North Coast 500 and Coronavirus – Travel Advice from July 2020
The Scottish Government has recently announced their Route Map to recovery with provisional reopening dates of 3rd July for self-catering accommodation, 6th July for outdoor hospitality and 15th July 2020 for the rest of tourism and accommodation providers to reopen.
If you are planning to visit the North Coast 500 as restrictions ease, please be considerate to the local communities by following the published guidelines and ensuring that you wear face coverings, practice good hand hygiene and adhere to social distancing guidelines whilst supporting local businesses. Full guidance from the Scottish Government for retail, tourism and hospitality customers can be found here.
We would ask everyone who is considering future day trips and overnight stays to please plan ahead carefully and check opening arrangements with the businesses directly. Don’t forget to check our Tops Tips for important Road Safety and Motorhome, Campervan & Caravan advice before you set off.
- Maintain physical distancing at all times, indoors and outdoors
- Timings of each phase are not confirmed – details will continue to be given daily by the Scottish Government at their briefings
- Some measures within a phase may be introduced at different times
- The measures of previous phases continue to apply, unless said differently
- If cases begin to rise again, restrictions may need to be reintroduced, and we may need to go backwards through the phases
- This route map is a dynamic, living plan so could change on a week to week basis as advice and evidence becomes available
- If you are showing signs of symptoms, DO NOT travel or visit tourism or hospitality services
PHASE 3 – Dates and measures are subject to change
You will be able to:
From 3rd July:
- Travel beyond your local area to enjoy the outdoors, day trips and exercise as distance restriction of 5 miles will be relaxed
- Book self-catering accommodation or visit your second home (without shared facilities)
- Use full services of public transport (be aware that there will be limited capacity)
From 6th July:
- Enjoy outdoor hospitality, including beer gardens
From 10th July:
- People can meet in extended groups outdoors with physical distancing
- Households can meet indoors with up to a maximum of two other households
From 13th July:
- Children and young people can play organised outdoor contact sports
- You can visit shops inside shopping centres
From 15th July:
- Book a stay at any type of holiday accommodation
- Eat out at restaurants and pubs indoors with new hygiene measures
- Go to museums, galleries, cinemas, monuments and libraries with new measures in place, including booking tickets in advance. Please make sure to check with individual providers to check opening times and information before your visit
Please keep up to date with and adhere to the latest advice from the Scottish Government including full details on Scotland’s Route Map for moving out of lockdown.
For the latest updates from Scotland’s national tourist board, please see the VisitScotland website.
VisitScotland’s Outdoor Access Guidelines during recovery phases.
Not all businesses are operating as usual due to the current Coronavirus pandemic. Here is a note of some of the businesses who are planning to reopen in the near future. This list will be updated as information becomes available. Please check individual listings for full details of any restrictions or changes and contact businesses directly for further information and bookings.
Caravan Parks and Campsites
Fortrose Bay Campsite, Fortrose, Black Isle – reopening 15th July. Restrictions apply.
Dornoch Caravan & Camping Park, Dornoch, Sutherland – reopening 4th July. Restrictions apply.
Ceannabeinne Cottage, Rispond, Lairg, Sutherland – reopening 10th July.
Apartment 65B, Thurso, Caithness – reopening 15th July.
The Tall Pines Yurt & Bunkhouse, Helmsdale, Caithness – reopening 20th July.
B&Bs and Guesthouses
Aurora B&B, Murkle, Caithness – taking bookings from 1st August.
Culgower House B&B, Helmsdale, Sutherland – taking bookings from 29th July.
Food & Drink
Carron Restaurant, Strathcarron, Wester Ross – reopening 6th July. Garden and Takeaway Service only.
The Cabin at John O’Groats, John O’Groats, Caithness – reopening 4th July (weekends only) and fully reopening 15th July.
Applecross Smokehouse, Applecross, Wester Ross – reopening 3rd July for online orders only.
Activities & Experiences
Liquid Footprints – operating as usual in accordance with Scottish Government and Industry guidelines.
Attadale Gardens, Strathcarron, Wester Ross – reopening 15th July. Restrictions apply.