Scotland may be the most beautiful place I’ve ever been. Definitely top 5 and also very high on my list of places I’d like to go back to. On this trip, we stayed in the south of Scotland because we thought it would be cold in the highlands and islands. Truthfully though, I don’t think it would have been bad. It was about 40 degrees fahrenheit the entire time we were there and all the grass was still green (when it wasn’t covered in frost). The only problem with going to Scotland in winter is how short the days are. On most days, the sun rose at 9am and was fully beneath the horizon by 4pm. Other days, it seemed like the sun never rose and it was just cloudy and rainy all day long. But if you can get over that, Scotland is great in the winter because of how few tourists there are.
Our first two nights in Scotland were spent at Carberry Tower which is a historic house (more like castle!) just outside Edinburgh. We had an amazing time here and really felt we were getting the full Scottish country house experience. There was Scottish breakfast in the morning, complete with haggis, afternoon tea with about ten different types of cakes and pastries to choose from, and a delicious four course dinner. The pictures below are from our first morning there. We woke up and everything was covered in frost and I felt like I was in a scene from Pride and Prejudice or something. That’s how beautiful it was.
After exploring the house and grounds at Carberry, we drove into Edinburgh for the day and our first stop was Edinburgh Castle. The view from the castle was gorgeous and if you’re ever visiting Edinburgh, we highly recommend walking up the hill to see the view. Other than that, we didn’t think the castle was that great. It was pretty expensive and just really crowded, but there wasn’t actually that much to see, other than the view.
After spending some time at the castle, we got lunch and walked around a little. Edinburgh seems like a really great city and we would have loved to explore more of the old part of the city, but with it being a couple days after Christmas, a ton of people were out shopping the sales. There was so much more we could have done, but it got dark so early we didn’t have the time.
The next day we left for Loch Lomond, which was just an hour away! Once we got to Scotland everything seemed so close, but it was a very long 7 hour drive up from London. Anyway, now we know to fly in the future and just rent a car when we get there. We will definitely be coming back.
Some observations about Scotland:
1. There are sheep literally everywhere.
2. Haggis is good. Seriously.
3. Scottish accents are the best!