Why Tourists Need To Think Carefully About The Clothes They Pack For A Vacation To Scotland

Planning a trip to Scotland? You're in for a treat! From hitting up Glasgow — a must-see European destination for art lovers — to diving into history in Edinburgh, sampling whiskey in the Scottish Highlands, or playing a round at St. Andrews (one of the oldest golf courses in the world), the country is brimming with adventures and landscapes that are suited for all types of travelers.

That said, one of the most important things to consider — along with your sightseeing and destination planning — is also what you'll need to bring with you. Known for its unpredictable and often drizzly weather throughout the year, you can easily experience up to "four seasons in a day" while visiting Scotland. From hot to cold and sunny to rainy, there's no amount of "but it's summer!" that'll save you from trading up your shorts and flip-flops for a pair of boots.

So, what's one way to save yourself the hassle? Pack layers (especially one layer that's waterproof). That way, you'll be much better equipped to deal with sudden changes and won't be left looking like a tourist.

What to pack for your trip

No matter what you're hoping to do, there are a few non-negotiables you're going to need to bring along for your visit to Scotland. The first is a waterproof jacket. Ideally, one that packs well — as in, something you can stuff inside a small go-bag or purse during a day out — and also works to block the wind. Whether you're walking around Edinburgh and Glasgow or hitting up the country's many coastal and mountain trails, a waterproof jacket will come in handy during one of Scotland's famously unexpected showers. Pair this with interchangeable layers — think tanks and long-sleeved shirts, as well as pants — and you'll be good to go.

Along with clothes to layer, you'll also want to pack a sturdy and comfortable pair of shoes. Whether that's sneakers or ankle boots is entirely up to you — just make sure they provide good traction, even when the ground is wet, and work for various occasions. Oh, and as a precaution: Just go ahead and leave the flip-flops at home. You're more than likely not going to need those unless you want to end up shivering with muddy toes.

Remember, a well-packed bag is key to ensuring that you're still able to enjoy your holiday to the fullest, rain or not. In fact, the Scots even have an old saying that fully encapsulates this: "There is no such thing as bad weather, only the wrong clothes!"

Other tips for your visit to Scotland

While packing smart and prepping for Scotland's rain-hail-shine weather are essential, there's another piece of the puzzle that needs taking care of: timing. After all, timing your visit to Scotland can be just as important as knowing what to pack — especially when it comes to things like staying within budget and avoiding crowds.

Ideally, the most budget-friendly time to visit Scotland is during the shoulder season — aka, spring and autumn. It's less busy, more affordable, and still equally stunning as during the rest of the year, but you'll have a much easier time finding accommodations and navigating the country's popular attractions without dealing with the large crowds of holidaymakers. If you can't make it then, summertime is still a great opportunity to enjoy outdoor activities and festivals — just watch out for Scotland's least likable inhabitants: midges

Numbering in the thousands, these annoying creatures can make for a less-than-pleasant experience while hiking, camping, or simply enjoying a drink outside. The solution? Pack some insect repellent, try to stay inside at dusk and dawn, and consider buying a midge-proof hat with a net (this one's for the braver fashionistas). Much like unforeseen rain, it's all about laying the groundwork for an unforgettable trip (and not letting yourself get bogged down by the details).