An influential travel guide has revealed the world’s most beautiful country, and the winner is just across the pond.
Rough Guide readers voted Scotland the most stunning place on the planet, edging out Canada and New Zealand to take the top spot.
The listing asks: “Who can deny that these wild beaches, deep lochs and craggy castles are some of the most wonderful and beautiful sights in the world?”
And with Scotland home to so much natural beauty and historic interest, it’s hard to disagree.
Malcolm Roughead, chief executive of VisitScotland, said: “We are delighted that Scotland has received this remarkable accolade from Rough Guide readers, but of course it will not be a surprise to anyone who has encountered our wonderful country.”
“From our awe-inspiring landscapes to our remarkable historic attractions, to our bustling but beautiful urban centers, Scotland takes people’s breaths away.”
“Our latest campaign, the Spirit of Scotland, was based on feedback from visitors that they get a special feeling while in the country – whether it’s in the wilds of Glen Coe on a stormy day or taking part in a ceilidh on Burns’ Night – there is something different about Scotland that they can’t experience anywhere else in the world.”
“Of course, with great beauty comes great responsibility and we urge both visitors and residents alike to respect Scotland’s natural assets to protect and preserve them for many generations to come.”
The world’s most beautiful countries
3. New Zealand
5. South Africa
Below you will see stunning pictures from Scotland.