Scotland is a land boasting picturesque vistas, and impressive nature with its lochs and waterfalls, so no wonder many Scots opt for local getaways. While there are so many undiscovered locations, a lot of locals tend to choose new places to explore and take the unknown path. A recent study by Coast & Country Hotel Collection has thoroughly analysed the internet and determined the top hidden gems in the UK and, more locally, in Scotland for 2023.
With the increasing interest in domestic getaways, the search for UK hidden gems has risen drastically over recent years: a whopping 325% increase in searches since November 2021, to be exact. Equally, #ukhiddengems and #hiddengemsuk have raked in almost 150M views combined on TikTok as of March 2023.
The hidden gems in Scotland and the UK analysis used various articles regarding the topics and created an initial list. Further, they pulled TikTok views, Instagram hashtag data and search volume for each location, assigned each a value, before finding the average of these scores to create the final score and ranking. Evidently, Scotland’s off-the-beaten-path locations proved as stunning as expected.
1. Outer Hebrides
#outerhebrides – Score: 35.41
2. Montrose Beach
#montrosebeach – Score: 26.22
3. Loch Awe
#lochawe – Score: 12.21
4. Dolphin spotting at Chanonry Point
#chanonrypoint – Score: 7.53
5. Lauriston Castle
#lauristoncastle – Score: 7.32
What is more, the top hidden gem location in the UK was deemed the Wild Atlantic Way in Ireland, with the hashtag of #wildatlanticway and a massive score of 76.51. Other noteworthy spots were Nanjizal Beach in Cornwall, Ladybower Reservoir in Peak District & Derbyshire and Lundy Island in Devon.
In the top 10 UK list, Outer Hebrides made it onto the second spot, Montrose Beach came fourth and Loch Awe took the ninth spot.
Paul FitzGerald, Portfolio Managing Director at Coast & Country Hotel Collection, said: “Thanks to TikTok and Instagram, we continue to see searches for hidden gems rise as many explore lesser-known destinations around the UK. And it’s a trend that we expect to continue. These locations arguably rival some of those you’d expect to find abroad and in far-flung places. However, knowing it’s easier to get to via car, train, or boat makes it more appealing.”