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Scottish Highlands Weather

Date published: 23/11/2023

What to expect from the weather in the Scottish Highlands

The Highlands is a place of magnificent scenery and drama. And no matter the season, the Scottish Highlands weather brings an added element of natural beauty. Being so far north, the Highlands get a dramatic range of weather you may not experience elsewhere. Serving only to enhance the drama and the beauty! We’ve created a list of what to expect for each season so you can pick the best time to visit us here at Eagle Brae, our log cabin village in the Highlands.

Sunrise over a waterfall in Glencoe

Spring weather in the Scottish Highlands

The Scottish Highlands is a great place to visit in the spring. The weather is lightly sunny, with mild temperatures of between 9 to 14 degrees Celsius. You’ll find a mixture of dry and wet days, with the wet days creating dramatic skyscapes that will definitely be worth putting on your Instagram. And the dry, clear days give you incredible views of the Highland scenery.

The daylight hours are slightly shorter than in the summer. And there’s plenty that you can do both indoors and outdoors. Your days can be as full or empty as you like. Either way, your trip to the Scottish Highlands is one you’ll never forget.

The Scottish Highlands are known for their flora and fauna. And many visitors come to see Scotland’s wildlife. If you’re visiting in the spring and wondering what you might be able to spot while you’re here, keep your eyes peeled for animals like badgers and otters. You can also see sea-dwelling creatures. You might see bottle-nosed dolphins, the common seal and the harbour porpoise. If you’re lucky, you’ll see red squirrels. As well as red deer and roe deer. And if you look up, there’s the chance you’ll spot an eagle, a buzzard, or even a falcon. Bluebells and Scottish primroses love the Scottish soil and are plentiful.

Purple Scottish primrose nestled in some rocks

Summer weather in the Scottish Highlands

The summer months in the Scottish Highlands are the longest days of the year. You’ll have the most amount of daylight hours to enjoy. As well as an average temperature of 18 degrees Celsius with pleasant, warm weather. Some days may be a touch overcast, but you’ll still benefit from the summer warmth. There’s plenty to do in the Scottish Highlands in the summer. From Inverness to Glencoe, a summer in the Scottish Highlands will be unforgettable.

Just as in spring, the summer is a great month to search for wildlife in the Scottish Highlands. You will be able to find animals like the badger, the otter, pine marten, mountain hares, red squirrels, and red deer. For birdwatchers, there are eagles, ospreys, merlins, barn owls, and even puffins! You’ll be graced with cross-leaved heather and bell heather, too.

Eagle Brae cabin with mountains in the background
Cabin at Eagle Brae with the mountains in the distance

Autumn weather in the Scottish Highlands

When the trees change colour, the Scottish Highlands become even more stunning. The weather gets slightly cooler, and the days will gradually shorten, revealing the incredible star-studded night sky across the Highlands. You also get the added benefit of autumn being a quieter season. Meaning that the tourist spots and must-see attractions will be much more accessible. You’ll still have some longer days, especially in the early days of September, and a temperature of between 9 and 16 degrees Celsius.

There is slightly less wildlife around during the autumn, but you can still see Atlantic salmon, pink-footed geese, black grouse, red deer, otters, pine martens, porpoises, seals, dolphins and badgers. There’ll also be gnarled old Scots pine, pine saplings and silver birch growing across the countryside for you to enjoy. If you are really lucky, you may witness a deer rut.

Red Deer on Eagle Brae cabin decking

Winter weather in the Scottish Highlands

Winter in the Scottish Highlands brings a unique blend of charm and beauty, unveiling a landscape draped in tranquillity and occasional snowfall. With an average temperature of around 6 degrees Celsius, the air is refreshingly crisp, inviting locals and visitors to embrace the cold season.

Despite the shorter days, the Highland winter offers so much opportunity for exploring. With hiking trails meandering through the scenery. The occasional dusting of snow adds a touch of magic, turning the Highlands into a winter wonderland. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, an avid hiker, or simply seeking a quieter escape to winter landscapes, the Scottish Highlands in winter promises an unforgettable experience.

Winter unveils a quieter side to the Scottish Highlands. But don’t worry. Those visiting in winter will still be able to see plenty of wildlife. Keen observers can catch glimpses of various birds including kites, sparrowhawks, barn owls and crested tits. The winter months also offer a unique opportunity to spot the peregrine falcons and golden eagles soaring through the crisp air. The woodlands and meadows, though covered in a blanket of snow still host the resilient roe deers, red squirrels and hares. Venturing to the loch edge, you might be fortunate enough to witness the playful antics of otters, the nocturnal wanderings of badgers and the appearances of seals and porpoises. 

If you’re into wildlife and love seeing nature’s beauty in a different light, the Scottish Highlands in winter is the perfect place to be.  The Scottish Highlands in winter is a must-visit for anyone looking for a special trip!

red deer in the snow in the scottish highlands

You can check the latest weather forecast for Eagle Brae here. Whatever time of year you choose to visit us, the Highlands has plenty to offer. A break with us will make you fall as in love with the Highlands as we are!

otter perched on a log

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