Lochleven Castle

Lochleven Castle

Lochleven Castle Facts A nine-minute ferry trip from Kinross brings one to Castle Island. The Lochleven Castle comprises a 14th-century square keep with curtain walling. The gateway in the wall leads to the courtyard, and a doorway leads to the vaulted ground floor of the tower. The third floor, now gone, was used as Mary, […]

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Huntingtower Castle

Huntingtower Castle

Originally known as Ruthven Castle, there were actually two towers here, standing side by side. Huntingtower Castle History In the 17th century these were joined when the space was built up, but from the inside the two distinct towers can be seen. A vaulted room on the ground floor makes the entrance to the East

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Glamis Castle

Glamis Castle

Glamis Castle is a large chateau-like castle, owned by the Lyon and Bowes-Lyon family for almost eight centuries. It has close Royal connections as Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother is a member of the family, and her daughter Princess Margaret was born here. Glamis Castle Tours Guided tours take one through sumptuously furnished rooms, commencing

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Elcho Castle

Elcho Castle

An attractive and elaborate tower, Elcho stands on a low rock overlooking the Tay. Elcho Castle History Built-in the latter half of the 16th century for the Wemyss family, it is owned by the Earl of Wemyss and March, though it has been in state care since 1929. There are remains of a courtyard, with

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Edzell Castle

Edzell Castle

Edzell Castle History The oldest part of the castle is the L-planned tower of the early 16th century, which is built in rich red sandstone. This was added to the north where the entrance pend passes beneath what was once a large hall, long since ruined. In 1602-04 Lord Edzell added the northwest tower. The

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Castle Menzies

Castle Menzies

Castle Menzies is the home of the Menzies clan. Castle Menzies History The Castle Menzies is a particularly fine Z-plan tower house of around 1571-1577, built of local stone with blue slate dressings. It replaced a castle burned to the ground in 1502. The decorative Victorian porch leads to the ground floor of the main

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Burleigh Castle

Burleigh Castle

Burleigh Castle stands by the roadside, east of Milnathort. Burleigh Castle History Built of red sandstone, the original tower of about 1500 still stands today together with a small tower dated 1582 and a stretch of connecting curtain wall, with a gateway through it. The remainder of the barbican has long since been removed, as

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Broughty Castle

Broughty Castle

Built to guard the Firth of Tay, Broughty Castle looks today to be a fine tower house that dates to around 1454, when the 4th Earl of Angus was granted permission by James II to erect one. Broughty Castle History However, the upper walls of the tower, as well as the present stair turret, date

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Blair Castle courtyard

Blair Castle

Blair Castle History The Cumming family built the first castle in 1269 and part of this still survives. In 1457 James II granted Blair to Sir John Stewart of Balvenie. It passed to the Murrays in 1629. The Blair Castle was extended in 1503, but in 1768 it was partially demolished and rebuilt as a

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Balvaird Castle and grounds

Balvaird Castle

History of Balvaird Castle Balvaird Castle was built by Sir Andrew Murray in 1500. The courtyard range and vaulted gateway were added in 1567, with a guardroom. The Murrays became Viscounts Stormont and Earls of Mansfield, moving to Scone Palace, but this castle remains in their ownership, though it is in state care. Balvaird Castle

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Balhousie Castle

Balhousie Castle

The Balhousie Castle that one sees today is basically a neo-baronial mansion of 1862, designed by David Smart and built for the Earl of Kinnoull. Balhousie Castle History The entrance is located in the re-entrant tower, over which are hay armorial panels. If one walks to the east façade of the Balhousie Castle, which overlooks

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Balfour Castle

Balfour Castle

Balfour Castle is a spectacular example of Victorian architecture. Balfour Castle History Balfour is complete with every detail of its original fixtures and furniture dating back to the 1840s, with gilded plaster ceilings, handmade wallpaper, and marble fireplaces. Set on seventy acres of wooded grounds, Balfour has panoramic views of surrounding islands. Its location is

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Tantallon Castle

Tantallon Castle

Spectacularly located on its cliff top, Tantallon Castle shows a massive sandstone wall to the landward. Tantallon Castle History Outwith this are earthworks, a dovecote, and an outer gate. A bridge across the ditch enters the Mid Tower, formerly the home of the keeper. Great walls extend to either side of this and the stairway

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Palace of Holyrood

Palace of Holyroodhouse

History of Palace of Holyroodhouse Palace of Holyroodhouse, also known as Holyrood Palace was originally built by James IV of Scotland between 1501 and 1505, as a Gothic palace adjacent to the 12th-century abbey. The Old Holyroodhouse The oldest part of the present building is the massive north-west tower, built between 1528 and 1532 by

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Lennox Castle

Lennox Castle

Lennoxlove Castle History Lennox Castle or Lennoxlove Castle was named after the Duchess of Lennox – the model for Britannia on pre-decimal coins. Previously known as Lethington Castle, it was the seat of the Maitland. The 15th-century tower has a double-story cap house and corbelled parapet. The 1670s east wing was remodeled in the early

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Lauriston Castle

Lauriston Castle

Lauriston Castle is a grade-A-listed building located in Edinburgh. Lauriston Castle History As Lauriston exists today, it is a very fine Edwardian mansion. Purchased in 1902 by William Reid of the furniture manufacturer, Morison and Company, the building reflects his interests in furniture, Blue John ornaments, and the arts. The Lauriston Castle was left to

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Hailes Castle The Great Hall

Hailes Castle

Hailes Castle History Hailes Castle stands on a rock above the River Tyne, and its oldest parts date from the 13th century. This is the central tower, built of red sandstone, with the curtain wall to the east of this, and the stairway down to the well. The tower contains a pit prison but was

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The Edinburgh Castle

Edinburgh Castle

Edinburgh Castle stands on high basalt rock, making use of the natural defenses of the site. Edinburgh Castle History Edinburgh Castle was used as a Bronze Age hill fort and during the Roman occupation it was a thriving settlement. By the eleventh century AD it had become firmly established as one of the principal royal

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Dundas Castle and grounds

Dundas Castle

Dundas Castle History Dundas Castle is truly a castle of which dreams are made. Dundas is one of Scotland’s most beautiful castles. The castle is located only eight miles from the city center of Edinburgh, six miles from the airport, and within an hour’s drive from Glasgow, Stirling, and Perth. The Auld Keep at Dundas

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Dirleton Castle

Dirleton Castle

The village of Dirleton is dominated by the imposing remains of Dirleton Castle, which dates from the 12th century. Dirleton Castle History Ruinous since Cromwell’s unwelcome attentions in the 17th century, it was once the heart of the major Scottish estates of the De Vaux and Halliburton families. In the 12th century, the Norman family

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Crichton Castle

Crichton Castle

A track from Crichton Church leads south to Crichton Castle, which is a large and impressive structure perched above the Tyne. Crichton Castle History The oldest part, the tower on the east front, was erected by John Crichton in 1400 and was vaulted. A prison was located on the lower floor. His son, Chancellor Crichton,

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Craigmillar Castle grounds

Craigmillar Castle

Craigmillar Castle stands on a 300 feet hill on the southern side of Edinburgh. Craigmillar Castle History Built-in the 15th century by the Prestons, it was sold in 1660 to the Gilmours. The L-shaped tower is the oldest part, and a curtain wall and other ranges were added in the late 15th and 16th centuries.

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Blackness Castle

Blackness Castle

Likened to a ship from its shape and location, Blackness Castle has been a place of defense from when it was built in the 1440s until after World War I. Blackness Castle History Originally built by the Crichtons, it was gifted to the Crown in 1453 and used as a State Prison until 1707; as

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Bothwell Castle

Bothwell Castle

Bothwell Castle History Bothwell Castle was built by the Morays and passed to Douglas ownership in 1362. It was forfeited to the Crown in 1445. The castle was acquired by the Douglas Earl of Forfar in 1669 and used as a quarry for his new house. It was passed into state care by the Earls

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Urquhart Castle along Loch Ness

Urquhart Castle

Urquhart Castle History The first castle was built for Alan Durward, son-in-law of Alexander II, in the 13th century. In 1275 ownership passed to John Comyn but the English captured it in 1296. It passed to and fro for a number of years until in 1308 Robert the Bruce gave it to his nephew, Sir

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Strome Castle and Castle Bay

Strome Castle

Located at Stromemore, four miles south of Lochcarron village, Strome Castle is today a fragmentary ruin. Strome Castle History Built on a low headland projecting into Loch Carron, the castle dates from at least the mid-15th century, for in 1472 Alan MacDonald Dubh, 12th Chief of the Camerons, was appointed Constable of Strome by the

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Dunvegan Castle Isle of Skye

Dunvegan Castle

The Dunvegan Castle is built on a rock headland projecting to Loch Dunvegan, and it has a Gothic appearance. Dunvegan Castle History The castle disguises a much older building, however, and parts of it date back to the 13th century. The wall around the courtyard (which has a well and steps down to the sea

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Dunrobin Castle

Dunrobin Castle

Dunrobin is a huge chateau-like castle perched on a rock, below which are extensive and attractive gardens. Its tall ‘candle-snuffer’ turret roofs are a distinctive feature. Dunrobin Castle History Built-in stages, the oldest part is the central tower of the 14th century. The Southwest block was added in 1641, and the south block in 1785.

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Cawdor Castle frontside

Cawdor Castle

Cawdor is a very fine castle with an ancient keep built around 1380 at its core and is surrounded by lesser wings and three courtyards. Cawdor Castle History The vaulted ground floor of the tower still has the remains of a holly tree that grew on the site, and tradition says this is where the

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Crookston Castle

Crookston Castle

The 15th-century castle Crookston stands on a mound in the midst of a housing estate. Crookston Castle History The knoll has a moat around its top, enclosing a flat courtyard in which stands the castle tower. The main hall has a parallelogram plan, with a square tower at the corners, two of which are gone.

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Spynie Palace walls

Spynie Castle

Spynie Castle History Known also as the Spynie Palace, this was the seat of the Bishops of Moray from 1208 until Reformation, after which the castle became ruinous. Mary, Queen of Scots stayed in 1562. The castle stands on the edge of what was once the great Spynie sea loch, with a harbor and small

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Kildrummy Castle

Kildrummy Castle

Kildrummy is one of the finest castle ruins in the north of Scotland. The greatest part of the surviving ruins date from the 13th century and were probably erected by an Earl of Mar. Kildrummy Castle History A path from the car park leads to the entrance gateway, reached by a bridge over the Barbican.

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The Huntly Castle

Huntly Castle

Huntly Castle stands currently in ruins, and it is located in the town of Huntly, Aberdeenshire. Huntly Castle History The great heraldic doorway is the finest part of Huntly Castle. This rises to 33ft, and contains the arms of the 1st Marquis of Huntly and his wife; the arms of the monarch, James VI, and

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Fyvie Castle

Fyvie Castle

Fyvie Castle History Now a great Z-plan building, the oldest part of Fyvie Castle dates from the 13th century. Each successive laird has added to the building, to give the Preston, Meldrum, Seton, Gordon, and Leith towers, in order of erection. Each alteration seems to have added a new kitchen, the older one being converted

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Dunnottar Castle and Old Hall Bay

Dunnottar Castle

Dunnottar Castle History Dunnottar Castle is a vast, impressive ruin perched on a great rocky headland. A steep path leads down the cliffside and up to the entrance gate, protected by large gun loops from the guardroom. The way continues through two tunnels to the grassed courtyard, with bowling green to the north and a

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Drum Castle Main entrance to courtyard

Drum Castle

Drum Castle History The old tower of Drum is believed to be one of the three oldest towers surviving in Scotland. Adjoining it is a large wing of 1619 and some Victorian additions. The old tower was the work of Richard Cementarius, Master Mason to the King in the late 13th century. The ground floor

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Delgatie Castle

Delgatie Castle

Delgatie Castle History Reputedly dating back to around 1030, what stands for Delgatie Castle today dates from 1570-1509. Wings were added in 1743, the most westerly containing a Chapel. The grounds have a garden, the Thomson Memorial Fountain of 1918, and various carved stones. Delgatie was taken from the Earl of Buchan in 1314 and

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Crathes Castle in sping

Crathes Castle

Crathes Castle History Construction began on Crathes Castle in the middle of the 16th century, when Alexander and Janet Burnett, with six children, decided they needed and could afford a better home. Crathes Castle took forty years to build. There were many delays in the construction since this was a time of trouble during the

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Corgarff Castle

Corgarff Castle

Corgarff Castle History Originally part of the Earldom of Mar, James IV annexed the estates in 1435 and granted the ‘Foresta de Corgarf’ to Alexander Elphinstone. In 1571 Corgarff Castle was set alight, killing Margaret Forbes and 24 others. The Erskines of Mar regained control in 1626. Montrose occupied the building in 1645. The Jacobites

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Castle Fraser Map

Castle Fraser

Castle Fraser History Michael Fraser erected Castle Fraser between 1575-1635 with assistance from Master Mason, Thomas Leiper. Castle Fraser was known as Muchall-in-Mar until 1695. The castle was completed by his heir, Andrew Fraser, 1st Lord Fraser. The main block is a Z-plan tower of five stories, to the north of which is a courtyard

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Brodie Castle from the south east

Brodie Castle

The Brodies have been at Brodie Castle since 1160 when Malcolm IV endowed the lands. The 25th Chief, Ninian Brodie of that Ilk, had the castle passed to the Trust in 1980 but continues to live there and takes an active part in the running of the estate. Brodie Castle History Brodie as it stands

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Braemar Castle

Braemar Castle

Braemar Castle History The original tower of the Braemar Castle was erected by John Erskine, Earl of Mar, as a bulwark against the power of the neighboring Farquharsons. In 1689 John Farquharson of Inverey burned it. Acquired in 1732 by John Farquharson, the castle was leased in 1748 for 99 years to the Government who

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Balvenie Castle

Balvenie Castle

Balvenie Castle is a ruined castle situated near the town of Dufftown. Balvenie is entered through an unusual double-leafed yett. The pend passes through the 4th Earl of Atholl’s Lodging, which has a fine round tower at the external corner and a smaller stair turret in the inner re-entrant. The cobbled courtyard is surrounded by

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Ballindalloch Castle

Ballindalloch Castle

Ballindalloch is a particularly fine building, located between the towns of Grantown-on-Sprey and Dufftown. Ballindalloch Castle History Historically a Grant seat, it became Macpherson-Grant, until the daughter married Oliver Russell. Their son, Guy, has assumed the surname Macpherson-Grant to continue the family name. The corner tower, which formed a Z-plan castle, was probably built in

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St. Andrews Castle

St. Andrews Castle

St. Andrews Castle History St Andrews Castle, located in the Royal Burgh of St. Andrews is less well known than the Cathedral, but it is every bit as interesting. From the visitor center of St Andrews Castle, one can enter either by a lesser gateway, or else over the bridge and through the Renaissance gateway

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Scotstarvit Tower

Scotstarvit Tower

Tarvit Tower History Tarvit Tower was erected between 1550 and 1579 for the Inglis but was purchased in 1611 by John Scot who renamed it Scotstarvit. It is his initials and those of his wife, Anne Drummond, which appear on the panel over the cap-house door. He was noted as the author of The Staggering

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Ravenscraig Castle ruins

Ravenscraig Castle

Ravenscraig Castle History Ravenscraig Castle was built on a rocky promontory between two shingle beaches. Two mellow stone towers, with rounded fronts, face the mainland, with a footbridge crossing a dry ditch to the entrance gateway. On the west is the oldest tower. The East Tower is lower but has deeper foundations. At its base,

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Kellie Castle

Kellie Castle

Kellie Castle History The Kellie Castle, which has many turrets, chimneys, carved panels, and corbie-stepped gables, was begun in the 14th century. The East Tower was added in 1573 – perhaps a courtyard or low buildings were located between. In 1606 the linking block and the Southwest Tower were added. Originally owned by the Siward

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Balgonie Castle

Balgonie Castle

Balgonie Castle History The 14th-century sandstone ashlar Tower of Balgonie rises at the corner of a ruinous courtyard, with the tower restored by David Maxwell in 1975. In 1985 the castle was sold to the present owner, the artist and craftsman Raymond Morris. The guided tour starts with the three vaults on the ground floor

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