Book Review: Rough Guide to Scottish Highlands and Islands


The Rough Guide to Scottish Highlands & Islands

This book among the Rough Guide Series particularly strikes my fancy because 2009 is a year of grand celebration for tourism in Scotland.  The book  is chock full of highly readable information, where to go and what to see.  Dozens of photos will set you dreaming of your trip.  Rob Humphreys and Donald Reid, along with Colin Hutchinson provide expert background on the best places to stay and eat for every budget.  And they add a grand bit of  prose to satisfy the readers' love of beautiful words.  For example, being a poet sent me right away to the Guide’s section on the Orkneys, where George Mackey Brown lived and wrote his lilting verses of ploughmen and wild storms.  Here is a quote from Rough Guide to Scottish Highlands & Islands, when writing of the Orkneys:

“Orkney lay athwart a great sea-way
from Viking times onwards, and its lore
is crowded with sailors, merchants, adventurers,
pilgrims, smugglers, storms and sea-changes.
The shores are strewn with wrack, jetsam,
occasional treasure.”

What lover of history and folklore and legend could resist that?  Practical maps and street grids in the book provide all the information a traveler needs for large cities and small villages, for visiting castles and lochs;  To name them is to dream of being there: Tobermory, Loch Drunkie, Balfour Castle.  And there is a special color insert titled Scottish Food and Drink:  Oh, the hearty Scots broth or Cullen skink or the making of  malt  whiskey from barley over peat fires.  To find them in Scotland, such delectable tastes.

A banner across the book says, “Make the Most of Your Time on Earth”  How better than to spend time reading about, then fulfilling your dreams with this great book.





Barbary Chaapel/nonameharbor is the Sailing Editor for Wandering Educators