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Family and dog friendly adventures with Liquid Footprints

We had a fabulous day out on Loch Achilty recently, courtesy of Chris and Liquid Footprints. A few hours in a canoe on the loch followed by Afternoon Tea right by the loch side, wonderful!

Liquid Footprints

Liquid Footprints

Chris and his team offer a range of outdoor experiences such as canoeing, sea kayaking, and gorge scrambling. The experiences are geared for families although everybody can sign up and join in the fun, even the dog! Believe it not, Chris does have special lifesavers so there’s no excuse to not take the pooch out on the water. One of the things we liked so much about Chris was his passion for being outside, and wanting to share this with his clients. He was such a wonderful storyteller too, knowledgeable about the area, and a very good canoe instructor.

Jimmy and the canoes

Jimmy and the canoes

Chris can tailor a trip to your requirements.  He can assist with suggestions for locations that are close to us here at Pinewood. If you need picking up, he can do this too with his minibus.

Jimmy and I were lucky to have an afternoon canoeing with Chris on Loch Achilty, followed by Afternoon Tea. After our trip on the loch, Chris set up a table with a tablecloth and even china cups.  He can cater for veggies and vegans too. We devoured sandwiches, scones, brownies, cakes and a hot cup of tea. Yum! These foodie experiences are one of Chris’s specialities. Whether it’s a romantic picnic for two, a BBQ for the family or a luxury foodie canoe trip, Chris can offer it all.

Picnic time by the loch

Picnic by the loch

If you book with Chris and Liquid Footprints, you can discover the amazing landscape, food and history of the Highlands via these unique activities.

Jump aboard Dolphin Spirit for a trip around the Moray Firth

I was lucky enough to have a trip on Dolphin Spirit in May, courtesy of Visit Inverness Loch Ness. I drove 20 mins to Inverness, along to the Inverness Marina and boarded the boat for a trip around the Moray Firth.

Dolphin Spirit Inverness HQ

The Dolphin Spirit Wildlife Cruise is family friendly, wheelchair accessible and dog friendly too. There is a specialist guide giving full commentary and the guide we had was extremely knowledgeable about the area, the dolphins, and their habits. Unfortunately, we didn’t see any dolphins nor seals, but it was lovely to see Inverness and surrounding area from the water. It felt strange going under the Kessock Bridge, instead of over it! And the views across to the Affric Mountains were amazing.

Affric mountains behind the Kessock Bridge

Dolphin Spirit is a “Motor Passenger Ferry”, which means she is specifically designed to carry people in comfort. This is also important from a conservation point of view.  It means that there is the minimum possible disruption for the dolphins: there’s only one hull in the water, with only one set of propellers.  The engines were selected for their low emissions and are connected to a specially configured low vibration drive train.

Dolphin Spirit departing Inverness

I spent most of my 1.5 hour trip up on deck! But there is a spacious cabin down below, fully carpeted, upholstered seats and very warm.

Although I didn’t go on it, there is also Dolphin Mischief – a 9 metre Rigid Inflatable Boat (RIB). She goes further, faster and offers a lot of excitement in each 2 hour sailing. The beauty of Dolphin Mischief is that she can take dolphin spotters beyond the confines of the Inner Moray Firth, right up into the narrows between the Chanonry Point lighthouse and Fort George and out into the waters off Ardersier.  These are some of the best spots to view the dolphins!

Dolphin Spirit costs £18.50 per adult passenger; children aged 4-14 is £12, or buy a family ticket for £55.

Highlands voted the top UK destination in Wanderlust travel magazine poll

Well, we’re not surprised the Highlands has been voted the top 2019 UK travel destination in a major poll of travellers by Wanderlust Travel Magazine.  From hiking the West Highland Way, or the Great Glen Way. From driving the superb North Coast 500. Visiting castles, lochs, distilleries, or historical sites.  Taking in amazing walks with breath taking Glens. Enjoying miles and miles of coastline with empty and often secluded beaches. Fabulous wildlife like stags, red squirrels, dolphins, whales, golden eagles and Highland cows. Stunning sunsets and sunrises, star gazing with dark skies, and even the Northern Lights. We have all this and more on our doorstep.  So don’t delay. Take a look through our website and availability and book your Slice of Highland Heaven for 2019.

Scottish Highlands montage centred around our luxury self catering accommodation

A montage of some of the best spots of the Highlands