Holiday Cottages in Scotland
Discover the magic of a holiday in Scotland
If you do nothing else of note this year, go to Scotland. It's utterly fantastic, with features that will appeal to anyone. The Scots are proud of their food too and it doesn't seem to travel too far, with most restaurarants favouring locally produced Scottish produce. Mix this with vibrant cities, misted mountains, sparkling lochs, deserted beaches and a culture that is thousands of years old - you cannot help but be captivated by this vast and beatiful country.
Scotland's Highlands and Lowlands are the result of a natural fault line that runs through East Central Scotland. The Great Outdoors certainly lives up to its name in Perth and Kinross, with the soaring mountain peaks of the Cairngorms, mysteriously deep lochs and amazing stretches of clean and beautiful beaches. If you like fishing, skiing and snowboarding, hiking, mountain biking and road cycling, you'll love it here.
Fife's castles make fascinating tourist attractions today, but they were built to serve a very practical purpose. Dunfermline was once Scotland's capital city and you will find numerous museums dedicated to preserving and explaining the region's history and people. St Andrews is the birthplace of golf and includes some of the world's top courses. Aberdeenshire is a prime example of why Scotland is so awesome. Incredible glens, sensational coastline and impressive culture are enhanced with incredible food and outstanding hospitality.
The Highlands are even better than portrayed in the plethora of poems and songs written about them. The Cairngorms National Park and the Hebrides are two of many reasons to visit. As well as five fabulous ski resorts, there is a calendar packed full of events like the Highland Games and festivals dedicated to music and whisky.
The region covers nearly half of Scotland, yet is home to less than ten percent of the population, meaning you can really enjoy a sense of space. As you drink in the silence on the Isle of Skye, you'll find it hard to believe it was once anything other than peaceful, yet both it and Moray are littered with remnants of a tempestuous history.
The landscape of Scotland's south east couldn't be any more different to the Highlands. The country's capital city, Edinburgh, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is complemented wonderfully by the surrounding Lothians. Edinburgh is sophisticated and fun, with museums, theatres, award winning restaurants and excellent shopping.
It's not far from Edinburgh to the Scottish Borders - a dividing line that spent centuries being both attacked and defended from both sides. While not as extreme as the Highlands, the Lothian environment provides a wide array of outdoor activities which cater for all abilities and interests.
As with many other parts of Scotland, Dumfries and Galloway in the south west is a sublime blend of perfect coastline, towering mountains and thick forests, but it stands apart for its love of art in all forms, including music, painting and writing. The city of Dumfries is beside the River Nith and is the birthplace of Scotland's favourite son, Robert Burns. While you're there, take time to visit Scotland's highest town, Wanlockhead and browse the bookshops that fill Wigtown. South Ayrshire is equally attractive and easy to reach, giving holidaymakers plenty of choice when looking for a self-catering cottage in Scotland.
Argyll and the islands off its coast are incredible. You'll be amazed at the variety of treats, like the Art Deco delights of Rothesay on Bute. Island hopping is a breeze with the regular ferry services and with each island having its own character, you can experience a huge amount in a relatively small space.
Stirling's history is bloody and long and all the more interesting for it. Nowhere has Scotland's ongoing struggle for independence been played out more than within its walls. Stirling Castle is an absolute must-see, as is Stirling Bridge; while Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park are just 30 minutes from the city centre.
The Scots are fiercely proud of their nation and justifiably so. Their culture and heritage have withstood centuries of assault to remain characteristically infallible. With so much to see and a full calendar of events, a holiday to Scotland is one that will keep everyone happy.