Tue. Jul 23rd, 2024


Scotland, a catalyst for the imagination and a daydreamer’s playground, is worthy of a fairytale. Draped in intrigue and exalted upon high, one glance at the unfathomable transcendental essence of this bonnie land can truly transform any cynic. For a dose of sublime inspiration, Culture Trip has searched across Scotland far and wide to find the most magnificent fairytale destinations. And yes, they’re all real!

An Stòr

Stunning Views of Old Man of Storr in Scotland

Stunning views of Old Man of Storr in Scotland | © DejaVu Designs/Getty Images

Watching over his kingdom, the ‘Old Man Of Storr’ is an ominous pinnacle of rock and one of the most photographed landscapes out there. Part of the Trotternish Ridge, this gracious chap came about from a leviathan ancient landslide.

Ben Venue

Ben Venue across Loch Achray

A view of Ben Venue across Loch Achray in the Trossochs | © Andrew1Norton/Getty Images

What a venue indeed. Situated in the Trossachs close to Loch Katrine, the name ‘Ben Venue’ comes from the Scots Gaelic for ‘The Miniature Mountain’. A popular place for walkers, two summits and ferocious cliffs lurk within this beauty.

Devil’s Pulpit

The Devil's Pulpit, Scotl and.


The Devil’s Pulpit, Scotland | © Westend61/Getty Images

The stunning hidden cliff rivers of Finnich Glen evoke a sense of otherworldliness, displaying the natural world at its finest. One particular spot, aptly known as the Devil’s Pulpit, perfectly captures the glen’s supernatural. Folklore has it that ancient Druids congregated at this mystical spot, as did Satan when he preached to monks.

Loch Earn

Loch Earn calm blue waters, highlands, Scotland.

© Andrew1Norton/Getty Images

Notably narrow and exceptionally magnificent, Loch Earn in the central Highlands is ruled by Mirror Man, a wondrous sculpture by artist Rob Mullholland. This enchanting loch is bestowed with its own tidal system or seiche, making it rare and stunning.

Neist Point Lighthouse

Clifftop lighthouse at Neist Point.

© David Tomlinson / Alamy Stock Photo

The kind of place featured in a great novel, this lighthouse waved to the world when it was first lit in 1909. Operated remotely from Edinburgh since 1990, an aerial cableway was put in place to transport supplies to the cottages and lighthouse.

Buachaille Etive Mòr

Buachaille Etive Mòr, Glencoe

Buachaille Etive Mòr, Glencoe | © Billy Currie Photography / Getty Images

A sanctuary where faeries flock, Buachaille Etive Mòr is circled by the River Etive and sports steep ascents and vertigo-inducing ridges. Derived from Scots Gaelic, the name translates as ‘the Big Boy Of Etive’.

Sound of Raasay

Sound Of Raasay

Sound Of Raasay | © Joe Dunckley / 500px / Getty Images

Whimsical and hypnotic, The Sound of Raasay gracefully separates the islands of Skye and Raasay, while resembling an alternate universe.

Aonach Eagach

Looking up Glen Coe at Loch Achtriochtan, with the Aonach Eagach

Glen Coe at Loch Achtriochtan | © Neale Clark / robertharding / Getty Images

Astonishing and dominant, Aonach Eagach – a precarious rocky ridge and adventurer’s dream – sits to the north of Glen Coe in the Highlands. Unsurprisingly, this beauty has quite the reputation as being one of the the most difficult horizontal ‘scrambling’ ridges in Scotland.

Dunnet Head

Dunnet Head Lighthouse

Dunnet Head Lighthouse | © george robertson / Alamy Stock Photo

The sort of place to evoke existentialist thoughts, Dunnet Head, a peninsula of Caithness, is home to the most northerly po int of mainland UK. Although frightfully vertigo-inducing, the jagged cliffs were made to be admired.


Ring Of Brodgar

The Ring of Brodgar is a Neolithic henge and stone circle in Scotland

The Ring of Brodgar is a Neolithic henge and stone circle in Scotland | © Pako Mera / Alamy Stock Photo

While the age of this stone circle is unknown, the mystique that surrounds the historical artefact transcends time. Forming part of the Heart of Neolithic Orkney World Heritage Sit in Stennes, the world-renowned circle of standing stones range between seven and 15 feet, bearing a number of ancient carvings. Though likely to have once served a ritualistic purpose, the true purpose is still unknown, cloaking these pillars of rock in intrigue.

The Quiraing

Quiraing, hill circuit (Walkhighlands)

The perfect fusion of wild and wondrous, the name ‘Quiraing’ stems from the Old Norse ‘Kvi Rand’, meaning ‘Round Fold’. Legend has it that the fold was a perfect place to hide cattle from Viking raiders. Unknown to many but avid adventurers, this is Game Of Thrones land.

Loch Awe

Loch Awe, Scottish Highlands

Loch Awe, Scottish Highlands | © Westend61/Getty Images

The longest freshwater loch in Scotland and appropriately named, Loch Awe holds schools of salmon surrounded by unfathomable beauty and intriguing ruins. Hypnotic reflections resemble an other-wordly portal into uncharted territory.

The National Wallace Monument

Wallace Monument, Stirling

Wallace Monument, Stirling | © BMPix/Getty Images

Sitting proudly atop Abbey Craig near Stirling, the National Wallace Monument was built in commemoration of 13th-century Scottish hero Sir William Wallace and resembles a scene from the Lord Of The Rings trilogy.

Loch Etive and Ben Cruachan

Loch Etive

Loch Etive | © AlasdairJames/Getty Images

The kind of beauty worthy of a bucket list, Ben Cruachan is the tallest summit in the beautiful range of peaks amidst Loch Awe and Loch Etive. The dancing reflections of the mirrored waters juxtaposed with the all-seeing mountains is therapy at its finest.

Cùl Mòr

Cùl Mòr, Scotland

Cùl Mòr, Scotland | © Stan F / 500px / Getty Images

Jaw-dropping and perfectly ruggedCùl Mòr is the kind of place that helps muster up that perfect epiphany. An ideal spot to fall off the grid.

Sgurr na Stri

View over Loch Scavaig towards the Island of Rum from the summit of Sgurr na Stri on the Isle of Skye, Scotland

© Stewart Smith / Alamy Stock Photo

Wizardly and imposing, Sgurr na Stri may only be 494 metres tall, and yet, it is considered one of the best spots in Scotland for outstanding views. The all-encapsulating skies add that extra touch.

The Hermitage

The river Braan flowing under the stone bridge at he Hermitage near Dunkeld, Perthshire, Scotland.

The river Braan flowing under the stone bridge at the Hermitage near Dunkeld in Perthshire | © atimages / Alamy Stock Photo

The kind of rabbit hole you want to fall into, the Hermitage is a picture-perfect wonderland overflowing with tribes of regal trees adorned with soulful leaves.

Eilean Donan Castle

Eilean Donan castle

© paulmerrett / Getty Images

The queen of all castles, Eilean Donan Castle inhabits her own wee island with views towards the Isle of Skye. A true star, this jewel is featured on many a shortbread tin.


Suilven a wonderfully shaped mountain in Sutherland, Northwest Highlands of Scotland.

Suilven a wonderfully shaped mountain in Sutherland, Northwest Highlands of Scotland. | © Derek Beattie Images / Alamy Stock Photo

Divinely profound and drenched in dreams, even the stars shine with astonishment as they delicately dance over Suilven. After all, it is one of the most precious mountains of Scotland.

Loch an Rusgaidh

Loch an Rusgaidh | Daybreak at Loch an Rusgaidh in The Loch … | Flickr

An alternate universe, you can’t help but admire the kaleidoscope of dazzling colours as they flicker and taunt around Loch Rusky, or Loch an Rusgaidh in Gaelic, meaning ‘Lake Of The Peeling’.

Ben Lomond

Looking across to Ben Lomond, Scotland

Looking across to Ben Lomond, Scotland | © Andrew Wilson / Alamy Stock Photo

With intoxicating views of Loch Lomond, Ben Lomond first became frequented by explorers in the late 18th-century. Today, it is one of Scotland’s most raved-about munros.

Fairy Pools

The Fairy Pools in Isle of Skye

The Fairy Pools, Isle of Skye, Scotland. | © Charlton Buttigieg / Getty Images

Fairies really do exist in Scotland. Enchanting little crystal clear pools of magic water, the Fairy Pools of Skye are so gracious they will render even the chattiest of folk speechless.

Sron na Creise

Sron na Creise from the Glen Etive road, Rannoch Moor, Scotland.

Sron na Creise from the Glen Etive road, Rannoch Moor | © Vincent Lowe / Alamy Stock Photo

Sacred to the core, the magnificent picture above shows Sron na Creise and Buachille Etive More in all their glory. When ice engulfs the area, only an ice-axe, crampons and intuition will suffice.

By: theculturetrip.com


By Beauty