If you’ve been dreaming of a visit to Scotland for forever, then you’ll want to make the most of your time once you eventually get there. There’s so much to do and see in my gorgeous home country that it can be difficult for visitors to know where to begin.

In reality, Scotland is a pretty small country but it has so much to offer that it can be totally overwhelming knowing where to begin.

So, how do you have it all on a trip to Scotland? Because, let’s face it, planning a trip to somewhere you’ve never been before and trying to fit in everything you want to do and see can be tough.

Plan ahead

plan a trip to scotland

The thing I recommend most is making sure you plan your trip well ahead of time. Planning is actually one of my favourite parts about travel and I love sitting down with my laptop to plan out where I’m going to go, what I’m going to do and what I want to see in whatever destination I’m heading to next.

Don’t leave it to the last minute to try to plan things or, worst of all, don’t arrive at the airport in Scotland with no plans other than how to get to your accommodation.

If you do this, you’ll end up spending a big chunk of your holiday time trying to plan and organise things that could have otherwise been done in advance from the comfort of your own couch. It’s a waste of the time you have in a place if you spend it all planning and organising.

Think about what you want to do

plan a trip to scotland

Are you a city lover? Or do you love to be out and about in nature? Do you long to be by the seaside? Are you a big fan of a road trip?

You need to think about all of these things and what you want to do most during your time in Scotland, because that’ll determine where you go.

Or, if you want to enjoy a little bit of everything, Scotland can offer that too. Because it’s a wee (that’s small for the uninitiated) country, most places are easily accessible by car or public transport within just a few hours.

City life

If it’s cities you’re into then Scotland won’t disappoint. The most popular city for visitors to Scotland is undoubtedly the capital, Edinburgh. Beyond that, the biggest city in Scotland (but one that’s always overlooked in favour of Edinburgh) is Glasgow.

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Both cities have so much to offer visitors. If you’re after the quintessential Scottish experience then don’t miss out Edinburgh. It’s charming, beguiling and utterly beautiful.

If you want a city that’s a bit more raw, unpolished and full of some of the friendliest people you’ll ever meet then Glasgow will fit the bill perfectly.

Or, better yet, if you have time, head to both. Glasgow and Edinburgh are only an hour apart and are perfectly connected by bus, road or rail.

Take in nature

plan a trip to scotland

If you want to get out and about in nature then Scotland certainly fits the bill.

There are mountains, national parks, lochs (over 30,000 of them!), forests and so much more.

The scenery in Scotland is honestly like nowhere else in the world I’ve ever seen. Some of the best views I’ve experienced have been in Scotland and this makes me even more proud to call it my home.

If there’s one recommendation that you take from this article, let it be this. Please, please don’t come to Scotland and only visit the cities, not venturing any further than the urban landscape.

You’d be doing yourself a massive disservice to only see Scotland’s cities.

Scotland also has some of the very best beaches in the world. Some of them look like they’d be more at home in the Caribbean or Mediterranean than in Scotland.

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Take a road trip

Did you know Scotland is home to roads that have been dubbed as being better than the iconic Route 66? I’m talking about the North Coast 500.

The North Coast 500 is a circular route of just over 500 miles that starts and ends in Inverness in the north of Scotland. It takes in some of the most incredible scenery that Scotland has to offer and I couldn’t recommend it more to visitors to the country.

plan a trip to scotland

Do you have any other tips for visitors on how to plan a trip to Scotland?