Scotland’s dramatic history spans 8,000 years, years marked by invasions and independence, wars and religious upheavals, intrigues and subjugation. Such a history has left its mark on the nation’s psyche – and its landscape – and has contributed in no small way to the fierce pride with which the Scots view themselves and their country today.
The following are just a sample of the many exciting things to see and do in Scotland – from the mountains of the Highlands to the many castles to the Loch Ness Monster to the Fringe Festival in Edinburgh, Scotland has so much to offer
The Palace of Holyroodhouse
The Queen’s official residence in Scotland, stands at the end of Edinburgh’s Royal Mile against the spectacular backdrop of Arthur’s Seat.
Canongate, Royal Mile, Edinburgh EH8 8DX
One of Scotland’s most famous castles has a complex building history. The oldest part, St Margaret’s Chapel, dates from the 12th century; the Great Hall was erected by James IV around 1510; whilst the Half Moon Battery by the Regent Morton in the late 16th century
Castle Hill, Edinburgh, EH1 2NG
Home to over 1,000 rare and beautiful animals from around the world, Edinburgh Zoo is located in leafy hillside parkland just ten minutes from the centre of Edinburgh. Recognised as one of the world’s leading zoos, Edinburgh Zoo is involved in many conservation breeding programmes, and gives the highest priority to the welfare, both physical and behavioural, of the animals in their care.
The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, 134 Corstorphine Road, Edinburgh, EH12 6TS
Our Dynamic Earth
It’s the Mother Earth of all adventures! Explore the planet’s past present and future. You’ll be shaken by volcanoes, fly over glaciers, feel the chill of polar ice, and even get caught in a tropical rainstorm. Discover Scotland’s geological heritage in our brand new free external gallery Earthscape Scotland. You can also take your crew seat in the all new FutureDome to travel forward in time to debate our planet’s future.
Holyrood Road, Edinburgh, EH8 8AS
Glasgow Science Centre
One of Scotland’s must-see visitor attractions – presenting concepts of science and technology in unique and inspiring ways.
Glasgow Science Centre, 50 Pacific Quay, Glasgow G51 1EA
The Museum of Transport
A popular museum of transport from across the ages
1 Bunhouse Road, Glasgow, G3 8DP
Satrosphere Science Centre
Scotland’s first science and discovery centre and with over 50 hands-on interactive exhibits and live science shows
The Tramsheds, 179 Constitution Street, Aberdeen, AB24 5TU
A multi award winning living history park and visitor attraction, with a central focus on education, participation and fun. Travel 10,000 years in one day from the Mesolithic to a Roman Marching Camp, with indoor and outdoor exhibitions, featuring hands on activities, workshops and guided tours everyday, Archaeolink is a dynamic historical experience for all the family.
Archaeolink Prehistory Park, Oyne, Insch, Aberdeenshire, AB52 6QP
In the Highlands of Scotland, one of the most celebrated holiday destinations in the UK. Wild and beautiful, the surrounding countryside isn’t just scenic, it’s teeming with wildlife and yet a host of visitor attractions and Scotland’s fastest growing city Inverness are all within easy reach. It’s the perfect base for exploring the Highlands and provides a natural link toSkye and the West Coast. And at the loch itself, of course, there’s always a chance to glimpse ‘Nessie’, the world-famous Loch Ness Monster.
National Museum of Flight, East Lothian
Discover how naval and military aircraft developed across two world wars and then trace the history of commercial passenger flight.
East Fortune Airfield, East Lothian, EH39 5LF
Adults £8.50; children £2
The National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh
The collections tell you the story of Scotland its land, its people and culture, covering life, the universe and everything in it. Some exhibits are millions of years old, others less than a decade. Your journey of discovery starts here…
Chambers Street Edinburgh, EH1 1JF
Admission free; 10am-5pm
0131 225 7534
National War Museum
War and military service have touched the lives of countless Scots, leaving their mark on Scotland’s history, image and reputation abroad. Set in the magnificent setting of Edinburgh Castle, explore over 400 years of the Scottish military experience. Uncover stories of courage and determination, victory and defeat, heroics and heartbreak.
Edinburgh Castle, EH1 2NG
National Museum of Rural Life
How did people live and work in the past? How has farming shaped today’s countryside? Escape to the country to take in the sights, smells and sounds of a 1950s working farm, complete with dairy cows and sheep. Explore the seasons from ploughing fields to sowing seeds, hay making to harvesting. There’s so much to do on your visit!
Wester Kittochside Philipshill Road East Kilbride G76 9HR
Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, Glasgow
Admission free; Mon-Sat 10am-5pm; Fri and Sun, 11am-5pm.
0141 276 9599
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