Wildside, located centrally in the Highlands of Scotland means that both east and west coasts are easily accessible by road and there are many places to visit. Here is a taste of just some of the activities available to holidaymakers at Wildside. More detailed information can be found in the holiday lodges or at reception. Other Loch Ness information may be found here
There are walks of all grades from Wildside, from bridle paths, way marked woodland pathways to hill walking on some of the remotest mountains in Scotland the Monadhliaths, backdrop to ‘Monarch of the Glen’. There are many rivers lochs and waterfalls to discover.
Many guests bring their bikes; with no main road and little traffic on this side of Loch Ness, cycling particularly mountain biking is very popular over a network of unclassified roads and forest tracks.
Surrounded by rivers, lochs, woods and hills, the lists of wildlife seen are impressive. Otters pass along the river and pine martens and roe deer visit the grounds at Wildside. The red deer stag, is abundant on the higher ground where golden eagles hunt. There is an R.S.P.B. reserve at Loch Ruthven (17miles) where in the summer months you may see the rare slavonian grebe nesting or ospreys fishing. Or, take a cruise on the Moray Firth to see the dolphins.
Fishing in the river for brown trout is available free of charge to guests. Boats can be hired on many of the local lochs; or fish from the bank. A Gillie can be arranged if required.
Fort Augustus has a scenic 9 hole course and a friendly club where they welcome visitors. There are other challenging courses, 3 at Inverness, 2 at Nairn and 1 at Cawder Castle.
Cruises on Loch Ness
Cruises on Loch Ness available from Inverness through the Caledonian Canal and Loch Ness to Urquhart Castle with Jacobite Cruises. Other cruised may be taken from Fort Augustus.
Caledonian Canal visitor centre along side the five locks which dominate the centre of Fort Augustus, gives a unique history of the canal. The busy locks are a popular attraction for visitors.
Castles and Battlefields within easy reach
Across the river at Wildside we have a fine example of a single span, high arched bridge, built by General Wade’s troops in 1732 as they created the military road network to link the garrisons of Fort William, Fort Augustus and Inverness. The purpose was to move troops and to break the isolation in the Highlands which tended to sustain the Jacobite unrest which led to The Battle of Culloden 1746. This site of the last land battle in mainland Britain is well worth a visit; the visitor centre explains the history of the Jacobite cause.(1 hour)
Urquhart Castle dominates the northern banks of Loch Ness; impressive new visitor centre.(1 hour)
Loch Ness Exhibition Centre . Originally the Official Loch Ness Exhibition Centre, the facility opened over 30 years ago. Now a hi-tech multi-media presentation leads you through 7 themed areas and 500 million years of history, natural mystery and legend revealing the unique environment of Loch Ness and the famous Nessie legend. Also here is the largest one stop shopping complex on Loch Ness featuring everything including, Heraldry Kiltmakers, Tartans, The Nessie shop and our famous Whisky shop
Cawdor Castle 14th century stately home with links with Lord Nelson and Lady Hamilton; has beautiful gardens. (1 ¼ hours)
Eilean Donan Castle on Loch Duich, a romantic setting and impressive interior. (1 ½ hours)
Inverness Floral Hall features an indoor subtropical oasis.
Abriachan Nurseries 3 acres of vivid garden on the north shore of Loch Ness.
South Loch Ness Trail
The South Loch Ness Trail is a brand
new and exciting trail for all types of user was officially launched in August 2011. The trail stretches for approximately 28 miles between Loch Tarff near Fort Augustus to Inverness via Whitebridge,
Foyers, Inverfarigaig and Dores.
Starting from Loch Tarff a few miles outside Fort Augustus, the trail rises sharply to Suidhe Viewpoint at 1200ft. From here south Loch Ness stretches out before you. It is a land of mystery and legend, bountiful wildlife and flora, forest, heather, peat clad moors and awe inspiring views. Wildside Lodges is a perfect base for trail walkers, as Wildside is on the route.
Rock Ness is an annual music festival which takes place at Clune Farm, Dores, on the banks of Loch Ness near Inverness. The first Rock Ness festival took place in 2006 and has grown in size every year since. The festival is known as "the most beautiful festival in the world" and "the only festival with its own monster" due to its beautiful location at Loch Ness, the home of the mythical Loch Ness Monster. The three-day long Rock Ness offers an eclectic selection of bands in a beautiful location and just a 20 min drive from Wildside Highland Lodges..
Loch Ness Marathon
A Monster Race... running alongside
the shores of the world's most famous loch.
Loch Ness is one of the best-known destinations in the world, beautiful scenery and the centuries-old mystery of the Loch Ness monster attract visitors from around the world. Loch Ness is also home to one of the best marathons in the UK. It is the biggest marathon in Scotland and brings lots of opportunities for all kinds of runners to take part – either in the marathon or one of the associated running events. Whatever your reasons for running become part of the Loch Ness running legend, providing fantastic sights, challenges to suit various abilities, lots of fun, and the chance to achieve something memorable in one of the most famous parts of the world.
The Loch Ness marathon passes the entrance way to Wildside Highland Lodges and all our guests love to show support to all the runners, it is a wonderful sight to see the many runners pass by, some in fancy dress supporting the many charities. So if you are not entering as a runner, you can still show your support by clapping and cheering and supporting the fantastic work these people do for charity.
Loch Ness Duathalon
A monster challenge!
By taking part in a British Heart Foundation event you’ll be sure to have fun and get yourself fitter but with the money you raise you’ll also help to save lives. A really challenging event for an individual competitor or a fantastic team effort guaranteed to satisfy adventure seekers around the stunning iconic landmark of Loch Ness
• Running 7.5km on forest trails with 276m of ascent and then Mountain biking on the north side of Loch Ness on the Great Glen Way– 60km with 1700m of climb
• Running 7.5km on forest trails with
276m of ascent and then road cycling 56km with 1050m of climb on the south side of Loch Ness followed by a 5km run mainly on tarmac
Have fun, get fit, save lives.
Held on the stunning shores of Loch Ness.
Loch Ness holds a staggering more fresh water than all of the other lakes in Great Britain combined! What better place could there be for a wild swim?
The "Big Yin" is the longest swim of the day at 1 mile. Conditions can be challenging yet the views down the Loch are awe-inspiring and the feeling of being alone even when you are swimming with others can be exhilarating. Wee Nessie" is a challenging 1/2 mile swim for the novice open water swimmer, but the views from the Loch are superb.
Wildside Highland Lodges is a fantastic base to participate or support any of the events, please show your support and have a fantastic day out.
Find out more details in all the events at Visitlochness.com