From Harry Potter to the TV series Highlander, the landscape of north of Hadrian's Wall sets imaginations racing. Here's our lists of Scotland's ten most spectacular places that will make you wish you packed a camera.
Since the Skye bridge was built it has got a whole lot easier to reach the heart of the inner Hebrides. Driving from the mainland past the sentry of Eilean Donan Castle, the Isle of Skye's epic landmarks transport you to the big screen. The Black Cuillins divide the skyline and, to the north, the Old Man of Storr is otherworldly and instantly recognisable.
2. Dunnottar Castle
The setting of Aberdeenshire's ruined island fort is said to have inspired Bram Stoker's and, more recently, was the setting of Mel Gibson's Hamlet. Set on a defiant outcrop of cliffs you can pity the poor Viking who tried to invade it.
3. The Jacobite Steam Train
The Glenfinnan Viaduct on the West Highland Railway Line is perhaps best known to Harry Potter fans as the onscreen version of the Hogwarts express. However, the journey on the Jacobite ends not in a wizarding school but the magically remote town of Mallaig.
The rolling hills of Glencoe in Argyll is famed for its prominent rocky outcrops which belay a dark violent history. Shaped by volcanic activity its better known as the setting for the Glencoe Massacre of Clan MacDonald – an event that would make a Game of Thrones plot twist look virtually bloodless.
5. St Andrews Cathedral
The ruined arches of the medieval cathedral are all that remain of the giant structure. Sat on the coast, near the ancestral home of golf, it's also in the middle of St Andrews University. Full of characterful seafront cafes, all of which have signs in the window claiming to be "where Wills met Kate (for a cup of tea)."
6. Calton Hill, Edinburgh
This scenic vantage over Edinburgh's Balmoral Hotel and Prince's Street is perhaps the most scenic park in Scotland. Full of whimsical ruins and stone pillars, it gained the moniker "Edinburgh's shame" after the city ran out of money to build a Greek Acropolis on the hill. 200 years later you'd be forgiven for thinking it was left artfully incomplete on purpose.
7. Balmoral and Braemar
Queen's haunt and home of the highland games, the purple heather of the Dee Valley is almost unreal. At the Braemar gathering in August, kilt-clad competitors take part in tradition events such as caber toss and hammer throw.
8 Calanais Standing Stones, Isle of Lewis
It's a long way to Lewis from the mainland, but built 4000 years ago, these impressive monoliths are older than England's Stone Henge and far more remote. After the two and a half hour journey from Ullapool to Stornoway you can have the legendary 'petrified giants' to contemplate for yourself.
9. Necropolis, Glasgow
An eerie inclusion, but Glasgow's city of the dead is dead impressive. It's a "who's who" of great Scots and certainly has a gothic Harry Potter-esque charm. The maudlin perch is a great place to survey Glasgow's city skyline and soak up some of the atmosphere from the Molendinar Burn.
10. Loch Lomond
The bonnie bonnie banks are famed through song but few people know that this loch in the middle of the Trossach's national park is the biggest inland body of water in the UK. It's only an hour's drive from Glasgow. It's rightly known as the "gateway to the highlands".