Scotland celebrates its Year of Young People throughout 2018, highlighting the destination’s incredible range of adrenaline-pumping activities, unmissable festivals and fantastic family fun, for both the young, and the young at heart! Wherever you go in Scotland you’ll find landscapes and cities primed and ready for adventure seekers – here, we take you to the countryside surrounding Edinburgh and Glasgow…just remember to bring all your energy!
08:00 CLIMB A VOLCANO
If you’ve stayed overnight in Edinburgh, really kick start your first day of activity by climbing Arthur’s Seat. An ancient volcano, Arthur’s Seat sits 251 metres above sea level, which affords such spectacular panoramic views of Edinburgh that you’ll be glad you got up early to catch them.
11:00 HIT THE WAVES
Drive half an hour east from Edinburgh to the county of East Lothian, where you’ll be greeted by long, flat stretches of lovely beaches that come with wind and waves conditions ideal for watersports. Head to the small coastal town of Longniddry and take to the seas – with qualified instructors – on a thrilling kitesurfing adventure, absorbing the amazing views of the coastline as your glide over the waves.
13:00 BOOST YOUR ENERGY
Pick up some lunch to takeaway with you on the two-hour drive to your next destination, St Andrews in Fife; you’re by the coast so there are plenty of fish and chips options!
15:00 SAIL ON LAND
You’ve mastered the waves, now it’s time to conquer the land as you tackle land yachting, an exhilarating sport that blends the grace of sailing with the thrills of motor racing; land yachting can see you build up to speeds of 40mph. The beauty of this sport is that you don’t have to have any experience of sailing and the basic skills don’t take long to grasp. Plus, as you’re racing across St Andrews beach, you’ll catch a fantastic view of the Old Course, the oldest and, arguably, the most iconic golf course in the world.
17:00 REWARD YOURSELF WITH A WEE DRAM
You’ve earned yourself a refreshing tipple; head into the heart of St Andrews and stop by at The Criterion, a family run, traditional Scottish pub. Its shelves are crammed with more than 160 whiskies and 50 Scottish gins, as well as a range of local ales, so make sure you’ve booked someone to drive you to your next destination, the pretty city of Perth an hour away, where you’ll base yourself ready for the next day’s activities.
19:30 FEAST ON SCOTTISH FAVOURITES
Build up your strength for the next day with Scottish favourites at The Bothy in the heart of Perth. This cosy restaurant uses the freshest local produce in its dishes and you can feast on carbohydrate-loaded goodies such as Isle of Arran haggis, neeps and tatties or beef cheek and ale pie served with buttery mash.
Time to check in
Perth is well-equipped with comfortable budget-style hotels and B&Bs, but if you’re looking for something a little upmarket, try The Townhouse. Situated in a charming Georgian property its décor mixes 18th-century style with Art Deco-design, although all its facilities are thoroughly 21st century.
If you want to base yourself somewhere a little more ‘sporty’ then head 40 minutes out of town into the countryside of Perthshire and check into Crieff Hydro. A spa resort, it also has more than 60 indoor and outdoor activities; fly over the treetops on a zipline, explore the surrounding woods via a Segway, smash your way through a game of tennis, try your hand at archery, or gallop through the countryside on horseback. In fact, you could spend an adrenaline-pumping 48 hours right here.
Alternatively, if you want to experience the great outdoors by night, check out Tree Howf near Dunblane, also 40 minutes from Perth. This magical accommodation is built high within the branches of an ash tree and boasts stunning panoramic views over the Ochil Hills. It’s entirely self-sufficient and comes with cooking facilities, shower and a huge star-gazing window above the hand-made king-size bed.
09:00 TACKLE THE RAPIDS
You’re in some of Scotland’s most beautiful landscapes in Perthshire, so experience its loveliness combined with a heart-thumping activity and spend the morning white-water rafting on Scotland’s longest river, the Tay, half an hour from Perth. These are great waters for beginners – as there are ample stretches of quiet water to practice paddling techniques – as well as for veteran white-water rafters, as the river is home to plenty of white-knuckle rapids too! Another wonderful way to experience the gorgeous scenery of Perthshire is via canyoning, an awesome activity of descending into gorges and being lowered by rope over spectacular waterfalls.
13:00 REBOOT WITH A PICNIC LUNCH
Pick up a picnic lunch after your morning activity from one of the farm shops dotted on your next journey, which takes you down to Balloch next to Loch Lomond (around 1.5 hours’ drive).
15:00 CATCH A BIRD’S EYE VIEW
One of the most enjoyable ways to experience the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park is from the air! Arrive at Balloch on the shores of the loch for the Loch Lomond Treezone courses. Conquer its 11 tree-top obstacles and finish the course with a real buzz, zooming down a 19-metre zipline; if you’re feeling particularly energetic, have a go at the Loch Lomond Buzzard, with 17 obstacles to tackle and the chance to whizz down a 65-metre zipline!
17:00 HEAD TO THE BRIGHT LIGHTS OF THE CITY
Time to travel on to Glasgow, which is an hour’s drive from Balloch, a brilliant city for the young and the young at heart.
19:00 DINE OUT IN THE COOL SPOTS
Glasgow has seen a raft of hip new eateries join its excellent restaurant repertoire this year. Can’t decide what cuisine you fancy? Head to Dockyard Social near the cool neighbourhood of Finnieston, a new street food and bar hub hosting a number of start-ups. Here you’ll find everything from wood-fired pizza to Hirata buns and Korean fried chicken. And find a slice of the US state Kentucky in the East End of Glasgow at Van Winkle, a ‘bourbon BBQ grill’, which comes with a superb choice of Bourbon.
21:00 PARTY CITY
Glasgow is fully celebrating the Year of Young People, with several key events. The Glasgow Youth Film Festival takes place between 14-16 September, and the city hosts the Graphic Design Festival between 19-25 October, which will run a celebratory element called the Young & Powerful as part of an exhibition, while Celebrate Art (which runs until November) will showcase visual arts projects from young people in venues across Scotland, including Tramway in Glasgow.
This summer Glasgow will also host a number of events that will keep everyone feeling young! Between 30 July-11 August, Summer Nights at the Bandstand has a fantastic line-up of musical talent that includes The Fratellis, the Pretenders, Van Morrison and Fleet Foxes. The Merchant City Festival comes to Glasgow between 2-12 August, a cultural festival of street art, music, theatre, film, comedy and dance. And, as host city of the European Championships 2018 (2-12 August), Glasgow is running Festival 2018, a programme of cultural events ranging from street art to music, theatre to dance, with the iconic George’s Square as its hub.
Time to check in
Glasgow has everything from budget accommodation to luxury properties and it’s also well-known for its chic, contemporary style hotels. Citizen M Glasgow is located in the heart of the city centre and is wholly contemporary in its approach to accommodation, bidding goodbye to trouser presses and pillow chocolates and focusing on elements such cool interior design, rain showers and free WiFi. Elsewhere, the Malmaison Glasgow is a boutique four-star hotel in the city centre located in a converted church, with its fabulous new Chez Mal Bar, complete with quirky towering beer barrel wall, while the Z Hotel is stylish designed and housed in the city’s renovated Old Printworks.
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VisitBritain Media Teampressandpr@visitbritain.com