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Scotland in February

Hi, All-

My mom and I would like to travel to Scotland. As a teacher, I’m bound to the school calendar and am wondering whether it would make sense to visit in February (school break) weather-wise. Here’s what we would like to do: spend 2 days in Edinburgh seeing the sights, take the train to Glasgow for a day, and possibly visit the Highlands and also take a boat trip on Loch Ness. I’m wondering about the last 2 items... Viator has some tours that go in the winter and we’re from Rochester, NY so we are used to cold weather and snow. Does this sound reasonable or should we leave it to another time? There are some pretty inexpensive flights right now. I know it depends on the weather and I’ve read averages, but just wondering if anyone has personal experience... Thanks in advance.

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Hi, Kristen,

I spent two weeks in Scotland in February each year from 2001 to 2006. Sometimes the weather was good; other years not so good. One year I was in Aberdeen for their worst snowstorm in 50 years. I've also been there when it was 60 degrees. (Fahrenheit)

In the central belt (Strathclyde) you should have no trouble getting about. Some of the less visited attractions (castles, museums, etc.) outside of Strathclyde will be on limited hours, or may even be closed for the winter season. You should have no trouble finding things open in the Glasgow-Edinburgh area, and best of all, you won't be fighting other tourists for space and accommodations.

I've been in Inverness in February. It's cold, but not uncomfortably so. You'll probably need a car if you're going to be visiting the Highlands. I don't know whether the Loch Ness tours operate in February. You may want to check the various tour operator websites to find out.

The good thing about traveling in February is that people are happy to see you. B&B owners and people working in any of the tourism industries aren't rushed off their feet as they are in high season.

You'll get more daylight hours nearer to the end of February. You should be getting nine to 10 hours of daylight, depending on when you're there.

Best thing to do is to go for it, enjoy yourselves, and keep an eye on the weather forecast!

Mike (Auchterless)