VisitScotland uncovers the women who shaped Scotland’s stories on International Women’s Day   

Provost Skene's House in Aberdeen

VISITSCOTLAND is encouraging people to explore Scotland through the eyes of women from all walks of life on today’s this International Women’s Day.

The organisation is asking customers to dive deep into exceptional Scottish experiences, behind which stand a rich tapestry of women, representing a multitude of facets of society, from Queens and scientists to authors and innovators.

2022 marks Scotland’s Year of Stories and women have created, inspired and been central within some of the country’s most incredible tales.

Amongst the experiences available to learn more about the role women have played in Scotland’s story are: 

  • The stunning and tranquil Japanese Garden at Cowden, Clackmannanshire, which was devised by Ella Christie, the first western woman to meet the Dalai Lama, and designed by one of Japan’s first female landscapers, Taki Handa, back in 1908
  • The National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh which will bring visitors face to face with Dolly the Sheep. This world-famous achievement was due, in part, to Marjorie Ritchie, who brought key surgical skills to the team of scientists who created the first cloned mammal ever to be created from an adult cell.
  • Edinburgh’s family friendly Camera Obscura & World of Illusions, a popular attraction and city landmark which few people realise was founded by a woman, Maria Short, in the mid-1800s
  • Provost Skene’s house in Aberdeen, which gives visitors a chance to discover over 100 individuals, including a great many women, who achieved remarkable feats. From doctors to social activists, singers, and archaeologists, discover the women of Aberdeen and the North-East who changed the world for the better
  • Dundee Women’s Trail, where visitors can discover a slew of achievements by women connected to the city by following the smartphone guide or trail locations map
  • Several locations across Scotland associated with Mary Queen of Scots and her mother, Marie de Guise, who was Queen Regent for many year, including the Palace of Holyroodhouse and the majestic Edinburgh Castle, each located at opposite ends of the famous Royal Mile in the city as well as her childhood home, Stirling Castle.
  • Glasgow Women’s Library’s Heritage Tour, where unsung women from suffragettes to forewomen and schoolmistresses who have shaped the dynamic city of Glasgow can be discovered
  • Scotland’s National Book Town and host of the famous annual book festival, Wigtown in Dumfries and Galloway, where visitors get the chance to discover more about the role local women played in the area’s history. The Wigtown Women’s Walk is self-guided and includes a stop at ReadingLasses bookshop, the only bookshop in the UK specialising in Women’s studies and books by and about women.

Marie Christie, VisitScotland Head of Development – Events Industry, said: “There are plenty of amazing stories to share throughout this Themed Year and it’s great to shine a light on the ones created or inspired by women.”

“Some of these tales have gone on to create wonderful experiences for locals and visitors to enjoy and several of our Year of Stories 2022 funded events tap into them too.”

“From icons of literature to local tales, the Year of Stories 2022 encourages everyone to experience a range of voices, take part in events and explore the places, people and cultures connected to all forms of our stories, past and present.”

“As our valuable tourism and events industry continues to rebuild following the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, this year heralds an exciting new chapter while also providing quality opportunities for artists, creatives and audiences.”

For more attractions and locations linked to Scotland’s fascinating stories, please visit

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