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Old 01-05-2012, 09:10 AM
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Much of my family history goes back to Scotland. So my wife has suggested that we visit sometime. My question would be is it worth going to see? I enjoyed Ireland and I've been to Britain, but never made it north. Many tours or packages that I see seem to talk about golfing which is something I have no interest in.

What are some top attractions in Scotland? Are the lochs worth seeing? How about castles? Natural beauty? Scenery?
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Old 01-05-2012, 09:37 AM
Location: Durham, NC
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Absolutely. I am a non-golfer and spent a week in Scotland and loved it. Avoid the package deals and set your own itinerary.

Edinburgh is one of the most charing and beautiful cities in the world and should not be missed.
I've not been to Glasgow, so can't comment there.
Inverness is the hub of the Highlands and while the town is nothing special it offers a nice base from which to explore the surrounding area, including mountains, lochs, etc... Loch Ness is nearby, and though its painfully touristy in a way, it is beautiful as well.
The Isle of Skye is phenomenal!
There are countless quaint coastal towns that look like they'd be a blast to explore.
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Old 01-05-2012, 09:41 AM
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Absolutely and I 100% agree - ditch the package tour ... it's fairly easy to get around, set your own agenda, especially if you are looking into some family history.

I made a couple trips up there, one based out of Edinburgh and another Glasgow. The later was used as a launching pad to explore some of my own family history, looking at castles, exploring the smaller towns/cities.

I really enjoyed pretty much every minute I spent in Scotland and didn't touch a single golf club
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Old 01-05-2012, 09:43 AM
Location: Toronto
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It is easily worth it. I liked it much more than England.

You can visit Glasgow & Edinburgh. I only passed through Glasgow but in Edinburgh you can see Edinburgh Castle, The Royal Mile (the main street leading to the castle), Holyroodhouse Palace (a residence of the Queen), Princes Street Gardens, Arthur's Seat, Canongate Church, a ghost tour under the city through tunnels, and more. That's all I remember in the city itself off the top of my head. We are not ones to see museums.

We also rented a car and went to take a Loch Ness tour, tour of Urquhart Castle, stopped at a restaurant to have some Haggis, drove through a million round a bouts, saw Highland Cows/Coo and saw one area who's name escapes me right now, but I will add it in once I find it. Edit: The area is called Glencoe, beautiful scenery.

There is also Stirling Castle and many other castles, both ruins and functional to see.

I know it's not very descriptive, but start looking up some of the places mentioned and I think you will be interested.
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Old 01-05-2012, 09:52 AM
Location: Scotland
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Edinburgh one of Europes most beautiful cities, Glasgow is a large cosmopolitan city with plenty to enjoy, Skye is breathtaking, the highlands are gorgeous and you have cities like Dundee which is a student city with lots of nightlife and historical attractions and where the new v&a museum is being built and it is close to St Andrews. And you have the capital of the highlands Inverness (one of the UK's fastest growing cities) and Aberdeen where there is plenty to do. You also have Loch Lomand, Ben Nevis, highland games, hogmany in Edinburgh (best in the world IMO) and the Edinburgh festival the largest arts festival in the world.
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Old 01-05-2012, 09:54 AM
Location: Colorado
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Omigod, of course it is! I spent a week touring a very small part of Scotland and never even saw a golf course. Depending on where you want to be and what part of the country you want to see there is LOADS to see and do. Eg;

1) Visit Glasgow and take a bus tour of the city, stop at the Rennie Macintosh museum
2) Drive from Glasgow north out of the city on the A82 towards Luss, a gorgeous village on the west coast of Loch Lomond. Stop in Luss and have a picnic on the banks of Loch Lomond. Maybe take a ferry tour of the Loch.
3) Keep going on the A82 to Fort William, stay overnight
4) Drive to Mallaig and catch the ferry to the Isle of Skye. It takes about 30 minutes but the journey is well worth it. Take pictures of the bagpipe player greeting you as you disembark. Drive the coast road to the bridge that connects Skye to the mainland OR stay on the Isle and take the bridge later.
5) Take the A87 to Fort Augustus at the south end of Loch Ness. Whether you drive along the Loch on the north or south side doesn't really matter as both routes are gorgeous altho the north road has the ruins of Urqurhart Castle.
6) Keep going to Inverness. Here you can stay and explore the city or turn south on the A9 near Kirriemuir. Along here you can take detours to Glamis Castle off the A90 or Balmoral off the A93 between Braemar and Ballater.
7) Keep going south to Edinburgh. Stay there for a few days to see the Castle, the Royal Mile, the Old Town and Holyrood.

And that's just a few suggestions. There is SO much more to see and do.
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Old 01-05-2012, 10:07 AM
Location: Oxford, England
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Scotland is such a beautiful country and is worth visiting whether you like golf or not. Do not miss Edinburgh which is just so beautiful but also laid back and just a perfect place to sit in a cafe and watch the world go by. Glasgow is more industrial but still has a lot to offer though is no way near as attractive as the Capital as it has a far more industrial past. The city has been greatly revived and regenerated in the last 20 years though and now boasts quite a few attractions, some grand nineteen century architecture. It is more hip and trendy than Edinburgh. I personally don't like it as much but is worth a visit.

The West Coast of Scotland ( Highlands and Islands) has some of the most beautiful scenery anywhere in the world IMO. The East Coast I would personally give a miss unless you had a lot of spare time.

The bigger Islands such as Skye, Mull, Jura and Islay are just wonderful as are the smaller ones such as Coll , Tiree, Muck and Eigg. If you had even more time then Harris and Lewis are just fabulous. Orkey and the Shetlands do require a bit more commitment to get there.

I lived in Scotland for five years so DM me if you want more info but YES, YES, YES , there is far more to Scotland than golfing. Wonderful scenic beauty, fabulous coast and islands, some fabulous restaurants, great country house hotels, museums, medieval castles, shopping, outdoors adventures like trekking and climbing, the lochs etc... The ladscapes are magical even when it rains which is a bonus ! Avoid Summer though as it is usually the busiest AND wettest time. Autumn and Spring tend to be much better for the weather.

Scotland should be on anyone's list of must see in Europe IMO.
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Old 01-05-2012, 12:46 PM
Location: Scotland
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"give east coast a miss"

Edinburgh is in the east coast lol.
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Old 01-05-2012, 01:07 PM
Location: Colorado
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Originally Posted by paull805 View Post
"give east coast a miss"

Edinburgh is in the east coast lol.
But it's not the entire east coast is it?
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Old 01-05-2012, 02:49 PM
Location: Eureka CA
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YES you will not regret it. The train from King's Cross is a good way to get to Edinburgh. Don't miss the Babbity Bowster in Glasgow. Get yourself a guide book so you can spend your time well. Have a wonderful trip!
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