After writing about Plockton in adverts and having it on the ‘bucket list’ for some while, we finally found an excuse to visit. Located a fair way up Scotland’s West coast, Plockton was perfectly placed for a stop-over as we travelled to Skye and then on to the Isle of Lewis.
On the way to Plockton we had taken in some incredible scenery from the towering dramatic peaks of Ben Nevis, to the magic of Eileen Donan Castle’s romantic setting. Yet when we dropped over the hill and caught first sight of Plockton, it was simply breath-taking, exceeding all expectations.
Photos just cannot do justice to the tranquillity and peace that breezes through this picturesque little fishing village. As the sun shines, it bounces off the white-washed cottages set against crystal clear waters that gleam so brightly you’ll be dazzled. There’s a great sense of pride amongst the locals who lovingly manicure their colourful waterside gardens, and are happy to chat to tourists as they sit out enjoying the sunshine. Every bit as much as the sailors and holiday makers enjoying a pint and the incredible view from the waterside garden of The Plockton Hotel.
If you can tear yourself away from the peaceful waters of Plockton, there are plenty of places to visit by car. Eilean Donan Castle is one of Scotland’s most iconic attractions and less than half an hour drive away (make sure you save room for one of the best ice creams you’ll ever taste!). The Isle of Skye bridge is even less and only ten minutes from Plockton. Skye’s stunning dramatic scenery is not to be missed, nor are its attractions.
We managed to pack in a visit to The Fairy Pools (take your trunks and towel), The Quiraing (your walking boots), Kilt Rock (camera) and of course Tallisker (your wallet!) in just a day. Appledore was another recommendation and reported to be a stunning (if not hair raising) drive from Plockton with an excellent pub serving seafood at the other end. However, the sun shone brightly every day and the waters beckoned, making it impossible for us to tear ourselves away from Plockton.
Whilst this may be a tiny ‘wee’ Highland village, it holds its own in terms of attraction and appeal.
Plockton by night
Popular amongst artists, sailors and holiday makers alike, Plockton offers a choice of three watering holes. The Plockton Hotel on the waterfront is a favourite for lunch or a sundowner with its waterside garden. Bustling with locals, the Plockton Inn offers a warm welcome to all, and is a friendly pub serving some of the freshest seafood you will taste. If you visit on a Thursday evening (and Tuesday in the summer months), they also throw in traditional Scottish entertainment provided by local musicians. Unfortunately we didn’t get to try Plockton Shores restaurant as we had our dog with us but heard nothing but glowing reports about this stylish restaurant with a clear passion for seafood.
Plockton by day
Whilst driving around the Scottish Highlands is a joy with its breathtaking scenery and quiet roads, it’s nice to have a day or two off, and Plockton has plenty to keep you occupied. With some of the finest crystal clear waters surrounding its sheltered shores, it’s the perfect place for kayaking and that’s exactly what we did for three days. Everyday bringing with it a different adventure from our first sighting of the seal colony, to the picturesque tiny sandy beaches made just for two and a picnic. For those who don’t have a kayak, there’s a kayaking school at Plockton accommodating everyone from beginners to more experience sea kayakers.
If you don’t fancy paddling, Calum’s Seal Trips will show you the breathtaking sights of Loch Carron with some interesting local tales along the way. The Sula Mhor leaves the harbour front regularly throughout the day (starting the third week of March and running throughout the summer months) with a guarantee of seal spotting (no sighting, no charge!).
Most of our time in Plockton was spent on the water but we did manage to squeeze in a quick walk to Coral Beach. Just over a mile from the village, we had this pretty coral cove all to ourselves to soak up the beautiful views over the water, and enjoy a moments contemplation before waving goodbye to Plockton.
Once visited, never forgotten. We hope to return to Plockton again very soon, next time staying for longer to explore more of this beautiful part of the Scottish Highlands.
Take a look at holiday cottages in Plockton and start planning your next adventure.