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The joys of Lochdown: 10 escapes to lift the soul

Suidhe Viewpoint Loch Ness

Image by  Peter Beavis  for Visit Scotland             Suidhe Viewpoint Loch Ness 

The joys of Lochdown: 10 escapes to lift the soul

Swap lockdown for lochdown with our inspirational guide to bonny Scotland's mind-clearing and wonderlust-fulfilling breaks- and all passport free!                                                     By Janice Hopper

Janice Hopper

lochside escapes scotland

 Loch Ard, Stirling by Carl Jorgensen            lochside escapes scotland   

People have long appreciated the benefits of being by the sea, but, in Scotland, the deep and eerie lochs hold their own charm, attracting poets, painters and photographers, as well creating the perfect environment for relaxation, hiking, yoga and escape. Seek calm on the water’s edge by swapping lockdown for ‘loch’down. 

 travel Scotland

Image by Emily Sandifer        travel Scotland

Loch Ness  - For Luxury - Foyers Lodge

Foyers Lodge boutique B&B is a romantic retreat, offering serene views over Loch Ness. Take time to treat yourself. Indulgent roll-top baths, dark enveloping colour schemes inspired by the surrounding water, pine forests and heather, and quirky, colourful antiques give the lodge a unique atmosphere. Sip Loch Ness Highland Gin in the Art Deco inspired Drawing Room before dining on local produce in the rich green Dining Room. 

Sottish holidays

Image by Emily Sandifer           Scottish holidays 

On a clear night, watch the stars light up the skies above the loch, before retiring to one of eight individually styled bedrooms or the lodge’s impeccable self-catering apartment. Refuel the following morning with Greek yoghurt, fruit and honey, granola, smoked salmon, or traditional Scotch pancakes. 

Visit Scotland

Image courtesy of Visit Inverness Loch               Visit Scotland

Loch Ness - The Great Outdoors

By day, experience rugged outdoor adventures. Foyers is on the Loch Ness 360° Trail, so hike to the nearby Falls of Foyers, then follow the path down to the shores of Loch Ness and search for the famous monster.

travel to scottish lochs

Image by Margaret Soraya       Travel to Scottish Lochs

Alternatively, make a stop at the Suidhe Viewpoint for a sublime photo opportunity, before continuing to the handsome town of Fort Augustus.  

loch retreats uk

An Ceann Mor landscape by Ross Campbell         Loch Retreats UK

Combine Art & Nature - An Ceann Mòr

Escape to the Trossachs where art and nature combine. Take in ‘An Ceann Mòr’ at Inveruglas; an eight metres high, pyramid-shaped installation made from sustainable timber. 

scottish landscape

An Ceann Mor by Ross Campbell      Scottish Landscape

Ascend 31 steps to the top of the viewpoint to be rewarded with vistas across Loch Lomond and the Arrochar Alps. 

scotland loch in summer

LookOut Loch Voil Ross Campbell     Scottish Loch in Summer

Combine Art & Nature - Loch Voil Lookout

Take a long hard look at yourself, and the scenery, with this mirrored cabin that reflects the beauty of Loch Voil in a myriad of different ways. Three benches offer a trio of viewpoints and a resting point for some quiet contemplation and natural wonder.

visit scottish lochs

Image by Ross Campbell     visit scottish lochs

The scenery looks dramatically different each day, offering sunbeams, rainfall, frost, mist or snowflakes, so escape everyday worries to reflect on this mirrored gem.

escape lockdown

Woven Sound by Ross Campbell      Escape Lockdown

Combine Art & Nature - Woven Sound

‘Woven Sound’ near Crianlarich enables visitors to experience the thundering ‘Falls of Falloch’ at close range as it dramatically cantilevers over the water’s edge. Woven steel rods create a tunnel that snakes through the trees, enticing walkers towards the powerful thirty-foot waterfall.

Artwork designed by John Kennedy, waterfall designed by Mother Nature. 

retreat scotland

Loch Lubnaig by Chris Close      Retreat Scotland

Combine Art & Nature - Faerie Hollow

‘Faerie Hollow’ by Ruairidh Campbell Moir takes in views from Loch Lubnaig to Ben Ledi.  Poetic quotes from writer Alexander Campbell capture the power and beauty of a Scottish winter.

music in scotland

Loch Lubnaig by Chris Close     Music in Scotland

Scottish faerie folk are said to stop at places of peace and tranquillity making this an ideal spot to shun the frantic pace of modern life.

scotland Loch Earn

For Beatles lovers at Loch Earn     Scotland Loch Earn

Combine Art & Nature - Music Lovers escape to Loch Earn

Retreat to Loch Earn to overnight in a lochside chalet by the waterfront. The Beatles sought out this secluded spot in 1964 when they were gigging in Scotland — a rural idyll with few pressures (or paparazzi!)

Scotland Loch Earn Local

New Beatles fan at Loch Earn      Scotland Loch Earn Local

Make your own music, or indulge in a peaceful kayak with Loch Earn Watersports, but bear in mind you may have to share the landscape with the locals.

Scottish Photography etreat

Image by Margaret Soraya     Scottish Photography Retreat

Take a Course - Mindful Photography

Margaret Soraya offers mindful landscape photography courses on the remoter islands and lochs of Scotland, from Harris and Orkney to Islay and Loch Ness. 

yoga retreat scotland

Loch Ness courtesy of Margaret Soraya      Yoga Retreat Scotland

In an increasingly noisy world, Soraya nurtures creative talent in calming and beautiful locations. The Loch Ness workshop is scheduled for 23-29 October 2021. 

ildkat yoga scotland

Image courtesy of Wildkat Yoga      Wildkat Yoga Scotland

Take a Course - Yoga Retreat

Consider Wildkat Yoga on the shores of Loch Aline. Start the day with mindful meditation and Vinyasa yoga practice. By day explore the local loch, or venture further afield to the islands of Mull and Iona. 

Scottish yoga

Image courtesy of Wildkat Yoga    Scottish Yoga 

Afternoon tea is served at 4.30pm, followed by evening Yin or Restorative yoga before dinner. The Wild Highlands Retreat runs 15-20 May 2021. 

Loch Katrine - For Writers and Poets

Set sail on Loch Katrine, or circumnavigate the loch by bicycle. All aboard the steamship ‘Sir Walter Scott’, ‘Lady of the Lake’ or ‘Rob Roy III’ to discover the loch’s links with the aforementioned writer and seek your own watery inspiration.

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