Updated: Mar 10
Scotland has an abundance of castles dating back to as early as the 11th century. The oldest standing castle is Aberdour Castle in Fife and Castle Sween is located in Argyll with parts dating to around 1200. Did you know that there is even a Castle Trail? The Castle Trail takes you through scenic Aberdeenshire, where you can discover 19 castles. Don't miss the many other splendid castles throughout the rest of Scotland. This past summer has been a whirlwind of wee Highland Coo Van Adventures, here are some of the Scottish Castles we had the privilege to visit and explore. I would love to share them with you. Here's more about what you need to know about Scotland's Castles.
Edinburgh Castle ©MDHarding
The Scottish Castle Trail - A Wee Highland Coo Van Adventure
One of Scotland's oldest tower houses - Drum Castle, with over 700 years of history. For centuries the seat of the chief of Clan Irvine. Explore the history with a tour of the castle, and climb up the stairs of Drum Tower with 360-degree views of the surrounding landscape. Don't miss the historic rose garden with cultivars from the 17th through to the 20th century. Holly Fest is taking place this December, hear Christmas stories, enjoy mulled wine, and much more!
Drum Castle ©MDHarding
Tour the medieval great hall, Victorian bedrooms and explore parts of Castle Fraser dating back to the 1450s. Home to the Fraser family for over 400 years, brimming with photographs and stories. Don't miss a stroll around the beautiful walled garden, will you be able to spot the carved wooden Dragon head? This month there are some incredible events celebrating Halloween with pumpkin decorating sessions and it's also the last month to see the Chimney Map. Painstakingly restored with some parts as small as a fly!
Castle Fraser ©MDHarding
Up on top of a stone cliff, Dunnottar Castle is one of awe. An unforgettable experience from the moment you catch a glimpse of the medieval fortress. With a history including the Jacobites, Royals and even where once a lion was kept! There are a number of stairs down before the climb up to the entrance. Worth the trek to see the views of the surrounding landscape and the rugged stone face below that formed more than 440 million years ago! Highly recommend visiting.
Dunnottar Castle ©MDHarding
A private fortress built for the Thanes of Cawdor, dating back to the 14th century, a tower dating to the 15th century, and lush, manicured landscape gardens. On a summer's day sit in the courtyard and enjoy both hot and cold delights from the cafe. To this day a family home steeped in history with lots of stories to tell and events to attend. A must-visit!
Cawdor Castle ©MDHarding
Located on the west coast of Scotland, Culzean Castle is surrounded by a dramatic and outstanding beauty with woodlands, coastal waters, and gardens. It has the largest display of military swords and an impressive Robert Adam Oval Staircase not to be missed!
Culzean Castle ©MDHarding
I hope you have enjoyed reading about some of the best Scottish Castles and inspired to visit them.
Most of the castles are National Trust for Scotland properties. If visiting more than one castle or National Trust for Scotland property, did you know you can become a member? It is an invaluable way to visit all the properties and discover more about Scotland's history.
Would you like to stay in a castle? There are some amazing ones that are now hotels or offer accommodation.
As always I would love to hear from you. Please get in touch with any comments/questions to: enquiries@MDHardingTravelPhotography.com Happy Travels:) x
Disclaimer: All the above comments and opinions are my own.