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Escape The Heat! Why This Record-Breaking European Country Is Perfect For A Summer Getaway

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It can be hard not to get swept into the allure of a warm, beachy getaway this summer, especially with so many people blasting your social media feeds with the dreamiest pictures from some of the most gorgeous destinations on Earth.

But at the end of the day, a beach vacation just isn’t for everyone.

I, for one, am yearning for a European city break, and if you, too, want to find someplace with the perfect mild weather while still avoiding the suffocating crowds of France and Spain, I’ve got just the place for you.

Woman taking in the views of Dumbarton, Scotland

Scotland just announced a brand new tourism record, having welcomed 3.9 million tourists this past year, according to official tourism statistics.

That’s a whopping 15% increase from the pre-pandemic high, and a good chunk of these international travelers are flying from the U.S.

And if you’re curious to see for yourself what the fuss is all about, I’ve got some good news for you – this summer might just be the perfect time for a tour through Scotland’s fairytale-like landscapes.

The ruins of Kilchurn castle on Loch Awe in Scotland

Here’s why:

Not your Typical Summer Getaway

Why deal with heat waves and overcrowded beaches when you can take in some of the world’s most jaw-dropping sights at a pleasant 20°C (68°F)?

Even though Scotland isn’t exactly the place for a typical summer getaway, the switch-up can feel refreshing, especially when there’s so much nature, history, and culture to take in.

If I were to fawn over all the incredible attractions that dot the country, we’d be here all day.

Edinburgh Castle

So instead (in hopes of helping those crafting their very first Scotland itinerary), I’ll quickly go through all the most popular landmarks across some of the most visited hubs:

  • Edinburgh – Edinburgh Castle, the Old Town, St. Giles' Cathedral, and the Palace of Holyroodhouse.
  • Glasgow – Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, the Riverside Museum, the Glasgow Science Centre, People's Palace, and Winter Gardens
  • The Highlands – The Isle of Skye, Cairngorms National Park, Urquhart Castle, Dunrobin Castle & Gardens, and Steall Waterfall
  • Loch Ness – The Loch Ness Lake, Urquhart Castle, and the Loch Ness Centre and Exhibition
  • Stirling – The Wallace Monument, the Battle of Bannockburn Visitor Centre, and Stirling Castle
  • The Isle of Mull – Tobermory, Fingal's Cave, and the Treshnish Isles
  • The Outer Hebrides – Lewis and Harris,  the ancient Callanish Standing Stones, Luskentyre, and Seilebost
An old croft at Quidnish on the Isle of Harris in Scotland

There’s Always Something New To Explore

If you’re one of the lucky souls who’ve already been to Scotland, you might be thinking – I’ve already seen these places; why should I go through the 7+ hour flight again?

That’s because while everything else might stay the same, there’s always a new hotel or restaurant opening up in one of your favorite cities to make things extra interesting.

Just this past year, places like the Delnashaugh, AC Hotel by Marriott Glasgow, and Eleven Stafford Street Townhouse have become some of Scotland’s hottest stays, and whether you want to give them a try or are waiting for something even newer, a summer trip guarantees all the comfort and excitement you’re looking for.

Hotels in Edinburgh, Scotland

And that goes for bars and restaurants, too.

New openings like The Spanish Butcher, Fallachan Kitchen, LOCHRIN Rooftop Bar,  and Ondine St Andrews have already made a name for themselves as some of the best places to eat in Scotland.

For even more ideas on new restaurants to explore, you can head over here.

An Event-Filled Summer

Your Scotland itinerary will include more than great restaurants, though, especially since this summer is set to be busy.

A bagpipe band in the Highland Games, Scotland

Between the Highland Games, the Edinburgh International Festival, the Genesis Scottish Open, the Royal Highland Show, the Stonehaven Folk Festival, and so many other exciting events you’ll struggle to keep count, your trip here will be anything but boring.

A Solo Traveler’s Haven

With solo travel continuing its meteoric rise to mainstream popularity, more and more travelers are looking for that perfect, safe, yet gorgeous destination, and it seems like we’ve found the best one yet.

Tourists walking past the colorful buildings on Victoria street in Edinburgh, Scotland

Edinburgh, in particular, is just a dream for those traveling alone this summer.

Not only will everyone feel safe here, but there are endless accommodation options for one, the community is mind-blowingly welcoming, and the public transportation system is so well-run that you’ll never have to worry about getting lost.

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