The Heart 200 Book: A Companion Guide to Scotland's Most Exciting Road Trip (2020)
Published March 2020
The Heart 200 route is a unique road trip around some of the most beautiful locations in Central Scotland. Two hundred miles running through Stirlingshire and Perthshire, Heart 200 takes its visitors on an epic adventure to suit every taste - whether you are an outdoors enthusiast, an aficionado of history, or simply looking to enjoy yourself in some of the most stunning natural surroundings in the world.
Written with the full approval and co-operation of the Heart 200 team, The Heart 200 Book is a guide to the very best that the route has to offer. You will discover the history and culture of this remarkable region, from antiquity to the modern day, with more than a few unexpected insights along the way. Over the millennia, this amazing land has made its mark on world history thanks to famous figures ranging from the ancient Celts and the Roman Empire to King Robert the Bruce and Mary Queen of Scots, by way of Bonnie Prince Charlie, Rob Roy MacGregor, Robert Burns, Sir Walter Scott, Queen Victoria and even The Beatles!
So whether you're travelling by foot, car, motorhome or bike, get ready for a journey like no other as the Heart 200 invites you to encounter standing stones and steamships, castles and chocolatiers, watersports and whisky distilleries... and surprising secrets aplenty! Illustrated with full-colour photography and complete with Internet hyperlinks to accompany the attractions, The Heart 200 Book will introduce you to some of the most remarkable places in all of Scotland and encourage you to experience each and every one for yourself. It really will be a tour that you’ll never forget.
The Heart 200 Book explores each of the locations along the Heart 200 route, inculding Stirling, Doune, Deanston, Callander, Kilmahog, Aberfoyle, Trossachs Pier, Strathyre, Lochearnhead, Killin, Kenmore, Aberfeldy, Fortingall, Kinloch Rannoch, Tummel Bridge, Bruar, Blair Atholl, Killiecrankie, Pitlochry, Ballinluig, Grandtully, Dunkeld, Birnam, Blairgowrie, Stanley, Scone Palace, Perth, Kinross, Glendevon, Gleneagles, Auchterarder, Dunning, Muthill, Crieff, Comrie, Braco, Dunblane and Bridge of Allan.
The Inside Story:
As anyone who knows me will attest, I really love the area where I live and work. And really, what's not to like? With incredible scenery, fantastic communities, and culture and history stretching back over the millennia, Stirlingshire and Perthshire are truly amazing places to experience. The Heart 200 Book was written in collaboration with my sister and co-director Julie Christie, with the aim of bringing the region alive for visitors and anyone who has an interest in Scotland's heritage.
While it is true that cities such as Stirling and Perth hold many examples of Scotland's ancient heritage, what impressed Julie and myself just as much was the thoroughly modern mindset that we encountered along the route; there were people who were dedicated to bringing the past to life in the present day, some tremendous independent businesses, and many outdoor activities on land, on water and even in the air. We very quickly realised that the Heart 200 route really did offer something for everyone.
Exploring the Heart 200 isn't just for visitors; when researching the book, we discovered so many incredible places that we knew nothing about, but which we found to be really deserving of anyone's time and attention. So even if you live locally, it's well worthwhile taking the time to visit some of the fantastic things that are right on our doorstep. The route is organised such that you can travel it in sections, in reverse order, or even meander along some of the numerous sub-routes. There is so much flexibility, you really can tailor your experience to suit your own preferences; it's entirely up to you.