Now that the end of 2009 is in sight, it’s time to look to the year ahead and see what is going on in Scotland in 2010. If you didn’t make it to Scotland for the big Homecoming 2009 events, make this the year that you come see the wilderness of the Highlands, the culture of Edinburgh, or any of the countless other travel experiences that Scotland has to offer. Here is a list of events throughout the country in 2010. If you find one here that you just can’t miss, follow the links to learn more, then use our WhyGo booking service to book your flight to Scotland, your hotels, and all your other travel needs.
- Perth 800: 2010 is a very special year for Perth, marking 800 years since the city’s royal charter in 1210. For a schedule of events throughout the year, check out our list of Perth 800 events.
- 3 Jan : Old Firm Derby : Just two days after Hogmanay, football’s oldest club rivalry takes the pitch as Celtic host Rangers. The two Glasgow sides first met in 1888, and have been bitter enemies ever since. (Glasgow)
- 25 Jan : Burns Night : You may have missed the 250th anniversary of the birth of Scotland’s most famous poet last January, but regardless of the year, Burns Night is always a great time to be in Scotland.
- 7 Feb : Six Nations Rugby vs. France : Scotland opens our 6 Nations campaign at home against the French, who bested us 27-6 on their last trip to Murrayfield. (Edinburgh)
- 18-28 Feb : Glasgow Film Festival : 2010 marks the 6th annual edition of the festival, and features a Cary Grant retrospective. Official site. (Glasgow)
- 13 Mar : Six Nations Rugby vs. England : There is no older rivalry in European rugby, and the Scots will give their welcoming reputation a rest when England comes to Murrayfield for the second and last home 6 Nations tie. Official site. (Edinburgh)
- 29 Apr – 3 May : Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival : One of the must-see events on the calendar of any Scotch whisky enthusiast, this festival includes tastings, tours of rarely opened distilleries, and even a 3-day “whisky school” to educate you on every step of the laborious process. Official site. (Speyside)
- Monthlong : West End Festival : The bohemian side of Glasgow, filled with cafes, boutiques and restaurants, comes together for this annual celebration, now in its tenth year and one of the highlights of the city’s calendar. Official site. (Glasgow)
- 5-13 June : Nairn Book and Arts Festival : The town of Nairn outside of Inverness hosts one of the best of the many popular book festivals throughout Scotland. Authors from around the country and beyond will speak and present their work. Official site. (Nairn)
- 15-18 July: The Open Championship: The greatest golfers in the world will come to St. Andrews for a classic tournament on a classic course. Without any doubt, the biggest event on this year’s golf calendar.
- 7-14 July, 18-25 July : World Laser Championships: This sounds like the coolest event ever just from the name, but to those not into sailing, “Laser” is a class of sailing competition. The Largs Sailing Club is host to both the Mens and Womens world championships throughout July. Official site. (Ayrshire)
- 6-30 Aug : Edinburgh Fringe Festival: The most famous of Edinburgh’s August festivals and the largest arts festival in the world, has something for everyone. The 2009 edition set attendance records despite the economic downturn, and this year will likely do the same. Official site. (Edinburgh)
- 6-28 Aug : Edinburgh Military Tattoo : The 60th year of the world’s most famous tattoo is bigger than ever, and includes performers from four continents. Not to be missed, especially this year. Official site. (Edinburgh)
- 2-8 Sept : Orkney International Science Festival : If you’re like me, when you think of the Orkneys, you think wind, whisky, and science education. Just kidding. But the 20th edition of the festival will feature talks and events on everything from astronomy to zoology and beyond. If you feel like you need an educational excuse to visit the beautiful Orkneys, here you go. Official site.
- 8 Oct-8 Nov : Glasgay! : Scotland’s biggest celebration of queer arts and culture is a month-long political and artistic phenomenon. Official site. (Glasgow)
- 31 Dec : Hogmanay : No one celebrates the New Year like the Scots, and as the cap to this special year of remembering Scotland’s history, the two biggest cities in Scotland will be competing to see who can throw the biggest party. As always, the smart money is on the capital (Edinburgh).