Travel: Beautiful Scotland

I am so lucky to call Scotland home. I arrived over a decade ago as a graduate student and immediately felt as I belonged.

 Edinburgh is a fantastic place to be a student as it is small enough to walk nearly everywhere but retains all the history and culture of a much larger city. I've spent many very happy hours wandering around Edinburgh, discovering all of it's wonderful nooks and crannies. And then there are the festivals! Hogmanay, the science festival, the book festival and the Edinburgh International and Fringe festivals, with loads of little ones inbetween, there is always something happening here!

Beautiful as Edinburgh is, my most cherished memories of Scotland are of the absolutely breath-taking Highland and Islands. I've spent very happy hours hill-walking (hiking) in Scotland and Munro-bagging or climbing all of the 282 hills over 3000ft is a favourite pastime. Often these require hiking into really remote parts of the country  and wild camping or bothying is required which adds to the whole experience.

Friends from around the world often complain about the weather or the darkness in the winter, but I think that this contributes to the magic of this place. Yes, the weather can be wild, but the scenery in the hills can take your breath away and make you feel like you're the only person in the world. Yes, the days in the heart of winter are very short, but the long summer days more than make up for that fact.

I love it so much here and am so lucky to have stumbled upon this beautiful place. Lucky, lucky me!



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