UK to drive an MX-5…
Yes, I used to think that Wales was the best country for driving in
If you like scenic rail journeys then when you go up in spring try the trip from Fort William to Mallaig voted the best rail journey in the world a few years ago or the Dingwall to Kyle of Lochalsh line. Another great rail trip is Crianlarich to Oban. The weather is not always atrocious I might add. I have done thousands of miles in Scotland all with the hood down. I can’t wait to go up there again, there is so much to see.
Did a small tour of Scotland a few years ago. A82 that runs along Loch Lomond, then Bridge of Orch and Glencoe before continuing to Fort William was outstanding (pretty sure it’s part of the route shown in 007 / Skyfall).
Also drove along Loch Ness and back through the Cairngorms, though didn’t drive North of that. Will definitely return.
Also did the Fort William to Mallaig train (over that viaduct shown in Harry Potter), I think I would have preferred to drive and stop at my own pace, though.
Truly stunning scenery.
With views at every turn everyone must at some point visit this amazing country. Us back in 2017, we did it again earlier this year.
Agree with everything that’s been said above!
A few pics here from my Scottish Road Trip
Colintraive, waiting for the ferry to Bute
Rothesay, Island of Bute
We’ll probably do the Fort William to Mallaig rail trip next year, and yes, I realise it doesn’t always rain in Scotland - it fined up the day we left!
Our enthusiasm hasn’t been dampened though
Can anyone give me info on the Mallaig to Skye ferry.
I can get the sail times I just need info on boarding these ferries. My NC is lowered around 30mm so is it going to be an issue, especially on this ferry boarding?T I’ll be the first ferry crossing in this car, I’m a bit nervous about scraping on/off.
I have been across a few of the car ferries in Scotland in my 2009 Sport tech which is built with lower suspension than standard with no trouble. I have also been on the Mallaig to Skye ferry but not in my MX5, and as far as I can remember the ramp is not too steep. It is a spectacular ferry crossing if the weather is kind. You can also get to Skye by the bridge but it’s not such fun. Enjoy your trip.
I took my lowered ND 1.5 over this crossing a couple of times without difficulty. A friend with a lowered NC also not a problem.
In fact most ferries around Scotland are not an issue with a lowered car (the other Skye ferry needs care) and if you take an oblique approach on the ramp in some cases it will help/give peace of mind.
What might be an issue is on some of the ferries which have a mezzanine deck (which is raised once it is full) where it can be a challenge to a lowered 5. If in doubt talk to the ferry crew at the port, they are well versed in dealing with lowered (and all sorts of) vehicles.
Thanks both above for your speedy replies…
I’m trying to mix it up a little this next trip which is in September. I’ve booked most places now and I’ve stopped at our route off Skye and want to pull in Mallaig this time instead of going back over the Skye bridge as we’ve done that route around three times. Our intended journey will then be a scenic drive from Mallaig and eventually reach the Corran ferry (I trust that’s good too for my car) and over night at Ballachulish before heading towards Loch Lomond then home.
We spend time at Leith and then up to Aberdeen with a stop over somewhere in between, probably St Andrews (to be finalised) the bits I have booked are from Boat of Garten, Tain, then the NC500 route down to Skye, 18 days total can’t wait.
The Corran ferry is fine. You shouldn’t have any problem. Just to add when you leave Mallaig on the A830 (Road to the Isles)you will shortly come to Morar. Try to take time to see the spectacular beach there, renowned for the silver sands.
If you don’t mind can you keep quiet about the nice roads up here. You don’t want them full of tourists fron down south to spoil the nice drives.
I think it’s too late!
I reckon every second car on the road was a rental when we were up there in October.
Still loved every minute of our time there and plan on coming back in April
When I was a kid, our family would occasionally visit my father’s old schoolteacher,
whol lived in Tomintoul. Whenever it snowed in Scotland, the very first road
to be blocked was always, as I recall, the Tomintoul to Grantown on Spey road.
At least I’m not bringing my caravan, sold it to buy my first MX-5, it can zip in and out of those passing places with ease.