Wildlife Weekend in Scotland

Stags near Spittal of Glenshee, Cairngorm National Park, Scotland

Stags near Spittal of Glenshee, Cairngorm National Park, Scotland

Whether it’s a day away, a weekend or a week touring around in our campervan, my husband Ivan and I have a wildlife competition: one point is given for common birds of prey and moorland birds, deer, pheasants, grey squirrels and hares; two points for more unusual birds of prey such as sea eagles and osprey or dolphins, porpoise, red squirrels, and lesser seen moorland birds like Capercaille.  Our usual campervan holiday takes in the amazing beaches and mountains of the west and north of Scotland to places such as Glencoe, Port Appin, Arisaig, Applecross, Skye and Lochinver where sea life and birds of prey are regularly spotted.  However, with the youngest son at university in Aberdeen, we decided to venture east this week to the cliff topped Aberdeenshire coast and to our surprise the wildlife competitions points went off the scale – a pod of over fifty dolphins followed by a herd of well over hundred deer, a black grouse, a red squirrel and three golden eagles – all in the space of a couple of hours! There is something indescribably enchanting and heart-warming about spotting creatures in their own habitat in the wilderness, and yesterday was one of those magical blue-skied days in the wilds of Scotland that makes us remember quite how special Scotland is.

For your own 4 night tour to the East of Scotland taking in Aberdeenshire, Speyside and Perthshire, try this tour below

East Coast 4 night Campervan Tour taking in Whisky, Wildlife, Castles and Hiking

 Day 1

From Four Seasons Campers by A82 by Loch Lomond, head east towards Stirling before taking the A9 north through Perth to Dunkeld for your first nights stop.  If you’ve time, tour around the Trossachs on route and take in the beautiful Loch Katrine and Loch Venachar.  The Sir Walter Scott steam boat offers cruises across Loch Katrine and Osprey are often spotted from the boat.   

 

Things to do      

  • Cruise around Loch Katrine
  • Visit Stirling Castle
  • Visit Dunblane Cathedral
  • Walk along the banks of River Tay at Dunkeld and watch the fishermen catching salmon
  • Visit the nature centre at The Loch of the Lowes for an array of wild birds
  • Lots of nice pubs in Dunkeld and often folk music events on either in the pubs or the Birnam Arts Centre   
    Black Grouse and wildlife on a campervan holiday with Four Seasons Campers

    Black Grouse

           

Campsite: Invermill Farm Caravan Park, Dunkeld

Wild camping: Beside Loch of the Lowes

 

Day 2

Drive east through Blairgowrie and across the A90 to Montrose and follow the Aberdeenshire Coastal Trail north to Stonehaven. 

Campsite:  Stonehaven Caravan Park

Wild camping: Catterline Harbour south of Stonehaven

wild camping in a campervan in Scotland at Catterline harbour

Catterline Harbour

Day 3

Drive north to Aberdeen and stop at Torry Battery just south of the harbour where the local dolphins will put on a spectacular display then head north west towards Castle Fraser and on to the A96 towards Findhorn and the Moray Coast before heading south on the A941 then A95 to Granton-on-Spey and Boat of Garten.

Wildlife spotting in a campervan near Torry at Aberdeen

Dolpins at Torry Batter by Aberdeen Harbour

Things to do

  • Dolphin spot at Torry Battery by Aberdeen and walk along coastal trail
  • Buy Aberdeen Butteries (cross between a scone and a croissant – very salty)
  • Lunch at Sand Dollar Café on the seafront at Aberdeen
  • Visit Fraser Castle
  • Walk along the Morray coastline at the beautiful stony beach at Findhorn
  • Visit Gordon and Macphail – whisky bottlers in Elgin
  • Visit a Speyside whisky distillery – there are loads to pick from!
  • Enjoy the steam train from Granton-on-Spey to Aviemore 

    The beautiful beach at Findhorn along the Moray Coast

    The beautiful beach at Findhorn along the Moray Coast

 

Campsite: Granton-on-Spey Caravan Park

Wild Camping :  Beside Loch Garten

 

Day 4

The River Dee near Ballater by Royal Deeside, Scotland best seen from a Four Seasons Campers campervan

The River Dee near Ballater, Royal Deeside

 

Head south towards Royal Deeside to Ballater and Crathes and enjoy the grandeur and order of the well-kept villages along the River Dee.  Continue west to Braemar and then head south down the A93.  Make sure you have your eyes peeled for wildlife across the Spittal of Glenshee.  We spotted herds of deer, black grouse, red squirrels and golden eagles in the space of ten minutes here.  Before you arrive at Bridge of Cally, head east through Kirkmichael and across to Pitlochry then north west towards Loch Tummel.

Things to do:

  • Visit Osprey Centre at Boat of Garten
  • Visit Crathie Castle, Balmoral Castle and Braemar Castle
  • Walk at Linn of Dee near Mar Lodge west of Braemar
  • Walk along the River Dee near Ballater and watch the salmon fishermen
  • Queens View, Loch Tummel
  • Dinner at The Inn at Loch Tummel
A herd of deer in Cairngorm in Scotland

A herd of deer meters from the road in Cairngorms

 

The open road going over Spittal of Glenshee in a Four Seasons Campers campervan

Wildlife heaven over Spittal of Glenshee

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