My husband and I will be booking our first RS tour to Scotland in August 2018. We chose that month to break up the endless months of scorching California summer with some cooler weather. We'd like to fly to another European location to extend our vacation for another week to mainly relax with a light amount of sightseeing or hiking. We'd love to return to northern Italy or France but with the heat and summer crowds those destinations seem like poor choices. I've been researching Ireland, but that seems like we'd be driving a lot to see much. We have been to England, Germany, Switzerland, Greece so something new would be nice. Any ideas for a relaxing location to end our August vacation that would not be crazy crowded?
First, you will love this tour! There is so much variety in what you see and do. Complex history and battlefields, spectacular geography from the highlands to the sea, castles, sheep dogs, crannogs... jam packed with experiences every day. It is one of our very favorite RS tours. We liked it so much we might consider repeating it. If you can, arrive in Edinburgh early/stay longer. We used our pre-tour days to orient ourselves to public transportation as well as taking a relaxing day to tour the yacht Brittania. (easy public bus) http://www.royalyachtbritannia.co.uk
One couple on our tour was headed post-tour for a week on Skye. It looks like it would be relaxing and probably not crowded. http://www.skye.co.uk/accommodation.php
Another idea would be to explore Wales. (can probably get there by train) We haven't been there, but it is on our To Visit list. http://www.visitwales.com
Ireland would require driving (and stressful driving at that), and I believe that August is prime tourist season for the typical tourist destinations like the Dingle peninsula, the Cliffs, etc
We were in Amsterdam this past August and I wore sweaters so not hot at all. I love this city, different country for you and filled with art.
I would vote for Scandinavia since you're looking to avoid heat and tourist crowds. Many Scandinavians travel south in the summer, especially August, to bask in hot weather. Yes, there will be Americans and other Europeans on holiday in Scandinavia, but it's less of a draw than the more southerly European destinations.