“There’s no such thing as bad weather, only inadequate clothing”, the poet laureate Ted Hughes is alleged to have said when asked why he liked holidaying on Scotland’s west coast, given that it always rains there. For those who don’t share Hughes’ cavalier attitude to the elements, the weather is probably the single biggest factor to put you off visiting Scotland. It’s not so much that the weather’s always bad, it’s just that it is unpredictable: you could enjoy the most fabulous week of sunshine in early April and suffer a week of low-lying fog and drizzle in August. Out in the islands, they say you can get all four seasons in a day. The saving grace is that even if the weather’s not necessarily good, it’s generally interesting, exhilarating, dramatic and certainly photogenic. Then, the sun finally coming out is truly worth the wait. A week spent in a landscape swathed in thick mist can be transformed when the clouds lift to reveal a majestic mountain range or a hidden group of islands far offshore.

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