Sunday, May 25

Q&A with Adventures around Scotland

There is a wealth of blogging talent in Scotland but unlike Susanne not all of them blog about our beautiful country. It is great to see someone blogging about all the wonderful things you can do here. Adventures around Scotland is a fantastic travel blog which is bound to give lots of motivation for fellow Scots to explore more as well as inspiration for people from further away to come and visit.

Hi Susanne, thanks for agreeing to be interviewed by us. For people who may never have read your blog before can you give us a quick summary?

Quite simply it is a travel blog specialising in Scotland. I am trying to find the best and most memorable experiences that our country has to offer and inspire locals and visitors to explore places they may not have thought about before.

How long have you been blogging and why did you start ‘Adventures around Scotland’?

I have only been blogging since February this year so it is still quite new and a work in progress!
I started it because I enjoy reading travel blogs myself and find them really useful and inspiring when I'm planning a trip. I realised that there are not many tourism sites for Scotland that provide ideas for unique travel experiences or information about places and attractions other than the typical list of tourist haunts. I hope that I can not only give readers an original and practical personal travel guide but also tell them about the hidden gems.

You look like you've traveled widely round Scotland- can you suggest some hidden gems to our readers?

I always say Dumfries and Galloway as not many people think of it as a holiday choice yet it has a lot of diversity and history. I really love Galloway Forest Park with it's dark sky status which makes it a great place to visit and camp out under the stars! I'll be heading back there in a couple of weeks so expect some new travel ideas from the area.

The Isle of Bute where I now live is also one of the most accessible Scottish islands to visit yet most people head to places like Arran, Mull or Islay instead. I have wrote a few articles about Bute as I really believe it offers something for everyone and would really encourage people to take the short ferry ride and discover it's natural beauty and tranquility for yourself.

I am constantly finding hidden gems and that is one of the reasons I started my blog and I'm sure as I explore more of Scotland my list will get longer!

One of the biggest difficulties our readers might see in having a travel blog is not traveling enough to have content- how do you feel inspire to blog if you are feeling ‘stuck’ at home?

When I can't travel I write from memory or explore what's on my doorstep. Everyone has favourite views, great holiday memories, beaches they head to when the sun is out that they can write about from experience. Your own area or city may be familiar to you, however the local knowledge you have will be invaluable to a visitor so think about what information and recommendations you would look for if you were a stranger in town.

We loved your blog post about the 'Launch Night of The Kelpies’ but do you have a favourite blog post or a treasured memory from your travels?
I must admit I love The Kelpies and the opening night has been one of my highlights of 2014,I plan to visit them again soon to take a tour inside so expect more photos!
My treasured memory from travelling around Scotland was hiring a motor cruiser to sail down the Caledonian Canal several years ago. It rained most days, there were plagues of midges, Loch Ness was really choppy and I was useless at throwing the rope to the lock keepers but it felt like a real adventure and when the sun came out there was something magical about bobbing along at a slow pace and having the freedom to travel and stop where the notion took you. Now I'm blogging I would love to try something like that again and write all about it.

As you would expect from any blog about Scotland you have lots of beautiful landscape photography- do you have any tips for our readers about taking these kind of shots?

I have always been interested in photography and though I'm not a professional I have done a couple of short leisure courses at college which have really helped with understanding light, composition and camera controls. There are distance learning courses if you can't attend college which are also really useful.

My biggest tip is to practice with your camera and take your time. The great thing about photographing a landscape is that it doesn't move and you have time to think about what elements to include in your image. Before you even get your camera out, really look and enjoy the scenery then think about what makes it special and try and capture that in your shot.

One last thing; what advice would you give to someone wanting to make the change to travel posts? Do you have any tips from experience when you first started blogging?
It may seem obvious but it is essential that you actually travel regularly as there is no point writing a travel blog and then not actually going anywhere or travelling so infrequently that there are months between posts!

Follow travel bloggers that you like and relate to and see what types of posts they focus on and which ones are popular. Read travel magazines like National Geographic and Lonely Planet to see how the professional travel writers do it. Decide on your own style and type of traveller you are aiming to attract and try out a few ideas to see what gets the best reaction.

My biggest tip is to specialise as there are ALOT of travel bloggers out there and many of them are churning out the same old generic advice or writing mediocre non informative posts. The ones that really stand out are those that either focus on a particular area and become 'experts' or are great storytellers. To me a good travel blogger should inspire you, if you're passionate about the subject then it will come through in your blogging.

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We hope you've enjoyed Susanne's interview and we would love some feedback so drop us a comment below. Susanne's guest post will go live on Wednesday at 5pm so please pop back then to give it a read.


  1. Susanne is a Scottish treasure! I discovered her on Twitter where her images are always stunning. We then met a few weeks ago during my #Homecoming2014 visit to Scotland. She gave me a guided tour around Bute - a part of Scotland I never intended to visit but for which I am now so glad I did. As a new blogger myself, I find hers a great example and resource for ideas. Her blog on the Kelpies opening night made them a 'must see' on my visit. Her love of Scotland is immense and her passion for sharing that love with the world is undeniable. Thanks to both of you for sharing!

    1. Many thanks for the kind comment Glen and thank you to Scot Bloggers for having me as your guest blogger this week.