Scotland Warnings and Dangers
Scotland is a land of historic castles, romantic hilltop vistas, and people who are happy to welcome visitors, but when visiting Scotland you should be on alert for issues such as gangs, fickle weather, and biting insects.
Neds and Football Fans
Neds, the local term for gangs, are groups of rowdy young men you might find on the streets. Many locals get upset when their favorite football or rugby team loses, so you’ll want to avoid any rowdy groups of people. and even if you have opinions about sports, it’s best to keep them to yourself and not say anything. Religion can also be a controversial topic in the area, so its best to not bring it up if you can avoid it.
Scotland is at the very top of Great Britain, but is also warmed by the local current so it doesn’t get too cold even in the winter. However, it does rain a lot and winds can be fierce even during the summer. If you’re planning on hiking, the weather can be even worse at higher elevations, so bring rain gear and sturdy hiking boots so you won’t lose your footing.
Midges are tiny little insects that can burrow in your skin and make you itch and are very common in Scotland during the summer. Use bug spray to keep them away.
Driving in Scotland
Remember, they drive on the left not the right. When you are driving on Scottish roads, keep in mind that animals have the right of way. You must stop for a sheep or cattle farmer driving his animals across the road. In rural areas, goats, Shetland ponies and deer are everywhere. While many guidebooks recommend the scenic back roads, take particular care here as this is where you’ll most often see them.
Editor’s note: The information contained on this page was compiled using real traveler reviews about warnings or dangers in Scotland.