Days Out in Scotland
… a simple guide to help families find Great Days Out in Scotland
Scotland is a country that is part of the United Kingdom and covers the northern third of the island of Great Britain. It shares a border with England to the south, and is otherwise surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east and the North Channel and Irish Sea to the south-west. In addition to the mainland, the country is made up of more than 790 islands, including the Northern Isles and the Hebrides.
The total area of Scotland is 78,772 km2, comparable to the size of the Czech Republic. Scotland’s only land border is with England, and runs for 60 miles between the basin of the River Tweed on the east coast and the Solway Firth in the west. The Atlantic Ocean borders the west coast and the North Sea is to the east. The island of Ireland lies only13 miles from the south-western peninsula of Kintyre; Norway is 190 miles to the east and the Faroes, 168 miles to the north.
The geographical centre of Scotland lies a few miles from the village of Newtonmore in Badenoch. Rising to 1,344 metres above sea level, Scotland’s highest point is the summit of Ben Nevis, in Lochaber, while Scotland’s longest river, the River Tay, flows for 118 miles.
Edinburgh is the capital city of Scotland and one of its 32 council areas. It is located in Lothian on the Firth of Forth’s southern shore. Edinburgh is home to the Scottish Parliament and the seat of the monarchy in Scotland. Historically part of Midlothian, the city has long been a centre of education, particularly in the fields of medicine, Scots law, literature, the sciences, and engineering. It is the largest financial centre in the UK after London. The city’s historical and cultural attractions have made it the United Kingdom’s second most popular tourist destination after London, attracting over one million overseas visitors each year.
Edinburgh is Scotland’s second most populous city and the seventh most populous in the UK. The 2016 official population estimates are 464,990 for the city of Edinburgh, and 1,339,380 for the general city region.