There are lots of ways to make a holiday in Scotland romantic whether that is enjoying a horse ride through the Cairngorms, taking a chilly boat trip to spot rare nature, or travelling around idyllic Scottish towns to see what you fall upon. This guide could be a great source of inspiration if you are planning to arrange a Valentines break or a romantic weekend in Scotland!
Do Scottish people celebrate Valentine’s Day?
As it happens, Scottish people are just as romantic as everyone else and love a reason to show their love, so yes, they do celebrate Valentine’s Day!
How does Scotland celebrate on Valentine’s Day?
Scottish people don’t do anything differently for Valentine’s Day, it is the same commercial day here as it is elsewhere in the world and the usual gesture of giving gifts, cards, roses and chocolates is common nature. However, the Scottish people can get creative with the way they choose to surprise their loved ones, whether that be going to hunt for the northern lights or taking a boat trip to find some dolphins.
There are simply loads of romantic things to do in Scotland. Even though the weather can be temperamental at times, the wild backdrop of Scottish scenery can make up for it any day. There are lots of ways to make an interesting and fun trip up, so we have shared some ideas with you below. These can all be done as day/evening trips whilst staying in our romantic cottages. Whether you are looking for a romantic weekend break or fun things to do for couples, there is something for you in Scotland.
Take to the dark nights and stargaze in Scotland
Stargazing can be one of the most romantic things to do in Scotland with your partner on a winter’s evening. Some would think it is too cold to brace the outdoors on a February night, however, if you are prepared you can really make it a splendid experience. You need warm clothes, camping chairs, a thick blanket (each), winter woollies and a thermos of hot tea - you might be there a while.
The best conditions are in winter when the nights are clear and cloudless. The best locations to see stars are in areas of low light pollution so generally in the countryside, away from towns. Scotland has two Dark Sky Parks which are Tomintoul and Glenlivet in Moray and Galloway International Dark Sky Park in Dumfries and Galloway. These areas are internationally recognised sites and are well worth a visit. However, you can still stargaze throughout other rural locations in Scotland, you just need a rural location and a clear night.
Hunt down the northern lights in Scotland
The northern lights can be spotted in Scotland and the best times to try and see them are between the months of October and March, so it’s the perfect time to plan a romantic trip. Like the stargazing, the best conditions are on a clear dark night, and you can make a real event out of it.
Some of the best locations in Scotland are in the North West: the Shetland Islands, the Outer Hebrides and the Isle of Skye. To get more ideas and inspiration, and to help you make a solid plan, check out our informative guide on the best places to see the northern lights. This would be a great way to enhance your holiday itinerary!
Try out some snow sports in Scotland’s ski centres
Scotland is a great backdrop for a day of snow sports, and between December and March, there can be some really good snowfall covering the hills making them perfect for a day of skiing, snowboarding, and sledging. There are three ski centres in Scotland; The Lecht, The Cairngorms and Glenshee Ski Centre which is to the south of the Cairngorms National Park. All of these centres have hire shops, cafes and gift shops, and they all run beginner’s classes as well.
For the more experienced, a day on the slopes can be a really great way to spend quality time. The adrenaline you get from a smooth run gives you all the good endorphins and you will be smiling all day, especially if you get a clear blue sky where the views stretch for miles. Finish your day off with a cosy pub meal and a pint of local ale and rest the legs by the fire. Our guide to where to find snow in Scotland is a great resource for those looking for a romantic snowy break in Scotland.
Take a whisky tour and sample Scotland’s finest scotch
Many commercial companies will send their employees on team-building trips to distilleries as it is both an educational and fun day out, especially combined with a guided tour and a group tasting! But this is a great way for couples to spend time too. Coming together over Scotland’s most famous drink is definitely an activity to consider. Distillery guides have a fascinating amount of knowledge when it comes to the history, processes, and the elements of whisky.
Speyside in the Highlands is famous for its whisky trail and there are over 50 distilleries in this region alone. Why not stay in our Speyside cottages and take a tour of these distilleries? You can book tours and tastings at most of them, and it would be fun sampling and comparing to find your perfect scotch. For more ideas on how to plan this, check out our guide to the famous whisky regions in Scotland. Add this to your list of romantic things to do in Scotland for couples.
Escape to the wilderness
Sometimes there is nothing better than escaping into the middle of nowhere and being totally uncontactable for a week (or longer!). This would be the perfect way to show your partner that they are the top of your list, and all you need is them. We have lots of rural cottages in Scotland that would act as the perfect base for your adventures, giving you a lovely space to return to after days out exploring.
The Scottish wilderness offers mountains, lochs, rivers, forests and beaches as well as nature, wild landscape and superb scenery. Climb Munros and experience 360-degree winter views, find a frozen loch to have a romantic picnic beside or warm up in the woods with some nature spotting. For some inspiration on where to stay, check out our guide to the rural cottages in Scotland and discover some hidden gems that are just waiting to offer you the ultimate romantic retreat.
Explore the Highland towns of Scotland
A nice way to spend time with your partner is to visit the towns and villages of Scotland to experience and soak up the culture. Whilst being huddled in the wilderness is an attractive thought, the beauty of staying nearer/in a town is that you have the conveniences of village life on the doorstep. Towns like Pitlochry, Blair Atholl and Grantown all boast beautiful Victorian town squares with lovely architecture and heaps of character. The west coast towns of Ullapool, Gairloch and Poolewe offer seaside settings and vibrant harbours. Every Scottish town is different, and you will love comparing the different characteristics.
Scottish towns and villages boast welcoming pubs, lovely restaurants, craft shops, village grocery stores, galleries and gift shops. They make lovely backdrops for a romantic adventure in Scotland and local activities can enhance your days out too, whether that’s fishing, bungee jumping, quad biking or nature spotting. The locals are friendly and welcoming and always keen to help you make the most of your stay.
For some ideas on which towns to visit take a read of our guide to the Highland towns of Scotland.
Take a wildlife tour and discover Scotland’s native beasts
A lot of people find peace and relaxation by immersing themselves in nature and wildlife, and Scotland has many wild residents who can keep you on your toes. Whilst most of them like to keep themselves to themselves, if you are patient, respectful of their habitat and look for them with a peaceful approach, you are bound to spot them.
Red squirrels, deer, otters, white-tailed eagles, golden eagles, dolphins, humpback whales and the Scottish wildcat are but a few species you can find when exploring Scotland. Why not get the binoculars out and surprise your partner with a wildlife trip that you will remember forever? This would be a lovely way to plan a romantic break in Scotland. And to help you plan we have written a guide to Scotland's native wildlife which provides you with more information on where to find different species.
Enjoy a romantic meal in some of Scotland’s hidden gems
It is really important to take a break from everything when you are on a holiday, and this includes a break from the cooking. Luckily, Scotland has a wealth of eateries throughout ranging from cosy cafes and blissful bakeries to traditional pubs and five-star restaurants. Whether you are staying in a city, a countryside village or a rural town, Scotland is well equipped to provide you with lots of places to eat.
A romantic meal can be the perfect way to show someone you love them and depending on how fancy you want to go, there is lots of choice. Book somewhere nice during your romantic getaway in Scotland and sample the best of Scottish produce. If you are staying on the west coast, you cannot leave without tasting the finest freshly-caught seafood.
Come and plan a romantic break in Scotland
There are lots of locations throughout Scotland that would be great for a romantic holiday, from the Scottish Borders, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Perthshire, all the way up to the Highlands. There are so many options for things to do and see, but hopefully, we narrowed them down a bit and have helped you on your way to planning the perfect romantic break.
If you are looking for accommodation, keep our romantic cottages in mind. Some have wood burners, hot tubs, private saunas and amazing views. Turn it into a luxury weekend break in Scotland and make the most of your time together!
For more inspiration, check out our guide listing 5 romantic getaways in Scotland.
Disclaimer: Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information at the time of writing,
please ensure you check carefully before making any decisions based on the contents within this article.