Top 10 Most Famous Scotland Landmarks Travelers Talk About
Visiting Scotland is a once in a lifetime opportunity for many people and the country’s rich history and stunning landscape make it a perfect one stop destination for many European vacations. There are many Scotland landmarks that are notable and worth visiting during your travels, but ten in particular that leave visitors abuzz. We’ve put together a list of the most famous landmarks in Scotland that shouldn’t be missed for first timers and repeat visitors alike.
1. Edinburgh Castle: The city named castle is enormous and dominates the view of the city. Its thick, stone walls are reminiscent of the structure’s fortress past. The castle itself, a World Heritage Site, is impressive to say the least, but the site it’s built on may be equally impressive. Perched atop an extinct volcano, which makes it an even more unique selection amongst Scotland Landmarks, the castle is open to visitors and boasts many attractions inside including the Crown Jewels. Arthur’s seat located nearby as well and the other two landmarks can fill an entire day of touring.
2. King’s Theatre Glasgow: It may not look like much from outside, situated on a street corner in the Charing Cross area of Glasgow, but it’s an impressive venue that is as stunning as some of the musical, theatrical and even circus acts that take place inside. It was built in 1904 and refurbished in the 1980s in order to restore the grand theater to its original glory. There are many shows worth seeing here and chances are that regardless of when you are visiting, there is something to enjoy at the King’s.
3. Stirling Castle: Renaissance craftsmanship abounds at this castle, which is synonymous with medieval styling and culture too. The building serves as a symbol of the country’s independence and people of important historical significance like Mary Queen of Scots and William Wallace are associated with the grand structure. Hundreds of years of rich tradition are celebrated here, and there are many festivals and events that occur at Stirling annually. It remains one of the most important and popular of all Scotland Landmarks for its beauty, architecture, surroundings and symbolic pride.
4. Loch Ness Lake: When most people think about Scotland landmarks, they think about castles and buildings. However, one of the most famous of them all is Loch Ness, home to famed cryptoid, Nessie. Here in the murky, deep and cold water is said to live a prehistoric aquatic dinosaur that has been sighted by eyewitnesses for hundreds of years. Although the most famous picture of the deep diving dino was found to be a hoax, the area has embraced Nessie as a local resident, making enjoying the lake even more exciting. A touristy vibe situated amongst gorgeous landscapes make it worth seeing while in Scotland.
5. Loch Lomond: Another of the most enjoyable Scotland landmarks travelers share also revolves around a lake, one of the largest in the area. Here, many islands can be found and the stunning natural landscape framed by snow covered peaks make it a popular tourist destination for many. There are numerous activities for guests here including water sports and golf, however one of the most interesting things about the loch may be its changing landscape. The number of islands that can be found along it can change, as some are only visible if water levels are low.
6. Cairngorms National Park: Established in 2003, the Cairngorms Park boasts moorland, lochs, farmlands, forests and rivers all situated amongst Britain’s largest and tallest mountain range. Guests to the park can enjoy a wealth of activities including water sports and nature hikes to enjoy the wildlife of the area. There are also many opportunities to experience Scotland landmarks in the park as well, including castles and ruined towns that history buffs will delight in.
7. Dunvegan Castle: The Isle of Skye is a popular tourist destination, and here can be found one of the most impressive castle Scotland landmarks in the region. The structure itself may be smaller than other castles, but it’s strong and fortified appearance and precarious location perched atop a cliff make it popular with tourists. Dunvegan is also the oldest castle in all of Scotland that has remained inhabited and the royal home has provided residence to the notable Clan McLeod for hundreds upon hundreds of years. Tours of the castle and gardens are available as well as boat rides of the nearby loch for an all day adventure.
8. Isle of Skye Fairy Pools: Although historically thought to be magical, there are no actual fairies floating around these famous waters of the Isle of Skye. The pools themselves draw crowds from all over the world as many Scotland landmarks do. But, visitors to these pools tend to have a greater sense of adventure as getting to them is a bit of a journey and getting in them is an even bigger one. They’re stunningly clear and beautiful and make for magnificent photography opportunities. But, they’re incredibly cold and only daring swimmers will be able to get more than just a toe in.
9. Shetland Islands: For visitors who want to enjoy some of the natural beauty of Scotland in a sub-arctic region that has been dubbed a Geopark, then this northernmost of Scotland landmarks is an ideal stop. Artists and photographers alike find the Shetlands perfect for finding both inspiration as well as an incredible diversity of unique wildlife such as seabirds and seals. The six thousand year old island cluster also boasts its own culture and heritage and there are archaeological finds to explore as well as local cuisine and tradition, too.
10. Foula Isle: Known as Bird Island, Foula lies to the west of the Shetlands and is where the RMS Oceanic met her ultimate fate. It features cliffs and a single beach where a handful of boats can come and go with some skill required. The island is notably bleak and perhaps home to the last remaining remnants of the Norn language. Foula holds few Scotland landmarks but does feature a lighthouse and village for visitors to enjoy. The island played host to the film “Edge of the World” a 1937 work that capitalized on the landscape and remoteness of the isle.