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In recent years, Scotland has experienced an increase in international tourism. In 2012 it was voted ‘the most beautiful country in the world’ by Rough Guide Magazine, while U.S. television show, Outlander (set and filmed in Scotland), has also contributed to its popularity.

Outlined below are the 3 most important questions you need to ask if you’re planning a trip to Scotland:

When is the best time to visit Scotland?

Since it is quite far north, Scotland is known as a very rainy region of the world and it has been known to rain all year round! That being said, summer months are typically warmer and the days are also longer (sunset is usually around 10pm or even 11pm!)

Bear in mind however that summer is peak season so it’s not only busier, but also more expensive. To contrast, winter will be quieter and cheaper, and there’s something quite magical about the glistening winter landscape.

Also, the Highlands actually enjoy warmer weather thanks to the Gulf Stream climate that passes the west coast, so you can certainly visit at any time of year. While this is certainly the case, during the winter months road conditions can get quite icy, and it can be harder to reach the more remote parts.

What’s the best way to get around Scotland?

Without question, the best way to get around Scotland is with a car. You can go wherever your mood takes you, stop off and look at anything that takes your fancy, and spend as much time as you like taking photos. Do bear in mind though that many of the roads in Scotland (especially around the highlands) are single track, so you will have to pull over to allow other cars to pass by – unless they let you go first!

Scotland also has incredibly stringent drink-driving policies, so never risk getting behind the wheel, even if you’ve just sampled a drop of whiskey at a distillery.

If driving is not an option there are plenty of public transport options, including trains and buses. Do your research in advance and consider pre-booking your tickets to cut back on costs.

Nature or Cities?

Yes, Scottish cities are certainly worth the visit, but no visit would be complete without exploring Scotland’s wild nature. From Loch Lomond to the western Highlands, there’s so much beautiful nature to soak in, including plenty of native wildlife. Official advice is to steer clear of feeding any wild animals, as this can disturb their natural behaviour and cause them to get sick.

Knockdow House is a historical property that was built in the 18th century. Nestled close to Dunoon, in the region of Argyll, Knockdow House is a gorgeous property steeped in history, and there is so much to see and do in the region.