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Coast, castles, & dogs


I am a travel agent in Maine, USA and have clients interested in traveling to Scotland this summer, 2017.  They would like me to put together an independent itinerary for them that would include:

Coastal Cliff Walks
Castle tours
Dog/Sheep Herding events or trials
Highland Game events

I'm wondering if you can recommend any certain locations and if there is somewhere to find a comprehensive event calendar that might help me get started with planning this trip for them? 

Thanks so much!

Answers

  • ParsmanParsman Member ✭✭✭
    Aberdeenshire can certainly offer 3 of the 4 highlights your guests have cited. Aberdeenshire has the only castle trail in Scotland with some 300 castle sites, 19 of which are open to the public in summer. You can find some details for this on the VisitScotland website itself at https://www.visitscotland.com/see-do/attractions/castles/scotland-castle-trail/ . There are also a number of good cliffside walks in the area, particularly between Stonehaven and Dunottar Castle and at the small port of Collieston. You can find more details again on VisitScotland at https://www.visitscotland.com/destinations-maps/aberdeen-city-shire/coastal-trail/ which also gives details of beautiful beaches and pretty little coastal villages like Pennan where much of the movie "Local Hero" was shot. Finally you can find Highland Games all over Scotland through the summer. The most important in Aberdeenshire would be the Braemar Gathering on the first Saturday in September, where the  Queen herself is the Chieftain. You can find details of games held right across Scotland at the Scottish High;and Games Association. They have an events calendar at http://www.shga.co.uk/events.php. Finally, I have had less luck in finding details about Sheep Herding in the county. The only thing I found that may be relevant was this web site at https://www.isds.org.uk/trials/trials-diary/scotland/. None of these events take place in Aberdeenshire, but they may be possible to visit on the day depending on where your clients base themselves.

    Hope this is helpful.
  • HorizonsHorizons Member, VisitScotland Ambassador ✭✭✭✭
    +1 on Aberdeenshire checking off Coastal Cliff Walking. Another recommendation for coastal cliff walks is the Isle of Hoy in Orkney. I still get goosebumps from seeing the pictures I took because I hadn't seen a coastline that looked so wild before. And the Old Man of Hoy is just superb. Orkney also has extremely rich history with multiple Stone Age sites (many of them Unesco World Heritage). North Ronaldsay sheep from this region are unique but I have no idea about herding events.
    I'm Anirudh, an Indian travel blogger who has explored a lot of Scotland by public transport. My blog. Find me on Facebook | Instagram

    Best of Scotland in 1 week itinerary (fully by public transport)

    My Scotland travels (includes EdinburghSkye, HarrisMullArranOrkneyLoch Lomond, Islay, Oban, Speyside fest)

  • fishyprofishypro Member ✭✭✭
    Hi @CruisePlannerTammy, one of the best cliff top walks that I have ever done was at Arbroath on the East coast of Scotland. Couldn't believe the amount of wildlife that we saw. Great for dog walking. Try the link for WalkHighlands to check it out.
    Best regards
    fishypro
  • Hi @CruisePlannerTammy, the South West of Scotland is a quiet place, but with lots of castles (we're on the border with England!), over 200 miles of coast and lots of farming. I recommend speaking to Mark and Lesley at Solway Tours - they could help you put together a great itineray which could include a tour of the best of our castles (including Caerlaverock and Threave). They'd also be able to advise on the best coastal walks and the local agricultural shows which usually include demonstrations of sheep dogs.
    Busy baking cakes and serving coffees, lunches and afternoon tea at our family owned tearoom right next to Sweetheart Abbey.  
    Facebook @abbeycottagetearoom
    Twitter @AbbeyCottage
    Instagram @abbey.cottage
    www.abbeycottagetearoom.com

  • Ju153_S1mJu153_S1m Member
    check out Blair Castle in Highland Perthshire, easily accessible from the main road north and is an incredible piece of Scottish history! 
  • Samantha_GrantSamantha_Grant VisitScotland Ambassador ✭✭✭✭
    @cruiseplannertammy Hi there I pass a sign for sheep dog displays regularly at Kincraig near Aviemore.  It's a beautiful part of Scotland too with lots to see and do.   Here's a link to the website:

    https://www.leaultworkingsheepdogs.co.uk/

    You don't mention when you're visiting but if you're here the weekend of 27/28th May you could visit Blair Castle mentioned above.  On the 27th the Duke of Atholl inspects his own private army, the Atholl Highlanders.  Britains only private army. It's quite a spectacle.  The following day the Atholl Gathering (Highland games) takes place in the castle grounds. It's the perfect location to enjoy Highland games and it's also close to Kincraig where the sheep dog trials are. 

    Hope this helps. 
    I'm a Scottish travel blogger and freelance writer with an extensive knowledge of travelling in Scotland.  I'm always on the road exploring my wonderful country.  I love remote places, history and the great outdoors. 




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