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Travel: All you need is love (and a castle or two) in romantic Scotland

© SYSTEMEilean Donan Castle on Loch Duich at Dornie
Eilean Donan Castle on Loch Duich at Dornie

Love is in the air, and what better excuse than Valentine’s Day do we need to fall in love with Scotland all over again?

With stunning scenery, wonderful walks and cosy hideouts, Visit Scotland gives us some tips on the country’s top romantic spots…

Romantic locations

The Queen’s View

Said to be named after Queen Victoria following her visit to the area in 1866, The Queen’s View is one of the most photographed areas in Scotland. Soak in the views of the Perthshire woodlands and enjoy the vista that overlooks Loch Tummel.

Luskentyre Sands

Walk along this Caribbean-like beach on the south-west coast of Harris in the Outer Hebrides, boasting miles of unspoilt, white sands and stunning crystal-clear waters.

Eilean Donan Castle

This fairytale castle sits on its own little island, overlooking the Isle of Skye, at the point where three sea lochs meet and is surrounded by rolling hills and forested mountains. Stay on the nearby island of Raasay, a truly romantic and wild place.

Sweetheart Abbey

The Abbey was founded by Lady Dervorgilla in memory of her husband, Lord John Balliol. When he died in 1268, Lady Dervogilla, had his heart embalmed in an ivory casket. When she died, she was laid to rest with her husband’s casket and the monks renamed the abbey in memory of her.

Loch Lomond

From breathing in views over freshwater and hills, to enjoying adventures by bike or by boat, Loch Lomond could be the setting for many a love story.

© SYSTEM
Sweetheart Abbey (dating from the 13c) at the village of New Abbey south of Dumfries.

Cosy hideouts…

Isle of Eriska Hotel, Spa and Island

There’s a certain magic about staying on a private island, which boasts gorgeous views overlooking Loch Linnhe and the dramatic Morvern mountains beyond.

The Balmoral Hotel, Edinburgh

A landmark in Edinburgh city centre, the historic building’s grand clock still dominates the skyline, while its enviable location, views, hospitality and five-star facilities provide the perfect retreat.

The Torridon, Achnashhen, Highlands

Set in 58 acres of parkland at the end of a magnificent sea loch, The Torridon has one of the most spectacular and idyllic locations in the country, offering the perfect opportunity to soak in the grandeur and solitude of the Highlands.

Stobo Castle Health Spa, Peebles

The magnificent castle is set deep within the Borders countryside in private grounds and surrounded by vast pine forests, a tranquil lake and Japanese Water Gardens. From the sweeping driveway when entering the castle, guests are enveloped in an environment of luxury, serenity and calmness.

Craighead Howf, Perthshire

Hide away in a treehouse or hunker down in a hobbit home. The accommodation ranges from quirky summerhouses to treehouses and even cottages complete with hot tub, sauna and whisky lounge – the perfect get away.

© SYSTEM
Seilebost, Luskentyre Sands, Isle of Harris

The Woodman’s Hut

Based in the heart of the Cairngorms National Park beside the Fhuarian burn, complete with stargazing roof, peat-fired chimenea burner, eco-hot tub and gorgeous views of the Cairngorms, these little cottages make for the perfect escape with that someone special.

Glenapp Castle, Ayrshire

Live it up like royalty. The luxury Scottish Baronial-style castle is complete with turrets and towers set on 36 acres of beautifully restored gardens with spellbinding views of the Isle of Arran, the Irish Sea and beyond for the ultimate fairytale experience.


Romantic Routes…

Portpatrick to Killantringan

This rugged coastline is popular with dog walkers and ramblers alike.

The North East 250

A unique road trip taking visitors through the whisky distilleries of Speyside, the spectacular mountain passes the Cairngorms National Park, the famous castles of Royal Deeside, the Granite City of Aberdeen, the rugged North Sea coastline to the east, and the picturesque seaside villages of the Moray Firth.

Three Lochs Forest Drive

Venture through the woodlands of the Trossachs and you’re sure to find the perfect forest picnic spot.

Borders Historic Route

Weaving 95 miles from Carlisle to Edinburgh. it takes in charming Borders towns, as well as passing fascinating castles, stately homes, and beautiful rolling countryside.

In the gorgeous grounds of Culzean Castle in Ayrshire, in the care of the National Trust for Scotland, you’ll find hidden caves, glasshouses and the stunning Swan Pond.