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Visit Scotland | Alba
Article published 09/11/2023

Scotland has been on a winning streak of late, picking up an array of prestigious global awards. We recently shared the exciting news of our recognition in Frommer’s "Best Place To Go in 2024" and Lonely Planet's "Best in Travel Awards 2024".

But the awards don’t stop there – here are a few more of our recent wins.

National Geographic Traveller (UK) Cool List 2024: Galloway and Southern Ayrshire Biosphere Shines

The Galloway and Southern Ayrshire Biosphere, Scotland’s first UNESCO Biosphere, is celebrating the news that National Geographic Traveller (UK) has named it as the only Scottish destination in the global Cool List for 2024.

This Cool List comprises the 30 most exciting global destinations that are set to make waves in the travel industry over the next year. These destinations are characterised by their unique ability to benefit both local communities and the environment while providing an exceptional experience for visitors.

Galloway and Southern Ayrshire Biosphere’s listing celebrates the reserve’s natural heritage, its UNESCO designation, and its recently extended boundary, which recognises the site’s cultural significance.

The National Geographic Traveller listing also reflects the key role the Biosphere played in the development of the world’s first UNESCO trail, a gamechanger for Scottish tourism.

The full results appear in the December 2023 issue of National Geographic Traveller (UK).

The Cool List 2024 on National Geographic




Threave Castle, Dumfries & Galloway

Time Out’s 40 coolest neighbourhoods in the world: Leith, Edinburgh and West End, Glasgow

Leith in Edinburgh and the West End in Glasgow have secured their spot on Time Out's list of the "40 Coolest Neighbourhoods in the World Right Now”.

Each year Time Out asks readers to tell them about the coolest spots in their cities. Over 12,000 people had their say in this year’s shortlist, naming the neighbourhoods in their hometowns where everyone wants to be right now. Then, Time Out narrowed down the selection with the insight and expertise of city editors and local experts who know their cities better than anyone else.

To create and rank the final list, they considered factors including community and social ventures, access to open and green space, and thriving street life.

When discussing Leith, the article mentions an arts venue hosting vintage night markets, Hidden Door festival at Leith Theatre, innovative restaurant spots catching the attention of foodies and, finally, finished tram works!

In Glasgow, Time Out recommends visiting at Starry Starry Night for a bit of vintage shopping, before heading to Kelvingrove Art Gallery. The article also recommends grabbing a churro from Loop & Scoop and eating it in the exotic surroundings of the Botanic Gardens.

40 coolest neighbourhoods in the world on Time Out


Water of Leith


Kelvingrove Art Gallery

World Travel Awards, Europe's Leading Sustainable Tourism Destination 2023: Edinburgh.

Edinburgh has triumphed in the World Travel Awards, taking home the title as Europe’s leading sustainable destination for 2023.

The award recognised a number of efforts the city has made to reduce its carbon footprint, including promising to introduce measures to become more plant based.

The winners were decided through a year-long voting campaign in which votes from members of the public carried a weighting of one while those from verified travel experts carried a weighting of two.

World Travel Awards website

Edinburgh Castle

Scotland. A destination of choice

What an honour it is for Scottish locations to receive such prestigious accolades.

These awards further cement Scotland’s reputation as a fantastic place to visit and reflects the hard work and dedication of individuals, communities, and organisations in making Scotland a destination that offers a responsible and memorable experience for all.

Let’s keep them coming!

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