2014 is going to be a massive year for Scotland with the return of the famous Homecoming Celebrations, although this years edition promises to be bigger and better than ever. The Homecoming was established in 2009 in order to showcase Scotland’s culture and heritage on the world stage, and here at Sykes we thought that we should do our bit to help out. That’s why we’ve decided to list some of the exciting things that best illustrate what the Homecoming is all about.
Ask anyone about Scotland and you can pretty much guarantee that some of the first things that will pop into their head will be kilts, bagpipes and haggis and where’s better to see these things than at a traditional highland gathering? As usual there will be numerous gatherings taking place around the country but as they are inspired by the Homecoming the 2014 editions are not to be missed. The Braemar Gathering, held in the heart of the beautiful Cairngorms National Park, is one of the most famous Highland Games attracting visitors from all around the world and next year you could join them, albeit with the added incentive of a cosy cottage where you can put your feet up at the end of the day.
2014 also sees the 700 year anniversary of the Battle of Bannockburn, and this momentous occasion is taking centre stage during the Homecoming festivities. To commemorate the event the Bannockburn Live festival has been arranged at the end of June. The event will see the grand opening of the brand new visitor centre, huge re-enactments of the battle and also many more traditional festival attractions with traditional Scottish foods, music and literature being celebrated; what more could you want from a day out?
The Scottish Countryside
The Scottish countryside really is a wonder to behold with its eerie lochs, stunning wildlife and breath-taking views, and from 2014 onwards there will be a new way in which you can soak it all in. As part of the Homecoming celebrations a brand new country trail will be opened that stretches all the way from Dunbar on the east coast, to Helensburgh in the west. This is in honour of one of Scotland’s great exports; John Muir, a world famous naturalist and conservationist who is known in America as the father of the National Parks, so why not pay homage to him and visit the Scottish countryside yourself.
Scotland has had a rich sporting heritage down the years and this continues right up to the present day with numerous olympic heroes, not to mention Britain’s first Wimbledon men’s champion in over 70 years in the shape of Andy Murray. 2014 looks set to continue this strong tradition with the Commonwealth Games coming to Glasgow and the Ryder Cup being held at the world famous Gleneagles course. If this inspires you then why not make the trip up north yourself. With almost 600 golf courses and numerous other sporting venues, you’ll be spoilt for choice, and what’s more if you book a holiday cottage in Scotland with Sykes you’ll have the perfect place to rest those tired legs afterwards.