The history of Scotland is as fascinating as it is complex. There were tribal Celts and ancient, face-painted Picts, Roman conquerors and audacious red-headed Vikings, fallen monarchs and powerful warrior-royals, noble clansmen, great explorers, pensive philosophers, bright inventors, and all that came with them and the remnants they left behind including astonishing signs of their presence and sophistication.
Think ancient and mysterious standing stones, fine castles and lavish stately homes, striking architecture, derelict fortresses, world-famous feats of engineering and more! From the Scottish Borders to Orkney and from Fife to the Isle of Skye, fierce battles, cruel ridings and bloody risings were won and lost, lasting unions were forged, and new discoveries and world-changing inventions were made.
The list could go on as the history of Scotland stretches back thousands of years. Relive the past and witness the wondrous monuments that today proudly tell their stories.
Scotland is well known as an ancient land with a fascinating history. What you might not know though, is how far that history stretches back – some of our sites are older than Egypt’s great Pyramids of Giza and Stonehenge in England.
Whilst it’s not possible to visit the many hundreds of Scotland’s historical sites at the moment, through the wonders of modern technology, it’s easy to see some of these amazing places virtually. Some links below take you to amazing 3D renders of selected sites, so you can learn more about them and for some, also see how they might have looked in their heyday.
Sit back, relax. Getting from A to B can be a chore sometimes, but not in Scotland. View the landscapes from a new perspective, with great rail journeys passing through some of the most scenic corners of the country.
In Orkney there’s time to stop and think about how the elements shape the islands you see before you. To gaze out across the sea and watch as it slowly moulds the cliffs and the beaches. To hear the call of migrating birds as they fly in on the wind. To wonder how many more thousand-year-old secrets the earth under your feet could be hiding. And to imagine the stories once told around a fire, and the stories yet to be heard. Come and visit Orkney, see the elements that shape these islands and feel them stir your soul.
Celebrate 2021 with some uplifting Scottish music! Traditional music and Gaelic songs have been at the heart of Scottish culture for centuries and it has never been more important to come together and support the talented Scottish musicians that are part of the unique and vibrant traditional folk music scene.
So put on your dancing shoes and get ready for some foot-stomping tunes as you travel through Scotland (virtually) to the sounds of the most exciting contemporary folk musicians and singers.
Secret Scotland – Series 1, Episode 1 Comedian Susan Calman takes a light-hearted jaunt around her homeland to uncover the secrets behind some of Scotland's most famous locations. She begins by visiting Edinburgh and the east coast, where she learns all about the firing of the one o'clock gun at the city's iconic castle, as well as the hiding place of Scotland's crown jewels. The fascinating stories continue below ground, as Susan delves into the ghostly history of Edinburgh's criminal past. Then, in lighter mode, she heads to St Andrews to try out a charming variation of the game of golf.
The Scottish Highlands, where to start? A destination with magical landscapes, glistening lochs, centuries of eventful history and hundreds of hidden spots where you can relive the past and embrace the landscape. The region is home to Britain's largest National Park; dolphin pods off the northeast coast; rugged seascapes in the North Highlands; Britain's highest peak, Ben Nevis; as well as stunning islands and stretches of coastline just waiting to be explored. The Scottish Highlands are a haven for outdoor adventurers, with miles of walking and cycling routes to uncover, a huge variety of outdoor activities to try, including canoeing, archery, gorge walking and Munro bagging, and a vast selection of landscapes to explore.
Their creation has spanned hundreds of thousands of years, with intricate patterns, shapes and sizes breaking off to form exciting lands at sea - all waiting for you to explore. There are over 900 islands off the coast of Scotland, all of which boast their own unique personalities and amazing attractions to uncover. incredible views and a welcoming community to enjoy.
Why is Scotland so fiercely proud of its national drink? In this video, we take a broad look at Scotch whisky, its origins, the distilling process, and the way the Scottish whisky industry has grown over time. Learn about the different regions in Scotland where whisky is made and some of the history behind its production – including illicit stills and smuggling! From peaty Islay whiskies to golden Speyside malts, everybody has their favourite dram, but wouldn’t it be nice to know a bit more about the Scotch in your glass? If you are just beginning your whisky journey, then we hope that this video inspires you to visit Scotland and tour a whisky distillery. For many people, this is one of the highlights of their trip to Scotland! New whisky distilleries are opening all the time all over Scotland, from the islands to the Highlands. The number of visitors to whisky distilleries has increased 56% since 2010, furthermore, the whisky industry is constantly innovating and taking major steps to reduce its environmental impact. The whisky industry is certainly not standing still.
At first glance, the Scottish landscape is harsh: foreboding fortresses atop hills and cliffs, the desolate moors… But spend some time here and you’ll quickly realize Scotland has its own unique beauty: breathtaking highlands just made for hiking and strolling, craggy coastlines, monuments that are proud reminders of long-ago battles, and blue lakes just made for fishing. Scotland is a land of legends and romance, from Robert the Bruce and Macbeth to lake monsters and the tragic Mary Queen of Scots. Here’s a look at the best places to visit in Scotland
Scotland’s towns, villages, cities, iconic attractions and stunning landscapes are as varied and as diverse as they come, so no matter where you end up you’ll be blown away by the breathtaking setting around you.
Scotland is home to some incredible varieties of food; from succulent seafood and traditional hearty haggis, to colourful vegan dishes and delicious locally sourced ingredients, there is a wealth of food to try. Scotland is surrounded by plentiful seas, and boasts lush mountains, fertile lands and varied weather, meaning we can grow natural produce on our doorstep and supply this to our many restaurants and markets across the country.
Ahead of Splash of Tartan, we show you the proper way to wear Scotland's national dress
Lead Photo Credit: Blend12 – Pixabay
Any destination and other content featured which is not specific to JWH tours provided in this newsletter is for general information and knowledge purposes only and not an endorsement. The information is gathered through various sources and is subject to change at any time without notice. It is the sole responsibility of the traveller to check with the proper authorities regarding travel to all past, current and future JWH newsletter featured destinations.