The North Coast 500

Published on 27 March 2020 at 16:37

Strathnaver on a cold morning

A contribution from Judith, our Scotland Scotland

Please, don’t be like so many others and drive this route at top speed. It just makes no sense!

You don’t see anything and you don’t hear anything other than the sound of the engine.

Instead, venture inland and discover the beauty and the sometimes haunting history of the Highlands.

One of my favourite roads runs through a Highland glen, Strathnaver, south of the tiny village of Bettyhill on the north coast. If you head north from Inverness, turn inland at Helmsdale on the A897 to Kinbrace, then follow the road west to Strathnaver.

I discovered this road properly only last year, when I had the time to stop and look and experience the special tranquillity which only a Highland glen has.

Just the curlews calling above the moorland. If ever you’re looking for a true ‘Zen experience’ this is it!

The lonely road runs through this very peaceful, beautiful glen which however has a tragic history of small crofting communities being driven out by their landlords in the 19th century, the infamous clearances.

Strathnaver ends at Bettyhill, a small community with a small but very interesting museum. I found the people there very knowledgeable and happy to spend time talking about their heritage.



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