Duration & Dates
7 days (6 nights)
31st March to 6th April 24
19th to 25th May 24
Arrival & Departure
Forsinard Lodge arrival after 4pm, departure before 10am
Colourful spring subjects
5 full days of creative photography
Fully inclusive accommodation
Expert guidance and tuition
Small group for individual attention
Un-discovered wild locations
Members price £1,349
3 people per tour per 1 guide
Initial transport to lodge
Spring can be a huge time of change in the landscape of northern Scotland, providing rich and varied subjects for our cameras. It is often said that you can experience ‘4 seasons in a day’ in this part of the world and this is especially true of springtime in the far north!
During the week we will use our days to explore both the surrounding ‘Flow Country’ of hills, moorland and gentle straths, as well as the dramatic and wild coastline. Within these excursions we are very likely to flex through a broad spectrum of subjects including landscapes, close-ups, nature, architecture, pictorial reportage and possibly even portraits. As we explore the world around us, the tutors will encourage everyone to try out more creative techniques such as monochrome shooting, using filters, multiple exposures, intentional camera movement, long exposures/motion blur and low light image capture. Spring still also provides some opportunities for evening shooting, with dramatic sunsets, night skies and even the potential for aurora!
Spring is also a time of nature ‘emerging’ from the grip of winter, so smaller subjects and the blossoming green of new growth can inspire an optimistic and fresh view of the world. Throughout the week we will also flex our itinerary to try and make the most of early and late illumination to help create atmosphere in our pictures, particularly looking for dramatic skies, cloud formations and golden light.
The small team at Wild Arena are all passionate about photography and sharing our love of the Scottish landscape with our guests. Our creative photography tours are designed to make the most of our wild and unspoilt location, to provide the perfect place for digging deeper into the world of making images.
During these special 7-day trips, we will be delighted to welcome a small group of guests to northern Scotland and spend some quality time, immersed in the process of searching for, finding, creating and carefully editing images that reveal the stories we want to tell. These trips are not genre specific, but instead aim to access whatever subjects we find to provide inspiration for great pictures. The guides and tutors are all extremely experienced and will encourage everyone with locations, ideas, techniques and settings to maximise the opportunity for learning.
What can you expect during your week with us? Well, we hope to welcome everyone as a friend and help develop their personal photography on a very individual level. Very small groups and all-inclusive accommodation should allow all our guests to relax into the week and really feel they have provided their hobby with the time it needs to grow and develop!
Our goal is always to immerse ourselves in the fascinating process of hunting for ‘visual treasures’ in our surroundings. There can be few things as satisfying as returning home, knowing you have unlocked a hidden story through ‘capturing’ the moment in a well crafted picture.
Key subjects for the week should include:
Key subjects for the week should include:
Landscapes: There are a huge range of landscapes accessible in the area with natural features like dramatic beaches, waterfalls and hills, as possible targets. The region is also rich in characterful man-made structures, including Iron Age Brochs and more recent croft houses and cottages with weathered exteriors, rich in colour and texture.
Nature: We will be looking out for signs of spring, with new growth in the vegetation, the emergence of reptiles and amphibians, and the early activity of birds. Macro is likely to be a genre of interest, but we will also be on the lookout for bigger wildlife too, with Red Deer and raptors.
Above all else, we want our welcoming, small group trips to be relaxing and creatively stimulating, providing the perfect combination of rest and enjoyment of the wonderful pastime of photography!
Our base for this trip is the beautifully situated location of Forsinard Lodge in northern Scotland. The building was originally built in 1870 by the Duke of Sutherland as a hunting & fishing lodge at the head of Strath Halladale. The river here was highly regarded for Salmon fishing and the surrounding area boasted Red Deer Stags of unusual size. The lodge has spent most of its life as part of a much wider estate, but now provides Wild Arena a perfect base for photography in this beautiful and relatively undiscovered part of the highlands.
We also boast some amazing neighbours including our good friends at the RSPB reserve at Forsinard, who manage a vast area of diverse upland surrounding the lodge.
Our guests are accommodated in recently refurbished bedrooms within the Forsinard Lodge building. Each room has its own new, en-suite bathroom and are comfortably furnished for our visitors stay. Guests will also have use of a conservatory lounge where meals can be served, and the group can come together in the evenings.
We pride ourselves on looking after everyone to the best of our ability and Adrienne will ensure guests are kept happy with delicious home cooked food from our kitchen. We also hope that the lodge is the perfect place for relaxed conversation, providing an environment that encourages learning and self-expression – a true ‘home from home’!
(D) Arrival at your base for the week, Forsinard Lodge, in the heart of the wild landscape of northern Scotland. We will bring the group together for a welcome dinner and introduction to the coming week.
(B,L,D) After a relaxed breakfast, we usually start the first day exploring some local locations. We might visit wild landscapes with the interest of abandoned croft buildings, waterfalls and rivers. We will take out a packed lunch and refreshments to make the most of our time and we will return to the lodge for a relaxed group dinner, taking a little time to review the day. Each evening we will check the forecast for clear skies or solar activity, so there is always the chance for some night-time shooting too!
(B,L,D) An earlier breakfast, we will again set out with packed lunch, but this time concentrating on making the most of early morning light. Locations might be varied, giving us a chance to try out fresh ideas & techniques. Again, back to the lodge for dinner and relaxed conversation.
(B,L,D) After a slightly later breakfast, we will make a longer trip out, visiting the higher hills and roads of the central north. This is wild country and there are always good opportunities for dramatic landscapes. Today we will also try and a find good location for shooting as the light fades and as evening turns to night. Again, back to the lodge for dinner and relaxed conversation.
(B,L,D) After breakfast we will again head out with a packed lunch for a full day of exploration on the wild north coast. With harbours, beaches, rocky coves and ruined houses, this is a dramatic area, hopefully generating some great picture opportunities. Again, back to the lodge for dinner and conversation.
(B,L,D) The final day of photography and a chance to cover anything we have missed in the previous 4 days, as there are many options for great subjects and inspiring locations. Back to the lodge for a final evening meal and the chance for the group to review the week of photography and the images we have been able to capture as a group.
(B) After a final breakfast, we will round up the week before guests depart for 10am.
Please note: – The itinerary is provisional and subject to change depending on local conditions. Not all wildlife mentioned can be seen well at all times of the year & some activities mentioned may not always be available.
Meals included are as shown – B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner
Who should attend
Anyone who has a love of photography and the outdoors. Photographic experience level is not an issue with such a small group size, so we are just looking for a willingness to learn and try new ideas!
Wild Arena Tours are not suitable for anyone under the age of 18.
Fitness level: You will need to be able to walk a few miles with your camera bag, over rough terrain. (Please note we do offer ‘Low Intensity’ tours for guests who feel a less demanding itinerary would suit them better).
Camera Knowledge: It is useful if you have a good working knowledge of your camera, but the Wild Arena guide will be on hand to talk through settings, ideas and techniques to make the best of the opportunities.
During this week of photography, we hope to teach you techniques for general, landscape, close-up and nature photography including, the creative use of shutter speeds and apertures, capturing the moment, telling a story, and making the most of the light.
'Whilst the journey to get there from Cheshire was long I can honestly say it was well worth it. David and Janet excelled at gently pushing me out of my comfort zone including my fear of heights!! Whilst I like taking photos of wildlife I now find myself delving into the world of landscapes, beaches and even derelict buildings. Accommodation was fantastic and loved there was no tv. Good food courtesy of Adrienne. Highland cows have now been ticked off my photography bucket list.'
Denise March 23