In the eighties and nineties the Dutch Automobile Association (ANWB) was hard at work mapping all tourist attractions in Europe while storing all the relevant details in a database. The internet was still in its infancy and the company was convinced it had a potential golden egg in the basket.
At the time I was one of the 15 Database Editors and did some extensive fact finding travelling around Scotland. I still remember being surprised by the constant change in scenery. I had (still do) a penchant for back roads and country lanes and, while it might take longer to reach your destination (a castle or your hotel); the rewards are more than worth it. These rural roads tend to wander from left to right and inevitably you will adjust your driving. As a consequence you’ll see a lot more and you’ll get so much more enjoyment out of it.
The countryside offers an almost timeless quietude that you’ll never find anywhere else.
Next time you visit Scotland, do get off the beaten track and experience that true sense of peace sitting on a hillock (or tree stump) gazing across the loch at your feet to the gentle slopes of the glen all around you. I remember just such a heavenly spot near remote Loch na Gainimh in Sutherland. There my love affair with Scotland must have taken root. I just wish I was there.