There’s a reason cinematographers are enamored with Scotland’s mystical landscapes and vibrant history. It is truly a land of wonder and majesty; endless outdoor adventures and unexpected luxury. There’s a lot more to Scotland than Whisky and Haggis. It’s a land of stunning beauty, with landscapes straight out of a fairy tale. A country steeped in tradition and history, but with a good dose of whimsy and humor.
Hit the town, follow a whisky trail, fish, hunt, or just take in the scenery. Experience a Robert Burns Supper or the Highland Games. Get the finest cashmere & woolens. Tee off on some of the most elite golf courses in the world. Stay in a baronial castle, a cosmopolitan hotel, a manor house, or a bed & breakfast; whatever suits your taste.
The Highlands are one of Europe’s wildest and least spoiled areas. You can walk for hours across misty moors, trek up and down rocky slopes, and take in the majesty of Scotland’s scenery without seeing a soul. A shaggy Highland cow or a soaring golden eagle may add to the feeling of blissful solitude.
When you’re ready for company, you’ll find it at friendly pubs and inns, where traditional music—and in the Highlands and islands, Gaelic culture and language—thrive. For all its air of wildness, rebellious history and moody weather, Scotland has a wonderfully cozy and warm side. The Scots have a strong hospitable streak and a great sense of humor, which often comes washed down with a “wee dram” and an infectious toast of slainte mhath (good health).
The Great Outdoors
Scotland’s rugged landscape is ideal for outdoor activities. Widley regarded as the world’s premier destination for mountain biking, it hosts the UCI (Union Cycliste Internationale) World Championships every year. You can walk, hike, and climb everything from marked woodland walks, gentle hills, coastal walks, and historical trails to serious rock climbing and long-distance footpaths,
Fishing for salmon and trout in the lochs and rivers is very popular. Scotland’s waterways also offer some of the best boating, sailing, kayaking, and canoeing in Europe. In the winter, the Highlands boast several major skiing areas.
Scotland gave golf to the world, and as befits the founding nation of the sport, excellent courses can be played throughout the land. The majority of courses accept visitors without introduction, and fees are low compared with those in most countries. If you’re looking to get a tee time at the elite courses like St. Andrews’ famed Old Course, be sure to book well in advance.
Among the notable courses are St. Andrews Old Course and the splendid Dornoch links. The championship courses at Turnberry belong to the luxurious Westin Turnberry Resort. Prestwick, at one time the home of the British Open, is home to three major courses.
Don’t call a Scot English and don’t refer to the country as England – You won’t easily be forgiven. A lesser offense, though still cringeworthy, is using the national nouns, Scot and Scotch, interchangeably. A Scot is a Scottish person from Scotland… Scotch is a type of whiskey.