Inverness and Loch Ness
A romantic railway route runs inland to Inverness. Along the way, visitors can see the ruins of a cathedral and the renovated abbey church at Elgin. Many buildings in Inverness, Scotland’s northernmost city, date back to the 17th century. The town lies on the Moray Firth. From here you can take a trip to Loch Ness, home of the famous sea monster »Nessie«. Walkers can circumnavigate the loch on the South Loch Ness Trail. The Loch Ness Exhibition Center in Drumnadrochit is interesting. Many Highland meetings of the Scottish clans are held in the region.
The southernmost regions of Scotland, the Lowlands, extend to the “Southern Uplands” in the north. The Lowlands consist of a fertile, gently rolling hilly landscape. The Scottish Borders region was the scene of many a battle between England and Scotland. The abbeys in Jedburgh, Dryburgh and Melrose are particularly worth seeing. The old frontier towns of Selkirk, Galashiels, Peebles and Hawick are still the centers of the tweed and knitwear industries. Beautiful lakes and pine forests lie in the lovely countryside of the Dumfries and Galloway region. Galloway is home to numerous stately homes. The Lowlands are home to national poets Sir Walter Scott and Robert Burns.
Formerly an industrial city, Glasgow is Scotland’s largest and most culturally vibrant city. Sights include Scotland’s only fully preserved medieval cathedral. The restored Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum features works by well-known painters such as Whistler, Turner, Rembrandt and Dalí. The Glasgow School of Art is an important work by Glasgow Art Nouveau architect and designer Charles Rennie Mackintosh, who designed numerous other public and private buildings in his hometown. Just follow the Charles Rennie Mackintosh Trail, which has tickets.
Malt Whiskey Trail
According to topschoolsintheusa, Scotland’s most popular export is whiskey. The Whiskey Trail runs between Inverness and Aberdeen, where one distillery follows the other and you can taste the different single malt whiskeys during distillery tours. In Speyside near Dufftown you can see how the cooper (cooper) mend whiskey casks in the cooperage (cooperage).
Time-honoured Stirling, with its medieval old town centered on the royal castle of Stirling Castle, lies northwest of Edinburgh. The National Wallace Monument, Stirling Bridge and the Bannockburn Fields, where King Robert II of Scotland defeated the English in battle in 1314, should be on the itinerary. Other attractions in and around Stirling include Argyll’s Lodging, the Smith Art Gallery & Museum and the Alloa Tower.
South West Scotland was the home of Robert Burns, Scotland’s best known poet. He was born in Alloway, where his birthplace, Robert Burns Cottage, can be visited. Burns Cottage is part of the Robert Burns Birthplace Museum. Following in the poet’s footsteps is Ellisland Farm (and Museum) and Robert Burns House, his former homes in Dumfries and Galloway. Both houses are open to the public. In Dumfries you can sit down in your old armchair at The Globe Inn.
Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park
The magnificent Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park covers 1,865 km² in the beautiful Lowlands. Here you will find mountains (munros), lakes (lochs), rivers and forests. Climb the 21 Munros, cycle the West Lomond Cycle Path, kayak in the Queen Elizabeth Forest Park or go wild camping on the banks of Loch Lomdon. The area surrounding Loch Lomond is so beautiful that it is the subject of many songs.
Edinburgh is the social and cultural center of Scotland and one of the most beautiful cities in Great Britain. The Royal Mile in the oldest part of the city runs from Edinburgh Castle via St Giles Cathedral to Holyroodhouse Castle. In the area between Edinburgh Castle, Waverley Station, Princes Street and the Royal Mile lies the charming Princes Street Gardens. Georgia’s New Town is home to beautifully preserved elegant 18th-century streets, buildings and squares. Also of interest are the diverse museums and art galleries such as the Scottish National Portrait Gallery. Also worth seeing in Edinburgh are the zoo and the botanical gardens.
The picturesque coastal town of St. Andrews is north of Edinburgh and has a lot to offer: a traditional university, a beautiful backdrop right on the North Sea and one of the largest golf courses in the world, the St. Andrews Links, which is known as the home of golf. A tip for golfers is a visit to the British Gold Museum. Also worth seeing are St Andrews Castle on the cliffs north of town, St Andrews Cathedral and Holy Trinity Church. Every year in August or September the street festival Lammas Fair takes place.
The legendary Glamis Castle is located near the small town of Glamis in the Angus Council Area. Glamis Castle, now the home of the Earl and Countess of Strathmore and Kinghorne, has been a royal residence for centuries since 1372. In fiction Glamis Castle was the setting for Shakespeare’s tragedy Macbeth and in reality it was the birthplace of Princess Margaret and the childhood home of Queen Mum. Guided tours are available through Glamis Castle. Worth seeing are the noble interiors and the gardens in the outdoor areas.
Edinburgh, city of festivals
Held annually between late August and early September, the Edinburgh International Festival is Britain’s largest theater and arts festival, bringing dance, opera, plays and concerts to the stage. With the Fringe Festival, the largest arts festival in the world takes place in Edinburgh in August, it shows art from all genres and genres: tragedy, comedy, improvisation, dance, art installations etc. Edinburgh, the UNESCO City of Literature, one of the world’s largest book festivals. The season of festivals in Edinburgh begins in April and ends in December.
The pristine islands of the Outer Hebrides are strung together like a chain on the edge of Scotland. They offer powder sand beaches, Neolithic sites and interesting wildlife. Paddle kayaks to secluded coves, admire the Calanais standing stones, browse countless galleries and studios for Celtic trinkets, and look out for orcas, dolphins and golden eagles.
Probably the most beautiful castle in Scotland, the medieval castle of Stirling Castle was built on a rocky outcrop. The castle overlooks some of the most famous battlefields in Scottish history. These include Stirling Bridge, where Sir William Wallace defeated the English in 1297 during the Revolutionary War, and the Battlefields of Bannockburn, where King Robert II of Scotland defeated King Edward II’s troops in battle in 1314. Mary Stuart spent her childhood here. In 1543 she was crowned in the royal chapel.
The Highlands are home to some of Britain’s most breathtaking scenery. The roads and railways between the capital and Inverness pass through the Grampian Mountains and the Forest of Atholl. The lochs of the Mid Highlands feed the River Tay, which is an angler’s paradise. Of particular note in the Highlands are Killiecrankie Pass, Blair Atholl, Kingussie and Aviemore, the famous winter sports resort. In the far south of the Highlands is Callander, home to the Rob Roy Visitor Centre. It tells the story of Scottish folk hero Rob Roy, who was the Robin Hood of Scotland.
The west coast is full of holiday resorts set in beautiful countryside, particularly in the coastal region opposite the Isle of Skye. Fort William is the largest and most famous coastal city in this region. Oban on Loch Linnhe is the gateway to the islands and the beautiful Kintyre region. Between Kintyre and the Strathclyde coast lies the Isle of Arran, to the west of Kintyre lie the Isles of Islay and Jura. Many Scottish kings are buried on Iona. Mull and the Outer Hebrides archipelago can be reached from Oban. The Sound of Sleat and the Inner Sound separate the Isle of Skye from the mainland.
The Pentland Firth separates the Orkney Islands from the mainland. Only 20 of the 71 islands in this group are inhabited. The islands are very fertile, but few trees grow here. Kirkwall, the largest city, is on the island known as the Mainland. Also of interest on the island of Mainland are the Stone Age village of Skara Braes and the UNESCO World Heritage Site The Heart of Neolithic Orkney (burial site of Maes Howe, the Ring of Brogar and the Stones of Stenness). Rugged cliffs and windswept sandstone landscapes make the Isle of Hoy one of the most dramatic in Orkney. Westray and South Ronaldsay Islands are of particular interest to bird watchers and anglers.
The Shetland Islands form the most northerly point of Great Britain and consist of around 100 rugged, hilly and heather-covered islands. Despite the northern location, the climate is surprisingly mild. The coast of the largest islands, called the mainland, is made up of bays and deep fjords. Lerwick, the largest town, was once entirely dependent on fishing. The Bronze Age settlements at Jarlshof, the island of Foula, the nature reserve on the island of Noss, Mousa Broch on the uninhabited island of Mousa and the world’s northernmost castle on the island of Unst are all worth visiting. All of the islands in this group can be reached from Lerwick.
Scotland’s North West is a dramatic region: the north and north west coasts are very rocky, deep inlets. Lakes break through the sparsely populated mountainous landscape with deep mountain gorges. Here are the highest mountains in Great Britain such as Ben Nevis (1344m). From Fort William, the Great Glen extends parallel to Neptune’s Staircase (Neptune’s staircase (lock systems in the Caledonian Canal)) via Loch Ness to Inverness. Worth seeing are the towns of Durness, Melvich, Thurso and the village of John O’Groats. Close to Ullapool, which is still an important fishing port, is the beautiful Inverpolly Nature Reserve.
Cairngorms National Park
The Cairngorms National Park is located in the central Highlands. The landscape is natural and for the most part without a developed road system. As its name suggests, the National Park is dominated by the Cairngorms mountains, but it also features rivers, lochs, forests and a wealth of wildlife such as martens, squirrels, badgers and wild cats. Beautiful campsites serve as accommodation. Visitors can hike, climb, bird watch and ski in the winter.
The Scots have been playing golf for many centuries, so it is not surprising that Scotland is the home of golf. The cradle of golf is in St Andrews on the Old Course, which attracts golfers from all over the world. With over 550 golf courses nationwide, Scotland offers not only great choice but also great diversity for golfers, including golf courses where championships are held such as the manicured greens at Carnoustie, Turnberry, Royal Troon and Muirfield.
Greta Green is on the old stagecoach route between London and Edinburgh. The place became famous as the first village across the border where young lovers fled to get married because of Scottish matrimonial laws. Weddings became a lucrative business and one of the most famous wedding venues was the Old Blacksmith’s Shop. This was owned by a family business called Gretna Green Group Ltd which was founded in 1886. Today it is one of Scotland’s most popular tourist attractions with a museum, restaurant and souvenir shops, attracting thousands of visitors each year.