As you have already realised. If there is one thing that we are not short on here in Scotland, it is castles. With so much beautiful natural land to build on, it comes as no surprise that there have been plenty of castles built on the land. Beautiful focal points that are not only remote but also picturesque too. Currently owned by Lord Stathnaver, and a home to his family name for seven hundred years, the magnificent Dunrobin Castle is known as the Jewel in the Crown of the Highlands.
Dunrobin Castle has been inhabited since the 1300s, which makes it one of the oldest continuously inhabited houses in Britain. In fact, it has been home to some of the most recognised Earls and Dukes of Sutherland over the centuries.
Those who visit the castle will notice that it has a distinct architectural quality, some of which say resembles a French chateau. This is all thanks to the design put in place later on in the life of the castle by Sir Charles Barry, who is also known to have designed the Houses of Parliament in London. The castle hasn’t always been used solely as a place of residence. In fact, during the First World War it was a hospital for the Navy and from 1965 to 1972 it welcomed boys into a boys boarding school setting.
Overlooking the Moray Firth, you can find Dunrobin Castle just North from Golspie and Dornoch.
If you visit the castle, then one thing that you are sure to be impressed by is the stunning gardens and grounds that surround it. Along with the design of the building itself, Sir Charles Barry also designed the gardens and grounds during its 19th-century overhaul.
The gardens were built during 1850 and have changed very little since that time. Although, there have been more modern plants and flowers introduced as time goes on. Often visitors are surprised by the sheer volume of amazing blooms that are found here in the gardens and grounds. This includes the huge Gunnera Manicata which is a form of rhubarb that is usually found in South America, however, you can find it growing here in Scotland.
Visiting the Castle
One of the best things about Dunrobin Castle is that it is open to visitors during the Summer season. Not only does it mean that you can take a look around the building itself, but also the gardens too. There is a well-stocked gift shop that not only has souvenirs from the castle itself, but also local craft items too.
There is also a museum on site too, which contains a treasure trove of information not only regarding the family and castle history, but also the wider history of the area too.
You can even stop for lunch at the Castle Buffet, where you will find snacks, hot and cold meals and plenty of delicious treats.
So, if you are staying at Mackays, and you want to find some interesting things to do during your time here, why not pay a visit to Dunrobin Castle. An exciting slice of Scottish history, which is never far away.