A Guide to the Scottish Highlands

Dunrobin+Castle%0A

Keana Saberi

Dunrobin Castle

Keana Saberi, Reporter

The rolling Scottish moors are a natural phenomenon with its gorgeous hued hills, creme colored castles, and breaktaking crystal streams. The beauty is unparalleled, and though Scotland is relatively small, there is so much to explore from the captivating peaks and Fir forests.

 Packing for the Weather  

The weather is chilly and rain is always at a constant. From my experience it is best to pack a multitude of layers to  prevent the cold from taking over. Here are some essentials that I’ve found are crucial and take in mind that Scottish Summers dip into the 40s and 50s.

  • A chunky knit sweater
  • A set of wool gloves
  • Rain boots ( or Wellies)
  • A thin t-shirt
  • A scarf
  • Thick socks

A Guide to The Best Locations in Scotland

From the sparkling lochs (or lakes) to the ivy clotted stone bridges, Scotland is a merge of glorious sights, definitely too many to list here. Here are just some of the magnificent sights to venture and excavate.                                                                                                   

Sights in Aberdeenshire

Aberdeenshire  is a glorious county located in the deeps of the city Aberdeen that is known for its beautiful sea views adorning the edges of the land and the quaint cobbled corridors and antique buildings that line the streets. The land is dispersed with ancient, turret towering castles and palaces.  Here are a few of the trip worthy sites in Aberdeenshire.

  • The Balmoral Castle, the Queen’s idyllic summer getaway located in the heart of the Royal Deeside, a breathtaking scenic mountain scape dotted with a variety of glens and creeks.
  • Craigievar Castle, sits in the middle of the picturesque lands of Aberdeenshire as an example of a gorgeous building style  from 1626 and looks as if it fell straight out of a fairytale. It’s detailed history is underlined in every aspect of the castle from its family portraits to antique furniture.
  • Dunnottar Castle,  a mysterious castle left partially in shambles upon a scenic outlook out onto the sea. From its tantalizing history and significance, some of the most wealthy Scottish families have carved their legacies into the glory of the castle. Once a terribly robust fortress, today it is a historic and beautiful part of the Scottish countrysides.
  • Crathes Castle, is a house of hallowed halls and a few too many ghost stories. The land features a scenic flower garden near a clearing by a large forest. The architecture is definitely worth viewing.

Sights in Edinburgh

A city of underlying history, from the hidden underground streets and dark coves, Edinburgh is place shrouded it ghost stories and tragic tales of blood and plaque.

  • The Real Mary King’s Close, A historic time warp back into 1600s Edinburgh, a place to discover the plague riddled underground streets and closes hidden under zooming structures built in the last 300 years. The Mary King’s Close was once a small close open to the Scottish sky, a hub of the town’s people, full of Merchants selling from their booths and farmers selling their crop. Now, it is a hidden city, under years of construction hiding the mystery of the lives lived  before under the layers of brick and stone. Tourists can  explore the once  ill infected city  and the ghost stories  that remain.
  • Edinburgh Castle, once a  fortress of impenetrable stone, now the castle sits perched upon a mound of once  volcanic rock in  the heart of Edinburgh, a landmark of the city’s history. The oldest section of the Castle,  St Margaret’s Chapel dates back to the 12th century and The Great Hall to 1510. The Castle honors the noble war history of Scotland & the glorious crown jewels.
  • The Royal Mile,  the bustling path along the gates near Edinburgh Castle  that passes through the center of old Edinburgh. Speckled with historic monuments and eclectic little shops that sell objects from fine Scottish whiskey to cashmere scarves. The Royal mile features of variety of pubs all named after the historic executions that occurred over 300 years ago.
  • Greyfriars Bobby Statue, a monument in the heart of the old town that commemorates the faithful companion of a officer from many, many years ago. The faithful and loyal dog, upon seeing that his owner had not made it back from a police duty, remained in the center of town, waiting. After his body was recovered, and his grave buried in the cemetery, Bobby stayed nearest to the grave, returning every night to sleep with his owner. The town’s people fed and took care of him, yet he never stayed with them long. He always returned to the grave. For 15 years he did this and up till his death he remained unwavered in his devotion. After his death, Queen Victoria honored his loyalty by allowing his body to be buried by his owner’s. Several local pubs are named after his honor.
  • Greyfriars Kirkyard, the graveyard where both Greyfriars Bobby  and his owner were buried and where Bobby sent most of his years.  Also, where upon walking one day, J.K. Rowling( past and current resident of Edinburgh)stumbled upon a grave plaque that would one day be the namesake for her famous villainous ‘Harry Potter’ character Tom Riddle otherwise known as Lord Voldemort. Some other characters were also named after moss covered grave stones such as Professor Minerva Mcgonagall.

The Journey to Fort William

While venturing towards Fort William , a small seaside village by train the journey provides some immaculate views. Glenfinnan Viaduct, the bridge the famously is featured in the Hogwarts Express Journey in ‘Harry Potter’ is quite a sight for sore eyes. While passing across the bridge, the colliding hills and plains merge in a spectacular collision of colors across the sparkling waters down below.                                                                                                                     

Glencoe

Picturesquely placed between Loch Leven and a glen, Glencoe was used for several scenic scenes in multiple ‘Harry Potter’ films. Embroidered with  rock crags and running creeks, the cavernous mountains of Glencoe are a breathtaking nature phenomenon.

                                                                                                       

Inverness

Just outside the cityscape of Inverness lies the beauty of Dunrobin Castle, a castle adorned with gilded gold and spiraling turrets that nearly scrape the sky.  Inside the castle, the magnificent rooms range from a library ornamented with leather bound books and several rooms with delicate yet mysterious and eerie portraits of famous lords and ladies.  Located in the Northern Highlands, this grandeur castle is speckled with perfectly manicured hedges and is the backdrop of the gorgeous blue hued Scottish sky.                                                                                                          

Loch Ness

Home of the infamous Loch Ness monster ‘Nessie’  the Loch or running water mass is known for is eerie yet startling beauty and the mystical and mysteries that flow in the river shrouded with a tall, ivy green trees.

                                                                                                                     

 Portree, Isle of Skye

Located in the Inner Hebrides, The Isle of Skye is an outlook out onto the clear sea waters and cloud clotted skies. From delicious Fish & Chips to decadent sights of nature, the journey to this small island is definitely worth it.  

Though this are only a few of the perfect scenic views that are part of Scotland’s wonderful scenery, this guide outlines some of Scotland’s greatest landmarks.