The Scottish Highlands are one of the more remote places in not just Scotland, but in the UK, to visit but you definitely shouldn’t let that stop you from visiting when you’re in the UK – the Scottish Highlands are also one of the most dramatically beautiful parts of the UK to visit.
There’s all the rugged beauty to see here but beyond that (and even beyond amazing places like Loch ness), there’s a whole plethora of beautiful little Scottish towns and villages that you have to visit when you’re here.
If ever you wanted a true taste of Scottish life, the Highlands are pretty much guaranteed to give you just that! To help you on your way, we’ve put together 10 beautiful villages you have to visit in the Scottish Highlands.
Also, don’t forget to check out our complete guide to visiting the Scottish Highlands, including recommendations on where to stay and an itinerary for your entire time (all recommended by locals from the area so you know its good – you can’t beat a good old-fashioned local recommendation).
The gorgeous village of Killin sits at one end of Loch Tay in the Highlands. The village is known for its quaint pubs and host of bed and breakfast options and many of the homes here are traditional thatched cottages that you would come to expect of rural Scotland.
The village of Torridon sits at the foot of majestic Liathach, said by some to be the most beautiful mountain in all of Scotland. It is the largest village in the area people flock here for the gorgeous views of the neighbouring peaks.
Shieldaig is smaller than Torridon and lies to the west of Liathach but some people say that it is even more picturesque than its sister village. Your challenge? Try to figure out which one is the more beautiful village! Expect lots of little cottages abound as well as babbling brooks and that rugged highland scenery.
Braemar is actually one of the highest villages in the Scottish Highlands, so don’t be surprised to find snow here (wrap up warm when you visit). The village is also famed for its stone cottages that were constructed to keep out the cold.
6.) Boat of Garten
Overlooked by the Cairngorms, the village of Boat of Garten also goes by the name ‘The Osprey Village’. Popular activities in the vicinity include fishing, hiking so you know to visit if you’re up for a good old fashioned hike!
7.) Nethy Bridge
Cromarty is not well known but that doesn’t mean that it isn’t worth a visit. Often overlooked in favour of other areas nearby, the narrow winding streets here are perfect for afternoon of aimless rambling if you’ve got spare time on your trip.
Many locals will tell you that Plockton is one of the most beautiful villages in the Highlands and they would be right too! The whole village is surrounded by lush greenery on one side and a beautiful coastline on the other, not to mention the quaint little cottages that line its streets.
Known as the place to come for those who love hiking, Ballater can be used as a great base to explore the nearby area. It is also famous for its spring water which in the days of old was said to cure a string of ailments.