you’re reading

10 things you didn’t know about Scotland


Culture /

10 things you didn’t know about Scotland

12

We didn’t know that Scotland has relations with the unicorn either…

10 Things You Didn't Know About Scotland

1.

Scotland has a ski resort. The Cairngorms – a mountain range in the Eastern Highlands – has low, rounded peaks ideal for gentle family skiing or beginners.

2.

Throughout the Victorian and Edwardian eras, Glasgow was the ‘second city of the British Empire’.

3.

Lewis and Harris, in the Outer Hebrides, are not two islands but one in two halves. Harris in the south is only narrowly joined to Lewis and blessed with spectacular beaches, moors and mountains, and is home to world- renowned Scarista Beach – a pale blonde beach backed by dunes.

4.

Golf was invented in Scotland and first played there in the Middle Ages. There are now more than 500 courses. Donald Trump recently bought Trump Turnberry and spent a reported £100m renovating it.

5.

Scotland has no less than 790 islands. While the list includes many well-known spots like Skye and Orkney, there are many more secret isles. Staffa Island was formerly a favourite of such 19th-century greats as Keats and Wordsworth, Robert Louis Stevenson, even Queen Victoria and Prince Albert.

6.

In Scotland, a kilt represents your clan, however tartan is having a moment and any man with reasonable confidence (read: half-decent calf muscles) should own one for the purposes of drawing attention to himself at weddings.

7.

The Stone of Destiny has been a stone of contention between the English and Scottish for more than seven centuries, finally returned amid great fanfare in 1996 and on view at Edinburgh Castle.

8.

In the heart of Scotland at Fortingall, in Perthshire you can find one of Europe’s oldest trees, the Fortingall Yew. Experts speculate that the tree may be 5,000 years old.

9.

In southeast Scotland, 40 per cent of the population carry the redhead gene. Being redhead may be an evolutionary advantage where it is often cloudy. Redheads (due to their pale skin) are generally able to get more vitamin D after less time in the sun than people with darker complexions.

10.

Scotland’s official animal is the unicorn. It’s not so surprising considering that the Scots love a legend, and hails from a time when unicorns were revered by the Celts.

Topics: