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Oh, the wonders of Tongue! Tucked away in the Scottish Highlands, this charming village is a diamond in the rough. Far from the bustling city life, Tongue offers a tranquil retreat with the backdrop of vast hills, fresh lochs, and breath-taking sea views. A jewel on the North Coast 500 or NC500, if you please. The place has a sense of magic to it that makes you want to kick off your shoes, let your hair down, and simply bask in the natural beauty around you. Now that’s what we call a perfect staycation adventure!
Part of the charm lies in its simplicity. Imagine serene lochs mirroring the pristine sky, quaint houses with their rustic charm, and hills rolling out as far as the eyes can see. One look at the place and you’d think it’s been ripped straight out of a storybook. And what’s even better? This gem is a part of the celebrated NC500 road trip route, offering you a travel experience like no other.
And it’s not just all about the journey. When you reach Tongue, a world of exploration opens up for you. From historical landmarks that take you on a trip down memory lane, to outdoor activities that set your adrenaline pumping, Tongue has got it all! Foodies will be thrilled to find the local cuisine to be just as rich and inviting as the place itself.
Through this guide, you’ll get to know more about this Scottish haven. We’ll cover everything from getting to Tongue, top attractions, local cuisine, accommodation options, and more! So, are you ready for a staycation adventure of a lifetime?
Let’s dive into the past a little, shall we? Tongue, perched on the north coast of the Scottish Highlands, has a rich history waiting to be explored. It’s located in the council area of the Highland, steeped in tales of clans and castles.
What sets Tongue apart from other Scottish towns? Well, it’s the tales of the Mackay clan. This clan was dominant in the area during the 14th century. If you’re a history buff, you’ll get a kick out of these stories.
The rugged and austere landscape adds to the allure of its history. The village grew around Tongue House, the Mackay’s former seat. A step into this village is like stepping back in time. It gives you a true taste of Scotland’s deep-seated history and tradition.
All in all, this serene village is much more than just a pretty place. With a past that’s as enthralling as the landscape, Tongue is the perfect blend of tranquillity and intrigue.
So, how do you get to this picturesque hamlet? Well, the village of Tongue is quite reachable, with Inverness being the closest city. You can fly into Inverness Airport and from there, it’s a beautiful drive to Tongue along the NC500 route.
If you fancy a drive, you’re in for a treat! The journey from Inverness to Tongue is part of the epic NC500 road trip. The views along the way are nothing short of stunning.
However, if driving’s not your thing, fret not. Regular buses operate from Inverness to Tongue. It might take a bit longer, but hey, more time to soak up those landscapes, right?
When’s the best time to visit, you ask? Spring and summer offer pleasant weather and longer daylight hours. But honestly, Tongue is enchanting all year round.
Welcome to the land of castles and lochs! Tongue has a wealth of attractions that are bound to take your breath away. The Castle Varrich is at the top of the list. It’s a historical landmark and a testimony to the Mackay clan’s dominance.
A short walk up a hill and voila, Castle Varrich is at your disposal. The views from up there? Simply mesmerising! Imagine panoramic vistas of the Kyle of Tongue and Ben Loyal. Sounds dreamy, doesn’t it?
The Kyle of Tongue, a sea loch, is another must-visit. The causeway across it offers delightful views. Spot some seabirds, soak in the serene atmosphere, and let the magic of the place engulf you.
Lastly, don’t miss out on Ben Loyal, fondly known as the Queen of Scottish Mountains. Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or just looking for a leisurely walk, Ben Loyal has something for everyone.
Ready for an adrenaline rush? With its stunning landscape, Tongue offers plenty of outdoor activities. And guess what? They are all part of the NC500 adventure!
Hiking is a favourite among visitors. The rugged terrain, the verdant hills, and the stunning sea views make for an exhilarating experience. Don’t forget to carry your hiking boots!
If you’re a bird watcher, you’re in luck. Tongue is home to various species of seabirds. So, grab your binoculars and head over to the Kyle of Tongue.
How about some water sports? The nearby lochs are perfect for canoeing or kayaking. The clear waters against the backdrop of the mountains make for a picture-perfect scene.
And if you’re up for it, why not try a bit of wild swimming? It’s cold, it’s refreshing, and it’s oh-so-fun!
Food & Drink
Ah, the pleasure of a good meal! Tongue, while small, boasts a few eateries that are big on flavour. Scottish cuisine, anyone?
First things first, a trip to Tongue isn’t complete without trying Haggis, the quintessential Scottish dish. The Ben Loyal Hotel serves a mean Haggis.
The Tongue Hotel is another gem. Its award-winning restaurant offers delicious local fare. From locally sourced seafood to Scottish beef, it’s a culinary journey you don’t want to miss.
Cafe Tàirneanaich, located on the village’s edge, is perfect for a cosy breakfast or a quick coffee. Their home-baked scones are simply divine!
Lastly, for the pub experience, head to The Craggan. Its warm atmosphere and fine selection of whiskeys make it a must-visit.
Time to put your feet up and relax! Tongue offers a range of accommodations to suit all budgets. From hotels to B&Bs, you’ll find a comfortable place to rest your head after a day of exploration.
The Ben Loyal Hotel is an excellent choice if you’re looking for comfort and convenience. With its stunning views and cosy rooms, it’s a favourite among visitors.
For a more personal touch, why not try a B&B? The Tongue Guest House is renowned for its hospitality. The delicious Scottish breakfast is a bonus!
on a budget, camping is a viable option. The Kyle of Tongue Hostel and Holiday Park offers camping facilities. Imagine waking up to the serene views of the loch!
So, whether you prefer the comfort of a hotel or the adventure of a campsite, Tongue has got you covered!
Tips and Tricks
Planning a trip to Tongue? Here are a few tips and tricks to make your stay even more memorable. Remember, you’re in Scotland, so prepare for a quick weather change! Pack layers and don’t forget your rain gear.
The midges, oh, the midges! These tiny insects can be a nuisance, especially in the summer. Bring a good insect repellent and you’ll be fine.
Always respect the countryside code. Stay on designated paths, leave no trace, and keep dogs on a leash. Remember, we’re guests in this beautiful landscape.
Lastly, do chat with the locals. They’re friendly, welcoming, and full of insider tips. So, don’t be shy to strike up a conversation!
So, why should Tongue be your next staycation destination? Well, the answer is simple. It’s a place that offers not just beautiful landscapes but also a peek into the rich Scottish history.
Its place on the NC500 route makes it an ideal pit stop. But trust us, once you get there, you might just want to stay a bit longer!
The outdoor activities, the historical landmarks, the culinary delights, and the friendly locals make Tongue a place worth visiting. It’s not just a destination, it’s an experience, a Scottish experience that will stay with you forever.
So, what are you waiting for? Pack your bags, hit the road, and embark on a staycation adventure that you’ll never forget. Remember, the road to Tongue is just as mesmerising as the destination itself. Happy Travels!
Q: Is Tongue easily accessible?
A: Yes, you can easily reach Tongue by car or bus from Inverness.
Q: What’s the best time to visit Tongue?
A: While Tongue is enchanting all year round, spring and summer offer pleasant weather and longer daylight hours.
Q: Are there outdoor activities in Tongue?
A: Absolutely! From hiking and bird watching to canoeing and wild swimming, there’s plenty to keep you busy.
Q: What food and drink options are there in Tongue?
A: Tongue boasts several eateries serving delicious Scottish fare. Don’t forget to try Haggis!
Q: What types of accommodations are available?
A: Tongue offers a range of accommodations from hotels and B&Bs to camping facilities.
Q: What are some must-visit attractions in Tongue?
A: Castle Varrich, Kyle of Tongue, and Ben Loyal are some of the top attractions.
Q: Can I camp in Tongue?
A: Yes, the Kyle of Tongue Hostel and Holiday Park offers camping facilities.
Q: Do I need to prepare for midges?
A: Yes, these tiny insects can be a nuisance in summer. Bring a good insect repellent.
Q: What’s the weather like in Tongue?
A: The weather in Scotland can change quickly. Be prepared for this by packing layers and rain gear.
Q: Is Tongue a part of the North Coast 500?
A: Yes, Tongue is a part of the epic North Coast 500 route.
Embarking on the iconic North Coast 500 journey is an experience like no other. This epic road trip around the crown of Scotland offers a blend of breathtaking landscapes, thrilling driving routes, and rich cultural experiences. To ensure you get the absolute best from your NC500 adventure, we’ve curated a list of essential items and recommendations to capture your memories. Each item is shipped securely direct from Amazon, and delivered straight to your door.