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Great Family Day Out at The Royal Highland Show


Photo Credit: Morgan Rodway

You know that it’s going to be a good day when you’re in Scotland and the sun is shining. You know it’s going to be an even better day when you’re headed to the Royal Highland Show — Scotland’s largest and most well-known agricultural show. I had heard rumours about “how amazing the Royal Highland Show was” but had never experienced it first hand.

I had decided to bring the whole family as my Mom and sister were visiting from America and we, of course, also needed to bring my 11-month old daughter. Going anywhere with someone under one years old is always a challenge and I wasn’t sure what to expect.

Royal Highland Show outing
Photo credit: Morgan Rodway

Unfortunately, the only day we could go was on a Saturday. Now, I imagine that it’s much quieter on Thursday and Friday so if your schedule allows I certainly recommend opting for one of these days. Crowds with a pram can be difficult so I was a bit overwhelmed at first.

Stop One: The Livestock Hall

The first stop on today’s excursion was the livestock hall. Prams and pushchairs aren’t allowed in due to the animals so you have to carry your wee one. I really recommend bring a baby carrier as you can take your time admiring the animals without your arms getting sore.

We really enjoyed checking out all the animals. From Highland to Aberdeen cows, you’ll find every kind of cow here. It’s also directly next to the Sheep tent so you can view them as well.


Cow at The Royal Highland Show
Photo Credit: Morgan Rodway


Stop Two: Sheep Shearing Competition

After visiting the cows, we headed towards the outdoor living area to try to see the birds of prey show. On our way, we walked past a sheep shearing competition and decided to have a look. Boy oh boy, I have never seen a sheep sheared so quickly or in one-go. They’d take the whole lot off in one fell swoop and in less than a minute. It was nothing less than impressive and must have taken some serious practice.

We didn’t stay long as we wanted to watch the Birds of Prey show.

Stop Three: Birds of Prey Display

I cannot put into words how amazing it was to watch one of the largest living birds of prey — the White-Tailed Eagle — fly through the sky. Instead, I thought that I’d show you. . .

Royal Highland Show falconry
Photo Credit: Morgan Rodway

Stop 4: Food Court & Angry Monk Beer Garden

After exploring all the exhibitions, it was time for a much needed refreshment break. We fuelled up on hot roast beef sandwiches and lager. Babies were allowed in the area outside the beer garden, but not in the actual tent which was fine with us. There were quite a few other families doing the same so my daughter could make friends and play with another wee boy.

Stop 5: Utility Pole Climbing Competition

As a former rock-climber, I was quite interested in watching the pole climbing competition. Climbers had to race up 25 meter poles and reach the top before their rival; located on a nearby pole. It was impressive just how quickly they could reach the top. I timed one competitor at just a few minutes. Vertically running up the pole certainly looks tricky with only spiked shoes and climbing equipment. In fact, some competitors reached heights only to slip before reaching the top.

Final Thoughts

One day is simply not enough time to fully enjoy and see everything at the Royal Highland Show; especially at the slower pace required for small children. There’s enough to do that you could easily entertain kids of any age for a few days. Next year, I plan to bring my hubby and spend at least two days at the Royal Highland Show.

Other Things to Note about Bringing a Baby

  • Changing facilities are located in all the bathrooms
  • Make sure to bring hat, sunscreen, and umbrella as there is little shade
  • Also bring plenty of baby food as food is pretty limited to normal, relatively unhealthy, fair food


Photo Credit: Morgan Rodway

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