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Only the Best: Best Places to Visit in Scotland in 2018

Dela Lozanova

16 November 2018

Time to Read

3 minutes

Trying to choose the best places to visit in Scotland with the kids? Adding a few award-winning attractions to your agenda sounds like a good idea!

More than 20,000 people voted in the Family Favourites Awards this year to pick the best things to do with the family in each region in the UK. Let’s find out what parents think are the best days out in Scotland and start planning yours!

Best FREE Family Day Out in Scotland

WINNER: Museum of Childhood Edinburgh

Museum of Childhood Edinburgh

After nearly half-a-year-long closure for refurbishment, the Museum of Childhood in Edinburgh is back and, as the vote showed, you guys still love it! There are lots of new things to see, including a Buzz Lightyear action figure from 2000.

The Museum of Childhood is one of the best places to visit in Scotland, not only because it’s free, but because it’s a unique attraction, which takes you through the history of childhood. It’s the first museum in the world dedicated to displaying toys and games from across the generations. For the grown-ups a visit to the museum is a heart-warming (and little nostalgic) trip down memory lane, while the kids get to explore a huge place filled with all sorts of cool toys - what’s not to like?!

Best Event at an Attraction in Scotland

WINNER: Almond Valley Heritage Centre - DEN-BUILDING ADVENTURE

Den Building Adventures at Almond Valley Heritage Centre

Den-Building Adventures is one of the best things to do in Scotland, hands down! A day out at the beautiful riverside Almond Valley Heritage Centre near Livingston is always fun but this event takes your little adventurers even further.

In an exciting day-long experience, budding explorers will be led to some of the wildest and most remote parts of Almond Valley where they’ll learn essential survival skills to face the wilderness. Once your kids get the hang of setting camp, making shelters, looking out for animals and making food, Bear Grylls will have nothing on them!

Best Day Out for Under 5s in Scotland

WINNER: KIDZ TOWN Role-Play Centre

KIDZ TOWN kids in dress-up and mascot

If your tots love role play, KIDZ TOWN Role-Play Centre in Stirling definitely should make it on your list of best places to visit in Scotland. With 14 different role-play location, KIDZ TOWN is a space where creative boys and girls can unleash their imaginations.

Sliding down a fire station pole in a firefighter uniform in a mad dash to prevent Main Street from burning down; keeping KIDZ TOWN safe from a police car; and taking care of the newborn babies in the hospital are just a few of the scenarios your little ones can act out at the centre. Doesn’t that make even your inner kid want to have a go?

Best Animal Day Out in Scotland

WINNER: Edinburgh Zoo

Giant panda at Edinburgh Zoo

Let’s get straight to it, shall we? There are over 1000 amazing creatures at Edinburgh Zoo but what excites everyone who loves animals is that this is the only place in the UK where you can meet real giant pandas. If that’s not worth the trip to Scotland, we don’t know what is!

The pandas are only the cherry on the top! Edinburgh Zoo is home to one of Europe’s biggest penguin enclosures, an interactive trail with over 40 chimpanzees to meet, and UK’s only koalas. So, we think we can safely say the zoo is koalafied to be one of the best places to visit in Scotland...

Best Educational Day Out in Scotland

WINNER: Maid of the Forth

 Maid of the Forth boat tour

Ah, the iconic Maid of the Forth boat cruises - no trip to Edinburgh is complete without one! Whether you want to relax at the open top deck and soak in the views of the Forth Bridges, or you fancy a scenic boat trip to Inchcolm Island, you’re sure to find what you need in the long list of experiences on offer.

The kids might not be exactly thrilled by the idea of enjoying the scenery, but they’ll definitely have a whale of a time, trying to spot puffins, grey seals, dolphins and occasionally even Minke whales.

Best Active Day Out in Scotland

WINNER: Conifox Adventure Park

Karting at Conifox Adventure Park

Kids have so much energy and Conifox Adventure Park offers so many ways for them to use it! There are activities for the whole family to enjoy: have a good kick-about at the 9-hole footgolf course, race on a pedal go-karting track, try some off-road pedal tractors and more.

The little ones still want more but you feel like you can’t keep up with your Duracell bunnies? Unleash them upon the play area and watch them take on the swings, trampolines, balance beams and the giant jump pillow. BEST ACTIVE DAY OUT EVER!


That’s it for our list of the best places to visit in Scotland with the kids in 2018. We hope you’ve found inspiration for a great day out!

Interested to learn which attractions took the Family Favourites Awards crown in the rest of the regions? Check out the full list of finalists and winners and find out more about the winners in our “Only the Best” series:

Best things to do in London | Best things to do in the North West | Best things to do in England | Best things to do in Wales | Best things to do in Yorkshire | Best things to do in Northern Ireland |
Best things to do in the Midlands



Dela Lozanova

16 November 2018

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Dela is the Content Editor at Day Out With The Kids. Originally from sunny Varna on the Bulgarian seacoast, she now lives in Coventry and travels regularly throughout Europe to escape the rain.

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