Planning any type of travel these days is precarious, especially if you’re a global adventurer used to travelling practically anywhere you want in the world without restrictions.
Travel within the UK can be tricky too, but for the foreseeable future it’s still more likely that holidays within Britain will be more manageable than those elsewhere. Cottages in Scotland are also in plentiful supply and often set in idyllic locations.
With plenty of wide open spaces and a low overall population density compared with many other parts of the UK, Scotland is a pretty good pick for a domestic getaway. And, if you travel away from the traditional urban tourism hotspots of Edinburgh and Glasgow, you might feel even more peace of mind and there’s still plenty to see and do.
With that in mind, here are three alternative destinations for Scottish staycations.
Scotland’s ancient capital Dunfermline boasts a medieval abbey and the rambling ruins of a royal palace. It’s also the burial place of many of the former kings and queens of Scotland—̶most notably Robert the Bruce, who inflicted a famous victory on English forces at the Battle of Bannockburn in 1314.
You’ll also love picturesque Pittencrieff Park, a gorgeous green space gifted to the citizens by industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie, who was born there. In terms of accommodation, there are ample hotels, but renting an Airbnb in Dunfermline lets you live like a local.
Stirling is set slap bang in the middle of Scotland’s central belt and this is the setting for the aforementioned Battle of Bannockburn (there’s an excellent interactive visitor centre), as well as Stirling Castle, from which you can gaze out from the ramparts over the Forth Valley and the setting of centuries of tumultuous history.
With its own loch and dramatic setting in the shadow of Dumyat Hill, Stirling University has one of the world’s most beautiful campuses, while the Trossachs National Park and Loch Lomond are also a short drive away. Hire a car from Enjoy Travel and explore!
With its new Kengo Kuma-designed V&A design museum (which is inspired by the rugged coastal cliffs of Scotland’s northeast but looks rather like an alien mothership) and the surrounding regenerated waterfront (which is complemented by the stunning and silvery River Tay and countless trendy bars and restaurants), Dundee is fast becoming a magnet for cultural tourism.
Dundee is also close to the home of golf (St Andrews) and some pretty picture-postcard villages on the East Neuk of Fife, as well as the urban delights of Aberdeen to the north. There are plenty of hotels there, but the Holiday Inn Express is very central, comfortable and excellent value for money.
Take a Scottish staycation in any one of these three alternative destinations and you’re sure to have a terrific time. If you can’t choose between them, why not spend a few days in each and score a holiday hat-trick?
Please share your own Scottish staycation tips in the comments section.