Up in the northern part of the island lays Scotland. Once the country of fighters like William Wallace, the origin of the liquid gold (Whisky) and today home of proud people that would love to be independent from the rest of the island. Furthermore Scotland has much more to offer and invites you to attend some incredible events in 2014!
During my past travels to this diverse country I’ve seen some amazing sights and fell in love in the country in the north.
These are some of the most beautiful sights in Scotland:
A fascinating city, right at the east coast of the country. Edinburgh is the capital of Scotland and surprises with old buildings and many stories that took place in its cobble stone streets. One old building stands next to each other and sucks you into the history of this incredible city. Even though the entrance of the castle is pretty expensive I can only advice you to visit it, you’ll get to know amazing things about the city and who reigned it and you’ll have an amazing view over the city during sunset when the city is presenting itself in its golden dress. Absolutely stunning!
Another highlight is the cities own extinct volcano called Arthurs Seat. There are many stories regarding the name, some say that it’s called like this because King Arthur loved to sit up there and look over this beautiful city. Can you imagine how Edinburgh looked like in the 6th century? The hike only take 30 minutes and you will get an amazing view over the city, the coast and the country!
As much as the Scots are proud of their own country, there is also a lot of rivalry among the cities. Especially between Glasgow and Edinburgh. Since centuries both cities are fighting with each other. By now they probably don’t even know the reason behind it but they also take it with humor and always try to heckle each other with funny jokes. Hilarious if you are an outsider and listen to them talking about each other… But Glasgow of course has much more to offer:
Compared to Glasgow, Edinburgh is much more modern and reminds of an old industrial city with many half-timbered houses with high walls. The University of Glasgow was a big inspiration to J.K. Rowlings Harry Potter and the rest of the city welcomes you with many museums and green places.
3. Loch Lomond
There is a reason why Loch Lomond is mentioned before Loch Ness. The Loch lays about 30 minutes north of Glagow and is only reachable by train from the Queens Street Station (Glasgow has two train stations). You need to take the train up to Balloch and you’ll arrive on the southern part of the lake. I would suggest to rent a bike on the short of the lake and bike the western part of the lake for about 4 kilometers until you reach a little town called Luss. It has beautiful tiny houses right by the lake and a few small shops. Perfect to relax after the bike ride. The worst part is the way back, maybe the bus that runs every hour, isn’t full enough and the driver is nice and you can take your bike with you!
4. Glen Coe and the Highlands
What an amazing landscape up in the highland and especially around Glen Coe. Glen Coe is a small valley in the highlands, where in Winter 1692 the clan of the MacDonalds was killed during their sleep as instructed by the king. Today Glen Coe is known for its beautiful landscape. I would suggest you to rent a car and do the driving yourself. During the day tours you only have a few minutes to snap a few pictures of the place.
5. Loch Ness
It’s pretty cool to see the most famous lakes of all from a boat but I also have to admit that it’s not much different from any other lake in Scotland. It’s just a big lake with a fun history. The ride on the boat costs 12 GBP and takes about 30 minutes. If you have time you can get off at the castle and wander around for an hour before taking the next boat back to the parking place. It’s cool but not that cool. The only place where you will see Nessie is in the souvenir shop!
Killiekrankie is a small town about two and a half hours north from Edinburgh. Not much to see or do except one thing that is pretty cool: Bungee Jumping in Scotland! It’s the only place in Scotland to do this and the view is spectacular. You jump off a bridge over a semi dry riverbed with an amazing view over a huge forrest. If that isn’t enough you can then go for a hike and maybe spot a few wild deers!
7 Kilometers south of Killiekrankie you will find Pitlochry. Another small town with a few streets. Pitlochry is home to one of the oldest whisky distilleries of Scotland. The famous Bell’s Whisky is produced here and you can visit any time and do a distillery tour and whiskey tasting. Perfect after the adrenaline rush jumping off that bridge in Killiekrankie!
When are you planning to visit Scotland?
Check out where the places are located on the map: