FEW places lend themselves better to the winter wonderland themes beloved of Christmas cards and songs than Scotland. Be it city landmarks or the rugged wilds, here are some of our favourite festive spots.

George Square, Glasgow

It has been a tradition for generations to go to see the Christmas lights at George Square. Sadly, the big festive switch-on – where thousands converge in front of Glasgow City Chambers to ooh-and-ahh at the illuminations – was cancelled this year due to the coronavirus pandemic. Even so, we can still reminisce about joyful visits in bygone times. Perhaps you visited in 1962 when this snowy shot, above, was taken? Things have changed over the decades. In 2016, the lights used since 1990 – when Glasgow was European Capital of Culture – were replaced. Of course, almost immediately, folk began to lament that they "missed the bells", referring to the distinctive, erstwhile decorations.

Visit peoplemakeglasgow.com

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Cairngorm Reindeer Herd

Britain's only free-ranging reindeer herd has lived in the Cairngorm mountains since 1952. These tame and friendly animals are a delight to meet up close. There are around 150 in the herd, ranging from Glenmore Forest Park as far as the Glenlivet Estate, some 30 miles away. You can see why Santa loves reindeer so much.

The Herald: Reindeer in the Cairngorms. Picture: David Cheskin/PAReindeer in the Cairngorms. Picture: David Cheskin/PA

If you're still looking for Christmas gift ideas, it is possible to adopt a reindeer for £42 a year. Check out the profiles for adorable beasts such as Slioch, Rubiks, Jenga and Stuc on the website. Note: although the Cairngorm Reindeer Centre is open, those from other areas of Scotland with travel restrictions should not visit or try to book tickets at present.

Visit cairngormreindeer.co.uk

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Christmas tree on The Mound, Edinburgh

There is always something magical about the Christmas tree on The Mound. Standing 60ft tall, its lofty perch gives it the appearance of gazing down towards nearby Princes Street, quietly observing shoppers flit back and forth along the busy thoroughfare. There has been a Christmas tree on The Mound since 1949, gifted by Hordaland County Council as a token of gratitude to Scotland for its assistance to Norway during the Second World War. This year's tree is accompanied by another poignant gesture of thanks, a 60ft-wide rainbow dedicated to the key workers for their tireless efforts throughout the pandemic.

Visit edinburgh.org

Please follow current Scottish Government advice regarding travel restrictions in your area. Visit gov.scot/coronavirus-covid-19