Literature and film

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Dynamic Earth
Dynamic Earth

The new VisitScotland Surprise Yourself TV advert to mark the start of the Year of Creative Scotland 2012.

  • Discover the Scottish myths and legends that inspired Brave
    Discover Scotland, the land filled with myths and legends that inspired Brave
  • A red steam train puffs its way across the impressive arches of the viaduct which sits in a lush green valley
    The Glenfinnan Viaduct near Lochaber, famous from the Harry Potter films
  • The Apprentice Pillar in Rosslyn Chapel
    Rosslyn Chapel in Midlothian features in Dan Brown's bestseller, The Da Vinci Code
  • Inside the Writers' Museum which celebrates the work of Robert Burns, Sir Walter Scott and Robert Louis Stevenson.
    The Writers' Museum, Edinburgh

Scotland’s proud and rich literary history has produced some of the best loved stories of all time and the country’s landscape has provided the backdrop for a surprising range of films. Why not create your very own film trail during your visit?

Throughout the Year of Creative Scotland 2012, the country's great literature and film events, and movie locations were celebrated. Listed below

The written word

  • The Trossachs have inspired writers for generations, particularly Sir Walter Scott who penned his celebrated poem The Lady of the Lake about the loch. After a visit to the area in 1859, French novelist Jules Verne wrote his novel The Underground City about a fictional underground mining community depth beneath Loch Katrine.
  • Follow in the footsteps of some of Scotland’s best loved writers in Edinburgh, the UK’s first and only UNESCO City of Literature. The city is also home to the world’s largest book festival, which attracts thousands of visitors to Edinburgh each August.
  • The fascinating Writers' Museum just off Edinburgh's Royal Mile, tells the story of three of the country's greatest writers - Sir Walter Scott, Robert Burns, and Robert Louis Stevenson (RLS).  Connections to RLS, author of novels including Kidnapped and Treasure Island, can be found throughout Edinburgh & The Lothians. From his birthplace on Howard Place and the family home on Heriot Row, to the Hawes Inn in South Queensferry, overlooking the Firth of Forth which features in Kidnapped.

Scotland on the big screen 

  • Scotland plays an important role in James Bond's new film Skyfall. Look out for the iconic Buachaille Etive Mor as 007 drives his beloved Aston Martin through Glen Coe.
  • Scotland's castles have also featured in previous Bond outings. The beautiful Eilean Donan Castle which sits at the meeting point of the three great lochs, Alsh, Duich and Long was transformed into MI6 HQ in The World is Not Enough. It also appeared in the epic film Highlander.
  • Scotland’s landscape takes centre stage in Disney•Pixar's animation Brave. Its European premiere closed the 2012 Edinburgh International Film Festival in June and was released in cinemas across the UK in August. Join in Brave's online adventure.

Something a little different
Looking down to Doune Castle and the River Teith, near Stirling

Fans of the 1975 comedy Monty Python and the Holy Grail can enjoy an audio tour of Doune Castle, near Stirling, by Monty Python’s Terry Jones. It featured as the French-held castle which King Arthur and his knights believed was home to the Holy Grail. The film was shot in the open spaces of Sheriffmuir on the slopes of the Ochil Hills.