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Black Isle Mid Ross & Easter Ross Map
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Black Isle, Mid Ross & Easter Ross


Sheltered by the mountains to the west, the Black Isle, Mid Ross and Easter Ross presents a greener aspect of the Highlands, especially on the rolling coastal lands by the Cromarty Firth.

The Black Isle is really a peninsula, wooded and farmed but with a wild east-facing coastline, sheered off and abrupt - a continuation of the line of (what geologists call) the Highland Boundary Fault. While little towns, for example, Fortrose, Cromarty or Tain, Scotland's oldest Royal burgh, have almost a Lowland air about them, the area has a wilder side, too. In mid Ross, beyond the Victorian spa village of Strathpeffer, the broad uplands of landmark hills such as Ben Wyvis, or the lonely upper reaches of Strathconon are reminders that this is still the Highlands.

The area offers an excellent choice of places to see and things to do. Dolphin spotting from Cromarty, Avoch or Portmahomack (and boat hire for sea-angling as well); more on dolphins and seals in the visitor centre in the North Kessock tourist information centre carpark. The Black Isle is a red kite stronghold - see them on close-circuit tv also at North Kessock and there is plenty of firth shoreline for birdwatchers to scan for waders and wildfowl.

Cromarty Courthouse Museum, housed in an original court building of 1773, portrays the life of an old Scots burgh (of which Cromarty is a fine example). Hugh Miller's Cottage, recalling the life of the locally-born geologist and church-man, is also here. Tain through Time also explores the very different story of this little town, formerly an important place of pilgrimage. Other places of interest include the Highland Museum of Childhood at Strathpeffer and the Groam House Museum at Rosemarkie which takes a Pictish theme, as does the Tarbat Discovery Centre, at Portmahomack, based on the findings of an internationally important archaeological dig. The Black Isle Wildlife and Country Park has a good selection of animals (some of which can be hand fed by children) There are distilleries to visit at Muir of Ord and Tain.

Golf, riding and angling are all easily found and there are leisure centres /swimming pools at many of the towns including Invergordon, Dingwall and Alness. In short, the Black Isle, Mid Ross and Easter Ross is a good area for families, with a choice of things to do, plus easy access to Inverness.

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