Scotland Vacations

Scotland is located on the far northern region of the British Isles. It claims a history and government separate from it's neighbor England. Scotland is dotted with over 31,460 Lochs or lakes, most of which are located in the mountainous region of the Scottish Highlands. Explore the castles of Scotland; of which over 300 are found near Aberdeen that date from the 12th and 13th century. Scotch Whiskey, which was first produced in Scotland during 1494,is known far and wide as a symbol of Scotland. The history of Scotland extends back centuries; numerous ruins of religious buildings, castles and abbeys are still standing from the 12th and 13th century. Older ruins from earlier civilizations, the Pics and Vikings have been found on various islands. Many people in Scotland trace their heritage and culture as being one of the original members of the Celtic Nation and as a result trace their heritage back to 750 BC to 12 BC.

Scotland Vacation Rentals and Boutique Hotels

Scotland Vacations: Things to see while on vacation in Scotland

The home of Nessy, the Kilt and naturally the home of modern-day golf, Scotland has a tonne to offer your everyday visitor, but are you doing the right things for your first trip? Well, we are here to help, and no matter if you are an everyday tourist or someone who has experienced the finest the gorgeous country has to offer, you have some stuff to learn. IN this article we are to be focusing on four main things. The first, the geography of the country, and I would make sure to wear my flannels and heavy jacket! Secondly, the history and there is a tonne of it. Thirdly, we will be looking at the culture of the highlands, and what you should expect when you arrive. Finally, we will be looking at the landmarks that you have to see. Now kick up your feet, and get ready to experience one of the hidden gems of the British Isles.

Scotland Geography

Scotland is not a large country, but what it lacks in size, it makes up for in rain. Sitting at over 78 thousand kilometres square, Scotland is the second largest country within the British Isles. The highest mountain is Ben Nevis which reaches up to 1344 metres above the foothills in the highlands. Notably, there are a number of large lochs that need to be seen. Loch Lomond, Loch Ness, you might even see Nessie, Loch Awe and Loch Maree are worth noting. There are more than 800 islands found throughout the lochs and inlets but only 130 are inhabited. There are three area of the country, or two if you want to be official (lower midlands and upper midlands). The lowlands or southern uplands are in the south and are home to the two largest cities, Edinburgh and Glasgow. The central plain sits directly North, and are home to lochs, and fertile land for livestock and farming. The Scottish Highlands are worth a trip and are on the northern tip of the country. This area is known for its stunning mountains, harsh cliffs and turbulent weather.

Scotland History

The country of Scotland is rich with history and has been the focal point of many key battles and clashes between the Scottish clans and the British Empire. You can include Roman soldiers, Vikings, Red Coats, noble clansman and ruling monarchs. This will be but a brief overview starting past Roman occupation in 124 and Viking invasions in 800. By the 12th century, Scotland had started to become a feudal society under William I, and led to a relatively peaceful time in the countries history. In the 14th Century, Scotland would be fighting again and under the rule of Robert, the Bruce would finally gain independence through Pope John XXII letter. Then in 1603, Scotland would fall under English rule after Mary the Queen of the Scots would die in prison, and England and Scotland were united under the same crown of James VI. In 1707, Scotland and England signed the Act of Union which created a house of Parliament in Westminster for both nations. The last of the clans raised up during the Jacobite Revolution in 1746, which ended in a total defeat of the Scotish army, and the death of clan life as it was began. It was not until 1999 that Scotland would regain some independence with its own parliament created. As well, the Scots had an unsuccessful independence vote in 2016. Today, the country still falls under the Westminster Parliament but does have some autonomy over certain sectors.

Scotland has been handling its traditions for the better part of a thousand years, with the earliest days of the clans starting in the 12th century. Today, Scottish traditions can be seen live practically every day, with a mix of traditional food, dance and of course clothing. The Edinburgh Military Tattoo is a perfect example of this. During the Summer, the tattoo is home to Scottish music, bagpipe bands, highland dancing and some of the best food you will eat, all located in Edinburgh Castle. Scotish Whiskey is also a key drink for the people, and if you are looking for scotch, this is the only place to get it. Scotland is also home to haggis, but that is not all the food you should expect. In the past couple of decades, the food industry in Scotland has had a renaissance and the country is now home to a number of Michelin Star restaurants.

Scotland Landmarks

*Edinburgh Castle
Set upon a now dormant volcano, Edinburgh Castle is truly a focal point of the capital Edinburgh. The complex includes the Crown Jewels, the Stone of Destiny, and Moons Meg. Try and arrive for the noon gun, and hopefully, you will be able to see the Tattoo that happens every Summer along the walls of the castle.

*Eilean Donan
This absolutely breathtaking castle is one of the most photogenic castles, and for good reason, it is gorgeous. Sitting on an island at the entrance of Loch Duich, this castle has been included in Jacobite and Scottish lore for some time. Some of the artefacts in the castle are unique as well, including a sword that is said to have fought at Culloden.

*Stirling Castle
A favourite of the Stewart kings and queens, Stirling Castle has been restored to its original Renaissance glory. You will be able to experience a castle like it was in the 16th century!

*Inveraray Castle
Made famous due to its connections to 18th-century neoclassical architecture, and its time on Downton Abbey, Inveraray Castle is one of the must-see castles in the country. The seat of the Dukes of Argyll, you will be able to take a gander at the gorgeous Beauvais tapestries that make their home in the drawing room or witness the outstanding views of Loch Fyne.

*Skara Brae
An archaeological site, Skara Brae was a location of a Neolithic settlement, and one of the best-preserved groups of prehistoric homes in Western Europe. The property sheds light on how life was 5000 years before Stonehenge was built, and was first uncovered by a storm. The excavation was completed in the 1970’s and today, you will be able to tour the grounds, and see replicas of the artefacts.

*St Andrews Golf Club
Visit the Royal & Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews, which was established in 1754 and the game of 'gowf' became a tradition in Scotland.

Take the Scotland's Castle Trail and explore over 300 castles in Aberdeenshire.

Visit the Abbotsford House and the beautiful gardens built by Sir Walter Scott in 1822 located in Melrose, Scottish Border

Enjoy a train ride through the Scottish Highlands on ‘The Jacobite’ steam train.