The Met Office said the spell of freezing weather will likely cause travel disruption, with some areas seeing temperatures drop to minus 4C and up to 10cm of snow.
A yellow weather warning for snow is in place for the Highlands parts of Grampian and the Scottish Borders, and into the north of England, until 4pm on Thursday.
Forecasters said: “Many places will see one to two hours of snow with a risk of temporary slushy accumulations above 100 to 150 metres, with snow leading to difficult travel conditions.”
A separate snow and ice weather warning has been issued from 8pm on Thursday until 12pm on Friday.
Frequent wintry showers arriving from the west during Thursday evening and overnight are likely to lead to a fresh covering of snow for areas above 200 metres – mainly around 2-5cm but possibly as much as 10cm on higher ground.
This will mainly affect the Highlands and the west coast of Scotland down through central areas to Glasgow, with some snowy showers reaching the Lothians, south-west Scotland, the Borders and into northern England and the west of Ireland.
On lower ground, forecasters have warned snowfall could cause temporary slushy conditions which then may freeze and cause dangerous, icy patches where skies remain clear for long enough.
They added there will also be risk of lightning strikes from isolated thunderstorms in some coastal areas.
A spokesman for the Met Office said: “We will see frequent and often heavy snow showers across the warning area, with accumulations possible down to low ground in western and central areas in particular.
“Temperatures will be low across the whole of Scotland, but could fall to minus 3C or minus 4C in central Highland areas. It will feel colder due to the wind.”
The Scottish Environment Protection Agency has issued three flood warnings for Scotland, including in the Western Isles and Orkney.
An alert for heavy showers is also in place for Dumfries and Galloway, with higher ground expected to see snow.
Ferry operator CalMac has announced some services have been cancelled due to the weather warnings, including departures from Rothesay, Colintraive, Rhubodach and Mallaig.
It has urged passengers to check timetables before travelling.
A spokesperson for train operator ScotRail said on Thursday: “If you’re travelling tomorrow, please be aware that we’re expecting temperatures to drop and some snow in some areas of the country.
“Take care as some platforms and pathways may be slippery and check your journey on our app before heading out.”
The freezing temperatures come after Scotland recorded the mildest New Year’s Day on record.
The Met Office confirmed temperatures reached 15.9C at Achnagart in Glenshiel, Kyle, on Saturday morning.
This broke the previous peak of 14.5C, which was registered at Inverurie, Aberdeenshire, in 1992.
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