Welcome to Highland Journeys

Hi, I am Nicola Fraser and this is my web site, Highland Journeys.

I would love to show you around the beautiful countryside of Aberdeenshire and Royal Deeside and help you explore some of the world's most magnificent Castles and also visit the world-famous Whisky Distilleries of the North-East of Scotland.

I was born in Inverness, the Capital of the Scottish Highlands. I am a Biologist turned professional Tour Guide and freelance Travel Consultant with a special interest in natural history and highland culture. I have been guiding around Scotland for over 15 years. I love all things Scottish and take great pride in showing fellow travellers a taste of our culture and showing them some of the best places that our amazing country has to offer.

Please check out my award-winning tours available for 2019 and also have a look at what people have said about me and my Tours.

I hope to meet you soon!

Nicola Fraser

New for 2019

Tour 1: “The Royal Tour” from Aberdeen

Highlights include: Royal Deeside, Balmoral Castle & Gardens, Royal Lochnagar Whisky Distillery, Historic Town of Ballater & its Royal Station, River Dee & Beautiful Countryside. 

Let me pick you up from your cruise ship at Aberdeen Harbour, or Hotel in Aberdeen/Aberdeenshire, and head off along the Royal Deeside route to the Queen’s Scottish Holiday Residence, the famous Balmoral Castle. It was built by Prince Albert and Queen Victoria in 1853 and today its magnificent grounds and gardens can be visited by the public, along with the Castle Ballroom and museum in the old stable block. This area of countryside is so beautiful that Queen Victoria called it her “dear paradise in the Highlands”. 

Later we will visit Royal Lochnagar whisky distillery, where we can see how whisky is produced. This is a real gem of a distillery nestled in the hills near Balmoral, producing a lovely, light 12 year old malt whisky.

Then we’ll head to Ballater, a picturesque Victorian town, a favourite of the Queen’s, where we can browse amongst the fascinating shops and cafes, and visit the newly opened Royal Station where Queen Victoria's original carriage is on display. Then we drive along-side the banks of the beautiful River Dee to Aberdeen.

We also have an option of visiting Braemar, a beautiful town in a spectacular location in the Cairngorms National Park (this depends on your time schedule).

Duration of Tour: 8 - 9 hours approx.

Mileage: ~140 miles

Transport: 4x4 vehicle

Private Tour Guide: Nicola Fraser, over 15 years experience of tour guiding

Price: From £75 per person, based on 4 sharing.


Tour 2: “The Dunnottar Castle & Whisky Tour” from Aberdeen

Highlights Include: Dunnottar Castle, Stonehaven, Fettercairn Distillery

Let me pick you up from your accommodation in Aberdeen or Aberdeenshire and head to the lovely coastal town of Stonehaven where we will visit one of Scotland's most striking ruined castles, Dunnottar Castle. Having explored this amazing ruin perched on top of a rock, we will head into Stonehaven for some lunch by the picturesque harbour. Next we drive through the lovely farming landscape, called the Mearns and arrive at Fettercairn Distillery. This is a real gem of a distillery sitting at the foothills of the Grampian Mountains. Fettercairn village itself is also worth exploring on foot. Then we arrive back into Aberdeen.

Duration of Tour: 7 - 8 hours approx.

Mileage: ~ 80 miles

Price: From £60 per person, based on 4 sharing.

Transport: 4x4 vehicle

Private Tour Guide: Nicola Fraser, over 15 years experience of tour guiding.


Tour 3: “The Castle Tour” from Aberdeen

Highlights Include: Crathes Castle & Gardens in Royal Deeside, Banchory Town, Falls of Feugh Wild Salmon Leaping, Castle Fraser & Grounds

Let me pick you up from your cruise ship at Aberdeen Harbour, or Hotel in Aberdeen/Aberdeenshire and head out towards beautiful Royal Deeside for our first stop, Crathes Castle. This castle is simply one of the most superb castles in Scotland, with its pink harled, Disney-esque exterior and remarkably well preserved interior dating back to 1500’s, it’s a must-see!  Its walled gardens are almost as famous as the castle itself and garden lovers will appreciate the sheer variety of plants, shrubs and trees.

Next we will visit the lovely Deeside town of Banchory. During our time spent here we can visit the dramatic Falls of Feugh, where at certain times of the year you can see Atlantic salmon leaping up the waterfalls.  Also, there is an award-winning tea room at the Falls of Feugh.  Then we leave Banchory town and drive along the Deeside route, through the beautiful countryside, to arrive at the impressive Castle Fraser. 

The origins of the castle date back to mid 1400’s, when Thomas Fraser built a 3 storey rectangular tower house, which continues to form the core of the castle today.  It is one of the most impressive tower houses in Scotland – a must-see! Also, there is a tea room based in the old kitchen of the castle, which serves Scottish fare with a French twist, very delicious!

Having spent some time at Castle Fraser and its grounds, it’s time to head back to Aberdeen to catch the ship or arrive at your hotel.

There is an option of visiting an Arts & Crafts Village near Crathes Castle, depending on your time schedule.

Duration of Tour: 7 - 8 hours approx.

Mileage: ~ 90 miles

Price: From £60 per person, based on 4 sharing.

Transport: 4x4 vehicle

Private Tour Guide: Nicola Fraser, over 15 years experience of tour guiding.