For my birthday I decided to go to the Scottish Highlands. I have always wanted to go and once when I was in Edinburgh with my parents I saw this flyer from Macbackpackers in our BnB and it looked sooo cool. I kept it and made a note of it.
Now Macbackpackers do tours all over Scotland and they vary in duration. But the tours are engaging, you don’t stay on the coach much, you get off as much as possible and really engage with the country and with nature.
I wanted to do the 5 day Highland Fling and Isle of Skye tour but I was broke so it took a while for my dream to be realised. But last year I worked aboard on a summer camp and I saved some of the money and with that money I got to book my tour!
I booked it early in the year as I knew when my birthday came I would be aching to go somewhere. It’s such good value for money and you can pay for the hostels you stay at in advance.
So how was the tour and what did it entail?
It was awesome! We went to so many places! Our tour guide, Mark, wrote them all down for us and I have the list but bruh, I’m not going to write it all for you because you should go and experience it for yourselves. On the tour I was the only British person, the rest were from Australia, Canada, New Zealand and China.
They were so outdoorsy. I thought I was but then I saw them running up the mountain and I was like cool … I’m going to walk … it’s fine. Lol. But they did challenge me to push myself and to climb higher than I thought I could. My knee hurt when I was hiking in the Isle of Skye but I still pushed on and I got to see such an amazing view in the end. (This was when we were hiking up the Quiraing). It was peaceful, the air was clear and there were hidden places to play that you couldn’t see from the bottom. Another girl on the tour took it slow with me and we had fun finding lakes (were they lakes …? I’m not sure) and just sitting and enjoying the view. Then we went down and waited with another tour mate for the rest to come down the mountain.
The Isle of Skye was amazing. It was the place I was least looking forward to but I ended up enjoying it the most. It’s such a small Isle and yet it’s packed with faery lore and beauty. There are so many places I still want to see! So I definitely want to go back one day.
The village (Kyleakin) we stayed in was so cute and that hostel was my favourite hostel. We got a nice room, the girls were all tour mates. The room was cute and we had wifi. I had the bottom bunk finally! And there was a cat that liked to hang out on our floor.
Our first stop was Inverness (yes I’m sharing out of order). This was the place I most wanted to go to. I don’t know how long I’ve wanted to go to Inverness. I’ve read books where they were based there and I just thought wow it sounds cool I want to go there. And I did. It was a nice city, cute and full of churches on one street. It was raining on that day but I didn’t care. I live in Britain. I’m used to it. The people were nice and I got to thoroughly explore.
I’ll admit, I did get a little lost for a while but I found my way eventually.
We also got to go to Loch Ness. Yes. *smiles*. I was hoping to see Nessy but no such luck. I think it’s because we were excited to see her so she was like, “Nah, not today”. I couldn’t swim that day so I just dipped my feet it. It was so cold and after a while I wondered if my feet would just detach and fall off. But as soon as I exited the water I felt so refreshed and renewed. It felt good.
We also went to Oban (another super cute city), we saw Ben Nevis, we saw a bunch of castles, loches and glenns. Our guide was awesome, sarcastic and full of knowledge of Scotland. We did spend some time in the lowlands getting to stop in Stirling and of course we were picked up and dropped off at Edinburgh.
All in all it was a great trip. I needed that time away and it really refreshed my mind and got my creative, writing, juices flowing. I definitely want to go again and see more places and just have fun and explore.
I definitely recommend you check out macbackpackers: https://www.macbackpackers.com/
Oh and beware of the midges!