Now that it’s Christmas time and everyone’s getting jolly on mulled wine and trying desperately to find leftover Christmas wrapping in their cupboards, it seems like a good moment to talk about the best Christmassy activities that Scotland has to offer.
Of course, hiring a motorhome in Scotland is a great idea any time of the year, but it reaches another level during Christmas.
Whether it’s the snowy mountains in the glens or the North Pole-esque glaciers in the highlands, the country of Scotland always has a hint of Christmas cheer which is only elevated from the 1st December right up until the new year. It couldn’t feel more like a fairy tale if it tried.
With this in mind, here are seven Christmassy activities you can do to get you in the Christmas mood and make the most out of your Scotland motorhome adventure:
A Colourful Castle
First off, you’re going to be picking up your Ariescape vehicle from Edinburgh, and this is a city which radiates festive spirit. Before you set off on your journey, however, you should take advantage of the city by visiting Edinburgh Castle at night. Between November and December, there is a glorious light projection show whereby films and colours are projected onto the castle wall and lasered into the sky with spotlights. It’s a truly unique experience and certainly won’t fail to get you in the Christmas spirit.
A Merry Market
You might be tempted to also take a gander down to Prince’s Street for the Christmas market, but we would advise against that. Don’t get us wrong, Edinburgh’s Christmas market is wonderful, and it’s certainly worth a look, but there is another Christmas market that is even better. That is the one in the city square of Dundee, where market stalls are set up on December 1st and remain until Christmas Eve. There is so much to enjoy here and, best of all, it’s not so packed that you can’t actually see what any of the stalls are selling – ahem, unlike Prince’s Street!
A Snowy Sportsfest
If you’re more of a sporting family, then we would recommend Cairngorm Mountain Resort to really get the adrenaline flowing and test out your winter sport skills. There is a fantastic ski area that is great for both adults and children, and it could be a great way to flex out the muscles before you jump back into the motorhome and continue your journey.
A Christmassy Cruise
Speaking of motorhomes, one of the best things about motorhome holidays is the fact that you can drive your home wherever and whenever you like. The roads are beautiful too, with Scotland offering some stunning views that will make you feel like you’ve gone through a portal into Santa’s North Pole. One of the best routes in this regard is undoubtedly the route from Glencoe to Applecross. This will take you through a valley with glorious snowy mountains and twisting winter roads, with a number of lochs that shine under the sun and always manage to grab the eye. Just don’t let them linger too long if you’re driving!
A Festive Fair
Going back to the Christmas markets, if you would like a bit more than a few attractions and stalls, then you can’t get much better than the Christmas Fair in Glasgow’s George Square. This is a festive event that starts on 1st December and includes a number of rides, including Santa’s Runaway Train and The Blizzard, all of which are perfect to keep the kids happy and entertained. Be warned though, some of these rides are not for the faint of heart. It might be Christmas, but that doesn’t stop some rides attempting to put the fear of God into you!
A Fairy-Tale Farm
Whilst you may have only ever seen Santa’s reindeer in films, places like Cairngorm Reindeer Centre in Aviemore give you the opportunity to actually see them face to face. The centre holds Britain’s only herd of free-ranging reindeer, and visiting it will not only help preserve them but also give you a way to get up close and personal and say hello to a real-life Rudolph!
A Glowing Garden
If you’re returning your motorhome before 30th December, don’t make the mistake of giving us back the key and making your way straight home. You’re in Scotland, you’ve got to see and do as much as you can! Finish off your trip with a visit to Edinburgh’s botanical gardens. Even after Christmas time, this spot is illuminated with magical lights and seasonal sounds which will keep that Christmas spirit flowing. Here, you can discover laser gardens, giant baubles, glittery Christmas trees and a number of light features that feel almost other-worldly. It’s a great way to round off the holiday and ensure that the family leaves Edinburgh with a big smile on every face!