Highland Games – Did You Know?

Scotland's Highland Games, with the associated traditions of caber throwing and hammer tossing, are renowned throughout the world.

But do you know where the world's oldest Highland Games take place, or where they toss giant champagne corks instead of the caber? Find out below in our list of Highland Games facts.

  • The Highland Games held each June at Ceres in Fife, the oldest free games in Scotland, began under a Charter awarded by Robert the Bruce in recognition of the villagers' support at the Battle of Bannockburn in 1314.
  • Many people participate in 'haggis hurling' in which a haggis is thrown. The contestant to throw their haggis the farthest wins.
  • The first Highland Games in the USA took place in New York in 1836.
  • The Braemar Gathering which take place during the first weekend in September, is the only Games attended annually by the British Royal Family.
  • Prosser Scottish Festivals and Games in Washington, is renowned for the "Anvil Launch" wherein a blacksmith's anvil is launched into the air with a quarter-stick of dynamite! An explosive way to mark the start and end of the Games.
  • At the Bellingham Highlands Games in Ferndale, Washington, you can hunt the 'Nessie eggs', where mini watermelons are hidden around the park, the lucky hunters can swap their precious Nessie eggs for prizes. Let's hope the eggs are easier to spot than Nessie!
  • Snefj¸rd Highland games Finnmark, Norway, are the most northern games in the world.
  • Logan Park, Dunedin, New Zealand hosts one of the most southerly games in the world.
  • At some Highland Games in France a giant champagne cork is tossed instead of a caber.
  • The Caledonian Club of San Francisco host the largest Highland Games in the Northern Hemisphere.
  • The world record for the biggest bowl of porridge was set at the Cupar Highland Games in Fife in 2010. The huge breakfast of 690 litres of porridge cooked could feed 2,000 people and was more than double the existing record.

Find out more about the Highland Games taking in Scotland on Visitscotland.com.

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