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The North Coast 500 Route – Scotland’s Answer to Route 66

The North Coast 500 Route – Scotland’s Answer to Route 66

Posted by Hilton Coylumbridge, January, 2016

The winter months have the very real potential to be some of the most incredible of the whole year for driving in Scotland. And as the spring slowly but surely rolls in once again, an already beautiful time becomes all the more stunning. Crisp blue skies, enchanting landscapes and the promise of quiet roads and uncrowded villages add up to quite the appealing prospect for a well-earned break.

For those thinking of heading this way in the New Year, Hilton Coylumbridge team is delighted to recommend checking out the world-famous North Coast 500 route. Essentially Scotland’s answer to America’s Route 66, this extraordinary coastal route will show you a variety of different sides of Scotland, along with quite simply the most breathtaking coastal scenery you will ever lay eyes on.

The Very Best of the Scottish Coast

As the name quite accurately suggests, the North Coast 500 route is a stretch of road totalling 500 miles in length, raking in the most wonderful sights and sites the North Highlands plays host to. Its official starting point is in Inverness, showing travellers the heart of the Highlands capital, followed by a trip up the West Coast and back down the incredible North Coast. But as the route is a circuit, it’s of course possible to start and finish anywhere you like!

Suffice to say that after just a few miles taking in the scenery around you, you’ll understand why the Daily Telegraph called the route ‘one of the world’s best’.

A relatively young circuit, the route was made official by the North Highland Initiative in 2014. Prince Charles, Duke of Rothesay established the non-profit trust in 2005, as a means by which to enhance and promote the economic performance of the North Highlands, with a strong focus on furthering its appeal for visitors.

The inspiration for the North Coast 500 was simple – one simple yet enormously rewarding circuit that encapsulates everything that makes the North Highlands a truly remarkable place.

Iconic Towns and Villages

What’s really great about the route is how there are so many wonderful towns and villages to stop by along the way. From Dornoch to John O'Groats to Durness to Ullapool and of course, Inverness, you’ll have the opportunity to explore a wide variety of quintessentially Scottish villages you may have otherwise never have come across.

Of course, there’s nothing to say that the whole circuit must be done if time doesn’t permit – simply checking out a small stretch of what’s on offer can be a hugely rewarding experience. And for those seeking a serious challenge, it’s also becoming increasingly popular to check out the route by bike…weather permitting, that is!

The Hilton Coylumbridge represents the ideal base for a wider exploration of the Scottish Highlands. Our privileged position provides fast and convenient access to the very best the region has to offer – including the iconic North Coast 500 route. Check out our fantastic Special Offers