A Scotland Honeymoon Guide for Fantasy and History Buffs

For majestic scenery straight out of an epic fantasy film, head to Scotland for your honeymoon.
Glenfinnan Railway Viaduct in Scotland with the Jacobite steam train passing over
Photo: Nick Fox | Shutterstock
Dina Cheney - The Knot Contributor.
Dina Cheney
Dina Cheney - The Knot Contributor.
Dina Cheney
The Knot Contributor
  • Dina writes for The Knot Worldwide, specializing in food, travel and relationships.
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  • Dina graduated from Columbia College, Columbia University and The Institute of Cul...
Updated Apr 18, 2024
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A Scotland honeymoon will cast a spell on newlyweds with its enchanting landscapes, regal castles and a culture as rich and layered as a peaty Scotch. This top honeymoon spot will have you embarking on a romantic adventure as you spend your days exploring misty Highlands, where every glen and peak tells the tale of centuries past.

Scotland's dramatic scenery serves as the perfect backdrop, whether your honeymoon itinerary includes a road trip or an adventurous hike. It's a place where you can watch golden sunsets from craggy cliff tops, seek out hidden beaches along the rugged coastline and learn all about the mystical legends of the land.

When it comes to planning your Scotland honeymoon, let us be your guide. From the best months to visit to romantic things to do together, use our expert tips to plan an unforgettable honeymoon in Scotland.

Scotland Honeymoon Tips in this Article:

    Neist Point Lighthouse, Isle of Skye, Glendale
    Photo: Juan Maria | Getty

    Best Time to Honeymoon in Scotland

    The optimal time to visit the country falls between April and October. Summer is peak season—partly because it offers the best weather. In August, the Scottish capital hosts its annual Edinburgh Festival.

    The shoulder season (May, early June, September and early October) still offers mostly favorable weather, plus smaller crowds and lower prices. Plus, the Highland Games are held nationwide from May through September.

    Best weather: June to September.
    Festival highlights: The Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the world's largest arts festival in August, offering everything from theatre to comedy and music. The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo, also in August, features military bands and performances against the backdrop of Edinburgh Castle. The Highland Games are held in various locations from May to September and showcase traditional Scottish sports, dancing and music.

    Scotland Honeymoon Planning Tips

    Scotland epitomizes a romantic getaway. This country in the United Kingdom offers a wealth of unspoiled nature, history and cultural traditions. About the size of South Carolina, it's ideal for a week or two of exploration. Scotland is also easy to access, says Sridevi Chandra, founder of Storybook Getaways. From New York, Chicago, Philadelphia and Boston, you can fly direct to Edinburgh. From New York and Orlando, you can fly direct to Glasgow.

    With rolling hills, miles of coastline and more than 790 islands, Scotland appeals to couples looking to unwind and relax after their weddings, says Chandra. The European honeymoon destination includes both charming countryside villages and bustling urban regions for a mix of everything.

    Couples can expect erratic weather in this UK destination. Conditions can change multiple times in the same day, says Chandra. If you're honeymooning in January or February, know that temperatures will dip and you should bundle up.

    Entry requirements: A US passport that is valid for the duration of your stay in Scotland.
    English, Scottish Gaelic.
    Location: Scotland is part of the United Kingdom, located in the northern third of the island of Great Britain, north of England.
    Currency: British Pound Sterling (GBP).
    Flight time to Destination: From major US cities like New York, direct flights to Scotland (typically to Edinburgh or Glasgow) take around 6 to 7 hours.
    Getting around: Scotland offers comprehensive public transportation options including buses, trains, and ferries for remote areas. Renting a car is also a great choice for those who wish to explore the scenic rural areas at their own pace.

    Pro tip: Invite a honeymoon planning expert to join your vendor team. Browse travel agents near you on The Knot Marketplace for Scotland honeymoon expertise, reviews and testimonials.

    Places to Visit in Scotland

    Dunnottar Castle, close to Aberdeen
    Photo: Silvia Otte | Getty

    The Scottish Highlands

    Blink your eyes and wake up in the countryside of Scotland, where Harry Potter films and Outlander scenes have stirred the souls of travel enthusiasts everywhere. The northern part of Scotland will beguile honeymooners with its lochs (lakes), mountains, castles and dramatic coastline. Whether you take a day trip from Edinburgh or stay a few nights, the highlands are not to be missed on a Scottish honeymoon.

    Loch Ness

    Located in the center of the Highlands, this freshwater lake is famed for the mythical monster said to inhabit it. Visit the sleepy and spooky destination for, perhaps, a glimpse into the extraordinary, or even go on a Loch Ness cruise to really immerse yourselves.

    The Isle of Skye

    In the Inner Hebrides archipelago, off Scotland's West Coast, is the Isle of Skye, known for its breathtaking scenery. Visit Dunvegan Castle and Gardens, the oldest continuously inhabited castle in Scotland.

    Eilean Donan Castle

    Destroyed during the 18th century's Jacobite uprisings, this privately owned 13th-century castle is situated on its own small island.


    In the Highlands' capital city of Inverness, explore the Victorian Market's 19th-century shopping arcade, Urquhart Castle and Culloden Battlefield, says Chandra.


    Head to the northeastern Highlands to navigate the Castle Trail, with 13 unique properties.


    A village at the foot of a narrow valley, Glencoe is popular with hillwalkers and climbers. Ascend mountains or take a wildlife Land Rover safari at Glencoe National Nature Reserve. Film buffs and "set jetters" will be pleased to know that the area appeared in Harry Potter films, Braveheart and Skyfall.


    Scotland's largest city features Victorian architecture and free museums and galleries. Foodies should explore its Finnieston neighborhood.


    Take a walking tour of the Scottish capital's historic and charming "Royal Mile." Sip afternoon tea at Edinburgh Castle and buy tickets for The Scotch Whisky Experience and Old Town Historic and Underground Tour. There are plenty of opportunities to dine with the city's many food and drink tours. (Hint: You will undoubtedly try haggis, a surprisingly tasty savory pudding featuring offal, oatmeal and beef fat.)

    The Isle of Lewis

    If you're a fan of the TV show Outlander, you'll want to head to this island in the outer Hebrides, off the West Coast. Visit the ancient Callanish Standing Stones, which were the inspiration for the stone circle that enables time travel in the show.

    Best Scotland Honeymoon Hotels and Resorts

    For honeymoon accommodations in Scotland, consider romantic options like historic castles, luxurious country estates, cozy bed and breakfasts or modern hotels in the city center. Here are a few of our favorites to get you started on your honeymoon planning journey.

    Colorful houses in Portree, Isle of Skye
    Photo: Westend61 | Getty

    Ocean Mist Leith

    Ocean Mist Leith is an ultra-stylish luxury hotel, featuring a bar with amazing 360-degree views of the historic Water of Leith from Edinburgh Castle to The Victoria Swing Bridge.

    5.0 Star Rating | Read Reviews

    Culloden House

    Located in the Highlands, the stately Culloden House is an ideal base for experiencing Loch Ness, ancient castles and whisky distilleries.

    5.0 Star Rating | Read Reviews

    The Carlton George Hotel

    The Carlton George is near the Queen Street Rail Station in Glasgow and a short walk to the Buchanan Street shops. The rooftop restaurant offers views of the skyline.

    4.5 Star Rating | Read Reviews

    Inverlochy Castle

    With Ben Nevis as the backdrop, Inverlochy Castle in Fort Williams is one of the most luxurious castle hotels in the world, points out Chandra. Expect natural beauty, traditional décor and refined service.

    4.5 Star Rating | Read Reviews

    The Gleneagles Hotel

    Located an hour's drive from the Glasgow and Edinburgh airports, this iconic 850-acre country estate epitomizes Scotland's rugged natural beauty. On the grounds of The Gleneagles Hotel, you can play tennis or golf on three championship golf courses, try falconry, ride horses, go off-roading, train gundogs or relax in the spa. The restaurant is Michelin-starred.

    4.5 Star Rating | Read Reviews

    Fonab Castle Hotel & Spa

    The design of this Highlands spot in Pitlochry melds the old and new. Fonab Castle has a more casual brasserie and award-winning fine dining restaurant, both of which you should try.

    4.5 Star Rating | Read Reviews

    Pro tip: Consider staying at an Airbnb or VRBO for unique accommodations that may provide you more privacy or lower prices on your Scotland honeymoon.

    Scotland Honeymoon Itinerary Ideas

    Scotland is perfect for couples who enjoy natural beauty and cultural history. Whether you'd prefer staying in the cities of Edinburgh or Glasgow or are more of an adventurous couple who would like to trek through the the Highlands or Isles, you really can't lose when it comes to things to see and do on a honeymoon in Scotland.

    Edinburgh skyline at sunset.
    Sylvain Sonnet/Getty Images

    Take a Boat Trip

    With the Atlantic Ocean, North Sea and Irish Sea surrounding Scotland, it's only natural to take to the water. On the West Coast, couples will want to ride the Calmac ferry from the town of Oban to the Isle of Mull. Or, they're welcome to enjoy a boat ride around Loch Ness.

    Ride a Steam Train

    From the lowlands to the highlands, the Jacobite Steam Train fleet covers the Scottish mainland. The West Highland Line connects Glasgow with Fort William and passes over the Glenfinnan Viaduct, of Harry Potter fame. Welcome to the Hogwarts Express.

    Sip Whisky

    Scotland is known for its peat bogs and whisky. Sample the spirit at a distillery, such as Talisker Distillery on the Isle of Skye.

    Hike the Highlands

    Get some exercise in during your honeymoon by hiking up the mountains and hills at Cairngorms National Park in the Highlands, the UK's largest national park. Or, climb Ben Nevis, Britain's highest mountain, by the Highlands town of Fort Williams.

    Play Golf

    Scotland is known for golf given its pristine courses and blustery terrain. For couples who love the sport, head to the Highlands town of St. Andrews to play any of 10 golf courses, including the famed Old Course.

    Pro tip: Add Scotland honeymoon experiences to your gift registry so that loved ones can give you one of these memorable couples activities. Make sure to upload some of your honeymoon photos to your wedding website—this way all of your guests (including those without social media accounts) can see what you're up to abroad.

    What to Pack for a Scotland Honeymoon

    Stunning drone view of the Glencoe Valley - stock photo
    Photo: Justin Paget | Getty

    Your Scotland honeymoon luggage should include plenty of layers for its unpredictable weather, including a waterproof jacket and comfortable walking shoes for exploring cities and countryside. Include a mix of casual and smarter attire for dining out or attending performances. Don't forget to include travel adapters and a portable battery charger on your packing checklist, too.

    Brittany Barber contributed to this article.

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