Posted in Europe on January 10, 2013
This past week I got to see and experience some of my own country for a change on a Haggis Adventures tour around Scotland. The trip coincided with a blog trip I was on titled Blogmanay, and came right after spending New Year’s Eve (Hogmanay) celebrations in Edinburgh – Scotland’s capital city. Although the Haggis trip was only for 3 days, we packed in a lot of destinations, had a lot of fun, and overwhelmingly I was left with the feeling that wow – my country is really spectacular! As a result of this trip I am definitely going to be making it a priority of mine this year to see much more of Scotland and share more about it with you! I think every blogger on the Haggis Adventures trip, whether Scottish or international, was left with similar thoughts and plans for future adventures around Scotland… For now though I want to tell you a little bit about Haggis Adventures tours and the stunning destinations they took the Blogmanay bloggers and I to on this whirlwind tour of Scotland;
Picture perfect highland scenery
Usually when I advise people to come to Scotland I always say “come in summer!” The weather is usually much warmer and you’ll get many hours of daylight – especially in the north! However, after my winter trip up to the highlands with Haggis Adventures has really made me appreciate all seasons in Scotland. There is nothing like a winter sunrise in the Scottish highlands, and the countryside has such beautiful winter colours precluding from the trees, leaves, and other surroundings that you’re left in awe as you try to run around snapping all the moments of beauty on your camera! Haggis did a great job of taking us to so many spots of beauty, including the well known iconic views such as Glen Coe and Eileen Donan Castle, but also to many little off the beaten track places too! If you want to see the beauty of Scotland then taking a tour with Haggis Adventures is definitely something I would recommend!
(Photo by Kash from BudgetTraveller.org of the bloggers at Morag’s Lodge.)
For our 2 over night stays in the Highlands we lived at the lovely little Morag’s Lodge hostel in Fort Augustus. Morag’s was our base and launch pad for the whole of our time in the Highlands and I know we all enjoyed our time there. As someone who has stayed in 150+ hostels during my lifetime of travels I know a thing or too about spotting a good ‘un, and Morag’s Lodge is certainly that! Highlights for me were that it was spotlessly clean, had the best power showers I’ve ever experienced in a hostel, and had a really cosy little pub that was a fantastic place to hang out, have a drink, and meet other travellers. The beds were also particularly comfortable!
Good Banter & Overall Atmosphere
Whenever you take an organised tour anywhere in the world, much of how good your tour will be is determined on the quality of your tour guide. They need a good knowledge of the sights and history that they are taking you to, they need to read the group well so as to assess their overall needs, and they need to be fun & friendly – able to conjure up a good atmosphere on board and keep everybody happy. I think this was where Haggis really scored best for me. Our guides Kay and Chris were both exceptional. They really looked after us, did their absolute best to cater to our needs, and their overall knowledge of Scotland was very impressive. As a local Scot even I learned a thing or two about my home country when I thought I would know everything there was to know. More importantly, by the end of the trip both Kay and Chris really felt like friends to the entire group and part of the Blogmanay family. They really knew how to make us laugh and intertwine that humour with actually teaching us about Scotland. This created a really nice atmosphere on board the bus throughout the trip, and it was just nice to see good guides at work!
Who is likely to enjoy a Haggis Adventure?
Haggis is definitely a youthful, fun, and engaging brand. I can totally understand why backpackers from all around the world love their tours of Scotland, but I think anyone new to Scotland and here for a short time would definitely benefit from one of their tours. To go on something similar to what us bloggers went on, the 3 day Skye High trip which takes you to the Isle of Skye, Loch Ness & Glen Coe will cost you 119 GBP per adult (115 GBP for a student.) Having been on this trip now myself I can honestly say this is incredibly good value.
So thanks to Haggis for taking me on this trip around Scotland!
The campaign bloggers were sourced and managed by iambassador. As always, opinions are my own.