Interested in visiting Scotland? This article is a great place to start and provides a basic overview.
Scotland is a European country which is currently part of the United Kingdom (England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales). Edinburgh, the Capitol of Scotland sits 734 miles south of the Arctic Circle, whereas The Shetland Islands, the most Northerly part of the UK are a mere 443 miles south of the Arctic Circle, which can lead to seeing spectacular Auroras. Scotland has a cooler climate, but is uniquely positioned and benefits from the warmth of the Gulf Stream, which keeps temperatures reasonably moderate, though warmer than other cities at the same latitude in Russia, Sweden and Alaska.
Scotland is a modern country with vibrant cities, quaint small towns, rugged mountains in the beautiful highlands, gentle rolling green hills in the south, stunning islands with beautiful beaches, and fantastic wildlife, all along the west coast.
It is impossible to visit Scotland and not learn some history. Virtually every place you visit in Scotland is steeped ancient history. Dotting the landscape across the country are structures and landmarks such as old, deserted Crofts, Castles ranging in condition from those in perfect repair and others in ruin, battlefields and Cairns. Other unique areas that epitomize the Scottish landscape are Ancient Neolithic, and Iron and Bronze Age sites.
While it may seem difficult to travel through the Scotland, the country actually boasts superb public transportation systems that include, trains, trams, city busses, taxis, regional airlines, and an excellent ferry system. Coach tours and private tours are also a great option to get around the country. For the more adventurous there is always the option of renting a car and hitting the highway and see where the road will take you.
Here is a useful link about public transportation in Scotland
Scotland has very diverse accommodations; Hotels, Hostels, B&B’s, guesthouses, Inns, self catering, campsites, glamping, boothys, or wild camping if you prefer. There is somewhere to stay for every taste and budget. There are regular visits from inspectors who determine the quality of the facility and look at how it is run. Facilities can be awarded from 1 star which is acceptable, up to a top rating of 5 stars which is exceptional.
Scotland has earned the reputation as Europe’s next great food destination, as it is blessed with a rich and varied larder of game, seafood, fruits and vegetables. Traditional foods such as haggis, clootie dumplings, porridge, black pudding and kippers are all easily available, along with an astounding variety of different cuisines from places such as India, Italy, Spain, Turkey, Russia, Hungary, Brazil, and Mexico to name a few, along with popular Scottish and British restaurants.
Scottish weather is often referred to as. ”changeable.” It is not a stretch when people say you really can see all four seasons in one day and thus, the old Scottish saying goes “There is no such thing as bad weather, only the wrong clothes,” can ring true on any given day.
Scotland has four full seasons, Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall. January and February are usually the coldest months with long dark nights, and short hours of sunlight. On the contrary, Summer months are, as would be expected, generally the warmest and offer up long hours of daylight. If you are in the far north, during summer months it never gets darker then twilight. The dramatic landscapes also affect the weather, as with prevailing winds from the Atlantic, the West coast is the windiest and wettest places in Europe. The East coast (Aberdeenshire, Angus, Fife, Edinburgh and Lothians) tends to be drier for the most part. Scotland does get snowfall in the winter and has several excellent ski centers. Scotland also is known to be very damp and rainy at times as well. Thus, it is recommended for one to be prepared with layers when you pack and among those layers, things that can be easily taken of or put on with ease are likewise suggested.