Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Romantic Scotland

Its the summer holidays and I hear countless parents telling me about their exotic holiday destinations, their sweaty delayed airport experiences and the challenges that come with holidaying abroad. Its not inspiring me to jump on a plane to soak up the sun, so why do we think this is such a good idea? I find it hard to understand why we don't holiday closer to home here in the UK. My husband and I when we got married seemed to raise a few eyebrows when we chose to honeymoon in the Lake District in March. But it was a fantastic week snuggled up by a cosy open fire in this cute little cottage between the peaks and the lake district with a world of exploration on our doorstep. So it got me thinking, what about Scotland? Could Scotland be the romantic destination we have all been so desperately wanting? It has a lot to offer, and the more I look the more I see about this enchanting and interesting place.

Its practically on our doorstep and the perfect getaway for a family or a romantic break for two. It's definitely given me some food for thought about planning our next holiday. I am wooed by the thought of the early Autumn weather, warm but with a bit of that cooling breeze thrown in. When I think about Scotland I think of the vastness of rolling countryside, the beauty in open space to think and refresh. The quiet stillness away from the business of life, to rekindle and revive - no wonder so many people refer to it as romantic. Its vastness and varied landscape seems almost mysterious when I think about it, a place to forget whats gone before and enjoy the time you have there- the perfect recipe for romance.

Eilean Donan Castle
Nestled in the amazing views are the popular cities of Glasgow and Edinburgh (and a few others) steeped in history (and a bit of shopping too) waiting to be explored, the perfect accompaniment to the rural countryside. Edinburgh is a place I have always wanted to visit with my husband to enjoy the breathtaking views, explore the sights and then wine and dine under the dim light of evening together. A romantic place where we can have time for the two of us and yet still enjoy the bustle of a busy city. I always think that traveling by train to Scotland seems like the best option as if you plan ahead you can get fantastic prices for tickets and its a great way to take in the views from your carriage seats and breathe it all in. Of course if you were really going to arrive in style it would have to be a steam train but I guess maybe I am dreaming a little on that one. I have very fond memories of a weekend in Glasgow visiting friends very early on with my husband before we were married and its one I think upon with fondness. The hum and glow of the city really drew us both in and I would capture a little it of that magic again.

Scotland seems to have a little bit of everything to suit everyones tastes and for me thats part of its attraction; the quiet countryside retreat, the bustling city with nightlife, michelin dining, whisky tours, incredible wildlife, historic buildings and intrigue, castles a plenty and home grown fresh food. Whats not to like?

When I think about what I love about Scotland its like being drawn into my very own novel. The perfect setting for my own mini-break version of pride and prejudice, the perfect backdrop and incredibly beautiful countryside to play out my own romantic adventure (that might be where the steam train comes in). Its almost like a secret garden that we have forgotten about just waiting for us to remember and re-discover it in all its beauty but still wowed by the wild treasures we wouldn't see anywhere else. Its so close and yet when was the last time we visited?

So why are we choosing such overcrowded destinations for our family holidays and romantic breaks away when almost on our doorstep is a romantic adventure waiting to happen in Scotland? We seem to have been seduced by cheap airline deals and all inclusive holiday destinations with overcrowded beaches. We seem to have forgotten about a beautiful place within a few hours reach that has natural beauty, space to think, inspiration around every corner. I want to be inspired on my holidays by my surroundings not frustrated that I have to share it with thousands of other visitors. I  want my kids to see a place in its uniqueness and understand its heritage and culture; and I think Scotland has just that to offer. I am not saying there isn't a place for holidays abroad, there is, but I am certainly going to be rethinking our breaks and holidays going forward and considering just what this enchanting romantic place has to offer for us as a family and a couple. Would you consider a break in Scotland?

This post is my entry into the Romantic Scotland competition by Sykes Cottages if you would like to find out more about it or enter yourself you can find all the details here about how to write your blogpost: #RomanticScotland.

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