I'm thinking about taking my family (two adults, three small children) to Scotland for Easter Break (10 days) in the beginning of April. I found a cheap flight into Glasgow, but I'd rather stay somewhere within driving distance (no more than 1 hour 45 mins) in the country. Are there any beautiful, rural areas with small quaint villages near Glasgow or Edinburgh that are recommended? Last year, my family and I went to the Cotswolds for Easter Break and had an amazing time staying near Winchcombe, so something similar would be perfect.
I can recommend Brambles B&B in the charming town of Inveraray in Argyll. There's a castle (beautiful inside and out), historic jail, nearby open-air Auchindrain Township museum with many acres to walk, and pony rides at Argyll Adventure. If you have a rental car you can also take day trips into the highlands.
Inveraray is about a 2-hour drive from Glasgow airport, most of it quite scenic along the western shore of Loch Lomond and then over the mountain passes.
You might consider staying on the island of Arran, which is accessed by ferry from Ardrossan. It's a spectacularly beautiful island with rocky peaks in the north, glens, isolated settlements, a beach or two and plenty of prehistoric standing stones (I'm thinking particularly of Machrie Moor). There are a couple of small towns on the island as well - Brodick and Lochranza. Only downside is that it's proximity to Glasgow makes it popular as a get-away for Glaswegians and this might be particularly marked on a public holiday like Easter. Worth considering in my view though, even though it's been a while since I last visited.
Hope you have a great trip!
I'd second Inveraray. It's right in the middle of very scenic and storied Argyle; if you are Clan Campbell this is Headquarters. You will be within day trips of many famous locations. You are also near a National Park which may have activities for the kids. Check what is open that time of year. It does still have occasional snow then...so bring layers and knit hats. It is over an hour to Glasgow.