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Audley specialist Emily


UK & Ireland Specialist

I was 18 years old the first time I left the country to study abroad in Italy. After walking around the streets of Florence, eating gelato, and climbing all the steps of Duomo Florence to get a panoramic view of the city; I knew I would do whatever I could to continue chasing these new types of experiences.

This led to me backpacking throughout Europe, travelling to 25 countries, and eventually to moving to Scotland to pursue my master’s degree in Performance Psychology at the University of Edinburgh. I ended up caught in Edinburgh during Covid, which allowed me to spend significant time road tripping along the scenic North Coast 500 route, getting up close and personal with sheep hiking in the highlands, and searching for dinosaur footprints on beaches in the otherworldly Isle of Skye.

The UK, specifically Scotland, feels like a second home to me, which inspired my career shift into travel. I came to Scotland to further my research in psychology, but left with a deep desire to work in travel and help others have their own amazing adventures.

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Audley specialist Emily

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Q&A with Emily

Cliffs of Moher at sunset

What’s your most vivid travel moment?

While in Galway, Ireland, my friends and I decided to go to the Cliffs of Moher despite predicted unfavourable weather conditions. Upon arrival we had to fight against huge gusts of wind to even get to the viewpoint. The winds were so strong we could actually lean against them — I have the funniest video of my friends being held up by the drafts. It was exhilarating standing at the edge of the cliffs with the breeze whipping around me; it added to the wild, majestic feeling of the cliffs. On our drive back we found a chocolate shop hidden in the middle of nowhere in the countryside, which was the perfect way to finish off the day.

Edinburgh in Scotland

Which book, film or artwork captures Edinburgh the most?

It’s an extremely silly movie, but the somewhat recent Netflix feature 'Eurovision' does a great job capturing the beauty of Scotland's Edinburgh. The movie was actually filming when I first moved to the city, and premiered during lockdown when my friends and I were all stuck inside and missing its magic. Watching the montage of the main characters discovering the city, walking through the cobblestone streets, climbing to the Calton Hill viewpoint to see the historic skyline; it felt like we were exploring the city for the first time again. It was a nice reminder of how lucky we were to live in such a charming, architecturally stunning city.


Your best piece of travel advice?

Enjoy, but be prepared for, the bad or unpredictable weather as it can often make for the best stories. This is particularly pertinent in the UK and Ireland, where rain can be imminent at almost any time. Some of my most salient memories have been born out of weird weather. The fog all over Edinburgh was once so thick that we could barely see the outline of the castle, which normally is a dominant figure in the skyline. Walking around the cobblestone streets and through graveyards in these conditions elevated the magical, kind of spooky feel that Edinburgh often elicits.