10 Places to Take a Canoe Adventure Journey


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Great Glen Canoe Trail, Scotland
Stop in to tour the castle at Loch Ness.
Stop in to tour the castle at Loch Ness.
VisitBritain/Britain on View/Getty Images

We wrap up our worldwide tour with a destination for canoeists who like their outdoor adventure seasoned with a dash of city life and culture. The Great Glen Canoe Trail takes you across the Scottish Highlands from Fort William in the west to Inverness near the northeastern coast. Of the Trail's 60 miles (96 kilometers), 40 miles (64 kilometers) traverse the country's lochs (lakes), including Loch Ness, reputed home of the Loch Ness Monster. The remainder is on connecting canals.

The Highlands are known for their rugged beauty. Broad, tranquil waterways pass through rolling, verdant hills and unkempt fields of wildflowers. Mist-shrouded mountains rise in the distance. For added adventure, bypass the portages and take to the rivers.

The Trail takes about five days to paddle, but you'll want to allow time for other attractions. You might take a day to tour the 1,500-year-old Urquhart Castle that overlooks Loch Ness, for example. Or, get cleaned up for an evening at Inverness' Eden Court. The state-of-the-art theater hosts musical, dance and dramatic performances, and its restaurant serves a gourmet menu with an emphasis on local foods, including lamb, haddock and the legendary Scottish haggis. Given this steamed pudding's esteemed status in Scottish lore, some people consider eating it an adventure in its own right.

Author's Note: 10 Places to Take a Canoe Adventure Journey

Much like planning a real round-the-world trip, trying to pick out just 10 destinations for this list was exhausting. Each one sounds better than the last. And most of them aren't well-known except to the people who live there. It's another reminder that just about every place on Earth has beauty and appeal all its own.

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