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Old Man of Storr, Isle of Syke
Photograph: Shutterstock

When will we be allowed to visit Scotland again?

Hotels and campsites can open on July 15, with the two-week quarantine lifting from July 10


Around the world, lockdowns are easing and countries are lifting their border restrictions. People from the UK are already free to enter countries like Italy and France, and return home, without facing a 14-day quarantine, but despite that, a lot of people have decided to swerve overseas travel altogether this year. 

One reason for this might be that, although the government have listed a number of countries that you can travel to freely at the moment, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office is still advising ‘against all but essential international travel’.

That could mean we’ll be waiting until 2021 to drink proper sangria on a Spanish beach or sun ourselves in the South of France, but it also means now is the time to explore closer to home. The ideal compromise might be a summer spent discovering the stunning Scottish highlands or the otherworldly islands that are dotted around Scotland’s coast. 

So are holidays in Scotland allowed right now? 

Well, almost. Holidays in England were given the green light last weekend (July 4), when the ban on overnight stays was lifted, and Scotland is following closely behind.  

Man walking down cobbled Edinburgh street
Photograph: Shutterstock


At the moment, people in Scotland are allowed to visit second homes or stay in self-catering accommodation, provided there are no shared facilities. Stays in all kinds of holiday accommodation, including hotels and campsites, will be permitted from July 15.

The easing of rules on this date will also extend to Scotland’s pubs and restaurants, museums, galleries and cinemas, as long as social distancing and safety procedures are in place. 

If you’re hoping to travel to Scotland from abroad, we have more good news. The Scottish government has announced that from today (July 10), visitors from 57 countries are exempt from the UK’s mandatory 14-day quarantine. The list is nearly identical to England’s, with the exception of travellers from Spain and Serbia, who will have to self-isolate upon arrival. 

These dates are still provisional, so we’ll keep you updated as changes are announced. And in the meantime, our fingers are firmly crossed and frantically googling stunning Scottish cabins like this one on the Isle of Skye

Want to know when you can travel overseas? Here’s what we know so far

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