Your 8-hour excursion sets off from the Inverness in the morning. Meet your guide at the city's Visitor Centre and take a comfortable seat in the van for the short drive over the Beauly Firth to Black Isle. As you travel west, listen as your guide recounts tales of how Black Isle got its name – from its signature black soil to its past association with witchcraft and dark arts. Take in the quiet countryside as you pass through the isle to Cromarty.
Disembark in the quaint fishing village that once served as an ancient ferry port – and still feels that way! Admire the Georgian architecture as you stroll past fishermen’s cottages, small shops and eateries. Next, hop back in the coach for a ride to Chanonry Point, passing other sweet Scottish villages like Rosemarkie and Fortress on the way.
From narrow Chanonry Point, gaze out at the waters of Moray Firth, home to a remarkable pod of some 130 bottleneck dolphins. Watch the amiable creatures leap and play on the water’s surface, then head into the town of Beauly to explore and grab lunch (own expense). Derived from the French term beau lieu (beautiful place), the charming village is the perfect spot for an afternoon break.
After lunch, head to the renowned Glen Ord Distillery. Tour the grounds and have a look at the impressive pear-shaped pot stills, each with a capacity of more than 16,000 liters! Learn about the complex production process and enjoy a sample of Glen Ord’s signature 12-year single malt whisky.
From here, make your way back to Inverness, stopping at the mysterious and majestic Loch Ness. Explore Drumnadrochit village, and take in sweeping views of the lake and surrounding hills – and perhaps get a chance sighting of the mythical Loch Ness monster, Nessie! Then relax for the ride back to Inverness, arriving at the starting point by early evening.