From rugged mountain peaks and glistening lochs to wild marshlands shrouded in morning mist, Scotland has no shortage of breath-taking views. Spreading across the northern third of Great Britain, Scotland attracts visitors in with its fascinating history, rich culture, and the sparkling waters of its many lochs. Scotland is home to numerous array of unique castles, a host of world-class art and science museums, and some of the largest wilderness areas in Western Europe. Regardless of the country’s relatively small size, exploring it completely would take most people an entire lifetime!
Scotland tours something for every group of people! With the beautiful cities of Edinburgh and Glasgow in the heart of the country, it makes for one of the inspiring vacation spots. In addition to the swarm of historical sites and natural aesthetics, there are a plethora of options for outdoor activities. The charismatic land of Scotland is all laden with great history, spectacular landscape, high-quality food, and welcoming locals. Let's dive a little deeper to know the country more closely before planning Scotland tours.
The 13th-century Edinburgh Castle built from sturdy walls and stones is one-of-its-kind edifices in the country that is a must-see. The most interesting aspect of the castle is its location, which gives a perfectly magnificent view of the entire city with a peek into the vociferous history of the country. The key sites here are St. Margaret's Chapel and the Stone of Destiny. The Margaret's Chapel is Edinburgh's oldest building that was constructed in 1130. At the castle gate, there are legendary heroes Robert the Bruce and Robert William Wallace, keeping watch on everything. Accompanying Scotland tour agents and experts are recommended because they have all the required knowledge about every single place and site.
Loch Lomond - Largest Lake in Britain
Loch Lomond, the biggest Lake in Britain is located at a very small distance from Glasgow! For its beauty and galore, it has also been called “The Queen of Scottish Lakes”. With salmon, whitefish, and trout, Scotland is the perfect paradise for all types of travelers. From adventure-laden water sports and good open space for hiking lovers, Scotland has everything to make for an electrifying trip. Boating is as popular as treks! The view through the Trossachs National Park is simply magical. It's worth mentioning that while traveling from Glasgow to the western Highland to Fort William if there could be many mesmerizing places. At the southern end of Loch Lomond, one can get to enjoy many outdoor activities.
Stirling Castle is one of the best Renaissance buildings in the UK that has been preserved in such a fantastic way. It used to be Mary Queen of Scot's childhood home and James V palace. The grandness of the castle has been skillfully restored in a way to give the perfect view to the visitors. And, every possible work has been done, so as to enable visitors to make it a living history. There are Costumed interpreters to explain everything about the castle and for young travelers, there are also History Hunter programs. Stirling is most popularly known for the Battle of Bannockburn which took place in 1314 where English invaders were defeated by Robert the Bruce. Apart from this, the Battle of Stirling Bridge took place here, which is also a key reason for the popularization of Stirling Castle among the visitors. At the Bannockburn Heritage Centre, people can get to see excellent displays showcasing history. Apart from all these majestic spectacles, there's the Wallace Monument, situated between Bridge of Allan and Stirling. It is a 246-step tower that gives an unflinchingly spectacular view.
Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum
The Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum became a popular tourist site in Scotland. It was only after the destruction that caused the disappearance of the great work at the Glasgow School of Art, particularly by Charles Rennie Mackintosh. The ones who were hard-core lovers of the Glasgow style art they drifted towards Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum. The gallery & museum chiefly has the perfectly built Mackintosh rooms and also other art forms done by various other artists. Other highlights of the museum include Bronze Age tools, a 1944 Mark 21 Spitfire, a Van Gogh portrait, and a 1901 organ. Among all of these, the 1901 organ used for daily free concerts is the most popular.
The Northern Highlands
The Northern Highlands are the most idyllic locations for hikers and bikers. With only a small part of the country living at this place, it boasts of its great and history and the lovely landscape. In addition to hikers and bikers, those who love fishing, gorge walking, sea kayaking, golf, white-water rafting, and any other adventurous activities, this place is the perfect location. Other than this there are these wonderful small villages and towns that provide wonderful spaces for eating and lodging. Dornoch, the small village is one of those beauties which has its cathedral and castle ruins for travelers to see. Many experienced Scotland tour agents have proclaimed that there’s a sign here that says that it’s Britain’s northernmost point.
A Closer Look - Unique Experiences on Scotland Tours!
It’s hard to find such a splendid experience as one can find in Scotland! The wonderful glens, the beautifully flowing rivers, and the echoing mountains every part of the country has some special experience for its visitors. Scotland travel agents and specialists recommend having this part of Europe on every traveler’s Bucket List. Here’s a brief description of the unique experiences. Read on to find:
Visit St. Andrews Golf Course of Scotland
There have been many inventions in Scotland! Some of these great discoveries include the postage stamp, the bicycle, the telephone, the steam engine, and tarmacadam. Another very important thing that Scotland gave to the world is “the game of golf”. And, when on a trip to Scotland, a visit to the St. Andrews Golf Course is worth it. Visitors from across the globe and particularly those ardent golf lovers come to visit this place. It is a well-established golf body of Scotland that was found during 1750. The club frequently hosts frequent British Open games. In the vicinity is the British Golf Museum where one can get to find the history of golf from beginning to the end.
Go for Birdwatching
It's not just about bird watching, but it gives a chance to get a closer look into the perfect panoramic view of the city. The best starting point would undoubtedly be the Speyside, which is an area with valleys, mountains, and moors. The Speyside is located between Monadhliath ranges and Scotland's Cairngorm. There are plenty of species including the golden eagle in these highlands. Sea eagles were on the verse of extinguish, but a reintroduction program that started in 1975 brought back them back to the western coast of the country. Scotland is the home to the fourth-largest sea eagle in the world having 2.5meter wingspan. In addition to experienced travelers Scotland travel agents have confirmed that this is one of the most fascinating things about the trip.
Climb to the Highest Peak of Britain
Climbing the Carn Mór Dearg Arête is one of the most thrilling experiences. But, for those who do not have a real experience walking up the hills, they can take the tourist path to climb along climb Ben Nevis. Join masses at the top of the top or head towards the Cairngorms, which is a collection of more than 1200 peaks. The most accessible of all the path here is the Cairn Gorm peak. For those who are not feeling that active, for them, the funicular railway path is the best. Here, they would be able to spot eagles, ptarmigan, snow bunting, and reindeer.
Monster-spotting on Loch Ness
The most popular of all the Lochs in Scotland is the Loch Ness, which has a mythical monster. When one arrives here, it may not seem to be a great place to explore on Scotland tours, but indeed has a lot to offer to its travelers. The best to start this off is from the Loch Ness Centre & Exhibition in the northern part. This is the perfect way to dive a little deeper into the historical facts about the hoaxes and the Nessie sightings. There is something for everyone to discuss and present their personal opinions. Then getting on to the summit of the Meall Fuar-Mhonaidh is the next thing. Though it's not a very high peak, but gazing down from the peak to the lock is one-of-its-kind incredible feelings.
The Bike Riders & Scotland
For downhill mountain biking, Scotland is an apt location! It's in fact, one of the best locations for downhill mountain biking in the world and has plenty of downhill sites for biking enthusiasts. Among them, one of the best is the Laggan Wolftrax. The most fascinating thing about this site is that you don't actually have to be a thrill-seeker like a teenager. However, for those who are interested, there are black runs. And, located at just 175 km away from the Vatersay is the Outer Hebrides, great for cycling. Apart from all the trill, the scenery is fascinating with lovely mountains, the corncrakes, the Callanish, the dunes, and the amazing sun setting.
The Rob Roy Way
The seventy-nine miles Rob Roy Way trail is another thing that should be on the list of the best things to do in Scotland. Beginning from some twenty miles away in Drymen it passes through Stirlingshire to make its way towards Pitlochry. This trail is incredible for travelers in the sense that it takes them through the great history of Scotland. One gets to see much of the area where most of the life of Rob Roy MacGregor was spent. On the way, one gets to encounter the perfect beauty through the Forests of the Trossachs which looks magical laden with huge pine trees. And, the perfectly gorgeous views of the Glens and Lochs are great on the way. Accompanying specialists and Scotland travel agents make it easy through the trail.
Best time to Plan Scotland Tours!
Spring and autumn are the best time to plan Scotland tours! The warmest parts of the year are the summer months. Here is a brief description of how to choose the best time to plan a trip as stated by many proficient Luxury Scotland tour agents. Read below to find:
March to May (spring) and September to November (autumn) are the best months to plan a vacation to this part of Europe.
The Springs months are although warm, but still, there is snow in some parts of the country like in the mountains of the Cairngorms and the Highlands.
June to August (summer) are the warmest months of the year. And, there is long hours of daylight from July to August.
There would be very less crowd near the end of October. And, through the mid-November it’s the perfect time to enjoy basking in the beauty of autumn foliage.
Luxury Scotland tour agents say that traveling through the mid of October is not a very good idea. During this time of the year, many of the tourist sites in Scotland close their door.
From December to February, there’s snow all through and traveling is quite tough. But, it’s great for those who like the scene winter spreads around.
Best Places to Stay on Scotland Tours!
There are varieties of accommodation options in Scotland. You can find here intimate cottages to luxury hotels to self-contained apartments. For an unusually pleasant experience, it is great to opt for tree house that is situated on the West Coast in a forest. Also, there are castles which offer the perfect platform to dive deeper into the past. Let's see what are the accommodation options in Scotland.
There are vast options when it comes to luxurious hotels in Scotland. One can find them fitting to every budget and matching different styles. Those who are tight on budget can opt for hotel accommodations in smaller cities. While those who are ready to spend a little more can choose to live in bigger cities like Edinburgh and Glasgow, during their trip.
Bed and Breakfast accommodations are also there. These are perfect for those who want to relish the hospitality of Scotland. These are those establishments that provide luxury, perfect breakfast and keeps their guests updated with local news culture and everything.
There are also self-catered cottages and flats. These are perfect for those who do not want anyone to intrude in their space. They are cheap, provide personal space for kitchen and everything.
Other accommodation options in Scotland include Castles, Camping, and Quirks according to luxury Scotland Tour agents.
Know these Facts Before Planning Scotland Tours!
There are a few things that are important to know before planning a trip to any part of the world. Keep in mind these facts given below to make the right decision. Many luxury Scotland tour agents have also advised taking care of these things. The aim is to create an experience where one can relax and unwind. Read below to find a way out…
Passport & Visa Requirements
Before traveling to Scotland, all travelers will need to have their passports ready. European citizens will not need a visa if they are staying for 90 days or less.
However, EU citizens can stay in the country for an unlimited time period. And, citizens from Australia, the United States, New Zealand, and Canada can stay for up to six months. Those traveling from the UK to Scotland will need to produce only an ID Card.
Currency in Scotland
Scotland uses the Great Britain Pound, which is equal to 1.3 US dollars.
While the currency of Northern Ireland and Scotland are the same, but they use different bank notes.
The Shopkeepers will accept these notes, on the other hand, but they are not actually allowed to do so. But, a few of them won't!
Don't worry there are banks where it's easy to exchange Irish or Scottish notes with English without requiring you to pay anything.
There are many options for exchanging currency in Scotland. There are Private bureaux de change that can be found easily on each and every street, ferry terminal, and train station.
Also, currency can be exchanged in the available Post offices and the bank branches. In addition to that, travelers can also use their bank cards to withdraw local currency.
Connecting with People & Customs on Scotland Tours
There are too many excitingly interesting customs and traditions of Scotland to explore. The country with a long history boasts of its uniquely exciting traditions. The most important aspect of their way of life is that, people here are passionately involved with sports and open-minded. Let’s find out more about customs and traditions of Scotland:
There have been many battles and wars in Scotland in the past (for independence). The Middle Ages witnessed many wars fought against England. And, there have been the introduction of English lifestyle after they occupied southern Scotland.
The Highlands or the northwestern Scotland is more comparatively rural and traditional as compared to southeast where there is more of an influence from the foreign nations.
A large part of the population follows Christianity. A part of it are also Catholic and Kirk. Each family has a specific identity and symbol.
The cuisine in Scotland is largely influenced by the ancient system. Like it used to be that the rich are allowed to eat meat and the people belonging to the lower class could consume only the other products from that animal.
The tradition meal for Scottish include animal organs, bread, roots, herbs, and dairy products.
Haggis is Scotland’s national food that is prepared from onions, oatmeal, spices, and sheep organs.
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