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The Scottish People

Scottish people have a reputation across the world for their friendliness, warmth and generosity. Millions of visitors come to Scotland annually, and we welcome each and every one with open arms; in fact, almost three quarters of international visitors to Scotland say that one of their main reasons for visiting us is our people!

Culture and Identity

Scottish people are proud of their nationality but they also have a long tradition of welcoming new people and cultures. Historically, Scotland has appreciated the benefits of embracing and celebrating different cultures.

Modern Scotland is a richly diverse country with many cultures living together in peace. Tolerance, equality and social justice are all considered important principles by the Scots.

Scots love a party

Scotland knows how to party and extends an invitation to all. From Hogmanay (New Year’s Eve) street parties and music and film festivals, to the more intimate Burns Suppers and St Andrew’s Day celebrations, there is always a fun event to attend.

Getting together, sharing good times and welcoming others with open arms give Scotland its reputation for being a happy and friendly country. It’s no wonder then that 50 million people around the world claim Scottish ancestry – and so many want to be a part of our Scottish family.


English is the main language spoken in Scotland, although you will be surprised by the wide range of different accents and dialects spoken across the country.

In our richly historic country, the ancient Celtic language of Gaelic is still spoke and, in fact, number of speakers are increasing. Scotland is proud to maintain its indigenous tongue as a part of Scottish culture.

Scotland is also home to 170 other different languages, spoken by a diverse and growing population.

Speaking the language of a country is very important for improving education or work opportunities. Our English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) programme offers people living in Scotland an affordable way to learn and improve their English, and to get the most out of living in Scotland. 

Want to learn English? Visit the ESOL Scotland site.