VIEWERS have been captivated by BBC 1’s Highlands – Scotland’s Wild Heart.
Narrated by Ewan McGregor, the stunning footage captured the nation’s natural splendour.
Author and producer Stephen Moss, 56, wrote the accompanying book, out now from Bloomsbury in hardback, £25.
Stephen and wife Suzanne have five kids and live in Somerset.
I often holiday in the Highlands.
I first went with a birding friend in the early 1990s and had a wonderful time on Speyside and in the Cairngorms.
When I started making wildlife programmes with Bill Oddie we’d be back in Scotland as often as we could.
I was involved with the WinterWatch at Aigas Field Centre near Beauly and am very good friends with the man who runs it so I’ve led bird tours there and also holidayed there with my family.
It’s close to Glen Affric, which is just stunning.
And last year we came up in February and stayed in Grantown-on-Spey for a week.
You’re a bit unsure with children as to how they’ll take to it but they loved it, especially the snow on Cairn Gorm.
What I love about both places is the contrast. You have the woods and the valleys and the glens and the rivers.
As a southerner, I’m slightly scared of mountains, but I love having them around.
The places I’ve fallen in love with and want to go back to are the Okavango Delta in Botswana and the Maasai Mara in Kenya.
We filmed Big Cat Diaries in the Maasai Mara and it was just incredible.
My wife said that when you go to Africa you leave a bit of your heart and soul there when you come away.
Mankind evolved there and I think we have it deep-rooted in us. In a strange way, when you go there for the first time, it feels like going home.
I love other parts of the world I’ve visited, such as Australia and Antarctica, but they feel quite alien.
I still love birding and try to fit in a bit wherever I go.
You just never know what you’ll find. Even in Somerset, every now and then, you’ll see something special.
And that’s more true in the Highlands at this time of the year than anywhere with birds arriving back from Africa.
Botswana’s Okavango Delta is absolutely teeming with wildlife.
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