From spectacular architecture and glittering city skylines to breathtaking landscapes and scenic vistas, Scotland is much in-demand as a filming location for big-name TV shows.

Recent additions to the ever-growing list include the highly rated Rebus reboot, as well as period drama The Buccaneers, comedy Dinosaur and a pitch-perfect adaptation of the novel One Day.

Not to forget returning favourites such as Vigil, Irvine Welsh’s Crime and The Crown, all of which have graced our screens in the past year.

If you’ve enjoyed viewing them from your armchair, why not get out and experience the places where they were made on a summer adventure around Scotland? Here, we share our picks for a whistle-stop tour of the best spots to visit based on your favourite genre.


Don't tell anyone but the new Rebus was partly filmed in GlasgowDon't tell anyone but the new Rebus was partly filmed in Glasgow (Image: free)


Outlander star Richard Rankin plays the titular gruff, tough Edinburgh police detective in a bold and contemporary reimagining of the character who originally graced Sir Ian Rankin’s books in the late-1980s.

The TV reboot has just concluded its six-week run on the BBC, with eagle-eyed viewers spotting many landmark locations across the episodes, including the Queensferry Crossing and Edinburgh Castle.

Follow in the footsteps of this modern-day incarnation of Rebus with a wander through the Grassmarket and up Victoria Street (the latter where another literary character who made the leap to telly - private investigator Jackson Brodie in Case Histories - had his offices).

The Gordon Aikman Lecture Theatre at the University of Edinburgh was used for exterior shots of the police station where Rebus is based, while The Mound overlooking Princes Street Gardens was the site of a skirmish between rival factions of the criminal underworld.

Instagram-friendly backdrops include The Meadows, with its pretty, tree-lined paths, and Heriot Place, where Rebus steps out of his front door and is greeted by the famed, perfectly framed view of Edinburgh Castle from the top of The Vennel.

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The city is renowned for its historic narrow, winding closes. It is at Anchor Close, between Cockburn Street and the Royal Mile, that Rebus delivers a top-class one-liner.

When his colleague DC Siobhan Clarke complains they should have parked at the top of the steep stairs and walked down, rather than schlep up, he quips: “You’re in the city of John Knox, Shiv. Life is supposed to be difficult.”

No tour of Rebus’s haunts would be complete without a visit to The Oxford Bar. The pub, affectionately known as The Ox, became a firm favourite of author Rankin in his student days.

It later made it into his best-selling novels, with Rebus often found propping up the bar and sipping a pint of Deuchars IPA. The hostelry on Young Street in Edinburgh’s New Town, has a recurring role in the new series.

And while the action centres predominantly on the Scottish capital, a clutch of other locations were used, such as Airlie Gardens in Rutherglen, which stands in as the fictional Keir Hardie Gardens in Fife where Rebus’s troubled brother Michael lives.

Watch Rebus on BBC iPlayer 

Rose Leslie and Suranne Jones in VigilRose Leslie and Suranne Jones in Vigil (Image: free)


Suranne Jones and Rose Leslie lead the cast as Glasgow-based police detectives DCI Amy Silva and DS Kirsten Longacre respectively.

The opening series of BBC thriller Vigil in 2021 was set on board a Trident nuclear submarine, while the second run, which aired last December, switched the focus to aerial warfare.

Take a stroll around the Park District in Glasgow, where the elegant townhouses and cobbled streets doubled as the location for a Chinese Embassy and Russian Consulate in series one, with nearby Kelvingrove Park also being used for scenes.

The fictional Dunloch drew inspiration from HM Naval Base Clyde on the Gare Loch in Argyll, commonly known as Faslane, which is home to the UK’s nuclear deterrent Trident and its four-strong fleet of Vanguard-class submarines.

Vigil, though, created a purpose-built set at Hunterston Terminal, a former iron ore and coal-handling port located at Fairlie, near Largs, on the Ayrshire coast. You can take a peek at the site from nearby Kaim Hill, which offers a great bird’s eye view.

The student flats complex at Murano Street in Glasgow, meanwhile, can be seen in scenes as the Naval base’s accommodation blocks.

The second series was filmed between Scotland and Morocco, the latter standing in for the fictional Middle East country of Wudyan.

The shores of Loch Lomond at Luss; the Avonbridge Hotel in Hamilton; Maxim Park at Eurocentral; the University of the West of Scotland’s Lanarkshire campus in Blantyre; Alexander Street in Airdrie; and flats at William Street in Whifflet, Coatbridge, all enjoyed screen time.

Watch both series of Vigil on BBC iPlayer

 Irvine Welsh's Crime being filmed in Wyndford in GlasgowIrvine Welsh's Crime being filmed in Wyndford in Glasgow (Image: free)


Location manager Gordon Keen revealed in an interview with The Herald Magazine last year that “well in excess of 200 locations” have been used while making the ITVX drama Irvine Welsh’s Crime starring Dougray Scott as grizzled police detective Ray Lennox.

The debut series, which aired in 2021, showcased Edinburgh landmarks such as Calton Hill, the Old Town and New Town, Waverley station, Cramond causeway and the Dumbiedykes housing estate that sits in the shadow of Arthur’s Seat.

Its second run, shown last autumn, featured Hearts football ground Tynecastle Park, the Scottish Office building in Leith, Dean Village and Inverleith Park, with Argyle House used as the police headquarters.

This latest instalment also saw Paisley’s Robertson Viewpoint, aka the “Car Park in the Sky”, Hillhead Library in Glasgow and the former Ravenscraig site in Motherwell used for key scenes.

Watch both series of Irvine Welsh’s Crime on STV Player


The BuccaneersThe Buccaneers (Image: free)


Although set in New York, London and Cornwall, this eight-part Apple TV+ series, which aired last autumn, was shot entirely in Scotland.

The Gilded Age drama, inspired by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Edith Wharton’s unfinished final novel of the same name, centres on “a group of fun-loving young American girls” who cross the Atlantic in search of affluent husbands.

Fans of historic houses are in for a treat, with the show’s production often combining several properties to create the opulence of each family home.

To create Tintagel Castle, for example, scenes were shot at Culzean Castle in Ayrshire; Drumlanrig Castle in Dumfriesshire; Hopetoun House near South Queensferry; the Cloisters at Glasgow University; and the chapel in the grounds of Murthly Castle, Perthshire.

Other spots included Seacliff Beach near North Berwick, East Lothian; Portencross Castle, West Kilbride, Ayrshire; and St Abb’s Head/Pettico Wick Bay at Eyemouth in Berwickshire.

Manderston House at Duns, Berwickshire, is among the other real-life buildings lighting up the screen. The Edwardian mansion has previously had roles in Belgravia, as well as the films The House of Mirth, The Awakening and Man To Man.

Gosford House at Longniddry, East Lothian, is no stranger to the cameras either. As well as appearing in The Buccaneers, its neoclassical architecture has featured in The Little Vampire, The Awakening, Castles in the Sky, Case Histories, Tommy’s Honour and Outlander.

Watch The Buccaneers on Apple TV+

The Crown - Matt Smith, Claire Foy, and Lyla Barret-Rye arrive for their scene at BalmoralThe Crown - Matt Smith, Claire Foy, and Lyla Barret-Rye arrive for their scene at Balmoral (Image: free)


For many Scottish viewers, Ardverikie Estate at Kinloch Laggan will be forever synonymous with Glenbogle in Monarch of the Glen, the popular BBC Scotland series from the early 2000s.

But for a global audience of some 73 million households worldwide, it is Balmoral Castle, having featured regularly in Netflix drama The Crown, including during powerful scenes where the Royal Family learns about the deaths of Princess Diana and Dodi Fayed.

When the sixth - and final - series aired last year, it also covered the blossoming relationship between Prince William and Kate Middleton at the University of St Andrews.

A clutch of locations around the Fife town were used, including the university’s library and St Salvator’s College, along with the nearby harbour, a local Tesco, cinema exterior, the Northpoint Cafe and Molly Malone’s pub.

Scenes for a ski trip to Vancouver and Whistler in Canada, taken by Prince Charles and his sons, used Arbour Lodge at South Platt Hill, Ratho, and Garry Bridge near Pitlochry, Perthshire.

Other memorable locations to feature in past series include Slains Castle near Cruden Bay in Aberdeenshire, which - also credited as an inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula - stood in for the Queen Mother’s Scottish residence, The Castle of Mey in Caithness.

Watch all six series of The Crown on Netflix


Dinosaur follows an autistic woman in her thirtiesDinosaur follows an autistic woman in her thirties (Image: free)


The BBC Three comedy drama - co-created by and starring Glasgow-born comedian, writer and actor Ashley Storrie - follows Nina, an autistic woman in her thirties, whose life is turned upside down when her sister unexpectedly announces she’s engaged. 

Dinosaur takes its name from Storrie’s character Nina, who works as a palaeontologist at the fictional Natural History Museum of Glasgow. 

There could only be one contender as a location for this venue: the red sandstone Victorian grandeur of Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum fit the bill perfectly.

And in one scene a Glasgow legend, Sir Roger the Elephant - the taxidermy specimen that has been on display at Kelvingrove since 1902 - can be seen in the background.

Locations in the city centre and West End both feature, with filming taking place at Aimee Bridal Couture on Bath Street and The Aragon Bar on Byres Road.

The show spreads its wings too, when Nina takes a trip to Rothesay for her sister’s hen party. This episode saw cameos for Wemyss Bay station and CalMac ferry MV Bute.

Watch Dinosaur on BBC iPlayer


Ambika Mod and Leo Woodall in Edinburgh-set One DayAmbika Mod and Leo Woodall in Edinburgh-set One Day (Image: free)


Aficionados of David Nicholls’s literary tear-jerker One Day have heaped praise upon the recent Netflix adaptation, with the general consensus that it far outstripped the 2011 Hollywood big screen version in capturing the essence of the spellbinding tale.

Ambika Mod and Leo Woodall play star-crossed lovers Emma Morley and Dexter Mayhew who, on St Swithin’s Day in the summer of 1988, spend the night of their graduation from the University of Edinburgh together.

The Scottish capital was an important scene-setter for the 14-episode Netflix series that follows the pair across the years as they build their adult lives, never quite escaping the invisible strings that bind them.

Among the locations used were the Old College Quad, first seen as Emma and Dexter celebrate their graduation. In later scenes, we see them on the stairs of The Vennel with Edinburgh Castle as a backdrop.

Viewforth in Bruntsfield is where Emma had her student digs in a traditional sandstone tenement flat. Dexter lives across town at upmarket Moray Place, although Grosvenor Crescent was reportedly used for filming.

Then there is Arthur’s Seat, the extinct volcano that dominates the city skyline, which the duo decides to climb for a morning-after-the-night-before picnic.

Watch One Day on Netflix


Martin Compston in The RigMartin Compston in The Rig (Image: free)

The Rig (Prime Video)

The supernatural thriller set on the fictional Kinloch Bravo oil rig in the North Sea debuted last year. The second series, filmed primarily at FirstStage Studios in Edinburgh, is expected to air later this year.

Nightsleeper (BBC)

The suspense-packed drama was filmed at Glasgow Central Station and using a studio set featuring a life-size train and moving video walls. Its strong Scottish cast includes Alex Ferns, James Cosmo, Katie Leung and Sharon Rooney. 

Fear (Prime Video)

This Martin Compston-led psychological thriller about a couple who leave behind their London life for a fresh start in Scotland is being shot entirely in Glasgow. Confirmed locations include the Park District and Kelvingrove Park.

The Undertow (Netflix)

An English-language remake of a Norwegian crime drama, filming for the eight-part thriller, in which Jamie Dornan plays identical twin brothers, will use the majestic scenery of Sutherland and Mull as its breathtaking backdrop.

Only Child (BBC)

Greg McHugh and Gregor Fisher star in a BBC Scotland and BBC Comedy sitcom about a man returning home to look after his strong-willed, technophobe father. The six-part series will be shot in Glasgow and around the north-east of Scotland.

Department Q (Netflix)

The Nordic noir crime drama, with Matthew Goode playing the brilliant-yet-impossible DCI Carl Morck, has been in production across Edinburgh. Lysander House in Dirleton and Yellowcraig Beach, East Lothian, have also been used for filming.

Lions (BBC)

The writer, actor and comedian Richard Gadd - who was catapulted to global fame thanks to his Edinburgh Festival Fringe play-turned-Netflix hit Baby Reindeer - is working on a six-part drama that will be filmed in and around Glasgow.

Karen Pirie (ITV

Lauren Lyle reprises her role as the eponymous Fife-based police detective, solving cold case murders. Filming for the second run, based on Val McDermid's novel A Darker Domain, began in Glasgow earlier this month.

Lockerbie (Sky)

Oscar-winning actor Colin Firth will play Dr Jim Swire in a five-part drama about the 1988 Lockerbie bombing. Filming has been taking place in Glasgow, as well as the West Lothian towns of Bathgate and Linlithgow.

Lockerbie (Netflix/BBC)

A second major drama series about the Lockerbie disaster is also in production. This one, whose cast includes Peter Mullan, Tony Curran and Lauren Lyle, will use locations in Scotland, Malta and Toronto.