Kyle Line: Inverness to Kyle of Lochalsh

Travel coast to coast across the Highlands, in the shadows of mountains and forests, beside bright lochs and wide open moors.

The Kyle line draws a wide arc from Inverness to the shores of Loch Alsh, taking in spectacular Highland scenery – and finishing with magnificent views of Skye.

Just outside Inverness lies Dingwall, a pretty market town that’s perfect for a stop off or a connection to the Far North Line. From there, the train takes you past lochs and moors as you travel through the Highlands. Keep an eye out for one of the most distinctive mountain ranges in Scotland, the Torridon Peaks, looming out of the north. On the final stretch of the journey, the train picks its way along the coast south to Loch Alsh.

Journey time

Highlights

Look out for

  • The Torridon Peaks – to the west, just before the stop at Achnashellach Forest
  • Herds of deer – on the downhill route from Loch Luichart to Garve
  • Ben Wyvis – an isolated mountain visible between Muir of Ord and Dingwall

Consider stopping at

  • Plockton for its beautiful bay – the town was used for the BBC series Hamish Macbeth and scenes in The Wicker Man
  • Attadale for Attadale Gardens – for 20 acres of Scottish Highland gardens on Wester Ross

The journey: across the Highlands

The train leaves Inverness to glide along the southern bank of the Beauly Firth, through Dingwall and on to Garve – keep an eye out for Ben Wyvis just after Dingwall, a huge isolated mountain to the north.

From there the line crosses the wild Highland mountainscape between Lochs Luichart and Carron. Look out for the Torridon Peaks on the western side: you can’t miss the great hulk of rock in the distance.

At the other end of Loch Carron you’ll find Plockton. Stop off to explore the pretty town – complete with palm trees – then spot the locations used for BBC series Hamish Macbeth, and The Wicker Man.

And on the last stretch towards Kyle of Lochalsh, the views of Skye are spectacular.

Tickets to Kyle of Lochalsh

Travelling on from the Kyle Line?

  • Catch the bus to Skye from Kyle of Lochalsh for excellent hillwalking
  • Visit Eilean Donan castle, a restored 13th century castle perched on an island at the head of Loch Duich
  • Head to the beautiful, remote Applecross peninsular by bus from Strathcarron station

Images taken through the train window on an iPhone 6

Ways to save...

  • Spirit of Scotland Travel pass: travel across Scotland over 1-2 weeks by train, ferry and coach
  • Highland Rover: explore the North and West Highlands over a week by train, ferry and coach
  • ​Rail & Sail: combine train and ferry travel into one ticket for more convenience and better value
  • Kids Go Free: travel off-peak and up to two children aged 5-15 can travel free with each adult
  • Railcards: see if you could save with a national or regional Railcard