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Wildlife and Wilderness in Scotland

  • TAILOR-MADE HOLIDAY IDEA

Duration

7 Days

Prices Start from

£3,995pp (ex. flights)

Combine the heather-swept Cairngorms with the rugged beauty of Skye, exploring two of Scotland’s most spectacular wilderness areas. Encounter land and marine animals as you explore, whilst also learning about the history and conservation of these wild places.

This seven-day guided adventure includes some of the best wildlife and wilderness experiences that Scotland has to offer. From chasing bottlenose dolphins to stepping in the footprints of dinosaurs, every day brings something unique and different.

Key Highlights of this Itinerary

Dolphins, Scotland 1

Dolphins

Search for pods of dolphins in the Cromarty Firth, close to Inverness

Mountains in Scotland 2

Mountains

Explore the Cairngorms National Park, home to some of the UK’s most beautiful and wild mountain landscapes

White-tailed eagle or sea eagle, Scotland 3

Scottish wildlife

Look out for red squirrels, badgers, birds of prey and even pine martens.

Skye landscape, Scotland 4

Isle of Skye

Delve into the history, nature, folklore and geography of this beautiful Scottish island.

Explore our suggested itinerary

  • Day 1

    Inverness - Cairngorms

  • Days 2-3

    Cairngorm National Park

  • Day 4

    Cairngorms - Isle of Skye

  • Day 5-6

    Isle of Skye

  • Day 7

    Isle of Skye - Inverness

Day 1

Inverness - Cairngorms

Begin with a morning boat trip in search of bottlenose dolphins in the Cromarty Firth. Then head inland into the Cairngorms National Park.

Days 2-3

Cairngorm National Park

Spend two days exploring the national park. Walk through ancient forests, spy on wildlife from a hide and visit the marshes of Loch Insh.

Day 4

Cairngorms - Isle of Skye

Travel west to Skye, stopping en route to visit Trees for Life in Dundreggan. Stay overlooking the harbour at Portree.

Day 5-6

Isle of Skye

Spend two days exploring Skye. Visit the remote western coastline, spot dinosaur footprints and discover ancient brochs.

Day 7

Isle of Skye - Inverness

Head back to Inverness, stopping en route to visit the quaint village of Plockton, renowned for its seafare.

Our travel experts can tailor this itinerary to suit you.

More details

Mountains in Scotland
Scotland
Dundreggan Estate, Scotland
Dundreggan Estate, Scotland
Road through Cairngorms, Scotland, UK
Cairngorms National Park, Scotland
Road through Cairngorms, Scotland, UK
Cairngorms National Park, Scotland

Cairngorms National Park

After meeting your guide in Inverness, set out on the Cromarty Firth in search of bottlenose dolphins. Then head inland and into the Cairngorms National Park – your home for the next two days.

This sprawling wilderness is the UK’s largest national park. Spend a morning walking through ancient Caledonian forest, where red squirrels and Scottish crossbills hide amongst lichen-coated trees.

Osprey in flight, Scotland
Osprey, Scotland
Swans on Loch Insh, Cairnsgorms, Scotland
Loch Insh, Scotland
Pine marten, Scotland, UK
Pine marten, Scotland
Red Squirrel, Scotland, United Kingdom
United Kingdom

Cairngorms Wildlife

As the sun goes down, head to a wildlife hide. With luck, you may see the pine martens – a rare very rare sight in the UK – as well as badgers and owls.

This late night necessitates a lazy morning, but early risers can head to the nearby loch in search of the resident pair of ospreys.

After lunch, explore the Loch Insh Marshes with your guide. This rich wetland environment is home to countless bird species and is considered one of the most important wetland habitats in Europe. Look out for curlews, lapwings, snipe and many more on the vast River Spey floodplain.

Queen's View at Loch Tummel - Scotland, UK
Loch Tummel, Scotland

Conservation and Regeneration

Leave the Cairngorms and head west towards the Isle of Skye. But before you leave the enchanting highland landscapes behind, stop to learn more about those working to protect this fragile environment.

In Dundreggan, visit Trees for Life. This ambitious rewilding charity has a vision to replant the Scottish Highlands with native tree species, such as pine, birch and rowan. Learn more about the work they’re doing and their plans for the future.

Neist Point Lighthouse, Skye, Scotland
Isle of Skye, Scotland
Gorse in front of Coral Beach, Scotland, UK
Isle of Skye, Scotland
Bridge in front of mountain, Skye, Scotland
Isle of Skye, Scotland
West coast of Skye near Kinloch, Scotland
Isle of Skye, Scotland

Isle of Skye

From your base in beautiful Portree, explore the remarkable Isle of Skye. Begin with a visit to see the fossilised footprints of dinosaurs, which hide beneath the sea at high tide. Then spend an afternoon exploring Portree and watching life unfold at the harbour.

The following day, explore the wild west coast of the island. Walk out to the lighthouse, where spectacular sea views occasionally include sightings of orcas or sea eagles. Visit a wonderfully preserved nearby broch and learn about the clan rivalries that once tore this land apart.

Finally, leave the island behind and return to Inverness. Stop for lunch in the pretty village of Plockton, famed for its seafood.

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It all starts here

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01285 880 980

Get in touch with our travel experts to start
creating your tailor-made holiday.

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A note on price

This Itinerary
Price
From £3,995 Per person

When to travel

United Kingdom in January

January is usually the coldest month of the year and also when you’re most likely to experience clear and frosty days but with blue skies and crisp mornings. Perfect conditions for winter walks, if dressed suitably.

United Kingdom in February

You may experience snowfall in February and temperatures will still be relatively cold. In the south of the United Kingdom, snowdrops begin to emerge, particularly in woodland areas and you’ll see the first sprouts of wild garlic.

United Kingdom in March

The weather gradually begins to improve in March as the Spring season starts to get underway. Temperatures begin to rise and spring flowers appear, both on the ground and as blossom on the trees. The rugby Six Nations Championship is held during February or March when England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland, France and Italy all go head to head.

United Kingdom in April

April can be a little unpredictable for the weather; it can be warm and sunny or it can be a very rainy month. Towards the end of April swathes of bluebells cover ancient woodland areas and meadows burst into colour.

United Kingdom in May

The weather is usually warm during May. The month has two Bank Holiday weekends, which can be particularly busy as British people make the most of this time off work. There are quite a few festivals that will take place from May through to August, making the most of the sunshine, so talk to our experts as to what you can get involved in.

United Kingdom in June

The warm weather continues through to June. There are quite a few festivals that will take place from May through to August, making the most of the sunshine, so talk to our experts as to what you can get involved in.

United Kingdom in July

Traditionally the summer months, July and August are in theory the hottest and driest months of the year although, as with all British weather, this cannot be relied on. There are quite a few festivals that will take place from May through to August, making the most of the sunshine, so talk to our experts as to what you can get involved in.

United Kingdom in August

Traditionally the summer months, July and August are in theory the hottest and driest months of the year although, as with all British weather, this cannot be relied on. There are quite a few festivals that will take place from May through to August, making the most of the sunshine, so talk to our experts as to what you can get involved in.

United Kingdom in September

September often has warmer and drier weather than August, and the summer crowds start to disperse as schools reopen.

United Kingdom in October

The autumn leaves are at their best, most vibrant russet shades during October with around, on average about 10 days of rain. Temperatures are cooler and some sites in more rural areas start to close for winter.

United Kingdom in November

In early November the autumn leaves are still in full show, but mountainous areas may experience snow and daylight is restricted to around seven hours in northern Scotland. The weather is usually cool and damp, although it’s not uncommon to have wonderful cold, dry spells. The UK acknowledges daylight saving time on November 1 and the clocks will be set back by one hour

United Kingdom in December

December is usually cold and damp, with little foliage and the least daylight hours of the year (fewer than seven in the north of Scotland).

Why Choose Steppes?

Our knowledge and expertise set us apart. So too our curiosity. It is this that drives us to create a journey that is really bespoke to you, all the while ensuring we travel and operate sustainably.

Are you ready to discover extraordinary once again?


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