Tips For Driving The Noth Coast 500 Scotlands Route 66

NC500 speed limitDrive too many hours at once and you will be in danger of missing the sights along the way and only make yourself tired. Try to aim at driving not more than 5 hours a day. always allow for the time you will be stopping to fuel up, eat and just have of coffee. Remember that the North Coast 500 is not a motorway, so you will go slower. It's not a race.

Follow our simple tips to help you along the way as you travel around this amazing coastal route around the Scottish highland's

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The North Coast and the whole region of the Scottish highlands is very easy to get to regardless of where you are travelling from. The area is extremely well serviced with good rail and road links, notably the famous and wonderfully scenic West Highland Line, and Aberdeen and Inverness airports are 100 and 5 miles respectively from Inverness. A lot of people also fly into Prestwick Airport which is about 45 minutes south of Glasgow by road, or fast regular rail link.

Once in the area, North Coast 500 car hire, NC500bike hire and bus services are well established to offer you local service. For your assistance in planning a trip to Inverness & The Scottish Highland's, we have provided travel information and links to help you prepare your trip. Check out our useful links page for details of transportation options and other useful North Coast 500 information.

Locally in this area, there are taxi services in Inverness who will pick you up from any Scottish airport or railway station and they also provide Highland tours. You can compare flights to the area and then make arrangements to rent a carfrom any Scottish airport, or consider renting from a local garage here in Fort William, and this can be collected from Inverness Railway station or delivered to your hotel.

Petrol and diesel & Electric Vehicle charging points are now available in most larger towns, but always be aware of rural filling stations as they may not be open, depending on the time of year and how they are feeling that day. (as well as breakdown and repairs/servicing garages) are available 24 hours from Inverness and surrounding areas.

North Coast 500 Speed Limits

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What are the North Coast 500 Speed Limits?

nc500 mph kmhIf you are planning on zooming around the NC500 like a bad thing then maybe you should realise a few things first about the speed limits on this iconic coastal route around the scottish highlands. firstly there are no motorways in the highland's and very few sections of dual carriageway, thus the whole route is nmade up of single carriageway and single track roads. The national speed limit on single carriage roads is 60mph for cars & motorcycles 50mph for Motorhomes (the average free flow speed around the route is 48mph), though there may be few occasions that you will be safe to drive at this speed. The reality is, the north coast 500 has become such a popular route in peak season that congestion has become a sad reality in such a rural setting. with sports cars, motorhomes, cyclists, walkers, hikers, campervans, daytrippers, sightseers, roadtrippers, truckers & van drivers not to mention the local people just trying to commute. (the Isle Of Skye was closed to Motorhomes for a period in 2019 due to the congestion on the island). If you are planning this nc500 route in 2020 and you do find yourself caught up in traffic don't be a fanny, remember you are part of the problem and part of the solution. Courtesy patience & manners are a must on this road so drive correctly for the conditions. You don't want to end up In Fanny Bay! Do You?

Driving On North Coast 500

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Driving On North Coast 500 Roads

Dont Beep The SheepWhile driving on the North Coast 500 always take extra care while driving on single track and narrow roads and always reduce your speed at approaches to bends, which can be sharper than they appear, also at junctions and turnings, which may be partially hidden. Dont Beep The Sheep Either !!!

North Coast 500 Driving Tips

Some roads in the Scottish Highlands and islands are single-track roads. A single-track road or one-lane road is a road that permits two-way travel but is not wide enough in most places to allow vehicles to pass one another. To overcome this problem, many single-track roads, especially those officially designated as such, are provided with passing places. Always take extra care on country roads while on The North Coast 500 and reduce your speed at approaches to bends, which can be sharper than they appear, and at minor junctions and turnings, which may be partially hidden. Be prepared for pedestrians, horse riders, and cyclists walking or riding in the road. You should also reduce your speed where country roads enter villages.
Overnight Parking is generally allowed on the North Coast 500 but there is exceptions to this. Any restrictions enforced will be limited to those few instances where the impact of overnight parking has a significant impact on the local community. This will be confined to village and town centres, and potentially certain "destination lay-bys" in the open countryside which serves as car parks for all types of visitors.
Live Road status updates can be found on Traffic Scotland, It is always a good idea to check this before setting off as alternative routes are few and far between on the north coast 500.

North Coast 500 Roadtrip News

  • Driving On North Coast 500

    Driving On North Coast 500
    Driving On North Coast 500

    Driving On North Coast 500 Roads

    While driving on the North Coast 500 always take extra care while driving on single track and narrow roads and always reduce your speed at approaches to bends, which can be sharper than they appear, also at junctions and turnings, which may be partially hidden. Dont Beep The Sheep Either !!!

    Read more ...  
  • New tariff at electric vehicle (EV) charging points On The North Coast 500

    The Highland Council has decided to introduce a tariff at EV charge points, starting on 1 June 2021.

    The new tariff is intended to recover costs associated with the operation and upkeep of the network, transitioning Highland Council to a more sustainable operating model.

    The number of EVs on the roads has doubled in the last year, therefore the risk in electricity supply will be upwards of those numbers without a tariff in place. The approach taken is fully endorsed by the Electric Vehicle Association Scotland and is designed to enable the Council to support and maintain the service offered, but also encourage best practice amongst users at charge points, facilitating all journeys.

    Read more ...  
  • Scotland’s travel ban set to begin

    Preventing people from travelling in level four lockdown areas comes into force in Scotland on Boxing day.

    The North Coast 500 in Scotland will be in level 4 of Scotland’s coronvirus alert system frommidight on Boxing day 2020.

    It is against the law to travel unless there is a “reasonable excuse” – so how is that defined?


    Read more ...
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