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“In Scotland, there’s no such thing as bad weather, only the wrong clothes”. Billy Connolly

Britain’s “second kingdom” offers mountains, castles, and quaint towns galore. Although joined to England since the 18th century, Scots have clung to a distinct culture.

If England is the green and pleasant land, Scotland is the wet and rugged realm. Scotland is to England what Texas is to America, and Bavaria to Germany: a place on the edge, fiercely independent, with its own traditions. In Glasgow you’ll find a lively, modern city, contrasting with the historic charm of Edinburgh. To the north you’ll find the Highlands, home to the Queen’s favourite castle, Balmoral, as well as Britain’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis. The whole of Scotland is dotted with stately homes and old castles. These are interspersed with whiskey distilleries, producing the finest drams in the world.

Time it right, and you’ll be here in time for one of Scotland’s many festivals. Burns Night is a must if you’re visiting in January, an evening of music, dance and hearty food. Hogmanay is one of the largest New Year parties in the world. The Edinburgh Festival in summer is a staple of the European arts calendar, attracting big names as well as new talents.

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