The Most Beautiful Area in Scotland: A Ranking of Breathtaking Landscapes

Choose the area you think is the most beautiful!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on Feb 28, 2024 05:20
Discover the enchanting beauty of Scotland's lush landscapes and stunning vistas through StrawPoll's latest ranking - "What is the most beautiful area in Scotland?". Immerse yourself in the magic of the Highlands, the charm of the Isle of Skye or the serenity of Loch Lomond as you cast your vote for your favorite Scottish gem or suggest a hidden treasure we might have missed. Unravel Scotland's alluring secrets as you explore the breathtaking scenery captured in our rankings, and join fellow wanderers in shaping the ultimate list of must-see destinations in the land of the thistle. Embark on this captivating journey with us and let your voice be heard as we unveil the most bewitching corners of Scotland, one vote at a time.

What Is the Most Beautiful Area in Scotland?

  1. 1
    Isle of Skye is home to breathtaking landscapes such as the Cuillin Mountains, the Fairy Pools, and the Old Man of Storr. It also boasts a rich cultural history and is a great place for hiking and wildlife spotting.
    The Isle of Skye is a breathtakingly beautiful island located on the west coast of Scotland. Known for its dramatic landscapes, rugged mountains, stunning lochs, and picturesque coastline, it is often referred to as one of the most beautiful areas in the country. The island is rich in history, culture, and wildlife, making it a popular destination for both nature enthusiasts and those seeking tranquility in stunning surroundings.
    • Location: West coast of Scotland
    • Landscapes: Dramatic and stunning
    • Mountains: Rugged and picturesque
    • Lochs: Beautiful and serene
    • Coastline: Scenic and breathtaking
    Isle of Skye in other rankings
  2. 2
    Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park is a stunning area of natural beauty that includes rolling hills, forests, and the largest freshwater lake in Scotland. It's a great place for hiking, water sports, and wildlife watching.
    Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park is a stunning area located in Scotland. It is a national park that features breathtaking landscapes, including the famous Loch Lomond, which is the largest lake in Great Britain. The park encompasses a variety of terrains, from lush forests and rolling hills to rugged mountains and sparkling lochs. It offers visitors an opportunity to immerse themselves in the natural beauty of Scotland and experience outdoor activities such as hiking, cycling, and fishing.
    • Location: Central Scotland
    • Size: Approximately 720 square miles (1,865 square kilometers)
    • Lochs: Includes over 20 large lochs and numerous smaller ones
    • Mountains: Contains peaks such as Ben Lomond and Ben Venue
    • Wildlife: Offers a diverse range of wildlife, including red deer, ospreys, and golden eagles
    Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park in other rankings
  3. 3
    Glencoe is known for its dramatic scenery and rich history, Glencoe is a popular spot for hiking, mountaineering, and skiing. The area is also home to several famous movie locations, including the backdrop for the James Bond film Skyfall.
    Glencoe is a breathtakingly beautiful area located in the Scottish Highlands. It is renowned for its stunning landscapes, dramatic mountains, and rich history. Glencoe offers visitors a unique blend of rugged natural beauty and historical significance. The area is a paradise for nature enthusiasts and adventure seekers alike.
    • Visitor Center: Glencoe Visitor Centre
    • Location: Scottish Highlands
    • Mountain Range: The Three Sisters of Glencoe
    • Valley: Glen Coe valley
    • Highest Peak: Buachaille Etive Mor (1,022m)
  4. 4
    Isle of Mull is a picturesque island off the west coast of Scotland that is home to stunning beaches, rugged landscapes, and abundant wildlife. Visitors can also explore ancient ruins and charming villages.
    The Isle of Mull is a picturesque island located on the west coast of Scotland. It is known for its stunning landscapes, rugged mountains, and charming coastal villages. The island offers a unique blend of natural beauty and rich history, making it a popular destination for nature enthusiasts and history buffs alike.
    • Size: 875.35 square kilometers (337.95 square miles)
    • Population: Approximately 2,800 residents
    • Highest Point: Ben More, standing at 966 meters (3,169 feet) tall
    • Wildlife: Home to a diverse range of wildlife including red deer, otters, golden eagles, puffins, and seals
    • Beaches: Mull offers beautiful sandy beaches such as Calgary Bay and Laggan Sands
  5. 5
    Cairngorms National Park
    Deus Ex at English Wikipedia · Public domain
    Cairngorms National Park is the UK's largest national park offers a diverse range of landscapes, from rolling hills to snow-capped mountains. It's a great place for hiking, skiing, and wildlife watching.
    Cairngorms National Park is a stunning area located in the eastern Highlands of Scotland. Spanning over 4,500 square kilometers, it is the largest national park in the country and is home to breathtaking landscapes of mountains, lochs, rivers, and forests. The park offers a diverse range of outdoor activities and a unique opportunity to witness the captivating wildlife and rich cultural heritage of the Scottish Highlands.
    • Size: 4,500 square kilometers
    • Location: Eastern Highlands of Scotland
    • Landscape: Mountains, lochs, rivers, and forests
    • Wildlife: Diverse range of flora and fauna
    • Outdoor activities: Hiking, mountaineering, fishing, wildlife watching, and more
  6. 6
    The Fairy Glen, Isle of Skye is a magical landscape of small hills, streams, and waterfalls that looks like something out of a fairytale. It's a popular spot for photography and hiking.
    The Fairy Glen is a magical and enchanting area located on the Isle of Skye in Scotland. It is famous for its otherworldly landscape and mystical atmosphere, often described as a miniature version of the Scottish Highlands. The Fairy Glen offers visitors a serene and breathtaking experience in the heart of nature.
    • Location: Isle of Skye, Scotland
    • Landscape: Otherworldly and picturesque
    • Atmosphere: Magical and mystical
    • Size: Miniature version of the Scottish Highlands
    • Flora: Lush greenery and vibrant wildflowers
  7. 7
    Eilean Donan Castle
    Syxaxis Photography · CC BY-SA 4.0
    Eilean Donan Castle is a picturesque castle located on a small island in Loch Duich. It's one of the most iconic images of Scotland and is a popular spot for tourists and photographers.
    Eilean Donan Castle is a stunning castle located on a small tidal island in Loch Duich in Scotland. It is one of the most iconic and picturesque castles in the country, attracting visitors from around the world. The castle itself is surrounded by breathtaking natural beauty and offers panoramic views of the Western Highlands.
    • Location: Eilean Donan, Loch Duich, Scotland
    • Architecture: A blend of medieval and early 20th-century design
    • Style: Scottish Baronial
    • Size: Three-story castle with a total of six bedrooms
    • Setting: Situated on a small tidal island at the point where three sea lochs meet
    Eilean Donan Castle in other rankings
  8. 8
    Loch Ness
    Sam Fentress · CC BY-SA 2.0
    Loch Ness is the famous lake that is home to the legendary Loch Ness Monster. Visitors can take boat tours or explore the surrounding area on foot or by bike.
    Loch Ness is a picturesque freshwater loch located in the Scottish Highlands. It is known for its breathtaking beauty and the legend of the Loch Ness Monster, which has made it an iconic tourist destination. The loch stretches approximately 23 miles long and covers an area of about 22 square miles. Surrounded by rolling hills and lush greenery, Loch Ness offers stunning panoramic views and is a favorite spot for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts.
    • Length: Approximately 23 miles
    • Area: About 22 square miles
    • Location: Scottish Highlands
    • Depth: Maximum depth of 754 feet
    • Water Source: Mainly fed by rivers, streams, and subterranean springs
    Loch Ness in other rankings
  9. 9
    St. Kilda
    Otter · CC BY-SA 3.0
    St. Kilda is an isolated archipelago located off the west coast of Scotland that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It's home to a unique ecosystem and a rich cultural history.
    St. Kilda is a remote archipelago located in the North Atlantic Ocean. It is known for its stunning natural beauty, rugged landscapes, and rich cultural heritage.
    • Location: North Atlantic Ocean
    • Archipelago type: Remote
    • Geographical features: Rugged landscapes
    • Historical significance: UNESCO World Heritage site
    • Wildlife: Abundant birdlife, including puffins and gannets
  10. 10
    The Kelpies, Falkirk
    Beninjam200 · CC BY-SA 4.0
    The Kelpies, Falkirk is two giant horse-head sculptures that are a modern symbol of Scotland's industrial heritage. Visitors can explore the surrounding park and learn about the history of the area.
    The Kelpies, located in Falkirk, Scotland, is an iconic and awe-inspiring public art installation. Standing at 30 meters tall, these magnificent horse-head sculptures are made entirely of shimmering stainless steel. The Kelpies are a symbol of Scottish heritage and pay homage to the role that horses played in supporting industries like agriculture and transportation throughout history. The sculptures were designed to capture the spirit and power of the Clydesdale horses, which were once common in Scotland. The Kelpies reside in Helix Park, a sprawling green space that offers stunning views of the sculptures against the backdrop of the surrounding countryside.
    • Height: 30 meters
    • Material: Stainless steel
    • Location: Falkirk, Scotland
    • Symbolism: Scottish heritage and the role of horses in industry
    • Inspiration: Clydesdale horses

Missing your favorite area?


Ranking factors for beautiful area

  1. Natural beauty
    The overall attractiveness of the landscape, including elements such as mountains, forests, coastlines, lochs, and rivers. Consider the variety and uniqueness of the scenery.
  2. Cultural and historical significance
    The presence of historic landmarks, castles, monuments, and sites that hold cultural significance or tell the story of Scotland's past.
  3. Wildlife and biodiversity
    The presence and variety of wildlife in the area, including birds, marine life, and other animals, as well as the range of plant life and ecosystems present.
  4. Outdoor activities and recreation opportunities
    The availability of outdoor activities such as hiking, cycling, water sports, and wildlife watching, as well as the quality of trails, parks, and other recreational facilities.
  5. Accessibility
    How easy it is to reach and explore the area, including availability of public transportation, roadways, and well-marked trails.
  6. Climate and weather
    The overall weather conditions, including temperature, rainfall, and sunshine, and how they contribute to the enjoyment and beauty of the area.
  7. Sustainability and conservation efforts
    The presence of initiatives to protect and preserve the natural and cultural heritage of the area, such as responsible tourism practices, conservation projects, and eco-friendly accommodations.
  8. Local community and culture
    The friendliness and hospitality of the locals, as well as the opportunity to experience authentic Scottish culture, traditions, and cuisine.
  9. Accommodations and amenities
    The availability and quality of accommodations, restaurants, and visitor facilities within or near the area, as well as the cleanliness and overall visitor experience.
  10. Popularity and crowd levels
    The balance between being a well-known, popular destination versus being overcrowded and having a negative impact on the environment and visitor experience.

About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most beautiful area in Scotland. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or area is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 174 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each area once every 24 hours. The rank of each area is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

More information on most beautiful area in scotland

Scotland is a country that is renowned for its breathtaking natural beauty. From the rugged Highlands to the rolling hills and picturesque lochs, Scotland offers visitors a wealth of stunning landscapes to explore. With so many beautiful areas to choose from, it can be difficult to pinpoint which region is the most picturesque. However, through our extensive polling and analysis, we have compiled a list of the most beautiful areas in Scotland, as voted by the public. Whether you prefer the rugged terrain of the Isle of Skye or the tranquil beauty of Loch Lomond, there is something for everyone in Scotland's most beautiful areas. Join us as we explore the top contenders for Scotland's most beautiful area and discover the unique features that make each one a must-visit destination.

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