History and archaeology events in Scotland: summer 2023

21 March 2023
The University of Glasgow will host an Outlander confrence this July
From vintage vehicles to Vikings, there's lots going on across the country, as our history events round-up reveals.

Shifting Vistas: 250 years of Scottish landscapes, 24 June 2023 to 2 June 2024 

For centuries, the Scottish landscape has provided artists with a potent source of inspiration. Shifting Vistas: 250 Years of Scottish Landscape includes paintings, drawings, prints and sculptures by artists such as Alexander Nasmyth, John Lavery, SJ Peploe, William Gillies, Joan Eardley and Victoria Crowe. The exhibition also features several recent additions to the collections of Museums & Galleries Edinburgh on display for the first time. 

City Art Centre, Market Street, Edinburgh EH1 1DE; tel: 0131 529 3993; website

Ness of Brodgar excavations, 5 July to 16 August 

Get involved in the penultimate arkeological dig at Orkney’s Nes of Brodgar site. Subject to successful funding plans, the site will be open to the public on weekdays on the above dates, with weekday guided tours planned for 11am, 1pm and 3pm.

Ness of Brodgar, Steness, Stromness KW16 3JZ; website

Celtic Summer, 15 and 16 July 

Scottish Crannog Centre celebrates the coming of summer with ancient games, competitions and food and drink inspired by our ancient ancestors.  

Kenmore PH15 2HY; tel: 01887 830583; website

Scottish Transport Extravaganza, 8 and 9 July 

Strathmore Vintage Vehicle Club will be holding the 47th Scotish Transport Extravaganza in the grounds of Glamis Castle, bringing together 1,800 vehicles representing a wide range of transport, including veteran, vtage and classic vehicles. There will also be parades, pipe bands and a craft village.  

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For tickets, visit the Glamis Castle website

Glamis Castle, Angus DD8 1RJ 

Outlander Conference, 18 to 22 July 

This major international Outlander conference at University of Glasgow offers participants the chance to debate, discuss and dissect the elements that make up the Outlander historical fantasy novels by Diana Gabaldon, and the TV series that followed.  For programme details, visit the website

Celebration of the Centuries, 12 and 13 August 

Fort George hosts this popular living history event in which re-enactors will bring the mighty fortress to life with a living timeline depicting over two thousand years of Scottish history. Wander through the living history camps, dating back to Picts and Romans, dance along to our big band in the Forties zone and watch as stunt horse riders from the TV series Outlander dramatically tell the tale of the Highlander Lady saved from capture by the Redcoats.  Book tickets here

Fort George, near Ardersier, Inverness IV2 7TD 

Skin: A Layered History exhibition, until 13 October 

This exhibition, at the Royal College of Physicians in Edinburgh, explores the history of skin diagnosis and treatment, including the role which scientific illustrations and wax models played in the development of dermatology. It will also uncover the history of skin markings – from scars to tattoos as well as skin-related prejudice past and present, in the context of racism, sexism and classism. Free entry.  

Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh, 11 Queen Street, Edinburgh, EH2 1JQ; website