Posted June 1, 2009 by Kate Hamman
It's rare to hear about Loch Ness without instantly thinking of its elusive monster, Nessie. And though exploring the lake on a boat cruise is definitely a fun and essential excursion, there are plenty of other reasons to enjoy your trip. While in lovely Loch Ness, you can also practice your step dance at a club known for its music, and then keep a watchful eye on the lake from the comfort of your hotel room.
Jacobite: If you want to search for Nessie from the safety of a boat, Jacobite offers daily tours of the Loch, lasting from one to six hours. Some trips include stops at the historic Urquhart Castle. The one-hour Inspiration Cruise is the shortest and least expensive option; costing £11 (about $18 U.S.; check XE.com for current exchange rates) per adult.
Hootananny: After a long day on the water, you'll need to add a little stomp to your step at Hotananny's. This popular club features traditional Scottish music and contemporary hits every night. Here, you can choose from three individual venues in one place, including rock music at Mad Hatters, a lounge vibe at the Bothy Sofa Bar, and lively ceilidhs at the downstairs Ceilidh Cafe Bar. Entrance is free most evenings, and the pub serves a range of local organic ales and lagers, as well as whiskey.
Craigdarroch House Hotel: For crystal-clear views of Loch Ness, the Craigdarroch House Hotel is the only four-star property with rooms overlooking the water. This country-house hotel in Foyers is run by husband-and-wife team Elanor and Martin, who make your comfort their main priority. They've created an ambiance that takes you back to a different time, with deep wood paneling, antique furnishings, and high molded ceilings. Each room is en suite, and comes with a hospitality sweet tray upon check-in. Rooms start at £80 per person, and include a full Scottish breakfast.
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(Photo: Britian on View)