Few people need to be convinced of Scotland’s picture-postcard landscape. But rarely have so many beautiful places been captured and collected as effectively as in Pete Irvine’s new book.
Published by Collins on the 9th March, the new paperback edition of Pete Irvine’s Scotland The Best 100 Places features a heady mix of tourist favourites and hidden gems. His selections are accompanied by breath-taking images from some of Scotland’s most talented photographers, and often opt for lesser known hidden treasures rather than more obvious landmarks.
“The book is about ‘place’, our sense of it and how it informs our awareness and perception of Scotland. Although it is a photography book, featuring photographs from some of Scotland’s most notable photographers, it is also a manual, helping readers to find the places in the pictures they might otherwise walk by.”
Irvine pre-empts any “glaring omissions” he may have left out of the book by stating that his selection is “entirely subjective”, requiring no justification.
“I’m confident that these one hundred places are all exceptional and that this has been captured in each of the photographs selected. Whether sitting in Charlotte Square Garden in August, or on the shore of Iona, or arriving by boat to Knoydart or Stromness, you know you’re in a very good place, that it’s great to be in Scotland and good to be alive.”
Let’s begin with one of Irvine’s better known choices. The Forth Bridge is known throughout the world, and achieved 125 years of service in 2015.
Since 1446, this chapel has brought both the devout and the curious to its doors. Famous for its association with Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code, it remains one of the world’s most mysterious and enigmatic churches.
Dunnottar Castle is a fantastic reward after a bracing walk from Stonehaven Harbour. With a great location and a rich history, it’s not to be missed.
Sat peacefully in the corner of Holyrood Park, you’d be forgiven for forgetting that St Margaret’s Loch wasn’t a world all by itself. Escape here and get lost in the peace and quiet.
Designed by Edward Lutyens and completed in 1901, Greywalls house is beautiful and unique both inside and out.
Another well-known entry on Irvine’s list, but for good reason. Glen Lyon has been visited by walkers and lovers of landscape for many years, including Tennyson, Baden-Powell and Wordsworth.
Dr Neil’s Secret Garden has, of course, become a poorly kept secret over the years. Nevertheless, it is a beautifully kept garden and a place that many consider to be good for the soul. It is reminiscent of storybook escapism, and is as lovingly cared for by Claudia Poitier and a group of volunteers as it was back in the day by Dr Neil himself.
These villages scatter a stretch of eastern coast and are the perfect place for a spot of exploration. Idyllic beaches and rare seabirds await you here.
Located in the former royal burgh of Fife, Falkland is full of country walks, art galleries, tea rooms and spectacular fountains.
Edinburgh is a city full of history, and its graveyards are a testament to that. You can find the monuments of famous historical figures, as well as learn about Edinburgh’s fascinating journey throughout the 18th and 19th centuries in a ghoulishly intriguing setting.
These are just some examples of the beautiful and thought-provoking locations outlined in Irvine’s book, proving why Scotland was voted the second best country to visit in 2017 by Rough Guides.
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