AT first glance, the long finger of land jutting out into the sea at Chanonry Point is nothing remarkable. There’s a pebbled beach that, on a clear day, gives decent views across the Moray Firth towards the battlements of Fort George.

Yet, this little corner is special: it is a great spot for dolphin watching. Scotland’s east coast is home to around 200 bottlenose dolphins, with the area off Chanonry Point, between Fortrose and Rosemarkie on the Black Isle, one of their favoured haunts to fish and play in the strong currents.

Said to be the largest bottlenose dolphins in the world, measuring up to four metres, their beefy size is partly down to the fact that they have adapted to living in cold waters, with extra layers of blubber keeping them warm.

Most days – rain or shine – a small crowd of people can be seen gathered along the beach with eyes fixed on the leaden waves. The dolphins are known to produce a thrilling show of acrobatics to rival Olympic gymnastics champion Simone Biles as they flip and somersault into the air.

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The pod comes close to shore, particularly during late spring and summer, when there are plenty of salmon to feast on. Porpoises and seals can often be glimpsed, with otters occasional visitors too.

This slender promontory packs in plenty of history, including a 19th-century lighthouse and a links golf course. The latter belongs to the Fortrose and Rosemarkie Golf Club, which lays claim to being 15th oldest recorded club in the world, dating back to 1793.

The lighthouse, meanwhile, was designed by Alan Stevenson (from the famed Stevenson family of engineers) and first lit in 1846. It has been fully automated since 1984 and is now privately owned.

The Brahan Seer monument marks another Chanonry Point legend, relating to a sad and horrifying tale.

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Kenneth Mackenzie, known as Coinneach Odhar in Gaelic, lived during the 17th century and according to folklore was able to predict the future. A memorial stone stands where he was burned to death in a barrel of tar, accused of witchcraft.

What to read: Moray Firth Dolphins by Tim Stenton (Bassman Books, £9.99) contains more than 120 photographs of these fascinating creatures.

Where to eat: The Fortrose Cafe, 67 High Street, Fortrose, is a gem. If it’s a dreich day, a bowl of homemade soup and a freshly baked scone are just the ticket. Call 01381 620638 or visit