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Cairngorms and Moray Firth
The highest mountain, the deepest loch – this is the area for superlatives as well as great contrasts. Nairn’s golf courses or Dornoch Cathedral are as much a part of the area as the soaring rock walls of Ben Nevis or the trackless grandeur of Knoydart. This is big country – even at Inverness, there is still some way to go to the top of Scotland!
With Inverness a natural route centre, the roads go off like wheel-spokes. The Laidhay Croft Centre by Dunbeath, or Timespan at Helmsdale portray Caithness and Sutherland life. Along the seaboard of the north-west, curiously-shaped and oddly-named mountains – Arkle, Foinaven, Canisp, Stac Polly – stream white quartz down their slopes like snow. The north-west has special atmosphere all of its own.