DEEP, still lochs mirror majestic mountains, their craggy peaks piercing endless skies.
On their banks, towering pines stand cloaked in the mists of thundering waterfalls.
This is God’s own country. Scotland’s Highlands and islands are as close to paradise as it gets.
And if you don’t believe us, strap in for the ride of a lifetime, with more jaw-dropping, awe-inspiring moments than you can ever imagine possible.
In this land of superlatives, you will find deserted beaches of bleached white sand and azure waters as breathtakingly beautiful as any on the Pacific or Caribbean coasts.
This place is home to Britain’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis, its deepest lake, Loch Morar, and its largest national park,The Cairngorms.
The UK’s last great wilderness, Knoydart, is here too. Tantalisingly accessible only on foot or by boat, it is one of the few retreats where you can watch golden eagles soar and hear their haunting cry.
This is a land of mystery, monsters and magic – a land where battles were fought and history made.
And this gem of a location has it all, from the World Heritage Site of St Kilda to deepest, darkest Loch Ness, where the infamous giant sea creature Nessie is said to lurk, to bloody Culloden Moor, the site of the last battle of the Jacobite uprising.
And the region’s turbulent past has left it with some of the planet’s most captivating castles – like Dunvegan on Skye, the Castle of Mey near John O’ Groats and Eilean Donan at Dornie, pictured above.
Visitors can go back even further in time and walk in the footsteps of Neolithic man on Orkney and Lewis.
You can find your own particular kind of happiness here – whether it’s trying one of its many sports and extreme activities in and around Fort William, shopping and theatre-going in buzzing Inverness or dining out in the many award-winning eateries that are dotted around the region.
One thing is for sure – a visit to the Highlands and islands will not only satisfy your appetite for fun, adventure and the natural world, it will feed your very soul.
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