This page is part of the South East Sutherland and North East Ross-shire Area Guide, provided by Balvaig Cottage Bed and Breakfast.

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The Dornoch Firth

Although a designated National Scenic Area, the Dornoch Firth is one of the least well known beauty spots in Scotland. This however makes it a very quiet area, and Sutherland is often known as the "quiet county".

It is hard to do justice to the area photographically as you cannot capture with a camera the enchanted feel as you drive along the Dornoch Firth on the south side from Tain to Ardgay via Edderton and Kincardine, or on the north side from Dornoch and Clashmore to Bonar Bridge via Spinningdale. It really is quite magical as you get glimpses of the water between the trees and expansive views across the green fields.

The Dornoch Firth is traversed by a fine road bridge which replaced the old Meikle Ferry. There are fine viewpoints at the north side where the old jetty for the ferry is, and from Newton Point, between Clashmore and Spinningdale. Both places are well worth the short detour from the main road and provide great opportunities for fine photography.

The Struie Road on the north side of the Firth provides one of the finest viewpoints from the road anywhere in Scotland where it overlooks the Dornoch Firth, though this route needs to be driven with extra caution and is not recommended during the winter.

The Dornoch Firth divides into two main sections separated by fairly narrow straits and a bend northwestwards:

  • the Outer Dornoch Firth which incorporates Dornoch and Portmahomack at the mouth, and Tain, Edderton and the main A9 road bridge slightly further inland. There is also a fairly narrow strait and slight bend visible clearly from Newton Point.
  • the Inner Dornoch Firth which you enter near the Struie Road junction on the south side, or between Spinningdale and St Demham's Church at Creich on the north side, and which culminates at Ardgay and Bonar Bridge respectively. At Bonar Bridge it "becomes" the Kyle of Sutherland.

The railway line from Inverness to Wick and Thurso makes its way along the south side of the Dornoch Firth, and the views from the train are very beautiful. At one point the railway goes across a section of the water on a causeway.

Culrain, where we are located, is about 5 miles to the west of Bonar Bridge, which is at the head of the Dornoch Firth.


Dornoch Firth from between Bonar Bridge and Spinningdale

Dornoch Firth from between Bonar Bridge and Spinningdale

Dornoch Firth from the Struie Road Junction

Dornoch Firth from the Struie Road Junction

Dornoch Firth from above Kincardine

Dornoch Firth from above Kincardine

Dornoch Firth from Bonar Bridge

Dornoch Firth from Bonar Bridge

 

 

Dornoch Firth from Meikle Ferry North. More Pictures >>

Dornoch Firth
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Pictish Trail | Shandwick Stone | Edderton Stones | Golf | Sandy Beaches | Cycling |
Culrain Walks | Culrain Burn Walk | Carbisdale Woods Walk | Balblair Woods Walk
Gearrchoille Woodland Walk | Kincardine Burn Walk | Badvoon Forest Walk | Raven's Rock Gorge Walk | Black Rock Gorge Walk
Glen Alladale Walk | Gleann Mor Walk | Glencalvie Walk | Strath Cuilleannach Walk | Glen Einig Walk
Loch Migdale Walk | Achue Walk | Tain Hill Walk | Scotsburn Walk | Fyrish Walk | Strath Rusdale
Carron Falls | Eas Carron Falls | Cassley Falls | Shin Falls | Allt Loch Ruagaidh Falls | Oykel Falls | Enarg Falls
Struie Road | Oykel Bridge | Glen Oykel | Oykel to Ledmore | Meikle Ferry | Loch Fleet NNR | Seals & Dolphins
Loch Brora | Loch Shin | Loch a'Ghriama | Loch Morie | Glen Oykel | Amat Forest Area