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10 things to do in the Scottish Highlands | Scotland tourist attraction | Fort William, Hogwarts Express, Glencoe and all the lochs

Hi friends,

Today I’ll be sharing the details of my 3 days 2 nights trip to Scotland (again), this time with my bestie Mya, back in December (2021). You can watch the video below on Youtube as we with timestamps / chapters if you would prefer skipping some parts. Or you can go further down where I have listed some Scotland tourist attraction sites we visited and why you should too! I’ve also included some of our photos for your reference – because if you’re like us, you’d want to know the best photo spots too.

If you have any other recommendations, feel free to share in the comments below!

  1. University of Glasgow’s Gilbert Scott Building and the Cloisters
    Our first stop was Glasgow university’s  Gilbert Scott Building. It was named after its designer/architect Sir George Gilbert Scott, who was a leading figure in the Gothic Revival movement in the late 19th century. The Cloisters (also known as The Undercroft or the Arches) connect the East and West Quadrangles and the doorway there leads inside to the Bute Hall and the Hunterian Museum (which is open to public and admission is free!). This building surely does make you feel as though you’re in Hogwarts – so definitely a must visit. I myself have been here a couple of times, just to experience the magic! Although surprisingly, Harry Potter was never actually filmed here.

  2. Rannoch Moor Viewpoint
    Rannoch Moor was actually featured in Harry Potter. It’s the place where the death eaters stopped the Hogwarts Express and conducted a raid to catch Harry in the Deathly Hallows
    Part 1. 
    This is not to be confused with Kinloch Rannoch – the iconic Outlander filming location which was used as the site of Craigh na Dun. That is almost an hour and a half away from here!

  3. Fort William
    We set our base camp at Fort William, a lovely little town with its own attraction and amazing loch (the Loch Linnhe). We stayed at the Ben Nevis Hotel & Leisure Club. Although you can tell that the building is old (and maybe tired?), our room was spacious, with a nice comfortable bed and a clean bathroom – so much more than we could ask for the price paid!

    Loch Linnhe is as majestic as it sounds. As the weather was pretty bad on the first two days, we only realised how beautiful it actually is on day 3! The skies cleared up as we crossed the Ballachulish Bridge on the third day and so we stopped to admire and recorded the amazing views.
  4. Glenfinnan Viaduct
    The Glenfinnan Viaduct that also features in at least three Harry Potter movies is only half an hour away from Fort William. Maybe it’s the gloomy weather, but we ended up being the only people there at the time. According to the locals, it’s usually VERY busy and it’d be difficult to even find parking (and the parking space is HUGE). But perhaps also it’s because we were too early – most people come to see the famous Jacobite steam train ie the real life Hogwarts Express pass over the viaduct at around 10.45am in the morning and at 15.15pm in the afternoon. We weren’t fussed.

    We then proceeded to do part of the Glenfinnan Viaduct circular walk, taking the mountain route towards the train station. It’s an easy trail that usually offers beautiful views of the Loch Schiel (if it’s not too foggy!). You may even be lucky enough to spot a herd of deers like we did!

  5. Bonnie Prince Charlie Monument & Loch Shiel
    A five minutes walk up the path behind the Glenfinnan Visitors Centre brings you up to a viewpoint that overlooks the bonny prince Charlie monument and the loch shiel with viaduct behind you. The Loch Shiel features in perhaps all 8 of the Harry Potter films as ‘the Hogwarts Lake’ although sometimes the director uses more than one lake to depict the scene from different angles. But still, it’s beautiful ! You can climb up the monument itself with a small fee. My photo here does some serious injustice to the actual view!

  6. The Three Sisters of Glencoe (Bidean nam Bian)
    The three peaks are the dramatic northern ridges of Bidean nam Bian. People usually come here to hike up the Bidean nam Bian – the highest mountain in the old county of Argyll. We didn’t do the hike as we’re running out of time – but I’ll definitely be back to tackle the 2-in-1 munro.
    I came across a very sad historical piece when I was researching this place, the Massacres of Glencoe. It took place on the 13th February 1692 with at least 30 members and associates of the MacDonald Clan of Glencoe being killed for failing to pledge allegiance to the new monarchs. I actually heard of the story in one of the youtube travel videos which I’ll attach its Wikipedia page instead here.

  7. Nevis Range
    Our original plan was a ski trip but the weather wasn’t on our side hence we had to do other things (thank god for our Plan B!). We did get to the Nevis Range in the end but only for the gondola ride. Once we’re up, we did get to do a bit of walking but not much. The views were absolutely breathtaking. Skiing up there would have been amazing ..oh wells 🙁

  8. Loch Achtriochtan
    I saw a group of tourist about to leave this place as we were driving past on our way back so of course I made us turn back round for another quick stop. Definitely worth it!

  9. The A82 and (10) Glen Etive
    We wanted to drive down the Glen Etive road, more fondly known as the Skyfall road as it was in one of the bond films. We didn’t though, instead we just continued down the beautiful A82 and stopped by the roadside a few times for its wonderful views before heading home.

    Like all good things, our trip ended too.. But I’m definitely going back again, soon hopefully!

    Have you been to any of these places? Let me know what you think below ! xx


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