High-energy ion scattering is an extremely useful technique for surface studies. Three methods for surface composition analysis (Rutherford backscattering, nuclear-reaction analysis and elastic recoil detection) are discussed. Directional effects in ion-beam surface interactions (shadowing and blocking) form the basis for surface structure analysis with high-energy ion beams and these phenomena are addressed in some detail. It is shown how surface relaxation and reconstruction, as well as positions of adsorbed atoms, can be determined by comparison with computer simulations. A special technique called transmission channelling is introduced and shown to be particularly well suited for studies of adsorption positions, even of hydrogen. Recent developments in the field are demonstrated by discussing a large number of important (experimental) applications which also include surface dynamics and melting, as well as epitaxy and interface structure. (author).