What makes Scotland a special country?
Well, the obvious things are the people, the scenery, the history and the number of nations throughout the world whose own history has been shaped by Scots.
The Scots are, by and large, a friendly and welcoming people. We are very proud of our small country and love to show and tell others about it.
The geography is such that within a few hours you can be in major industrial and commercial centres such as Glasgow and Edinburgh, then on to the rolling green valleys of Perthshire or the tranquil beauty of the Trossachs, finishing in the splendid majesty of lochs and mountains of the Highlands. Short boat trips take you to sparsely populated areas like the Western Isles, the Hebrides, Skye etc.
Scotland is an ancient nation that has had a turbulent past, but has never been forcefully occupied. Everywhere one looks you can see evidence of the history, be it castles or monuments, universities or crofts.
There is probably no country in the world that cannot point to a large percentage of its population who have Scottish roots. Scots have always been enthusiastic travellers who prefer to embrace their new home rather than try to change it to suit their own roots. Saying that, there are very few large towns or cities anywhere that cannot boast a Caledonia Club, a St Andrews Association or a Burns Society. It helped, of course, that the world's most popular drink is distilled in Scotland. It is often said that a Scotsman will drink with anyone and frankly that attitude has helped oil the wheels of progress.
My own personal view as to why Scotland is a popular country is the inherent romance of the place. As I have already said, history is everywhere and it is very difficult not to become caught up in this romantic history. See how popular Braveheart was: not very accurate but very romantic and stirring!
2009 is Homecoming Year which is designed to welcome visitors to Scotland, particularly those who want to discover their Scottish roots. This is a link that will give you some of the background. The Advert is, in my opinion, well worth watching and listening too. I will not pretend that all of the contributors have even passable singing voices but I think it does display the pride and romance. The 60 second version is the better and for you ladies, the worst thing that can happen is that you get to hear Sean Connery in full voice!