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May is a month full of celebrations, from our traditional bank holiday get-togethers to the King’s Coronation jamborees . . . and in this edition of Best if Scotland we’ve also plenty to celebrate.

The party gets started with an exclusive interview with Graham Kinniburgh, whose work on the short film An Irish Goodbye has won critical acclaim and an Oscar – but only after overcoming immense challenges. Sir Richard Branson is also popping Champagne corks as he launches his new Virgin Hotels Edinburgh. Staying in the capital, we can unveil Tipo, one of the city’s newest and perhaps most discreet restaurant.

Heading out into the countryside, we arrive at Dunkeld House Hotel, which now offers modern luxury living and a heavenly spa amidst country manor charm. If this whets your appetite for a holiday with a difference, Ailsa Sheldon has a range of bucket list destinations: a selection of accommodation so stylish it will be sure to inspire the interior designer in you. Staying with the vacation vibe, our travel expert Robin McKelvie heads to the beautiful Cowal Peninsula, and, if you like to stretch your legs, Paul and Helen Webster are your tour guides for the best routes anywhere in Scotland . . . and we mean anywhere, with the duo having mapped almost every step of the nation.

And when it comes to our shorelines, did you know seaweed is the secret ingredient in the work of innovative textile designer Jasmine Linington? Find out more about her wonderful designs inside. It’s not all get-up-and-go, and or even dive-down-and-go, of course. With libraries enjoying a surprise renaissance, sit back, relax and delve into the pages of the country’s finest literary treasure troves.

Finally, actress Nalini Chetty, soon to be starring in a new production of A Streetcar Named Desire, reveals her ‘Best Of’ places from around Scotland. So, let’s hear it for the month of May . . . and for the very Best of Scotland!

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