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Scotland‘s breathtaking glens, majestic crags crowned with castles, and vibrant cities steeped in culture make it undeniably one of the most stunning destinations on Earth. Deciding where to go in Scotland isn’t easy, given the many options available.

1. Orkney

Orkney, Scotland

Orkney is a living museum with numerous Stone Age sites that are rich in mystery. In 1999, the Heart of Neolithic Orkney near Stromness received World Heritage status, consisting of four sites. Stromness is also among the top 30 seaside towns in the UK.

You must visit the ancient settlement of Skara Brae. The remains of this 5000-year-old fishing and farming village are remarkably well-preserved, showcasing its stunning location by the sweeping curve of the Bay of Skaill. The village is particularly beautiful on bright days.

You’ll find the Ring of Brodgar, the impressive Stones of Stenness, and the nearby Maes Howe burial site. Maes Howe’s burial chamber complex is considered one of Europe’s most impressive. Its most remarkable aspect is the alignment of the tomb with the winter solstice sun. The Vikings left behind runic graffiti in the 12th century.

2. Pitlochry

Pitlochry, Scotland

Pitlochry, a peaceful and picturesque town in the stunning Highlands of Perthshire, has rightfully earned its place in your top ten most beautiful places in Scotland.

Foodies will find Pitlochry to be one of the top destinations in Scotland. The town offers many options, including distilleries, pubs, restaurants, and tearooms. In addition, visitors can easily access numerous rewarding walks and thrilling outdoor activities.

Visit and sample the offerings of Blair Athol Distillery, one of Scotland’s oldest working distilleries. Then, go to Queen’s View for a range of woodland walks and breathtaking views over Loch Tummel.

If you’re a fan of the great outdoors, you won’t want to miss the opportunity to explore Ben Vrackie. With its impressive 841m summit and stunning views of the Beinn a Ghlo range to the north, this mountain is a must-see for nature enthusiasts.

3. Iona Island

Iona Island, Scotland

The Isle of Iona, located less than a mile off the Isle of Mull, has a population of 177. When describing your emotions about this place, “soulfulness” is the perfect word.

For centuries, people have made pilgrimages to this small, three-mile-long, and slightly over a mile-wide area. The island’s captivating spiritual history and breathtaking natural beauty create a visit that deeply resonates with all five senses.

To truly experience the tranquillity of the Isle of Iona, it is recommended to stay overnight, as most visitors only come for a day trip. Iona Abbey and Dunbhuirg Iron Age Fort are just a few historic sites. Iona also boasts beautiful walks and a stunning coastline.

4. Glenfinnan

Glenfinnan, Scotland

Respondents praised the sleepy village of Glenfinnan for its “peace, beauty, landscape, and diversity” as it is spectacularly sited at the head of Loch Shiel.

The Hogwarts Express in the Harry Potter films passes through this elegant, multi-arched bridge, offering a delightful experience for travelers of all ages.

In the summer, a Jacobite steam train operates between Glenfinnan Fort William and Mallaig. In contrast, conventional trains run for the remainder of the year. This route made it into our round-up of unforgettable train journeys for a reason. Discover Britain’s top five steam railways for a taste of old-world charm.

Visitors are drawn to Glenfinnan for the walks and history found alongside the viaduct. In 1745, Bonnie Prince Charlie rallied forces here before embarking on the ill-fated march on London. The Glenfinnan Monument now stands as a marker for where he raised his battle standard.

Standing 60 feet tall, this impressive structure features a Highland clansman in full battle dress. It is situated in a picturesque location at the head of the loch. The best view of this iconic column can be enjoyed from a viewpoint behind the Visitor Centre.

5. Harris Island

Harris Island, Scotland

Tourists love the Isle of Harris (Na Hearadh, from the old Norse for “high land”), part of the Western Isles. It is a place that many found to be peaceful, stunningly beautiful, and filled with cherished memories. The beaches there are truly breathtaking.

The Isle of Harris is connected to Lewis, with the “division” stemming from a historical split in the MacLeod clan. Harris boasts hillier terrain compared to the low-lying Lewis. Its slopes are adorned with boulders and lead down to stunning white sands and crystal-clear azure waters, making it a top-notch island in Scotland.

Tarbet, the largest settlement in Harris, is nestled in a picturesque green valley on the narrow isthmus. The port boasts a stunning mountainous backdrop, while the town is beautifully arranged on steep terraces. North Harris’s scenery is breathtaking, with majestic gneiss mountains rising above the picturesque Loch Sea.

Meanwhile, the scenery of South Harris may be less dramatic, but it is still a stunning area. The west coast is particularly impressive, with some of the finest stretches of golden sand in the Western Isles. This is truly remarkable.

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