With Halloween fast approaching and the hours of daylight dropping, we must admit defeat and accept that winter has officially come. But while you’re counting down the days to Christmas, take some time out to explore the many festivals and events Scotland has to offer in November.
The Woodland Light Experience – October 25th to November 12th
The Woodland Light Experience is a magical outdoor light and sound show set in Balfron. The woodlands are transformed into a mythical wonderland, accompanied by storytelling from 4:30pm to 6:30pm in the Storyteller’s Yurt. The Fairy Experience takes you on an enchanting walk through the fairy trail, 10-4pm on Saturdays and Sundays. While you’re at it, hop on the tractor to Santa’s cabin for some hot food and a personally guided tour around Santa’s neighbourhood. Buy your tickets for the Woodland Light Experience here.
Stirling Gin Festival – November 3rd to 4th
The Stirling Gin Festival is returning for its fourth and biggest gin celebration at the Stirling Highland hotel. For £27.50 a head, you can explore over 50 brands of gin including Edinburgh Gin, Pickerings, Eden Mill and some award-winning newcomers. FeverTree tonic and garnishes will be provided with guidance from the makers to help you find your favourite style of gin and tonic.
Guy Fawkes Night – November 5th
Remember, remember, the fifth of November! In 1605, Guy Fawkes was arrested for attempting to murder King James I with explosives as part of the Gunpowder Plot. To celebrate his failed attempt, people across the United Kingdom light bonfires and fireworks. The Inverness Civic Bonfire & Fireworks Display is one of Scotland’s most popular Guy Fawkes shows, running from 19:30 to 19:50. You can also head over to Edinburgh’s Meadowbank Stadium for this year’s Sci-fi Themed Fireworks Display.
Oban Winter Festival – November 17th to 26th
The Oban Winter Festival is a 10-day event with markets, a Reindeer parade, light shows, performances and exhibitions. Oban is one of Scotland’s oldest sources of Single Malt Scotch Whisky, so why not sample Scotland’s national drink at the Distillery Market?
The festival also features a Victorian market where you can pick up some handmade goods and gifts just in time for Christmas, and grab some traditional Scottish grub at the Corran Halls Market. Fun fact: 2017 is the year of the Haggis! Come on down to the Haggisfest and cast your vote for the “people’s choice”, or you know, just enter the Haggis Hurling competition. Kilts provided.
To finish off the experience, you can dance the night away at a Grand Ceilidh featuring the sweet, sweet tunes of Oban Pipe Band. Don’t be shy – your host will show you the moves.
Staying for the night? Book yourself in at Oban Backpackers here.
Inverness Christmas Lights Switch On – 19th November 5:45pm-8pm
As if looking for Nessie wasn’t a good enough excuse, you can add the Christmas Lights Switch On to your list of reasons to visit Inverness. On the 19th of November, the town is filled with hundreds of locals and tourists alike to welcome the Christmas spirit with a spectacular light and animation show accompanied by Christmas carols and traditional Scottish tunes. After the show, Santa and his reindeers will even accompany you to a panto at the Eden Court Theatre.
Night at The Museum: Fantasy Scotland – 24th November 7-10pm
Inspired by the University of Glasgow’s new postgraduate course, English Literature: Fantasy, the Hunterian Museum will bring some of your favourite mythical and historical figures to life with performances, games and treasure hunts. Between all the fun and games, you can always grab a pint with Peter Pan at museum bar. The event is free; however, tickets must be booked in advance.