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  1. 2011.08.08 A map of the clans in Scotland
  2. 2011.08.08 Downtown Miami Map - Map of Downtown Miami Hotels

Located in Northern Europe, Scotland is a small country with a strong identity and a fascinating history. Although part of Great Britain since 1707, Scotland has managed to maintain its own culture and institutions.

With its beautiful scenery and unspoiled landscapes, Scotland has become a popular destination among American tourists. This amazing country, which includes over 790 islands, houses thousands of historic sites and interesting destinations. Consult a map of Scotland to get an idea of the location of the most important points of interest.

Ever wanted to visit Scotland? Here are some tips that can be useful if you are planning to travel to Scotland:

The weather in Scotland is pretty unpredictable. Most tourists visit Scotland between April and September. However, although warm, the weather during summertime can be wet too. If you want good weather, try to go in May, June or September, which tend to be the driest periods of the year.

Also, make sure to book your reservations well ahead of time because most cities become crowded during summertime and festival periods.

Main Sights in Scotland:

  • Edinburgh: Being the capital of Scotland, Edinburgh is the most popular destination in Scotland. The Old and New Towns are included on the UNESCO World Heritage list. Make sure to visit the Palace of Holyroodhouse, Edinburgh Castle and the Royal Mile (the main thoroughfare of Edinburgh). From Mid-August until early September, Edinburgh also welcomes the “Edinburgh International Festival”, an Art festival that has become very popular in Europe.
  • Glasgow: With over 600,000 inhabitants, Glasgow is Scotland’s largest city. Take a look at the amazing architecture by visiting the imposing Gothic-style Glasgow Cathedral. Glasgow will also seduce Art lovers who will appreciate the 13 museums and art galleries located in the city.
  • Loch Ness: Located in the Scottish Highlands, Loch Ness is the most popular loch in Scotland, due to the legendary Loch Ness Monster (nicknamed “Nessie”) that is said to live in its waters.
  • Islay: Islay is a Scottish island renowned for its distilleries. Indeed, Islay Malt Whisky (“Scotch”) is the foremost attraction on the island. Islay is also a great destination for bird lovers, for it hosts many bird species such as barnacle geese, sea eagles, oystercatchers, cormorants, etc.
  • The Orkney Islands: The Orkney Islands are an archipelago of around 70 islands. If you like sightseeing and archeology, visiting the Orkneys will be a wonderful experience since they house a lot of prehistoric monuments. Make sure to see the Standing Stones of Stenness, the Ring of Brodgar (stone circle), Skara Brae (stone settlement) and Maeshowe (passage grave) which are all included on the UNESCO World Heritage list.
  • The Isle of Iona: Iona is an island that attracts 500,000 visitors each
    year. It is renowned for its white-sand beaches, its Abbey (Iona Abbey) and its remaining stone Celtic crosses.
  • Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park: Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park is a national park located around Loch Lomond. The major attractions include hiking, wildlife and landscapes.

Views of Edinburgh

Top activities and events:

  • Visiting Scotland’s castles: Scotland is a country that boasts hundreds of castles. The most famous are the Culzean Castle, the Eilean Donan Castle, the Glamis Castle and the Balmoral Castle.
  • Attending Highland games: Highland games are sporting events that promote Scottish culture and heritage. The most popular Highland game is Braemar’s Royal Highland Gathering (held at the end of August or the beginning of September) which includes games such as the caber toss or weight throw. During Highland games, participants dress with a kilt and tourists can enjoy listening to the symbolic music of the bagpipe.
  • Ben Nevis Hiking: With an altitude of 1,344-metre (4,409-feet), Ben Nevis is the highest mountain in the United Kingdom and draws 100,000 hikers each year.
  • Playing Golf in Scotland: Scotland houses some of the most beautiful golf courses in Europe. As a matter of fact, Scotland is renowned to be the cradle of golf and St. Andrews, known world-wide as the Home of Golf, has become a veritable pilgrimage destination for golfers from all over the world.
  • Horse riding in the Highlands: Horse riding can be a good way to enjoy Scotland’s scenery and discover the most beautiful sights of the country.

Thanks to its breath-taking landscapes and its strong culture, Scotland has become a popular destination. Drawing around 1.8 million tourists each year, this amazing country hosts many historic monuments and sights.

The fascinating history of Scotland, as well as its cultural identity, will surely make your trip unforgettable.

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What comes to mind when you hear Miami? You are probably thinking of  sun and beaches. Well, you are right, the weather in Miami is usually sunny and the city offers a variety of fantastic beaches. Miami is Florida’s largest city and a popular winter getaway due to its balmy subtropical climate. You do have to be careful with Miami weather, though, as the months of June to November are officially part of hurricane season.  Peak season for hurricanes is actually late August to end of September, so try to plan your trip outside of these times. Here is a map of Miami that will help you with your travel plans.

Miami beaches are beautiful

Hurricanes apart, Miami is a vibrant, diverse destination, so let’s explore the numerous things to do in Miami!

  • South Beach (nicknamed SoBe) is probably Miami’s most well-known tourist draw. With its fashionable nightclubs, bars, restaurants, upscale hotels and designer boutiques this is area attracts large numbers of American and international tourists.  Anyone in search of great fashion, upscale shopping and exciting nightlife will find it in South Beach.
  • Coconut Grove is a neighborhood of Miami east of Coral Gables and offers excellent dining and shopping opportunities.  One of the most popular destinations in Coconut Grove is Coco Walk, an attractive shopping center with more than 30 stories, a movie theatre and several restaurants.
  • Little Havana is centered around  Calle Ocho, the heart of the Cuban immigrant community in Miami. Many other Latin American immigrants have also settled here in the last couple of decades. Various Latin personalities including Gloria Estefan and Celia Cruz are enshrined in the Walkway of the Stars. The Calle Ocho Festival is one of the world’s largest Carnival-inspired events and attracts more than a million visitors every year.
  • Built between 1914 and 1923, Villa Vizcaya was originally the estate of James Deering, heir to the International Harvester fortune. Today Villa Vizcaya Museum and Gardens is a national historic landmark and one of Miami’s most scenic destinations. The villa is an opulent example of the Mediterranean Revival architecture and from its waterfront terraces you can enjoy stunning views of Biscayne Bay.
  • The Miami Seaquarium is one of the most popular places for families and children because people can observe sea animals and even swim with dolphins. The aquarium offers some programs for children to play with these adorable sea mammals and even train them for a day. It is located in Virginia Key, an island between Miami and Key Biscayne.
  • Jungle Island offers a kind of interactive safari experience. You can see a variety of the world’s rarest animals, such as the Andean Condor, some very rare tigers and pythons. One of the most unique attractions at Jungle Island is a 900 pound “liger” – a cross between a lion and a tiger.
    Villa Vizcaya

    Villa Vizcaya - one of Miami's most scenic destinations

  • Just outside of the city of Miami, the Florida Everglades are a giant wetland that covers a large portion of South Florida.   The Everglades are home to unique species of animals such as alligators, turtles, fish and subtropical birds. Various companies offer guided tours to this protected nature area.
  • The Spanish Monastery was originally built in the 12th century in Spain and was brought to Miami by media mogul Randolph Hearst in the 1920s. Today it provides a place not only for visitors or travelers but also for people who are planning their wedding or anniversary. You can experience a truly medieval atmosphere at the Spanish Monastery in Miami.
  • The Venetian Pool is one of Miami’s most popular and beautiful public swimming pools, and is located in the city of Coral Gables in Miami-Dade County. Built in 1924, it features two impressive waterfalls , grottos and a huge pool that is drained and refilled with fresh water on a daily basis during spring and summer.
  • There are lots of things to do by day and night. If you like sports you can visit Sun Life Stadium and watch the Orange bowl, an American college football bowl game, in January. The Miami Dolphins are the city’s beloved football team, Miami Heat is Miami’s professional basketball team, and the Florida Panthers are the city’s NHL hockey team.  Spectator sports also include professional tennis (the Sony Ericsson Open), greyhound racing and golf.
  • Many thousands of visitors also travel to the city every year for the many great festivals and events in Miami. To mention just a few, the Winter Music Conference is one of the largest Latin music festivals, and Winter Party is one of the biggest LGBT festivals in the world. The South Beach Wine & Food Festival is one of the largest and most well-known festivals in the Miami area.

Miami is a diverse cosmopolitan metropolis and you will have a great time, whether you are there for entertainment, sports, culinary experiences, special festivals or the famous Miami nightlife.

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A map of the clans in Scotland  (0) 2011.08.08
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Posted by ralfowen

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