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High in the Highlands

High in the Highlands

The Highlands is a grand place to visit. With castles, mountains and lochs, there's plenty to see for everyone. Here is a peak you want to climb and have. This is just a small part of the region but its my favorite.

Cairngorms National Park

The Cairngorms National Park is a popular tourist destination in the Scottish Highlands. The park encompasses 1,600 square miles of land, and it includes much of the Cairngorm Mountains. It's the largest National Park in Scotland as well as all of Europe. The park borders three other national parks: Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park to the south, Galloway Forest Park to the northwest, and Royal Deeside to its east.

The area offers ways for visitors to enjoy nature at its best: hiking trails traverse through scenic landscapes; there are plenty of opportunities for fishing on lakes like Loch Avon; or you can spot rare wildlife while driving through. There are also several historic castles and ruins scattered throughout this region which date back centuries ago when people lived here as farmers or lords protecting their territory from bandits or invaders coming over from England during war times (such as Robin Hood).

Braemar Royal Deeside

Braemar is a small town in Aberdeenshire, Scotland. It lies at the foot of Lochnagar, the tallest peak in the Grampian Mountains, and has played host to many events over its history. In addition to being a National Trust for Scotland property. A bit of history, An important garrison after the 1745 Jacobite rising, Braemar Castle had been attacked and burned by John Farquharson, the Black Colonel of Inverey during the Jacobite rising of 1689, to prevent it from being used as a garrison by Government troops. In 1716 the castle was forfeited to the Crown following the Earl of Mar's leadership of 1715 Jacobite rising. The castle and lands were purchased by John Farquharson, 9th Laird of Invercauld but the building was left in ruins until 1748 when it was leased to the government at a fee of £14 per year, now to serve as a garrison for Hanoverian troops. Rebuilding started under the command of John Adam, Master Mason to the Board of Ordnance.

In 1831 the military garrison was withdrawn and the castle returned to the Farquharson clan. Restoration to provide a family home began under the 12th Laird of Invercauld who entertained Queen Victoria there when she attended the Braemar Gatherings on the grounds of the castle. In 1800 Braemar Castle was documented to have its moat intact.

It has also been featured in the video of Andy Stewart's "A Scottish Soldier".

Since 2006 the castle has been leased to the local community. It is run on behalf of the community by a local charity, Braemar Community Ltd, and staffed by local volunteers, and an ambitious restoration program has been started. It reopened to the public in 2008.

Braemar Gathering

The Braemar Gathering is the largest Highland games event held every September in Braemar, Scotland. It attracts competitors from all over the world who come to show off their skill at traditional Highland sports like tossing cabers, throwing hammers, and putting heavy stones.

Braemar has been hosting gatherings since 1597 and it quickly became a popular tourist attraction for visitors to Scotland. The first gathering was held at the end of August or early September each year and was attended by representatives of local clans who competed against each other in various events such as wrestling, stone-throwing, dancing, and caber-tossing (where competitors must toss a large wooden pole/tree trunk over their heads).

Trekking in the Highlands

The Cairngorms Dee Side Braemar region boasts of many expansive hills, which the best hiking trails located in and around Braemar. The area surrounding this small village is vast and filled with open fields, craggy hillsides, and thick forests ripe for exploration. There are many different types of terrain that can be found within this region including Alpine, forest, and moorland. You can pick whatever level you can handle there is a trail for all levels. As well as some amazing biking trails.

Shopping in Braemar

For a village of 600 people, Braemar has evolved into a literal rodeo drive in the middle of these heavenly hills. From the Fife Arms Gift Shop to the new Hazelnut Pâtisserie and the Andrew Braidwoods Braemar Gallery you can indulge your eyes and tastebuds in a world-class affair. Imagine having a cocktail while seated beneath a Picasso, then enjoying a french pastry, or visiting an art gallery that is home to the best highland artists' work all within a small city block. Smattered about these indulgent affairs are the rugged mainstays of family-owned storefronts like the Horn Shop where you can find red deer antlers turned into artwork and finally after a long day of hiking and indulging you can settle into a great pub called Farquarsons or maybe motor over to Braemar Brewing company for a fresh microbrew, oh and if you're a Scotch fan you can miss Berties at the Fife Arms. Inspired by the famous Royal Queen Victoria’s eldest son, King Edward VII, also known as ‘Bertie’. this bon viveur, known for his notoriously spirited behavior, this new whisky bar will embrace all of this much-loved monarch’s extravagance, appetite for life, and excessive spirit in every sense. Bertie’s is a celebration of whisky and this hedonistic heir, a gregarious and larger-than-life character, who played fast and loose with the rules, had a love of opulence and all the wonders of the world. Whisky Ambassador Katy Fennema will lead you to the single malt promised land.

In 1852, Queen Victoria and Prince Albert purchased the estate of Balmoral Castle in Royal Deeside. The property was built on land that had been owned by the Clan Grant for hundreds of years, but it was not a hereditary title - rather, it passed from father to son as each generation came of age. It was not until 1766 that the original castle was destroyed by fire and rebuilt with stone walls.

Balmoral Castle is open to visitors Between April and July every year Balmoral is open to the public. It has become a popular tourist destination because tourists on the off chance of seeing members of royalty such as Queen Elizabeth II; however, you might get a glimpse of the royals at their other royal residences such as Craigowan Lodge and Birkhall Cottage where other members of the royal family will sometimes stay during their summer breaks. It is also not uncommon to see members of the royal family walking about in villages or hiking around Lake Muick

The Highlands are full of historic and modern attractions.

The Highlands are full of historic and modern attractions. The Cairngorms National Park, an area of unspoiled beauty, is the backdrop for many outdoor activities including skiing and walking. Braemar Royal Deeside is a traditional Scottish town with a long history that has been attracting tourists since Victorian times. Every first Saturday in September it hosts the Braemar Gathering, which is one of Scotland's oldest Highland games events. These gatherings are held throughout the summer at various places throughout the highlands but the Braemar Gathering is the Super bowl of all Celtic games.

So if you are planning a trip to the Highlands, take some time to explore the rich history and culture of these beautiful mountains. There is something for everyone here!

Thanks for reading this blog post about my heavenly home away from it all. You can join my Facebook group My Trip to Scotland and follow my next journey, or just sign up to receive updates here.

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