Planning an upcoming trip to Scotland? You don’t want to miss out on the most beautiful sites and exciting opportunities this country has to offer.
Scotland has everything from bustling city life to serene nature trails.
Read on to discover a well crafted Scotland itinerary with the top sites to see.
Edinburgh is Scotland’s most populous city and it is packed full of things to do. Plan on spending the largest portion of your Scotland trip in Edinburgh.
When you first arrive, hike to the top of Arthur’s seat for a bird’s eye view of the city. This will get you excited about your time exploring Edinburgh and Scotland in general.
After hiking up Arthur’s seat go down into the historic city and explore the landmarks. One of the most famous stretched of road is called the Royal Mile. This connects Edinburgh Castle with Holyrood Palace.
At this point, you may be growing weary of Scotland’s dreary weather.
If this is the case, head into the National Museum of Scotland to explore artifacts and exhibits.
Fan of the Harry Potter series? Don’t leave Edinburgh without checking out Elephant House Cafe. Elephant House Cafe is said to be the birthplace of Harry Potter. It was in this cafe that JK Rowling wrote parts of the multi-million dollar series.
Bring a laptop or a notepad and you too could produce the next best young adult novel series.
Still looking for a Potter fix? Take a short walk to George Heriot’s school. This is the school that inspired Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry in the Harry Potter series.
After Edinburgh has been thoroughly explored the next stop on your Scotland itinerary should be Glasgow.
It’s likely you’re weary from walking and traveling and you may need a short break. If this is the case head to Glasgow’s West End to enjoy a theatre performance.
Oran Mor is a theatre venue in Glasgow that offers a “Play, a Pint, and a Pie”. This is a quick 45-minute play where you enjoy a pint of beer and a pie for the price of your ticket.
In the afternoon after your pint, play, and pie take a cruise down the Clyde river. The boat ride will offer you a scenic view of Glasgow.
Done with the sightseeing and looking for a place to party at night? Glasgow is considered Scotland’s nightclub capital.
Jamaica street’s Sub Club is an underground dance club that offers great music and a great environment for boogying.
3) The Isle of Skye
Now it’s time to head away from the cities and into Scotland’s beautiful countryside to the Isle of Skye.
Your time in the Isle of Skye will primarily consist of hiking its beautiful trails and hills.
Neist Point, The Old Man of Storr, and Fairy Glenn are three must-visit cliffs for hiking destinations.
At the foot of the Black Cullin mountains, you can find the fairy pools. The fairy pools are beautiful pools of clear water that look fit for woodland fairies.
Hungry after your hiking expedition? Check out The Oyster Shed for the freshest oysters you’ve ever tasted.
4) Loch Ness
It’s hard to think of Scotland without thinking of lake Loch Ness and the infamous Loch Ness monster.
Whether you believe in the stories or not, it’s important to add Loch Ness to your Scotland itinerary.
The stories alone should make you curious enough to take a lake cruise and search for Nessie yourself.
Before you take off on your cruise, visit The Loch Ness Centre and Exhibition building for a history lesson on lake Loch Ness and Nessie.
If you’re looking for fun activities with your kids you can head over to Nessieland amusement theme park. Here they offer mini golf, a train ride, and a film about the Loch Ness monster.
Finally take a cruise on Lake Loch Ness with a guide who can give you the details about the backstory of the monster.
Have your camera fully charged in case you spot anything unusual out on the lake!
5) Seasonal Activities
One of the main things to think about when planning your Scotland itinerary is what season you’ll be visiting the country.
Summer is the most popular time to visit Scotland as temperatures are up and days are long. Summer is also the best time to visit if you’re interested in seeing some important elements of Scottish culture.
The Highland Games take place all summer around Scotland. However, the most popular Highland games take place in Dunoon, Scotland in August.
Interested in seeing men in kilts compete in all sorts of sporting events while bagpipes play in the background? Then the Highland games might be the event for you.
The Edinburgh Fringe festival is another must-see summer activity in Scotland. The fringe festival runs throughout the month of August.
The fringe festival features artists and performers from all over the world and of all skill levels. The fringe festival is all about encouraging people to perform and tell their individual stories through art and theatre.
It’s a great festival for anyone who supports artists and is interested in quirky forms of expression.
Use This Guide to Plan Your Scotland Itinerary
Use this guide as a jumping off point to plan your ultimate Scotland itinerary.
Scotland has activities to offer people from all walks of life with all sorts of different interests. Whether you’re into going outside and exploring nature or staying inside and watching a play, Scotland has something for you.
We welcome you to explore our site and learn even more about the great country of Scotland. If you have any questions about this article or want to contact us for any reason, please do so here.
We are happy to help you build your Scotland itinerary.