Conjuring up romance effortlessly and with subtlety, Scotland is a stunning destination in which to celebrate your love for each other. For the backdrop to your honeymoon here, expect dazzling skylines of moody mountaintops, emerald-green glens, myriad remote, sand-rimmed islands ideal for escaping or eloping, and a mysterious fortress or three for every horizon. But for vacationing newlyweds, what truly makes this land so romantic are the stories that lace each place you pass through: legacies of great romantic writers like Sir Walter Scott, tales of trysts involving the likes of Mary, Queen of Scots and more. Here are the most romantic destinations in Scotland for honeymooners, with suggestions of what to do in each.
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Sure, it's crisp and cold, but those who head to Scotland in January will be rewarded with the quietest environs and lowest prices of the year. This is a great time to bundle up and explore uncrowded cities and snow-dusted scenery. After an early sunset, look for seafood restaurants and snug pubs, especially on January 25 when Scots celebrate their national poet: Robert Burns.
February is a cold and potentially snowy month to visit Scotland; still, it's easy to stay warm with uncrowded cultural attractions, whiskey distilleries, and a vast wilderness offering endorphin-inducing activities (and lengthening daylight hours to enjoy them). In fact, this month is Fort William's annual mountain festival for the ultimate fix of outdoor inspiration.
Get here now: March is the end of low season—a good time to snag travel deals and explore uncrowded attractions, from Edinburgh Castle to the Isle of Skye (combine both for the ultimate road trip). Daylight hours are also increasing as spring approaches for more time outdoors. Keep in mind that there may be an uptick in crowds and prices if Easter falls early.
Spring is officially here. April is an uplifting month when the Scots dust off winter and embrace sunnier, milder weather and blooming flowers (though snow-covered mountains might persist). This is an ideal time for taking an outdoorsy road trip broken up by hikes and coastal walks before the summer crowds arrive. Don't miss the festival dedicated to whiskey near Cairngorms National Park.
Welcome to one of the best months of the year to visit Scotland. Not only is the weather warming up this month, but it’s generally sunnier with colorful blossoms and green foliage, which means excellent conditions for spring hiking. And the cherry on top? You'll beat the summer crowds arriving next month.
The transition from spring to summer is an excellent time to explore Scotland before the peak crowds arrive. In June, the landscapes are fresh and green, the weather is warming up, and the days are extra long for enjoying an array of outdoor activities, from hiking and whiskey tasting in the Highlands to sea kayaking off the west coast, perhaps with a whale sighting near the Isle of Mull.
July brings the warmest temperatures of the year for exploring the western lochs and isles (and occasional waterfalls) and taking road trips on the north or east coasts. Of course, there's plenty to do in and around lively Glasgow and Edinburgh with easy access to trails, castles, and beaches—just make sure to bring a layer wherever you go.
It's festival time in Edinburgh when the capital bursts to capacity with several top-notch events featuring books, films, and military bands—and, of course, the world's largest arts fest called Fringe. Nature-seekers, for their part, can find plenty of space elsewhere, from the coasts and islands to the rugged Highlands. Wherever you travel, you'll want to plan your trip far in advance during the peak season.
With early hints of autumn, September is considered one of the best months of the year to travel to Scotland. This is a great time to explore Edinburgh's top sights and take a scenic road trip with fewer crowds than in August, though you can always find a festive vibe at the Pitlochry Highland Games with members of the British royal family.
Autumn is a spectacular time to explore Scotland's cultural cities and rugged scenery. The weather is becoming crisp and cool, and you can say goodbye to the bothersome gnats, called midges, that disappear with the last hints of summer. In other words, this is the perfect time for romantic road trips—with lower rates for luxury resorts—while golfers, hikers, and wildlife-seekers have plenty of options.
Scotland quiets down this month, letting visitors take advantage of low rates and light crowds in Glasgow and Edinburgh. Better yet, pair your city excursion with a scenic road trip in the Scottish countryside (or isles) for invigorating hikes, whiskey tasting, and castle spotting—all capped with cozy autumn evenings, perhaps by the fire.
With short days and long, cozy nights, December is an atmospheric time in Glasgow and Edinburgh with traditional festivities and Christmas markets. Elsewhere, this is one of the quietest (and cheapest) times of the year to enjoy Scotland's beauty on a scenic road trip, whether you prefer wildlife and whiskey tasting in the northern Highlands or cliff walks and seafood on the rugged west coast.