Loch Ness
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Loch Ness: Tours & Tickets

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5 Loch Ness Monster Myths and Legends

Scotland's Loch Ness Monster has been the center of myth and tall tales for 1500 years. Though the Highlands are spectacular to see, its famous loch continues to lure visitors in hopes of a chance encounter with this elusive creature of the deep.

What lurks beneath the surface

What lurks beneath the surface

Some say that Scottish lore about mythological creatures living in its waters, such as kelpies, selkies and "water horses," fuels the fire of a monster prowling Loch Ness.

The saint that saved the day

The saint that saved the day

The first encounter was in 565 AD, when St. Columba drove a water beast away with the power of his voice and prevented it from devouring one of his companions in the water.

A grainy picture paints a thousand words

A grainy picture paints a thousand words

Road work along the shore in 1933 seemed to rouse Nessie from the deep, and a year later a black-and-white photo revealed a slender neck and small head emerging above the surface.

Jurassic proportions

Jurassic proportions

Nessie's features ironically resemble a plesiosaurus, a sea reptile that looks like a lizard with flippers and lived in the early Jurassic period 200 million years ago.

Let sleeping monsters lie

Let sleeping monsters lie

Extensive use of technology has yet to find the mythical monster. Though if ever caught, ancient legend predicts a catastrophic end of the region--it's food for thought!

Our insider tips

Getting to Loch Ness

If you're renting a car, take the A82 highway to reach the visitors' center in Drumnadrochit, which is on the northwest shore of Loch Ness. If you're relying on bus service, there are daily departures from Inverness (30 minutes) and Fort Williams (1 1/2 hours).

Loch Ness activities

The Loch Ness Centre and Exhibition in Drumnadrochit exhibits the history of the region and the hunt for Nessie. The biggest attraction is, of course, a one-hour cruise on Loch Ness, complete with sonar equipment and underwater cameras just in case. Apart from the monster-mania, Urquhart Castle is nearby and worth a visit. Though blown to bits in 1692 and left in ruins, it provides amazing views of Loch Ness from its elevated location.

When to go

Scotland's weather is variable. You could wake up to grey and rain, but then bask in sunshine by lunchtime. May and June are recommendable months to visit, as the weather is generally fine, and the days are long. Consider September, as well, when the crowds are less and fall is in the air.

Good to know

  • When should I visit?
    Hours will depend largely on your means of transportation. Tours of the loch will have limited times.
  • Is it expensive?
    Prices vary by tour or mode of transportation, as well as the activities you plan to do there.
  • Will I need a guide?
    It's not necessary, but for a short visit, a guide can point out the best locations to see.
  • How to get there
    Loch Ness is reachable by car or bus, with many tours passing through from major cities.
  • Additional information
    Be prepared for rain while visiting and pack accordingly! Pay attention to transportation times when planning your visit!

What people are saying about Loch Ness

Well organised and professionally carried out ..

Jamie was amazing, very informative, good fun and a great driver .. such a great way to see such a beautiful part of Scotland ..

Absolutely fantastic experience I will never forget!

Our guide, Gregor, was just the best! He provided almost constant entertainment during the drives from stop to stop - from historical tid bits to relevant music to jokes - it was so much cooler and more exciting than I'd expected. I highly recommend this tour and if you get Gregor, you scored big! Each stop was incredible, the lochs of Scotland are breathtaking and inspiring. Staying the night in Inverness was wonderful - a nice smaller town and a welcomed change of pace from the hustle and bustle of London where we were the previous week. Plus Inverness is gorgeous. We stayed close to Ness Bank and the river at night and in the morning was so calm and peaceful. I will miss that place and can't wait to go back! And the food was amazing too! We ate at Johnny Foxes and the haggis stuffed chicken was one of the best things I'd eaten the entire vacation. Gregor also recited Robert Burns' Address to a Haggis on the way back to Edinburgh which was pretty cool!

Inverness and Highlands Small Group 2-Day Tour Reviewed by Jonathan, 06/11/2019

Great view of highland with experienced guide

It s a nice tour with friendly and knowledgeable driver mr Duggie, he knows alot about the place and history. The view of highland is great

Wonderful driver and group of individuals. Such a beautiful trip!

Our driver/ tour guide was phenomenal with all his knowledge of essentially every question we asked. He was constantly engaging and making sure everyone was taken care of and happy. I would most definitely recommend this trip or any of the other ones they have to offer because their services are wonderful! I like to be active and walking around when I travel, however this was such a nice break between to sit and see the scenery but still go out and enjoy it within a few days time. I would highly recommend it too if you would like to truly see the beauties of Scotland and not have to worry about the TINY roads.

Very much impressed with your excellent tour!

My wife, daughter and I had a very remarkable memory with your tour, beginning from we boarded the bus at 8.45 am, the panctuality to the end of journey. Jaime the driver was really the best one who I have ever seen in my entire travelling life. With his friendly, smiley face and full of knowledge, the way he was talking and explaining, was professional, excellent and informative. with his amazing voice behind the microphone I really gained a lot of information from him. We enjoyed very much. And I am going to recommend your tour to all of my clients and as well as my friends too. Thank you Jaimie. Wish you all the best. Abdulrahim Alawadhi Managing Director Al Awadhi Travels Dubai UAE

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