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Scotland on a Budget

Skip the pricey rental car and use local trains and buses instead; they serve most cities and towns, including many smaller ones. (If you'll be hopping a lot from place to place, consider a rail pass.) Hostels often offer private rooms at inexpensive rates; B&B's can also be quite affordable in comparison to hotels. Self-catering cottages, campgrounds and homestays can also help you trim your accommodation costs. Pubs offer cheaper eats than restaurants. You can also create your own picnic lunch by stocking up on food at grocery stores.

Best Time to Go to Scotland

The most popular time to travel to Scotland is summer, when the weather is warm and daylight stretches well into the evening. Art lovers and culture vultures flock to Edinburgh for its August festival season (hotels fill up months in advance). Spring and fall offer cooler temperatures, lower airfares and smaller crowds around the country's castles, hiking trails and historic sites. Days are short and the weather can be forbidding over the winter, particularly on the blustery east coast. Many attractions close or reduce their hours over the winter.


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