First-time visitors to Scotland have a lot to take in, from the landscape and historical sites to the people and the language.
Even though most people will have a great time, there are a few things they probably wish they had known before arriving.
In light of this, we asked our readers what they thought; the following are their responses.
1. Do not be afraid to travel in the winter.
This should be fairly obvious, but Scotland is beautiful year-round if you can handle the weather.
As stated by one of our users: “We arrived in Glasgow on the Friday before Christmas, and the city was bustling! People celebrating, Christmas Markets, it was a joy to take it all in while strolling around.”
2. Take the train instead of a car
This was a popular suggestion, with one individual stating that trains are superior for “viewing breathtaking scenery from the windows.”
3. Do not fear integrating yourself.
It may seem obvious, but this is a suggestion made by many, who all add that not always being a tourist can be advantageous and that Scots are so hospitable.
One follower recommended: “You must learn the lyrics to at least one song and sing it in its entirety. There is no escape from it.”
While someone else added: “Consume the haggis and the whisky. Repeat.”
4. Prepare in advance – you don’t want to miss out!
As there is so much to see and do, many suggested planning ahead.
One user remarked, “You must plan ahead; we missed out on the island of Hoy because we did not schedule in advance.”
5. Be ready for inclement weather
As Billy Connolly once remarked, there is no bad weather in Scotland, only inappropriate attire.
Many agreed with this recommendation, adding that it may be prudent to pack for all types of weather, even in summer.
One person joked: “Avoid carrying an umbrella. Ineffective in the wind”
While someone else added: “When the temperature is warm, the sun is shining brightly, there are no clouds in the sky, and there is no wind, and you see flashing warning signs that say “Heavy rain,” believe them. Just believe it.”
6. Dress appropriately
Even on a sunny day, you should never attempt to go hiking in sandals.
Someone wrote that you should bring good walking boots and a good raincoat, as well as “essential” warm clothing.
One more added: “In June, our first stop in Edinburgh was Prince Street to purchase heavy sweaters. We did not anticipate the weather. A simple fleece will not suffice.”
7. Do not assume that everyone will understand you.
Local dialects, Scots words and phrases, as well as the accents, may make it difficult to understand what everyone is saying. Do not fear asking people to slow down.
According to one follower, “even though you believe you speak the same language, you actually do not.”
8. Do not be afraid to ask for assistance.
This is a good one, as most Scots are willing to lend a hand and we are typically very hospitable and patient.
One of Scotland Now’s readers writes, “The people are warm, friendly, and helpful.”
“Ask the locals instead of engaging in touristy activities,” advises another.
One author penned: “They will share stories and take you to unimaginable locations. Every person with whom we spoke was truly remarkable and wonderful. The beauty is not limited to the landscape. Be courteous and present.”
9. You won’t be able to see everything in one trip.
Scotland is larger, busier, and more magnificent than you may believe.
“The people are remarkable. The country is lovely, “One individual writes. You must definitely add more time to your visit!
While another traveler added, “There is no way that a single trip to Scotland is sufficient; there is never enough of Scotland.”
Other suggestions included booking a longer trip and not attempting to see and do everything on the first visit.
However, our favorite is: “Take your time and avoid hurrying. Since Scotland has existed for thousands of years, you can always return.”
10. You will find it difficult to depart.
Lastly, be prepared for a strange type of melancholy when you depart; even the locals experience this when they travel elsewhere. It makes coming back even more desirable.
Topic: 10 things people wished they knew before visiting Scotland
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