Scotland Travel Guide

Lonely Planet’s 2011 Scotland travel guide will be of great interest to anyone wanting to travel beyond London to perhaps Edinburgh, St Andrews for the golf, or to explore the beautiful Scottish Highlands. The guide is particularly good on Edinburgh, and includes a pull-out Edinburgh city map (which also includes a thorough Edinburgh street index, a map of Edinburgh’s neighborhoods, a map of Central Glasgow and a map of Leith).

There is a separate Lonely Planet Edinburgh Encounter guide, but it’s only 176 pages long and, with much more colour in it, costs almost as much as this guide to the whole of Scotland, which is three times the size. The Scotland travel guide also has almost as much information about Edinburgh in it as the dedicated Edinburgh guide.

Scotland’s Best Travel Experiences

If you know you want to go from London to Edinburgh but want to know what else there is to do in Scotland, the guide’s list of the Best Travel Experiences in Scotland will help. Golf and whisky are two of them, of course, and other highlights include Glasgow (easily reached by train from Edinburgh), walking, Scotland’s castles, island hopping, Glen Coe and, naturally, climbing Scotland’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis.

Golf in St Andrews, Scotland

A major attraction of Scotland for golf enthusiasts is the chance to play a round at St Andrews, the historic home of golf. The book rightly says that St Andrews is a fantastic place to visit, even if you hate golf, but for golfers it does give you enough information on how to get there, where to stay, eat, and drink, what the town’s top visitor attractions are, and of course how to plan ahead and book a round on the Old Course. This isn’t easy, and single golfers are advised to start queuing at 5.30am in the hope of joining a group. Rather easier is to book one of the Guided Walking Tours of the Old Course, which run June-August.

Iconic Scotland in 3D

The back of the book boasts a new inclusion - 3D Plans of Iconic Sights. Well, apart from the fact that we run a mile from anything that includes those now meaningless words ‘icon’ and ‘iconic’, the most over-used words in the English language, the 3D plans are a disappointment and a waste of space. We expected them to be spread throughout the book, adding to the pleasure of visiting Scotland’s main sights. But no, we eventually found them - all three of them - tucked between the Edinburgh and Glasgow chapters. Yes, there are just three 3D plans, and they are of Rosslyn Chapel, Stirling Castle and the Royal Mile in Edinburgh.

Is this Scotland Travel Guide a Good Buy?

Despite the 3D plans, which do after all only waste 7 pages, this is a very thorough guide to Scotland. It was detailed and accurate on the places we know ourselves, and at 516 pages reminds you just how much there is to see and do in Scotland.

Buying this Lonely Planet Scotland Travel Guide
The 516-page Scotland guide from Lonely Planet costs $22.99 in the USA and £12.99 in the UK. It is currently available heavily discounted on both
Amazon USA and Amazon UK


This review is of an older version of the guide. Since then, updated editions have appeared:

Amazon UK

Amazon USA

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