Scotland is the second largest country within the United Kingdom, with an area of 30,414 square miles (78,387 km2) and a population of over 5 million.
The country makes up the northern third of the island of Great Britain, and is bordered by England in the south, the North Sea to the east, the Irish Sea to the south-west and the Atlantic Ocean to the north and west.
The name “Scotland” derives from “Scoti”, which is the Latin name for the Gaels. Gaels are speakers of one of the Gaelic Celtic languages; Irish, Scottish Gaelic and Manx. By the 11th century, the Late Latin word “Scotia” was being used to refer to the Gaelic-speaking part of Scotland, north of the River Forth. It wasn’t until the Late Middle Ages that the word “Scotland” was commonly used to describe the country as a whole.
Scotland also includes over 790 islands that are divided into four groups; Shetland Isles, Orkney Isles, the Inner Hebrides and the Outer Hebrides. Only the most accessible of these islands are inhabited, which is fewer than 90.
Scottish Gaelic name: Alba.
Cities: 7, as of 2013.
Council Areas: 32.
Largest city: Glasgow.
Official languages: English.
Recognised regional languages: Scottish Gaelic, Scots.
Patron saint and day: Saint Andrew, 30th of November.
Click here to see the location of Scotland within the British Isles. You can find out all the places we have been in Scotland by following the drop down menu. You can either look by Historic County if you are a fan of the Historic County Boundaries of Scotland and abolished counties such as Sutherland, or if you are more familiar with the present day Administrative Counties which includes counties like Dumfries & Galloway and Inverclyde then use that tab instead.