Start your monster-hunting on Loch Ness in a canoe or kayak, which can easily be hired in Inverness. You can explore the misty waters and see what you come face-to-face with!
Head up into the mountains beside Loch Ness. Glen Affric is a particularly stunning area for setting off on hikes amid the heather-decked hills. There are car parks at various points from where you can follow well-marked trails through pine forests and moorland, with ever-emerging views of even more lochs.
Slide off those walking boots and hunker down for the night in a proper Highlands pub like The Slaters Arms or The Steading Country Inn, both of which also have comfortable rooms and are en route back from Glen Affric. After all that activity today you’ll have worked up an appetite for hearty Highland dishes washed down with a dram or two of local whisky! And if you’re lucky, the locals might start a sing-a-along as the night progresses on.
Wake yourself up with a high-speed power boat ride across the loch: Cruise Loch Ness run their RIB (rigid inflatable boat) tours from Fort Augustus (at the opposite end of the loch from Inverness, a 54min drive). Or take the calmer scenic cruise boat trip, passing the sights of the loch shores, like the magnificent Urquhart Castle.
Back on dry land, transfer onto 2 wheels with a bicycle hired from Girvans Bike Hire, also in Fort Augustus, and cover some more of those enticing trails. Follow the valley away from Loch Ness and you can reach Fort William (2 hours 45 minutes cycling), where Britain’s highest mountain Ben Nevis (4,413ft/1,345m) looms.
Head back to Inverness and experience the city’s lively nightlife. There are no end of pubs, and you can enjoy live music and even ceilidhs most nights in locals’ favourites Hootananny’s and Johnny Foxes Pub.
Morning and afternoon
Set off for Loch Ness’s quieter, lesser-explored south shores for a walk along the South Loch Ness Trail. Be sure to drop in and say hi to the Nessie Hunter Steve Feltham, who bases himself in a prime position on the loch shores by The Dores Inn (16min drive from Inverness).
The Dores Inn is the just the place for an evening’s Nessie-spotting, positioned right on the loch shore. Pull up a chair and settle in for a night of hearty pub food, unbeatable views, and comparing tales with the locals of mysterious sightings on the waters.