People, food and culture
Scotland’s first inhabitants were known as the Picts, a Celtic tribe who founded the Kingdom in the early Middle ages. Today, the vibrant Scottish people proudly uphold their strong traditions and have a distinct culture. The Highland Fling and the Sword dance are the oldest traditional Highland dances of Scotland. Male warriors performed the dances to celebrate their victory after returning from battle. Now, they are performed at national events and dance competitions. One can take a glimpse of Scottish culture at the annual festival called Scottish Highland games. Oats, barley, and dairy products are considered as pillars of the rural and urban diet of Scotland. The national dish is the haggis, a dish which consists of a pudding made of sheep's organs mixed with onions, oatmeal, and spices. It was traditionally served inside the sheep's stomach! Shortbread is another Scottish dish that does not require an introduction. Invented in 1736, the buttery goodness of shortbread makes it a popular dessert item worldover. Scotland is also famous for, yes you got it - Scotch Whisky, traditionally made from malted barley and more recently, also from wheat and rye. It is aged in oak barrels for at least three years to upwards of 20 years. No visit to Scotland is complete without downing a dram of the good stuff.