The counties of South Yorkshire, West Yorkshire, North Yorkshire and East Riding of Yorkshire all have their own delights to offer, including Leeds, York, Scarborough and Beverley. Passing some of the most beautiful beaches on the north-west coast, the NC500 eventually leads along the north coast towards John O Groats, the northernmost point of mainland Britain. Take a string of whitewashed cottages, place them next to a gorgeous loch with a backdrop of imposing mountains and you have Shieldaig. Before you set off it is worth reading up on the rules of the road in Scotland – Visit Scotland have a great video guide to how to drive in Scotland . It is a circular coastal route that takes you through the North West of Scotland. Check out the Google map below which has the official NC500 route marked on. You can return the same way or take the slightly longer ¾ mile route back to the car park. TOP TIP From Ullapool you can catch the Calmac ferry to Stornoway on the Isle of Lewis to spend a few additional days exploring the Outer Hebrides. The Ultimate Roadtrip! A highlight on the NC500 road trip is definitely the hairraising Bealach na Bà road – one of the highest mountain pass roads in the UK and sometimes as steep as 20%. As you can see, we brought down our daily mileage significantly in order to make time for activities. sea kayaking, Distance: 39 miles, Overnight at Achmelvich Beach Youth Hostel, Day 5: Achmelvich Beach to Tongue incl. However, keep in mind, that being the only car that goes against the stream can be annoying and tiring on single track roads. It is one of Scotland's best-known mountains and sits in the heart of the Assynt. Soon you will get your first glimpse of Thirle Door and the Stacks of Duncansby. The North Coast 500 is an EPIC road trip destination. Launched in 2015, the North Coast 500 encompasses over 500 miles of wild scenery, secluded beaches and historic castles in Scotland’s northern highlands. Due to its fame, unfortunately this is not somewhere you will find solitude. Leaving the coast and driving inland to loop around to Ullapool felt a bit like a disappointment – where are the views? The beach has some of the whitest sand I have seen in Scotland and is well-sheltered from the wind. The cafe offers a variety of refreshments and snacks as well as cakes, teas and coffees in a quirky setting among model gondolas, national park stickers and shelves filled with adventure books. It is a combined sea and freshwater cave which means it has been formed from two sides at the same time. Remember there are no lifeguards at most beaches. An ultimate guide on where you have to stop and eat along the North Coast 500 route. It is a magnificent road trip long that covers some of the most beautiful scenery of the north-western Highlands and coastal regions. Yaaaayyy I’m so glad you gave Helmsdale a shout out!! After hours you can only go as far as the first chamber, but that is still really impressive. The narrow single-track road to Redpoint leads through several small villages and finally, to a gorgeous red sand beach. The NC500 is one of the most scenic routes, not just in the Highlands but across Scotland (you can read more about it, including a full itinerary to help you travel across it in our post here). One of Ireland’s most special places, the spectacular North Coast, is blessed with a number of fantastic sites. Next to the lighthouse, you can walk along the cliffs and spot sea birds nesting at these soaring heights. The North Coast 500 is something I would be very interested in doing. Aside from stunning mountain views, it also boasts lovely views across Upper Loch Torridon. Join here!). 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