A Tropical Island Paradise (in Scotland)

22nd August 2018

When you think of palm trees and sand beaches you would instantly associate this with a Caribbean island. Many Scottish West Coast Islands are on the Gulf Stream allowing the growth of plants more associated with the tropics. Bute is no exception, and a visit to this gem on the Clyde is a journey into a diverse landscape. In a day you can experience Victorian architecture, lush gardens, Iron Age and Medieval sites, empty sand beaches, and a marvel of Victorian Gothic revivalism. The main town of Rothesay has wonderful promenade gardens fringed with palm trees and an original Victorian public toilet which attracts crowds of visitors!

Once a thriving Victorian seaside holiday destination, Bute is being reimagined as a new destination for the 21st century, but still keeping it’s old world charm – more and more new businesses are coming to its main town of Rothesay and the Art Deco Pavilion is being refurbished - Rothesay Pavillion. It’s visitor numbers are rising, but still manages to stay more peaceful than some of more well known islands in Scotland.

There is really something for everyone on this easily accessible island, so here are my top 5 things to do and see while visiting:

1.      For Ancient History: The Iron Age fort and Bute Museum – both go hand in hand as you can learn more about the Iron Age and Bronze age discoveries and then visit the ancient sites -Bute Museum. For those interested in archaeology there are also standing stones in several locations on the island – most notably the Kingarth Stones, set in an atmospheric forest location

2.      For Castle Lovers: Rothesay Castle – The only Castle in Scotland will a circular curtain wall - Rothesay Castle

3.      For Everyone: Mount Stuart House – A Gothic Revival Country House with an incredible history and lots of surprises to discover (including what is claimed to be the  worlds first heated indoor swimming pool)- Mount Stuart House.This is an unmissable part of a tour of Bute.

4.      For Outdoor Types: The West Island way – a newly created walking route taking you on a journey through the changing landscape on a very achievable route - The West Island Way.

5.      For Beer Lovers: All islands should have a brewery and Bute is no exception, a young craft brewery, constantly developing its products with great success - Bute Brew Co.

Just to add to all this you MUST try a Top Hat at Zavaronis - a Top Hat is an ice cream in a cone topped with a snowball (mallow covered with chocolate and coconut). This is a local delicacy and the Zavaroni family have a long history of serving up ice cream and fish and chips to hungry travellers.

There is so much else to keep you busy during your stay, and we can add The Isle of Bute as part of many or our other tours, a great introduction to Scottish island life.

Contact us to see how you could enhance your tour with a visit to Beautiful Bute! Book now with Best Scottish Tours.

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