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15 places in Scotland that people struggle to pronounce

Here is a list of 15 towns and villages whose names you might find difficult to pronounce. Scotland is well renowned throughout the world for its stunning and distinctive place names, some of which even some locals find difficult to pronounce

Every country in the world has places named that even locals struggle to pronounce without aid, and Scotland is no exception.

Locals frequently make fun of visitors who pronounce Edinburgh or Glasgow incorrectly, but there are many cities and villages that even Scots struggle to pronounce correctly.

Even names that seem simple to utter at first glance, like Hawick or Wemyss Bay, might be confusing when you first try to pronounce them. Even sounding out each phrase individually won’t always be helpful.

Did we miss any? Let us know in the comments!

Ecclefechan

Ecclefechan is one of many place names in Scotland you might have a hard time pronouncing (Image: Colin Smith / Fork Ahead)

This Dumfries and Galloway village’s name is pronounced Eck-el-feck-han.

Findochty

The fishing village of Findochty is beautiful but you might have a hard time with its name (Image: lucentius / Getty Images)

Findochty is a fishing village near Buckie in Moray, and is pronounced Fin-eck-tay.

Garioch

Garioch is one of six committee areas in Aberdeenshire. While you may think it is pronounced Garry-och, it is actually Gee-ree.

Kilconquhar

Looking at the name of this village and parish in Fife, you probably would not guess that it is pronounced Kin-uck-ar.

Strathaven

While on first glance you may assume that this historic market town in South Lanarkshire is said Strath-hay-ven, it is actually Stray-ven.

Ae

This one is easy. The village with the shortest name in the UK is simply pronounced eh.

Hawick

Hawick is the largest town in the Scottish Borders, and is pronounced Hoy-k—not Hay-wick.

Milngavie

It’s easy to assume this is pronounced Miln-gav-ee, but the East Dunbartonshire town is actually said Mull-guy.

Culross

This is another one that is easy to get tripped up on. Don’t be fooled into thinking that this village in Fife is pronounced Cull-Ross—it’s actually Coo-riss.

Anstruther

Anstruther is a small coastal resort town in Fife, popular with day-trippers and holidaymakers. To pronounce it like a local, you would say Ainster.

Wemyss Bay

While you may assume that this is pronounced We-miss Bay, it’s actually even simpler—Weems Bay.

Ballachulish

The village of Ballachulish is centred on former slate quarries and is pronounced Ball-a-hoolish.

Freuchie

This Fife town is one of the easier names to get right on this list, but still many incorrectly pronounce it as Froo-chee. It’s actually Froo-kay.

Auchtermuchty

Pronouncing Auchtermuchty, another town in Fife, may look like a difficult task on first glance, but it’s easier than you might think. You simply say it as Awk-ter-muck-tay.

Poolewe

Finally, Poolewe—a small village in Wester Ross in the North West Highlands—is pronounced pool-you.

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