Scotland Cities: An Insider Guide

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Scotland Cities - An Insider's Guide 

For those looking for a memorable and unforgettable family holiday, or maybe a romantic couple’s escapade, Scotland has so many things to offers. From discovering the best and top destinations to participating in thrilling outdoor adventures, Scotland is a small country located in the north of England that provides no end to exciting things to see and do.

If you are fascinated by photography and sightseeing, then Scotland is the best choice, particularly if you opt to spend quality time in the cities of Scotland. The bigger urban destinations like Glasgow and Edinburgh are amongst the finest places to go to in Scotland, don’t fall back from the opportunity to go to some of the country’s evenly striking smaller cities as well.

Favorites among travelers not scared to venture more afield take account of historic Stirling, well-known as the location of the Battle of Bannockburn, as well as St. Andrews, a place to the most popular golf course in the world.

To take full benefit of your travel itinerary in Scotland, make sure to our list of superb cities in this country.


The City of Stirling

Stirling city is renowned as the Gateway to the Highland due to its fantastic location between the Highlands and Lowlands. While it is considered of the smaller cities, Stirling is steeped in history as the place of many battles in the past during the Wars of Independence. The renowned Stirling Castle, Stirling Bridge, and Wallace Monument are debatably the most popular tourist destinations for these historical reasons.

On the other hand, if you are not sightseeing, shopping opportunities are surely not hard to come by in this amazing city. The big Thistles shopping centre takes account of a large number of renowned retailers and brand names. The cobbled streets located at the top of the city are a place to traditional art and craft as well as tourist stores.


The City of Dundee

Dundee is perhaps not on the majority of visitors’ and traveler’s to-do lists. Relatively not familiar to travelers, it’s situated in the central lowlands and is considered the 4th biggest city in Scotland. Dundee city centre is said to be a paradise for shoppers, with lots of Scots traveling from Aberdeen or Edinburg to shop in the big department stores as well as retailers.

Dundee also has lots to offers families with kids. You can head to Cairnie Fruit Farm, situated just outside the city, which provides go karts, and a big playground, and the chance for you and your loved ones to pick your own fruit for the day.


The City of Glasgow

Glasgow is also one of the most popular cities in Scotland and the most visited as well. This is a home to many museums, many of which are the free entrance, like, for instance, the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum.

The collections here range from natural history to armour, and as the museum has been made with kids in mind, it offers the best venue for a family day out. Performing and visual art have always played a vital role in the development of this city.

Its Centre for Contemporary Arts and Gallery of Modern Arts have pushed this growth forward and now have made it a high-profile venue for a lot of global events. It hosts a lot of literary and musical events, which include the Celtic Connections and Jazz Festival. For music fanatics attending these amazing events, finding accommodation could not be easier. The city has a lot of luxury and low-cost basic hotels to select from at any time.


The City of Aberdeen

The amazing city of Aberdeen is the 3rd most populous in Scotland. This city is located in a picturesque location along the North Sea shore and the largest fishing port in the country. Renowned fondly as the Golden Sands, Granite City, and the Silver City, Aberdeen is the place to many major attractions that appeal to vast arrays of interests and tastes.

When it comes to culture, the city of Aberdeen is the place to an array of unique and interesting things to do and see, ranging from the performing arts and galleries to museums and many diverse live music venues, such as the many bars along the notorious Belmont Street. Also, regularly drawing large visitors yearly are The Aberdeen International Youth Festival and The Aberdeen Jazz Festival, the biggest festival celebrated in the world that features youth and young performers.


The City of Elgin Scotland

Elgin, not like other cities in Scotland, has a temperate weather with cool summers as well as relatively mild winters. The nearness of the sea allows heat to be sustained in the winter while ranges of a mountain to the southwest and west block the rainfall which comes out of the Atlantic Ocean storms.

If you plan on a road trip to the Scottish Highlands, this city is a calming way to visit the real essence of the countryside of Scotland is all about. Religion was a vital factor in the continued existence of a community, most particularly in times of wars or plague- which the abbeys, cathedrals are worthwhile to visit. The Duffus Castle is a good place to start due to its fascinating history.

Visiting this city will make you feel as if you’ve been transported back to seventeenth-century village life. It also offers views of the nearby areas that provide you with the true experience of the Scotland culture and give you some downtime to keep in touch with locals.


The City of Perth Scotland

Perth is in Central Scotland, which used to be a royal borough. It is located along the Tay River, providing a superb view from Craigie Hill. This functions as Perth and Kinross administrative seats. While it’s no longer a city since its declassification, it is still popularly referred to as the Fair City.

Perth has a rich and long history. While it has been named Aber The or mouth of the Tay by the Celts, it was the Romans who gave it the name Bertha until it was altered to Perth as everybody knows it at this point. Perth has been a royal residence and the place to many renowned battles, which include the royal assassination.

Perth is a superb place for exploring the region. It has an amazing collection of museums, galleries, as well as theaters for entertainment, and a wide range of shopping areas- family-owned stores, specialty shops, and craft fairs and festivals, which are held all through the year. Fresh foods are readily available in many produce markets due to the fertile soil and perfect weather. Game, fish, as well as superb wines are also in order together with preserves and honey. There are few farms which allow guests to around and choose their own.

What is more, there are fine restaurants that use local produce at its finest in the true Scottish style. Dining and shopping in Perth is an event all in itself. For a memorable experience, the Fair City provides attractions which include Scone Palace, the ancient crowning place of the Kings, and the 15th-century Huntingtower Castles, which lies to the West of Perth. Garden and nature lovers must go to the Branklyn Garden and witness its main attraction, which is the very popular Himalayan blue poppy.

Fort William City

Fort William City Scotland

The bustling beach location of Fort William city makes a superb starting point for your tour into the pure and untouched Ben Nevis and Northwest Highlands. Fort William was built in the year 1654, after the first Jacobsite Rising.

One of the best attractions of this amazing city is the West Highland Museum, which is renowned for its big collections of weapons, period painting, traditional highland clothes as well as furniture. A remarkable tour from this city is to Glenfinnan Viaduct, often known for Harry Potter films. Also, you can take pleasure in the steam excursion aboard the Jacobite steam train over the bridge, a tour which is regarded as one of the most remarkable and stunning rail adventures all over the world.

Ben Nevis is also worth visiting as it is considered one of the most natural and popular attractions in this city and a big draw for many outdoor fanatics out there.


Dunfermline Scotland

Dunfermline, a beautiful city that is renowned as the significant capital of the country, and in later decades derived its wealth from damask linen and coal mining. The best starting point for your journey is Malcolm Canmore’s Tower, located in the Pittencrieff Gardens, and foundation walls built way back in the 11th century. Another worth visiting is the old Benedictine Abbey, discovered in the 12th century. 

Another renowned sightseeing location is Andrew Carnegie’s Birthplace Museum. This is situated in a small cottage in Moddie St. A complete selection of documents and pictures shows how this deprived weaver’s son became one of the richest industrialists in the world. 


Scotland has so many things to offer to visitors and travelers, and one of them is the beautiful and historic cities. Each city has an amazing history and provides you many things to do and see so your stay will be more memorable and unforgettable.

About the author

Laura Morris

Laura Morris is an experienced clinical practitioner and CQC Registered Manager with over twenty years experience, over ten of which have been as an Independent Nurse Prescriber.

She has held a number of senior leadership roles in the substance use and mental health sector in the NHS, the prison service and in leading social enterprises in the field.

Last Updated: November 8, 2023