The Best Places To Discover In Scotland

(Collaborative guest post). Scotland: the country of castles with beautiful landscapes, romantic islands, mythical monsters and friendly inhabitants. It's also the country with the bagpipes, men who proudly wear kilts and fried Mars bars in batter (well pretty much anything fried in batter really). Scotland is an amazing country that will take your breath away and will fill you with unforgettable memories for a lifetime.

View across Edinburgh. Free stock image from Unsplash by Gabriele Stravinskaite


One of the best ways to explore Scotland is by car. If you do not own a car, you could choose to rent a car instread. If you still do not know a reliable rental company, then you can turn to the services of Enjoy Travel, where you can choose the car of your choice at a competitive cost. Of course, driving is not the only option. The towns and cities of Scotland have excellent train connections and are easy to get around on foot or by bus so if you don't have a car or don't want to drive for long you can go by rail.  In fact, one of the most romantic train journeys is in Scotland. I am referring, of course, to the famous Jacobite steam train, the train that became known from the Harry Potter films as the "Hogwarts Express".

There are also ferries to the numerous (and beautiful) islands of Scotland and hiking trails with stunning views around stunning lakes or mountains. The country has a unique natural beauty but also a rich history. Whether it's history, modern cities or romantic landscapes, you will find many reasons to fall in love with Scotland. There is so much to see, but the best place to start might be exploring the main cities.


Essential Cities To Visit In Scotland


Edinburgh

The capital of Scotland has many attractions and a rich history. It is famous for it's Victorian architecture, it's castle perched on an imposing volcanic rock, an underground city (which some say is haunted), as well as luxury boutiques for shopping lovers.

Edinburgh Castle, built in the 13th century, has a long and often dark history. Connected with the tragic life of Mary, the Queen of Scots, the castle endured many battles, even air raids in World War II. When you visit, do not miss the opportunity to see the Jewels of the Crown of Scotland, their famous Stone of Scone (or Stone of Fate) and the Church of St Margarita, built in 1130 and is the oldest building in Edinburgh. Also, if it is a cold day, take a break for a delicious hot chocolate in the castle cafe or stop for a hot toddy with whisky.


Glasgow

Edinburgh may be the capital of Scotland, but Glasgow is its largest city. Although it was considered a dark, post-industrial city, today it is now a vibrant city famous for its culture, music and gastronomy, and it's markets.

Glasgow also has excellent museums, most of which are free. In particular, the Kelvingrove Museum and Art Gallery are some of the most famous and remarkable. Near the Museum is the Glasgow Botanic Gardens. One of my favourite attractions is Glasgow Cathedral with the Necropolis, which offers unbeatable city views and the St Mungo Museum of Religion.


Sterling

Home of one of the largest and most important castles in Scotland, Sterling became famous after the movie Braveheart. Due to its strategic location, near the only point on the Forth River with a bridge until the end of the 19th century, it was the apple of contention between the Scots and the English, but also rival factions. It was often used as a royal residence for the kings and queens of Scotland (including Mary Stewart) until its union with England.


Sitting on top of a high volcanic rock, it offers stunning views across the valley and the city of Stirling. It is very well maintained, and you can get a taste of life in the royal court as it would be in the Middle Ages. An organised tour is a good idea, as it will give you a complete picture of life in the castle and thus you will enjoy your visit more.


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