From John O'Groats at the northernmost tip to Berick-upon -Tweed and the border with England, the Scottish mainland stretches over 450 km (approx 300 miles). However, Scotland's rugged, intricate coastline stretches over 20 times that distance at nearly 10,000 km (6,200 miles). Scotland has over 750 major islands, many of them located on its northern and western coasts.
Scotland's topography is often extremely mountainous with wild heather clad moorlands in the north and west, pine forests mixed with quality pasture in the middle, and fertile farmland in the east and north east. In the south, we find the rounded, grass-covered hills of the Lowlands with lochs and rivers scattered throughout.
Most of Scotland's five million people live within the country's Central Belt which runs from Dundee and Edinburgh in the east to Glasgow in the west. The Scots cherish the differences that set them apart from their English neighbours. The Scots cling tenaciously to their regional and cultural differences - their customs, dialects and the Gaelic language. It is perhaps more by their differences than in their similarities that the Scots can be defined. But, for all that, they are immensely proud of their nation, its separate institutions such as education and law - and the many achievements and discoveries that have changed the world.
If you live outside Scotland, come and see for yourself. Explore some of the most beautiful countryside and bioversity in the world. From the lush Border regions with undulating landscapes made famous by Sir Walter Scott and Robert Burns - through Scotland's central belt with it's rich history of learning, financial institutions and the impressive commercial and industrial achievements of the Victorian era - to the romance and drama of the Highlands where much of our history is rooted - it's a journey and a people you won't forget. The Scots have a delightful self-depreciating humour and are renowned throughout the world for their tradition of a warm and generous hospitality.
If you are lucky enough to be a Scot or to live within Scotland then you can enjoy all the riches of Scotland right outside your doorstep. Use our Luxury Scotland web site and the host of travel articles to explore those less familiar aspects of this wonderful country.