A 17th century castle with a colourful past and an exciting future. Built by the Earl of Mar in 1628, it has been hunting lodge, fortress, garrison and family home.
Set amid the stunning scenery of the Cairngorm mountains with castellated turrets, a star shaped curtain wall and a bottle necked dungeon. Home to the chief of Clan Farquharson, it is furnished with the furniture, memorabilia and personal belongings of the Farquharson family. Now the castle's future rests with the small community of Braemar. With a 50 year lease from the Farquharson family, the village has ambitious plans to conserve and restore the castle and provide even better visitor facilities. A grand dining room, gracious drawing room, Victorian bathrooms and delightful morning room and with 12 rooms on show there is plenty to see and discover in this compact castle. An L shaped tower house, it has an unusual right winding spiral stone staircase leading to 3 floors of furnished rooms.
Hear about the characters who have called this castle home. Influential noblemen such as John Erskine, second Earl of Mar, who spent his childhood as playmate of James VI (James I), the sixth Earl, who raised the Standard for the Jacobites' 1715 Uprising and lost his title, lands and the castle and Finlay Mhor "the lang hielander", standard bearer for Mary Queen of Scots at the Battle of Pinkie and the first Farquharson of Invercauld. Shiver at tales of the infamous Black Colonel who burned Braemar Castle in 1689. And hear the complaints of Ensign William Grant, a soldier in the Hanoverian army garrisoned in the Castle after the Battle of Culloden. See a timber fragment from that 1689 burning, a family trinket box which once belonged to Mary Queen of Scots and a Bronze Age sword found buried on Farquharson land nearby.
Local volunteers guide you round this informal castle giving insights into the lives of the Farquharson family, the clan Chief, Captain Alwyne Farquharson, and the wealthy families who have used the castle as their "holiday cottage".
Entry to all rooms in the castle is up the steep stone staircase so unfortunately if you have mobility problems, the castle is not accessible. You are however welcome to sit and enjoy the sunshine (and perhaps a coffee from the shop) in the courtyard or visit the Highland Games display while friends/relatives tackle the stairs.