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Medieval Magic – 6 Luxury Experiences in Scotland’s Historic Highlands 2024

Medieval Magic – 6 Luxury Experiences in Scotland’s Historic Highlands 2024

If you’ve ever wanted to explore mist-covered mountains topped by ancient castles and surrounded by legendary tales passed down for generations, it’s time to venture into the Scottish Highlands. Throughout the Scottish Highlands, there are a variety of luxury lodges, historic tours, loch cruises, and private whiskey tasting that allow you to experience the region in comfort and style, but how do you know which one to choose? Below, we have listed the best experiences the Highlands have to offer so you can confidently plan your trip into the wilds of Scotland. 

The Fife Arms, Braemar

Image Credit: Shutterstock / shawnwil23

The first stop on our list is a Victorian coaching inn meticulously restored with a unique art collection. The Fife Arms Inn, near the royal Balmoral Castle, offers a regal experience of traditional Scottish life. Each room in the Fife Arms Inn is themed around Scottish culture and history to fully embrace your stay with the culture you’ve set out to experience. The inn also hosts traditional activities like Scottish storytelling and game hunting, so you’ll have plenty of activities to do when you’re not exploring the hills and castles surrounding you. They also have a well-acclaimed restaurant that serves local and seasonal cuisine to ensure that every aspect of your stay is a complete cultural experience. 

Insider’s Tip

Don’t miss the Ghillie’s Bar for a cozy evening with over 180 whiskies. 

When To Travel

Summer for pleasant weather, or winter for a snowy wonderland. 

How To Get There

Drive or take a bus from Aberdeen, approximately 1.5 hours away. 

Best Time of Year To Travel

May to September for mild weather and outdoor activities.

Website

https://thefifearms.com/

Inverlochy Castle Hotel, Fort William

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Wirestock Creators

The second experience we recommend is a 19th-century castle surrounded by the scenic beauty of Ben Nevis, which happens to be the tallest mountain in Scotland. The Inverlochy Castle Hotel offers a variety of activities, from falconry to fishing and even tennis. However, they also offer plenty of experiences off the castle grounds, like a cruises around the nearby loch. Renowned for its Michelin-starred restaurant led by a top chef, the Inverlochy Castle is the perfect choice for those who want to experience the history of Scotland while maintaining modern luxuries.

Insider’s Tip

Request a room with a view of Ben Nevis for an unforgettable wake-up scene. 

When To Travel

Spring or early autumn for fewer tourists and stunning scenery. 

How To Get There

About a 2-hour drive from Inverness or 3 hours from Glasgow. 

Best Time of Year To Travel

April to October, especially beautiful in autumn.

Website

https://www.inverlochycastlehotel.com/

Glenmorangie House, Tain

Image Credit: Shutterstock / JanTrautscholdPhotography

Next, we have the Glenmorangie House in Tain. An intimate coastal retreat an hour from Inverness, this elegantly decorated house is known for romance, luxury, and a tranquil walled garden. Here, they offer exclusive whiskey tastings and distillery tours for Glenmorangie whiskey. Nearby, plenty of historical attractions like Foulis Castle and Tarbat Ness Lighthouse overlook the beautiful highland coast. Guests at Glenmorangie can also enjoy local golf courses and stunning coastal walks, making this the perfect destination for those who want to experience the nature of the Highlands in a more private setting.

Insider’s Tip

Book a private whiskey-tasting session for a personalized experience. 

When To Travel

Late spring to early autumn for the best coastal weather. 

How To Get There

A 1-hour drive north from Inverness. 

Best Time of Year To Travel

May to August for longer daylight hours and milder weather.

Website

https://www.glenmorangie.com/

Aldourie Castle, Loch Ness

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Botond Horvath

If you’ve ever wanted to stay in your own private castle next to the most famous Loch in Scotland, then Aldourie Castle is the place for you. A private hire castle offering exclusivity and luxury on the Loch Ness shores, this castle features beautifully restored interiors with historical themes throughout every room. During your stay, guests can enjoy traditional Scottish banquets and entertainment as part of their private experience. Outside, you are surrounded by vast private grounds that are perfect for outdoor activities. The castle also offers boat trips on Loch Ness so you can make your search for the legendary Loch Ness Monster!

Insider’s Tip

Explore the private gardens; they are especially beautiful in spring. 

When To Travel

Summer for the best chance of good weather and outdoor activities. 

How To Get There

Around 30 minutes by car from Inverness. 

Best Time of Year To Travel

June to August, with long daylight hours and warmer temperatures.

Website

https://aldourie.scot/

The Torridon, Wester Ross

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Edinburghcitymom

Next we have a stay for those more interested in a scenic experience filled with outdoor activities. Set in 58 acres of parkland at the end of a sea loch, the Torridon offers breathtaking sea views and surrounding highlands. The Torridon also provides a range of outdoor activities, including kayaking and mountain biking, for a more adventurous highland experience. Known for its luxurious accommodations, award-winning whiskey, and gin bar, and 3 AA Rosette restaurant serving the best of Scottish produce it is, there is also no shortage of options for those interested in a tamer stay.

Insider’s Tip

Try their bespoke adventure days, tailored to your interests. 

When To Travel

Spring or autumn for stunning natural beauty with fewer crowds. 

How To Get There

A scenic drive of about 1.5 hours from Inverness. 

Best Time of Year To Travel

May to September, ideal for outdoor activities.

Website

https://www.thetorridon.com/

Boath House, Nairn

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Reimar

Last on our list is a Georgian country house known for its stunning architecture and gardens. The Boath House focuses on personal wellness with spa treatments to relax the body and abundant serene surroundings to calm the mind. The Boath House also provides an AA Rosette restaurant emphasizing organic and local ingredients. Each room is individually styled with antique furnishings and modern comforts to provide a more personal experience. When not relaxing in the grounds, guests can venture out to the nearby attractions like Cawdor Castle and Nairn Beach to ensure they experience all the Scottish Highlands have to offer.

Insider’s Tip

Book a garden tour to appreciate the house’s horticultural heritage. 

When To Travel

Spring and summer for garden blooms and pleasant weather. 

How To Get There

Approximately a 30-minute drive from Inverness. 

Best Time of Year To Travel

April to July, to enjoy the gardens in full bloom.

Website

https://www.boath-house.com/

The Bottom Line

Exploring the Scottish Highlands is not just about seeing the sights; it’s about experiencing them in comfort and style. From the Victorian elegance of The Fife Arms in Braemar to the secluded luxury of Boath House in Nairn, each location offers a unique way to enjoy the region’s natural beauty and rich history. Whether you’re looking for outdoor adventures, cultural immersion, or simply a peaceful retreat amidst stunning landscapes, these destinations cater to various preferences. With insights on the best times to visit, how to get there, and insider tips, planning your Highland adventure becomes a straightforward task. In the wilds of Scotland, each of these luxury experiences promises a memorable journey, blending the allure of the past with the comforts of the present.

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