Glencoe National Nature Reserve
A82, Ballachulish PH49 4HY, UK
Photo courtesy of National Trust for Scotland
Glencoe National Nature ReserveUndoubtedly one of the most dramatic valleys in Scotland, Glencoe is also a place of historic tragedy. It was here, in 1692, that troops loyal to the monarchs William and Mary slaughtered members of a local clan while they slept for not declaring their fealty. Haunting stories aside, Glencoe’s natural beauty delights visitors. The valley features towering mountains formed by violent volcanic eruptions, then sculpted by massive glaciers, and rolling hills covered in emerald-green grass. There are a variety of hiking trails, but all entail a bit of expertise, so be careful. At the western end of the glacial glen is an excellent visitor center where you can learn about the valley, its wildlife, and the families that lived here (including the legendary Celtic hero Fingal and his poet son Ossian).