There are some places in the world that are almost synonymous with film. Of course the biggest one is Hollywood, because of the sheer amount of movies they’ve produced. But, other places have become immortal by the amount of films that have been shot there; by the sheer number of iconic scenes and actors that have passed through them over the years. Travelling to them is not only a holiday- the actual trip becomes a piece of film memorabilia for the cinema buffs among us.
The Caledonian Canal in Scotland is one of these places. Navigating through its waters is a mystical and historical experience, full of notable landmarks and film history. The most obvious landmark is the legendary Loch Ness. Its very existence it’s a piece of folklore, as the legend of “Nessie” has become part of the collective subconscious around the world; mentioned in films like Ghostbusters, Lassie and Napoleon Dynamite. Traveling through its waters becomes a transcendent experience that lets you in on the legends and myths contained within.
Of course, you can’t talk about the Caledonian Canal without mentioning the 1986 Christopher Lambert classic “Highlander”. The entire film was shot along its waters. If you are a fan of the film (of which there is only one because most people would agree that it’s better to pretend the sequels don’t exist!) the entire trip becomes a visit to a film set. The reason this location was chosen becomes clear early on in the trip- its waters are peaceful yet dramatic, creating a perfect setting for an epic adventure, whether it’s Connor MacLeod’s or yours.
It’s also really hard to talk about UK film without mentioning Ian Fleming’s greatest creation: James Bond. 007’s adventure in “The World Is Not Enough” was on the canal as well, and you can almost feel the mystery and intrigue as you cruise along, bringing back memories of M’s disappearance and reminding you of the incredibly silly name “Christmas Jones”.
Speaking of British film icons, the Harry Potter series also has a relationship with the Caledonian Canal. The Hogwarts Express passed through it in all the movies in the franchise, or as the locals know it, the West Highland Railway line.
One of the best parts about the Caledonian Canal is that visiting it can be very affordable. Companies like Lateboat offer accessible deals on Scotland canal boat cruisesand customisable packages that visit exactly the landmarks you want to see, and help you craft your very own unforgettable experience.
Visit the canal, take loads of photos and take with you a piece of movie history.