Photography Adventures in Scotland & Beyond


The North West Highlands – Northern Exposure Scotland May 2023



Wild Light – Northern Exposure  22nd – 27th May 2023 6 days –
Min 2 participants £1950.00 p/p or 3-4 participants £1795.00 p/p 
(deposit £200.00) 2  places left 

The of the far North West Highlands  feature some of the most dramatic mountains and finest beaches in the whole of the United Kingdom.

Stac Polly photography workshop

Destination summary

You’ll have 6 days to explore, photograph and get exposed to some of the remotest, emptiest and wildest parts of the Atlantic and North Sea coasts as we travel over the top of the UK mainland.   From Inverness up towards Durness and Cape Wrath , across the top to John O’ Groats in Caithness and back through east Sutherland back down to Inverness.

Inverpolly and Assynt

The Highlands north of Ullapool have been described as Scotland for the connoisseur. One of Scotland’s best loved peaks Stac Pollaidh,  sits proudly above the rocky loch strewn landscapes, hemmed in by other classic peaks.  Wide open Achnahaird beach offers a wealth of beautiful seascape compositions  sitting  almost  at the tip of the Coigach peninsula. You’ll have a full day to explore these truly amazing landscapes, capturing a variety of scenes.

Loch Eriboll NC500

Sandwood Bay & Oldshoremore Beach

A highlight of the The North West Highlands is  Sandwood Bay.  Remote and wild and with its famous sea stack Am Buachaille, it’s one of the most hauntingly beautiful places in Scotland. It’s also said to be the finest beach in Sutherland if not Britain. We’ll be hoping for some wild sunsets to complement this wild and evocative part of the Highlands.

Sandwood bay North West Highlands

Handa Island

Handa Island is home to a colony of Puffins and other sea birds we’ll take a short boat trip over to the island to explore its coastline and  beaches on foot, while catching sight of the birdlife and puffins that nest on the Island.

The Northern Beaches & Kyles

The remote Highland villages of Durness and Talmine provide a quiet setting to relax and explore before we photograph a duo of  stunning beaches; Sango and Rispond. Further east beautiful Sea Loch, Loch Eriboll’s shores are lapped by the crystal clear waters of the Atlantic Ocean. Views from its eastern shore reveal dramatic scenes back towards the peaks of Cranstackie and Foinaven.

Back at sea level he Kyle’s of Durness and Tongue make for striking abstracts at low tide as we  make our way east.

North West Highlands

Ben Loyal and Ben Hope

We’ll have the opportunity to photograph two of the regions favourite peaks in Ben Hope and Queen of the Highlands Ben Loyal that domiante the north coast’s landscape.

North West Highlands

Caithness and East Sutherland

Scotland’s most northerly point is Dunnet Head  and it’s Lighthouse  offers great views to Orkney and the sea birds nesting in the adjacent cliffs. From our comfortable base in Castletown you’ll also  explore the village og Johh O’ Groats and  nearby cliff tops that offer great views out over the Duncansby Sea Stacks.

South of the former  Herring boomtown town of Wick are the castle ruins of Girnigoe that sits on the cliff tops along with its adjacent seastack and we’ll take our time to explore and photograph both.

On our final day we’ll make our way south to the old Whaligoe steps that desend to an ancient harbour and  explore the quiet beach  scenes around Berriedale after a great lunch at the River bothy Cafe. Will then complete our route Inverness  passing by my ancestral home of Loth high above the east Sutherland coast.

North west Highlands

Extra information

Start time 10:00 pick up Inverness

End time 17:00 drop off Inverness

Getting there  Inverness is serviced by bus and rail  from Edinburgh or Glasgow (3-4 hrs) or by air from major UK airports plus Dublin and Amsterdam airports

Accommodation Lovat Arms Hotel,  Beauly 1 night –  The Old School House Inshegra, Sutherland – 2 nights Castletown Hotel– 2 nights. All single occupancy rooms. * subject to change depending on Covid self catering restrictions.

Meals – packed lunches or cafes along the way. Dinner at local restaurants /pubs as appropriate to our schedule.

Essential equipment camera, lenses (wide and telephoto up to 400-600mm if you have them) and good quality solid tripod.

Non essential but recommended Polariser, neutral density graduated and straight neutral density filters would be useful. .A Laptop with image editing software is also useful although not essential. Good quality waterproof camera bag/back pack.

What to expect

This photo adventure includes an initial practical tutorial on basic shooting skills, use of camera gear and equipment on location on the first day.  This includes camera workflow, shooting in manual mode and reading histograms.
A photo adventure’s  main objective is guiding you to the best locations at the right time with suggestions on types of shot, general settings and composition advice. Participants should be familiar in the use of their cameras to get the best out of the locations, however help is always on hand  and advice freely given.
Walking – A few walks and hikes up to around 90 mins each way  will be part of the itinerary. The terrain can be boggy and rocky in places.

Participants will be invited to share 6 of their  final images  with Glen and their fellow participants for comment after the trip via a secure online link.

The Highland’s reliably fickle weather can be a feature of Scotland and her dramatic and romantic landscapes. Conditions can be glorious at times but it’s not unusual to turn cool and rainy at any time of year. This can and often does add to the dramatic nature of light and land. It’s important that you have adequate and good quality outdoor clothing ( jackets and over trousers) including waterproof hiking boots that are waterproof. 

Locations and fitness.
Not all locations will be by the roadside, some locations are easy to reach, some require a little effort, walking sometimes on muddy and boggy surfaces. This can involve  short hill walks, walks across rocky, uneven terrain and slippy surfaces. Walking times can be up to one hour – one way, however  participation is optional at every location.

All ages above 18 years are welcome but a reasonable level of fitness and mobility is required, regardless of age in order to fully participate and appreciate a Lightstalker’s photo adventure or workshop.  If you have any doubts of your suitability for a specific trip please contact Glen directly.