Millions of people around the world claim Scottish descent, but do you know which clan or family you belong to? Are you a Macleod or a Robertson, a Campbell or a Sutherland or a sept of another of Scotland’s great clans? Join us on a fascinating historical journey as we celebrate Scotland’s unique identity and welcome the world through inspirational events and festivals throughout 2014.
We've highlighted a few ideas below, and you can find more information about uncovering your ancestral connections at Scottish Ancestry.
From surnames and tartan to a real sense of community and belonging, the spirit of the clan lives on in Scotland. Use the clan search and learn more about the special clan gatherings taking place during 2014. There's also lots of opportunities to research your family tree at centres throughout Scotland, or get some great ideas of where best to go by following our ancestral itinerary. Discover where your historic clan homeland is and which tartan you can call your own.
Look out for the great tests of strength through caber tossing and tug o’wars, listen out for the distinct sound of bagpipes and admire the agility of Highland dancers at these hugely popular summer Highland games. Communities come together and take great pride in celebrating their heritage, and there's always lots of opportunities to join in the fun. Download our free guide to Highland games for events information, clan facts and much more.
Struileag - Children of the Smoke
Experience a performance which blends rousing song, spectacular imagery and exhilarating dance on Glasgow Green on 28 July. Children of the Smoke explores themes of language in relation to the cultural landscape and identity of the people of the Highlands and Islands and the Scottish diaspora, and this unique production is presented entirely in Gaelic.
Download one of the tracks from the show for free.
'Who Do You Think You Are? Live'
The popular family history event comes to Scotland for the first time this summer. Head for the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre between Friday 29 and Sunday 31 August and enjoy three days packed full of workshops, exhibits and more. Whether you're an expert researcher, or want to start uncovering your own family tree, this is the perfect starting point.
Homecoming comes to the Highlands and unites Gaelic speakers from around the world at the Royal Mòd in Inverness. One of the highlights of this Highland Homecoming which runs between 1 September and 31 October 2014, is a celebration of Gaelic culture and a performance of the Struileag - Shore to Shore, which has been lovingly created by the Gaelic Diaspora over the past two years.
Scotland's very own castle country can be found in Aberdeenshire which has a staggering 300 castles. Why not follow Scotland's Castle Trail which features 17 of these historic buildings? Or for a journey of self-discovery and to uncover the history of the Boyd family, head to Dean Castle in Kilmarnock between October and December 2014 for the Deep Roots festival.
Stirling's Big Weekend
It's been 700 years since the Battle of Bannockburn, a pivotal moment in Scotland's history when a victorious Robert the Bruce led the charge against the English army. Bannockburn Live, a spectacular feast of Scottish culture and history, was part of the fantastic Big Weekend in Stirling and the surrounding area on 28 - 29 June. Kicking off with Pipefest, the weekend also featured the Armed Forces Day National Event along with the special commemorative two-day festival, complete with battle performances.
You can relive the 1314 battle as it's brought back to life at the new state-of-the-art Battle of Bannockburn Visitor Centre, which opened its doors earlier this year. Explore the fascinating exhibits and stories from the great battle, and you can even take part in this medieval event yourself on a massive 3D map.
Don't forget to bookmark this page to keep up to date with the full programme of activities as they're announced.