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25 Places In Scotland That Are Straight Out Of A Fantasy Novel

Who needs Westeros? We've got Wester Ross.

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No, this isn't a series of screenshots from a video game: It's actually Smoo Cave, a 200 foot long series of interconnected sea caverns near the village of Durness in the highlands.


This series of blue, inviting interconnected pools and waterfalls in Glen Brittle might look tropical, but they're actually freezing cold (well, they are in Scotland after all). Despite that fact, they're very popular with wild swimmers.

This Game Of Thrones style fortress is actually Dunnottar – from the Scottish Gaelic Dùn Fhoithear, which means "fort on the shelving slope". The site is thought to have been occupied since Pictish times (5000 BC to 700 AD).


The "Great Herdsman of Etive" dominates the skyline for miles around and can easily be seen from the scenic A82 road. The name actually refers to a ridge rather than an individual mountain: Its most recognisable peak is Stob Dearg (pictured).


Kilchurn Castle is a ruined 15th century fortress that sits at the north eastern end of Loch Awe in Argyll. It was the ancestral home of Clan Campbell, but was abandoned after being badly damaged by lightning in 1760.

These ominous standing stones on the Isle of Lewis are arranged in a cruciform shape. According to legend, early on midsummer morning an entity known as the "Shining One" walks through the stones to the centre of the circle.


Who needs Westeros when you've got Wester Ross? In the centre of this highland loch sits Shieldaig Island, which is covered in mature pine trees despite the fact the surrounding hills and mountains are bare: It's thought they were planted in Victorian times.

Linlithgow Palace is a large, eerie and well preserved ruin about 15 miles west of Edinburgh. It was one of the main residences of the kings and queens of Scotland until 1603, but fell into disuse and burned down in 1746.

This small island in the Inner Hebrides is famous for its tranquil beauty. In the Early Middle Ages it was an important part of the ancient Gaelic kingdom of Dál Riata and was a centre of spiritual learning for around four centuries.

Sgùrr Thearlaich is one of several peaks that form the Black Cuillin ridge in Skye, which also features a hard to climb "Inaccessible Pinnacle". You can watch an incredible video of Scottish trial cyclist Danny Macaskill riding to the top of the pinnacle here.

Finnich Glen, also known as The Devil's Pulpit, is a very narrow 100ft deep gorge hidden away in trees about four miles south of Drymen and about 16 miles north of Glasgow. The fast-flowing waters make it a popular spot for canyoning.

Ben Nevis is the highest mountain in the UK (4,408 feet) and attracts around 125,000 visitors each year. The summit is covered in snow for around eight months a year, making it one of the best places in Britain to try ice climbing.

These weirdly shaped, otherworldly rock pinnacles were a filming location for the 2012 Ridley Scott-directed science fiction film Prometheus. The largest of these ancient peaks is the 50 metre high Old Man of Storr.

Eat your heart out, Middle-earth.


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