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Travel: Reach for the cars on Scotland’s best road trips

© SYSTEMViews west towards Inchrory in the Cairngorms.
Views west towards Inchrory in the Cairngorms.

Scotland is gradually reopening as restrictions ease – and there couldn’t be a better time to think about a road trip.

The country has all the essential ingredients – beautiful, ever-changing scenery, incredible attractions and welcoming towns and villages.

But for those looking for something off the beaten track, VisitScotland shares 10 road trips that we should all try.

Buckle up and enjoy the ride!

Angus Coastal Route

Linking the cities of Dundee and Aberdeen, this stunning drive offers splendid views of the east coast, from the Grampians to the west and the North Sea to the east. The route is perfect for those with an interest in Scottish history, taking in sites such as Broughty Ferry, Barry Mill, Arbroath Abbey and Dunnottar Castle.

© SYSTEM
Two cyclists heading west on the A830 along the side of Loch Eilt

Argyll Coastal Route

It’s all about seafood, seaside and scenery on this 129-mile stretch from Tarbert to Fort William. A fantastic journey along the west coast boasts views of Loch Lomond, the picture-perfect Castle Stalker, magnificent Glencoe and the majesty of Ben Nevis.

Borders Historic Route

Connecting Gretna Green to Edinburgh, the 89-mile stretch of road meanders through charming Borders towns and villages en route to Scotland’s capital. Make a stop at Borders Textile Towerhouse or Lochcarron of Scotland to sample the region’s famous textile industry, pay a visit to Abbotsford House, the former home of Sir Walter Scott or explore the sights, sounds and history of Edinburgh.

Fife Coastal Route

The Kingdom of Fife is well known for its stunning shorelines and rich history. This route, which runs from the Kincardine Bridge to the Tay Bridge, traces the coastlines of the Firth of Forth, passing by the Royal Burgh of Culross, fishing towns in the East Neuk and historic St Andrews, known across the world as the Home of Golf.

Forth Valley Tourist Route

Running from Edinburgh to Stirling, this 43-mile journey allows to you explore some of Scotland’s most impressive feats of engineering and modern art including the Forth Bridge, The Kelpies by Andy Scott and The Falkirk Wheel.

North East 250

The North East 250 mixes countryside and coast, history and heritage, whisky and wilderness. The circular route has highlights such as Gordon Castle, Bow Fiddle Rock, Peterhead Prison, Drum Castle and The Lecht 2090, one of Scotland’s top ski resorts.

Perthshire Tourist Route

Begins just north of Dunblane and finishes in Ballinluig. The region is well known for its stunning landscapes which you can enjoy on this spectacular drive. Enjoy a stay at Gleneagles, explore the town of Crieff and visit attractions such as the Drummond Castle Gardens, the Scottish Crannog Centre and Highland Safaris.

Snow Roads Scenic Route

Stretching across Perthshire, Aberdeenshire, Moray, Speyside and the Highlands, this 90-mile route includes some of the Cairngorms National Park’s most scenic areas, encompassing dramatic landscapes. Starting in Blairgowrie, the route meanders through the towns of Braemar, Ballater, and Tomintoul before ending in Grantown-on-Spey. Enjoy the beauty and adventure of this enchanting journey.

South West Coastal 300

© SYSTEM
The village of New Abbey, Dumfries and Galloway, South West 300

This circular route takes in the coasts of Dumfries & Galloway and southern Ayrshire. As well as breathtaking coastline, the South West Coastal 300 also includes part of a UNESCO Biosphere, the Galloway and Southern Ayrshire Biosphere, and the Galloway Forest Park, Britain’s largest forest park. Pass through charming coastal towns, secluded shady shores and discover gems such as Sweetheart Abbey, Scotland’s Dark Sky Observatory, Culzean Castle and Crawick Multiverse – an incredible land art attraction.

The Coig

One of Scotland’s newest driving routes, The Coig, Gaelic for “five”, is a series of five touring routes around Ayrshire, the Clyde Coast and the islands of Arran, Bute and Cumbrae. The Coig offers great adventures, from dramatic mountain peaks and sweeping sandy coves to ancient castles and quaint, quirky towns and villages. There is something to delight, surprise or inspire around every corner.


For more inspiration about road trips in Scotland, see visitscotland.com/see-do/tours/driving-road-trips/routes

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