Fort Augustus, Scotland
Fort Augustus (pop. 890) at the south end of Loch Ness is a favorite spot for tourists. The fortress which gave the place its name was built in 1715 and it became the headquarters of the English General Wade in 1729. After changing hands a number of times the greater part of it was demolished in 1876. Benedictine monks have since built an abbey and a highly-regarded school on the site.
Great Glen Exhibition
The Great Glen Exhibition documents the military past of the glen, the arrival of the religious orders and also tales of the Loch Ness monster.
The main road (A82) continues towards Inverness along the north bank of Loch Ness, while the B862/B852 follows the south bank, passing close to the magnificent waterfall at Foyers. With pretty woodland lining both sides of the road, the southerly route is probably the more scenic.
Follow the A82 about halfway along Loch Ness and just before the "Monster Exhibition" at Drumnadrochit the remains of Urquhart Castle appear standing on a tongue of land jutting out into the lake. Set against the backdrop of lake and mountain the castle is at the center of many ancient myths. Dating from the 12th century it was once a typical example of a motte and bailey fortification, but in the 14th century stone walls replaced the original wooden structure. In 1509 James IV gave the castle to John Grant of Freuchie, whose family commissioned James Moray to extend the keep. At the end of the 17th century the fortified castle fell victim to a fire.