Jo took me to visit Loch an Eilein, in the Rothiemurchus estate, during one of my first trips to Scotland way back in 2005. I love pine forests and, in particular, Scots pines, so I was in my element there. The walk around the loch is an easy one, ranging 4-5 miles over pretty unchallenging terrain, and offers plenty of picturesque spots in which to enjoy the views across the water to the nearby Cairngorm mountains. The ruined castle on the eponymous island – Loch an Eilein means “Lake of the Island” in Gaelic – is particularly photogenic.

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