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Pack the Suitcase & Go

Roadtrip to John O’Groats – The Most Northern Town in Mainland UK

When we were in Scotland last month, Neal wanted to make the trip all the way to John O Groats – which is the most northern point of mainland UK.  And why?  Just to say we had.  

(In my book, that’s a good enough reason for a little roadtrip into the Scottish highlands, right?) 

When we left our campground near Elgin, the clouds were low but after about an hour of driving, the clouds cleared and it became incredibly beautiful.   

The drive up to John O Groats, as you would imagine, was pretty remote with small seaside towns along the way, but be ready with your own snacks because many of the cafes and shops will close early in the day (even in the summer).

As we were driving, I found that the combination of the cliffs and sea, it reminded us of the landscape we saw when we visited Iceland.  The views were dramatic and rugged, having me respect anyone who calls this isolated part of Scotland ‘home’. 

After about 2 ½ hours of driving, we finally arrived at the small town of John O Groats, comprising of a few restaurants, a pub and small shops.  You could tell that this was a very seasonal town, shutting down for the off-season when the tourists are not around. 

For context, when we were at John O Groats, the Shetland Island were only 125 miles away, we could see Orkney Islands, North Wales was over 500 miles away and London was 625 miles away. (Whew!)  We really were in the most northern corner of the UK – and the views were pretty special. 


After we walked around the town (which took all of 15 minutes), took photos and then had a pizza lunch at one of the local cafes – we headed back to Elgin.  As we drove we decided to make a few stops, including at a remote beach and a gorgeous seaside harbour with bright colourful boats perfect for snapping a photo or two. 

Our last stop of our day out, was at the Glenmorangie distillery, where I popped into to buy a special bottle of whisky marking our trip to Scotland.  (Always a good souvenir – right?) 

I’ll admit it, the roadtrip to John O’Groats was a bit random – but really memorable.

Tell me, what was a random roadtrip you did just because you could?


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