Winter Trip to the Scottish Highlands

I used to visit Scotland quite a lot growing up because my step-grandparents live there, but seeing as my dad and step-mum also now live there, I feel like Scottish mini-breaks could be a much more regular thing in the future. Despite them moving in June 2017 we hadn’t had a chance to go up and visit, so we decided to make a getaway and spend a few days in the highlands before Christmas.

We got up there about 8am on the Wednesday before Christmas and after exploring their lovely new home, our first stop was a walk at the most gorgeous beach, Shandwick Bay. You don’t generally envision enjoying a beach trip in Scotland in the middle of winter, because it’s literally freezing, but it turns out you don’t have to whack out the bikinis and start making sand castles to have a good time. Even just watching the dog bomb up and down the sand was enough. Apparently they also have seals and dolphins in the area but unfortunately they weren’t up for saying hey during our visit. Maybe next time! After that I had the most amazing fireside nap, and then we finished the day making mince pies and drinking gin. Not bad for day one!

On day two we drove to Dornoch, which is the cutest little royal town near to Moray Firth. As it was nearly Christmas we indulged in the best toasted sandwiches by a roaring fire, took a look around the Cathedral, spent some time in their adorable gift shops and Christmas shops, before driving home with a classic Christmas CD on full blast. Oh and then we ate more mince pies. I’m only just realising how much I actually ate whilst I was there…

Day three was our last full day and we had a huge Christmas dinner at the Kincraig Castle Hotel which sits up on a hill overlooking Invergordon and Cromarty Firth. This was seriously the most insane meal and given that we left not being able to breathe from excess food consumption, that alone says how good it was. In the evening, we went to see It’s a Wonderful Life at the world’s smallest cinema screening. They even offered blankets and everyone clapped at the end. It doesn’t get more festive than that does it?

On Saturday it was time to fly home, but even just three and a bit days of spending time with my parents and grandma while seeing a little more of the world was such a good way to end a great year. Hopefully I can see a little more of Scotland in 2018! Edinburgh is definitely on my bucket list

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