Top 5 Scotland - Fill your Bucket List - Capercaillie Escapes

How many hotels, guest houses, restaurants, castles, gardens, boat trips and distilleries are there in Scotland?  Well, a lot!

So when sitting down to plan a route for your holiday it can be overwhelming to say the least.  So many times I have been told by exacerbated prospective guests – “I just want to do it all!” Well, as I am sitting down to update my own Scottish bucket list for the year ahead I thought it may be helpful if I share a my latest Top 5 Scotland for others to enjoy too.  Whatever you decide to pop into your travel bucket list just make sure you take the time to enjoy the journey, enjoy our local food and drink, get to know the locals and marvel among our magnificent scenery.  It’s all here for you to enjoy 360 days of the year.

Top 5 Scotland – Fill your Bucket List

Kilcamb Lodge (Ardnamurchan Peninsula – Scottish Highlands)

One of Scotland’s best small hotels nestled on the banks of Loch Sunart on the remote Ardnamurcahn Peninsula in the Scottish Highlands.  Being completely dog-friendly makes it a hit for us, and with a range of rooms to suit varying budgets, private lawns and woodland, a superb restaurant and cosy lounge bar this is a quiet and tranquil place to get lost amoung stunning scenery for a day or two.  We are really looking forward to escaping here for a few days in March to relax as a family.

The Balgove Steak Barn (St Andrews – Fife)

One of our favourite places to eat in St Andrews and a popular choice for a fun, informal and tasty meal out.  Just on the outskirts of this famous golfing and University town you’ll find a bustling farm shop, cafe and steak barn at The Balgove Larder.  Not so much of a hidden gem these days as the word has spread, but still a gem.  Tables allocated on a first come first serve basis so always arrive a wee bit before you get too hungry in case you have to wait.   You can be sure of a warm welcome and a lively atmosphere in the barn.  This is a popular choice for locals and visitors to the town.  You can walk back to town within 15 minutes.

Sea-Kayaking (Shieldaig – Wester Ross)

Tom is a brilliant and knowledgeable guide meaning you can be sure of being in safe hands whether out on the water or striding out along the rugged coastline or into the dramatic Torridon Hills beyond.  This spectacular part of north west Scotland is home to Shieldaig Outdoor Adventures.  We can’t wait to finally get out sea-kayaking onto Loch Shieldaig in the hope of spotting some of the local wildlife – otters, white tailed eagles, porpoise and seals.

Ballintaggart Farm (Grandtully – Highland Perthshire)

Well here is a place to unwind and enjoy sublime Scottish home-cooking among the rolling hills of Highland Perthshire.  With expert tuition in the Farm Cook School, using produce from the local area and Kitchen Garden, you can also enjoy homely dining in their wee restaurant and spend the night in beautifully presented luxury guest rooms – this is a real treat.  Ballintaggart offers a simple Scottish elegance and a warm welcome.  The Grandtully Hotel is a lovely new addition for Ballintaggart located just a couple of miles down beside the River Tay and is another lovely overnight or dining option with the same warm welcome and quality of hospitality.  We’ve had guests, family and friends enjoy Ballintaggart already and it’s very much on our bucket-list!

Caoroun Gin Distillery (Grantown-on-Spey – Speyside)

Is it criminal to be a proud Scot yet admit that whisky is not a favourite tipple?  However, the rise of Scottish Gin, well that is something that I will be more than happy to sample.  In fact, would you believe in December we were kindly gifted a Gin Advent Calendar – what a brilliant and slightly different way to count down to Christmas.  Well I was delighted to find behind the door of Day 12 a miniture of one of my favourite gins – Caorunn. Translated as the Gaelic word for ‘Rowan Berry’, Caorunn is a lovely drink handcrafted and distilled in the famous region of Speyside.  Tours and tastings are available at the distillery but advance booking recommended.

Whilst this Top 5 are a few of our favourite spots and places to enjoy this year, no matter your tastes or hobbies there is something for everyone here in Scotland.  Explore Scotland your way and if you discover something to love then get in touch on our Facebook or by email and let us know!

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