We hope everyone has been enjoying the summer weather! Now that the summer holiday is approaching, a great way to spend it is by visiting some of the fantastic castles in Scotland. Scotland is known to be a home to over 1,000 castles varying in shape, sizes and history! We’ve picked some of our favourite castles that we absolutely love and are in close proximity to our lovely properties. These include Stirling Castle, Edinample Castle, Finlarig Castle Ruins, Edinburgh Castle, Drummond Castle, Blair Castle and The Scone Palace. If looking to book a holiday within these great locations, click to our Cooper Cottages’ website to find out more!
If looking to soak in the history of Stirling, why not check out the Stirling Castle. The Stirling Castle is one of Scotland’s grandest castles due to its imposing position and impressive architecture. When entering into Stirling Castle, experience the world of Scotland’s Renaissance kings and queens alongside a world of colour, splendour and glorious craftsmanship. Discover various sections of the castle such as The Royal Palace (allows visitors to step into enchanting richness of royal life in the 1500s), Queen Anne Gardens (a peaceful and beautiful garden on the south side of the castle), The Castle Exhibition (tells an overview of Stirling Castle from the earliest times to present days) and The Palace Vaults (fun, interactive exhibitions catered to kids). A day at the Stirling Castle is a great way to absorb all of Scotland’s heritage with lots of learn alongside a café and gift shops for souvenirs of a great day!
Near the southern shores of Loch Earn, sits Edinample Castle which is located near Balquhidder in Stirling. The Edinample Castle was constructed during the late 16th century by the ‘Black’ Duncan Campbell. The castle was built upon a bedrock of schist and is structured with a main rectangular block augmented by round towers. The walls of the castle were made from schist rubble to give the landmark a more uniform appearance. The structure was then further expanded in 1790 with a two story porch alongside further modifications being made during the Victorian era. The Edinample Castle is a private residence with no public access, however can be seen from a distance.
Finlarig Castle Ruins, Killin
A fantastic historical site to visit is the Finlarig Castle Ruins. The ruins of the Finlarig Castle can be found on top of a large wooded mound within the end of the village of Killin, the west end of Loch Tay. It is thought that the Finlarig Castle dates back into prehistoric times, indicated by its place on the site. Alongside the ruined castle, there is a burial ground that has been used within the last 100 years. The Finlarig Castle Ruins is a great place to explore the remaining’s of a four-storey castle that was constructed to a Z-plan design. This involves a main block which includes offset towers at the south-west and north-east corners. The castle was built back in the 1620s by Sir Duncan Campbell, 7th Laird of Glenorchy. Sir Duncan Campbell was nicknamed as the “Black Duncan” and was known to like castles and constructed well known castle such as Balcardine Castle located in Argyll, Achallader Castle situated on the edge of Rannoch Moor and Edinample Castle near Lochearnhead. Fun fact – in 1651, the Scottish Parliament was summoned to assemble at Finlarig Castle, however only members of the Parliament showed at the summoning. Interestingly, it has been said that Rob Roy MacGregor also visited Finlarig Castle back in 1713.
One of the most world famous icon of Scotland is the Edinburgh Castle. Throughout history, the castle was home to kings and queens for many centuries and is currently a popular historic site in Western Europe. There are many fantastic ways to experience Edinburgh Castle! Learn about the history of the castle with exciting tales of the military fortress, royal residence and the prison of war. Discover the characters that make up the castle’s history. A great way to learn about Edinburgh Castle’s history is by exploring the castle’s highlights, which includes visits to the Great Hall, St Margaret’s Chapel and the One o’clock Gun. Additionally, various itineraries are available which gives a tour around the castle catering to specific times and interests. Such tours include ‘Morning’, ‘Military March’, ‘Just an hour’ and ‘Royal Route.’ There’s also lovely places to eat as you tour the castle such as the Redcoat Café and the Tea Rooms alongside gift shops for a souvenir of your adventure!
Drummond Castle (Gardens)
If looking to embrace more of nature, the Drummond Castle Gardens is definitely worth a visit. Drummond Castle is known for their spectacular gardens! The Castle Gardens is one of Europe’s and Scotland’s most important and impressive formal gardens. The gardens date back to the 17th Century, in which the gardens were then redesigned and terraced within the 19th Century. The gardens that visitors can observe were replanted back in the 1950s however, they preserve many original features such as the ancient yew hedges and the remaining beech tree that was planted by Queen Victoria, commemorating her visit in 1842. The gardens have also been featured in many films, TV programmes and advertisements. The most notable film that featured the gardens include the feature film Rob Roy and the Starz Outlander series. If curious to know how these gardens are like in real life, head over to their Gallery section to experience the elegance of the Castle Gardens through breath-taking images and videos.
Blair Castle, Perthshire
The Blair Castle is a 5 star visitor attraction site in Perthshire. The castle has been a home to the Atholl family for over 7 centuries! The Blair Castle has a diverse history and is home to various figures such as politicians, agriculturalists, soldiers and entrepreneurs. The castle is made up of 18th century interiors and Scots Baronial architecture in 30 stunning rooms. The inside of the castle will have you stepping into the Medieval, Georgian and Victorian eras as the Blair Castle captures remarkable periods in Scotland’s history. There are also private tours and groups available to book, in order to experience the beauty and history of the Blair Castle & Gardens. The castle’s exhibitions which showcases the fascinating history of the castle, which explores the lives of those that have lived, visited and worked there for over centuries. Alongside the castle, explore the breath-taking gardens and grounds. Laid out within the 18th century, the gardens feature a 9 acre walled garden, a wooden grove, a kirk ruin, gothic folly and an extensive deer park. Upon exploring the castle, you can pick up a souvenir from the Blair Castle Gift Shop.
The Scone Palace, Perthshire
Another stunning castle in Perthshire is The Scone Palace, with over 1,000 years of history. The Scone Palace is the world-famous crowning palace of the King of Scots and the original home of the Stone of Scone. There are over 100 acres of Gardens and Grounds at Scone Palace to explore alongside the amazing Murray Star Maze. Book a tour to explore the various elements of the palace. A fantastic place to visit with family with a picnic area available, a wide selection of hot and cold food items and a fabulous gift shop.