After exploring the magic of Skye, it was time for us to return to Edinburgh. Of course, Scotland being Scotland, there were a bunch of beautiful pit stops for us to make along the way.
Back on the mainland
Pretty much as soon as we arrived back on the mainland we had said farewell to the cloudy Skye skies and were greeted by some uncharacteristically gorgeous weather. The blue skies really did make for some mesmerising scenery to admire on our drive.
Old Inverlochy Castle
This castle isn’t much more than a ruin these days, but it is still definitely worth a visit.
Sitting on the banks of the River Lochy and just a stones throw away from Fort William, this 13th century castle isn’t big, but it is a good looking place to stretch your legs and break up the drive.
If you recognise this viaduct, then you are one of my people!
Basically, this place is a mecca for any and all Harry Potter fans who find themselves in Scotland. This viaduct was used in the filming of several Harry Potter movies for some scenes depicting the journey of the Hogwarts Express from Platform 9¾ to the castle.
If you get lucky (or are a fantastic planner) you may even get to see the famous Jacobite Steam Train cross at this very spot.
I first visited Doune Castle in 2013 on my first ever trip overseas. On that trip, Doune Castles biggest claim to fame had been that it was used to shoot Monty Python and the Holy Grail. In fact, it had even played host to a Monty Python themed festival in 2005 – where the many punters spent a heckuva lot of time clapping coconuts together!
However, these days, visitors to Doune Castle are much more likely to be hardcore Outlander fans than Monty ones! For all my fellow Jamie lovers out there, if this castle looks familiar, you may recognise it more clearly if I referred to it as Castle Leoch.
Furthermore, for the eagle-eyed of you, you might think that Doune Castle also seems to resemble Winterfell… well, that’s because it was used in the shooting of the Game of Thrones pilot episode.
Honestly, Doune castle has seen a lotta action lately!
This does mean that the days of exploring it by yourself (such as when I visited in 2013) are long gone, but it is still certainly worth a visit, even if you aren’t a fan of crowds.
We had had high hopes of exploring Glencoe during this days driving, but a truly torrential storm successfully kept us at bay. We arrived back into Edinburgh exhausted but so happy. Our road trip around Scotland had been nothing short of magical, and as I have said many times before, I know that I’ll be back in Scotland one day soon.
Getting to Edinburgh: One of Scotland’s largest air and rail hubs – you’ll have lots of options
Edinburgh Central Youth Hostel: Dorm beds start at £20 per night, click here to learn more
Vehicle Hire: We hired a car through Budget with no issues, which seemed to be the most affordable option
Camera: Images captured with an Olympus OM-D E-M1 in conjunction with M.Zuiko 7-14mm f/2.8 and M.Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8 lenses
Remember: The Glenfinnan Viaduct is a ‘No Drone Zone’ – handy to know for any drone lovers out there!