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How to have a Traditional Christmas in Scotland

How to have a Traditional Christmas in Scotland


This year we will be celebrating our first Christmas in our new home in Scotland. We are also hosting Christmas this year, and I want to have a SUPER traditional Christmas in Scotland.

I’ve been pestering the Haggis researching Scotland’s Christmas traditions and I realised that you can celebrate a traditional Scottish Christmas anywhere in the world, and many traditions are easy to replicate. Seeing as a lot of folk had to cancel their trips to Scotland this year, why not bring a little Scotland into your home?

From decorating your Christmas tree and neat Scottish gift ideas to Scotland Christmas traditions- here are some fun and super easy ways to have a traditional Scottish Christmas.

Merry Christmas, from Scotland!

10 Ways to Have a Traditional Scottish Christmas

Give your Christmas tree a Scottish theme

One of the easiest ways to have a traditional Scottish Christmas is to decorate your tree with Scottish decorations and ornaments.

I’ve seen lots of cool decorations for sale on Etsy– here are some of my favourites:

Tartan is also easy to get a hold of around Christmas time. An easy way to have a traditional Scottish Christmas is to decorate your Christmas tree with long threads of tartan ribbon, or even create bows out of tartan to put on your tree [see how to tie below].

You can even go one step further and wrap all your presents with Scottish themed wrapping paper!

How to tie a bow

Have a traditional Scottish Christmas meal

I don’t mean to burst your bubble at the offset, but Scots traditionally eat turkey for Christmas dinner, however, there is nothing stopping you from having a Scottish themed Christmas lunch or dinner.

Scottish food is hearty and delicious- and belongs on any table where there’s a celebration! You can find a local butcher that sells haggis [except if you live in the United States where haggis is actually illegal] or try one of these traditional dishes:

Be sure to wash your meal down with a hot toddy or dram of Scottish whisky!

Haggis, neeps and tatties

Don’t forget dessert!

Switch up your usual Christmas dessert for a Scottish dessert such sticky toffee pudding or cranachan. I think sticky toffee pudding is particularly good if you celebrate Christmas during winter, and cranachan is lovely if you celebrate Christmas in the summer.

You could even serve up some sweet treats, including shortbread or tablet. Both recipes are super easy to make and a great activity for the kids.

>> Listen to our podcast about celebrating Christmas in Scotland. Also available on Spotify and Apple Podcasts.

Buy unique Scottish gifts

Why not spoil yourself or your loved ones with some Scottish themed gifts?

This year it’s even more important to buy from small business owners verses big companies.

Here are some unique gifts I love that are made by Scottish small business owners.

Shopping at the Glasgow Christmas Markets

My favourite shops on Etsy

My current obsession is finding Scotland based creators and artists on Etsy and filling my home with beautifully unique, handmade items. Here are some of my favourite Etsy shops I’ve purchased Christmas gifts from:

  • Brooches and jewellery by Miriam Emerton – I adore her brooches [they go perfect on your blouse or beanie] which feature images of her own paintings.
  • Photography and postcards by local Edinburgh photographer, Burc Ates.
  • Blue Ranchu Designs – I love Laura’s Scottish Terrier accessory bags. She designed the graphic herself and makes them by hand!
  • IDrewThis – I adore Ilona’s Scotland designs! She has a wonderful range of prints, cards, tea towels, coasters and more.
  • Hame Made – I love Ashleigh’s contemporary and cheeky Scottish slang prints. I have her ‘Haggis, Neeps & Tatties’ print hung up in my lounge!
  • Jewellery By Katrina – Katrina has a variety of lovely Scotland-inspired jewellery. I love her tartan necklaces in particular.
  • The Auld Romantics – I adore this unique shop located in Perthshire! Their Scotland in a Bottle keepsakes are the perfect gift for any Scotland lover.

Online shops

Online shopping is a lot more attractive this year, for obvious reasons. Here are some of my favourite online stores I love to browse [and the perfect place to do some Christmas shopping].

Sandwick Bay Candles – Megan is a Kiwi living in Stornoway the Outer Hebrides and makes delicious smelling handcrafted soy candles.

Dreaming of Scotland – Scottish Clothing + Gifts – travel blogger Kay from The Chaotic Scot started her online shop this year when Covid-19 decimated international travel. She has really unique gifts including hoodies, beanies, candles, prints and more inspired by her travels in Scotland!

Kevin Sean O’Connell Landscape Art – I am a huge fan of this artist and have already picked out some goodies picked out that I want to hang in my house!

The Haggis and I at the Edinburgh Christmas market in 2019

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