10 Reasons You Should Add Scotland To Your Itinerary Now

Isle Of Skye - Scotland
Isle Of Skye – Scotland

Scotland. A wild, rugged country. Where red heads roam free and it’s perfectly acceptable to say Aye and Wee. On my travels, many people told me about how I should go to Ireland, ‘it’s so green, the accent is so sexy, they know how to party, there’s so much history…’ and yes that is true… but how many people have you heard say ‘YOU MUST GO TO SCOTLAND!’ Well here I am telling you this! SCOTLAND IS WHERE IT’S AT!

These are the places I visited

-Edinburgh

-St. Andrews

-Inverness

-Isle of Skye

-Oban

-Aberdeen

-Dundee

1 – They have the sexiest accent! Seriously, any Scottish men out there give me a call. Whilst you might not always understand what they’re saying, it’s ok, you can just stare into their eyes and nod your head. The people are so so friendly. Unlike the snobbish Londoners, the Scots know how to make you feel welcome. When I first arrived off the train in Edinburgh, a gentleman helped me find my hostel and carry my bag without being creepy! Yay. You can approach almost anyone in the street and they’ll be more than happy to help you out with directions, translations or just to say hello.

Skyline of Edinburgh
Skyline of Edinburgh

2 – Edinburgh is the coolest capital city ever! The windy roads, cobblestone streets, open green spaces, clean crisp air, best and cheap nightlife, amazing pubs and a castle in the middle of the city… it has everything you could ever want out of a city! And it’s relatively small, so you can explore the city by foot. Be sure to make the climb up to Arthur’s Seat to get a breath of fresh air and a spectacular view over the city.

Conquering Arthur's Seat
Conquering Arthur’s Seat

3 – Scotland has so many castles! Like 3000 (most are complete ruins but still spectacular). So if you’re into your knights in shining armour, kingdoms and castle walls, look no further than Scotland. For the full list of castles visit http://www.scotland.com/castles/ A lot of the castles are free, so you can climb in and around them and capture some wicked photos.

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4- Harry Potter was written and filmed here! Enough said really.

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5 – The Isle of Skye is one of the most majestical places on Earth. Basically untouched by man, you can completely immerse yourself in the beautiful countryside!

Fairy Cirlces - Isle of Skye
Fairy Cirlces – Isle of Skye

6 – You can spend hours by Loch Ness, looking for Nessy! You can enjoy a beer or whisky by the lake and watch the sun set whilst having your camera by your side. If you’re game enough, you can jump into the nearly freezing water, unfortunately I wasn’t game enough, but what a great story to tell.

Looking for Nessy - Loch Ness
Looking for Nessy – Loch Ness

7 – The landscape is completely surreal. Moutains, rivers, valleys, lakes with small winding roads to take it all in.

Conquering a hike through a valley
Conquering a hike through a valley

8- It snows! For all of us Australians that have never seen snow before, it’s quite a remarkable experience. Scotland has ski fields and beautiful snow capped mountains, and in the midst of winter, snow will creep down to the lowlands into the bigger towns and cities where you can throw snowballs and make snowmen.

Enjoying the snow maybe a little too much
Enjoying the snow maybe a little too much

9 – It has beautiful beaches and coastal areas. Perhaps, not in winter, however when it starts to heat up, you can flock to the sandy beaches. My favourite was in St. Andrews where you can see the ruins of a cathederal, castle and run your feet through the sand.

Crystal clear waters, surrounded by mountains
Crystal clear waters, surrounded by mountains

10 – IT’S JUST DAMN BEAUTIFUL!

Wee cottage in the woods
Wee cottage in the woods

I hope this has inspired you to add Scotland to your itinerary for your next adventure!

Ciao Lads and Lass’

 

1 New Friend Request

‘Hey, yea I’m from (insert country here).’
‘Oh really? I want to go there one day.’
‘Ah well add me and when you come hit me up.

I’ve had this conversation so many times. And my facebook friends keep growing in number as you meet people from everywhere across the globe. There are so many places that I do wish to visit in the world and yes if you’ll let me crash on your lounge and take me out to your favourite bar, let’s do it. However, I just recently got to thinking about all the people you meet through your travels, you might have an amazing time with them, and you may never see them again, but you’ll always see their status updates and keep up to date on their life.

My Romanian/German friends overlooking the Danube River - Budapest, Hungary
My Romanian/German friends overlooking the Danube River – Budapest, Hungary

 Twenty years ago, you would’ve had a great time out with some cool people, went your separate ways, never saw them again, and they may cross your mind a few years later as you reminisce.
But now due to facebook, a night out turns into a virtual connection lasting a lifetime.
And it gets me thinking about what it really means to be someone’s friend, beyond a friendship request.

Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love scrolling down my news feed and seeing things in all different languages, with pictures from the snow, mountains or beaches. And I love the fact that at some point in our two very different lives, our paths crossed, we smiled at each other and formed a bond. The unfortunate thing really is, I still know everything that’s happening to you in your life, but I genuinely don’t know if I’ll ever see you again. And you’ll see what’s happening in this person’s life for years to come.
So how do you cut people out of your life now? You really can’t. Whereas 20 years ago, if you outgrew someone, that was it. But now it’s all so personal and people take great offence to being blocked or deleted. Life definitely needs those buttons to filter out those people who are no good for you, but does it have to be so public? It’s such a relief when you do realise that you don’t need certain people in your life and you can cut them out, but until then your friend requests keep rolling in.

The coolest roomates you could ask for in a hostel, French, Slovenian, American and German friends - Edinburgh, Scotland
The coolest roomates you could ask for in a hostel, French, Slovenian, American and German friends – Edinburgh, Scotland

Some of my closest friends that I have the fondest memories with , are people that you share intimate moments with. Whether it’s telling them your secrets, going on an adventure together, staying up until 3am just talking about nothing in particular, calling them when you’re in trouble and just someone to hug and who makes you feel at home. And it’s just a bonus if you can crash on their lounge when you go traveling to their home country. But it’s those relationships that last beyond that one night out, you message them, have your little inside jokes, have numerous photos with them and you’re already planning when you can see eachother again. You don’t necessarily have to talk everyday or skype once a week, but when you do talk, it’s like it was yesterday. And when you talk, you’re not telling them everything you’ve done for the past month, instead just having a general conversation filled with laughter that doesn’t really make sense.

My American friends at the Cliffs of Moher - Ireland
My American friends at the Cliffs of Moher – Ireland

It’s crazy how social media has changed friendships especially within the travel community, because back in the day if you really wanted to keep in touch with someone special, you would get their home address, print off some pictures, write a letter and send it across the world which could take weeks. But now everything is instantaneous. Night out. Take some photos. Have a good chat. Discuss future travel plans. ‘Oh add me.’ And done, you’re now friends for life, where that friendship once wouldn’t have exceeded that night.

And I’m not saying in any way that this is a bad thing at all, it’s fantastic. 20 years ago it would’ve been impossible to have pen pals from Brazil, America, Canada, Scotland, France, Sweden, China… all at the same time. I am so thankful for all the incredible people I’ve met in my travels from all across the world, and I probably follow you on facebook, Instagram or twitter. I wish you all of the best in your lives and really do hope I get to crash on your lounge at some point and my offer is always there, if you’re ever in Australia, please do come a visit. Until then keep the status updates, snapchats, tweets and posts coming.

Ciao

p.s (everyone in these photos are truly incredible! we shared some amazing times together and these photos are just a small reminder of the memories i’ll carry with my for life).