Explore the area

What’s your perfect holiday day?

  • Letting nature work its healing magic with a walk in the woods, or seeing the sunset on the beach?
  • Or do the kids want adventures of discovery in ruined castles?
  • Would you like a sea trip to spot puffins or orcas?
  • Or maybe you want to take a look round an actual royal castle?

This page is a taster of what to do while you are with us – see our Things to Do page in our online guest guide for more.

As you can see from the Caithness Broch Project map below – Caithness is full of adventures!

Many thanks to The Broch Project for permission to use their “Fantasy” map of Historic Caithness.
Many thanks to The Broch Project for permission to use their map of Historic Caithness – Click on the image to get your own

Summer events

Every weekend in the summer has an event like the County Show or Highland Games. Ask about what’s on when you visit. 

Midsummer wildflowers in Caithness
Midsummer wildflowers in Caithness

Sea-trips, and driving or walking tours

Take the ferry to Orkney for a day trip at any time of the year.

A sea trip round our cliffs is spectacular at any time, you may see seals or orca at any time of year, and puffins and other sea-birds in the summer. 

Or if you like all the inside information on what you are seeing, book a day out Robbie Mac, Above and Beyond, North Coast Explorer or Seawolf Wildlife Tours.

Noss Head Lighthouse and Caithness Seacoast Rib
Noss Head Lighthouse and Caithness Seacoast Rib – click on image to book

Walks and wildlife

Caithness provides a lot of gentle and medium walks which are perfect for children and dogs, looking for seaglass on the beaches, or walking along g beaches and cliff-tops, or visiting neolithic ruins, or exploring our hidden straths and glens. You may spot otters, rare birds, or seals (please keep your distance if there are pups with the seals).

Broch Dun Dornaigil, Sutherland
Broch Dun Dornaigil, Sutherland

Adventures with kids

If your kids love animals, we have petting farms, alpacas and reindeer! There’s a fairy glen for younger children, and water-sports lessons for teenagers. We even provide kites for taking to the beach!

Flying a kite on Reiss Beach
Flying a kite on Reiss Beach

Histories and mysteries

You could spend your entire stay exploring our castles, including ruins like Castle Sinclair Girnigo or ones still very much in use like the Queen Mother’s Castle of Mey, and Dunrobin Castle down the coast.

Find out about crofters’ lives at Mary Ann’s Cottage, Laidhay Croft, and Badbea Clearance Village.

Or maybe take some trips further back in time, to our Brochs and other sites from the Neolithic to the Iron Age.

Castle Sinclair Girnigoe is less than a mile from the Lighthouse
You can see the ruins of Castle Sinclair Girnigoe from the kitchen

Crafts and shopping

For something unique to Caithness, created by our talented artists and makers, visit Ortak at John o’Groats, The Coo’s Tail and Eye Candy in Thurso, and Puldagon Farm Shop outside Wick. If you love learning new skills, try a landscape painting class

For live music, check out the Sutherland Sessions and Lyth Arts.

Fabric picture of Orcas at Noss Head
“Orcas at Noss Head” by Little Indies House


With five local distillery tours, you are spoilt for choice whether your tipple is whisky, rum or gin.

If it’s dreich outside…

Visit the Noss Head lens in the Museum in Wick, or the Vintage Cars at Halkirk, and find out more about retro-nuclear-tech at the North Coast Visitors’ Centre in Thurso.

See the fresnel lens from Noss Head Lighthouse in the WIck Heritage Museum
See the Noss Head lens in the Wick Heritage Museum

Aurora-watching and the Northern Lights

We are often asked “can we see the Northern Lights?” – The answer is “yes” and “no”. There are two or three big shows each winter, but they can look dull and grey to the naked eye, and you cannot book them ahead! Read my blog Photographing the Northern Lights with your Mobile Phone for more information. 

The lighthouse itself

Noss Head is still a working lighthouse, so we can’t let you up because we don’t have the keys!

Eating out

It pays to plan ahead a little, especially if you visit us out of season. Use Trip Advisor to check out cafes and restaurants.

Getting the most from your stay and planning ahead

We know some of these businesses have plans to re-open this summer – check their websites for details.

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