Shaped like a kidney bean and occupying centre stage in the Firth of Clyde, Arran is the most southerly (and therefore the most accessible) of all the Scottish islands. The Highland–Lowland dividing line passes right through its centre – hence the cliché about it being like “Scotland in miniature” – leaving the northern half sparsely populated, mountainous and bleak, while the lush southern half enjoys a much milder climate. The population of around 5000 – many of whom are incomers – tend to stick to the southeastern quarter of the island, leaving the west and the north relatively undisturbed.

Book through Rough Guides’ trusted travel partners

Scotland features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

The most beautiful region in Scotland: the results!

The most beautiful region in Scotland: the results!

In a country as stunning as Scotland, how do you choose the most beautiful region? VisitScotland asked us to help them find out, so we ran a poll with our rea…

20 Apr 2018 • Rough Guides Editors
How to ace Aberdeen: an expert’s guide to the Granite City

How to ace Aberdeen: an expert’s guide to the Granite City

With more than thirty other namesakes around the world – from New South Wales in Australia to South Africa's Eastern Cape – Scotland's Aberdeen remain…

18 Apr 2018 • Mike MacEacheran
9 quirky British islands to explore

9 quirky British islands to explore

Just a fraction of Britain’s more than 6000 islands are accessible – and even fewer are inhabited. If you’re dreaming of life, or just a holiday, on a rem…

04 Apr 2018 • Rachel Mills insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right