Known as ‘The Pearl of the North’, Ballindalloch Castle is one of the most romantic and renowned castles in Scotland.
Located in the heart of Speyside, Scotland’s most prolific whisky region, Ballindalloch Castle is one of the few private castles in Scotland that has been lived in continuously by the family which founded it, the Macpherson-Grants. Originally a fortified tower house that was erected circa 1546, Ballindalloch underwent a significant period of renovation and extension during the Victorian era which transformed it into the sumptuous country retreat that stands today. An independent company of what was to become known at the Black Watch regiment was formed under the command of Colonel William Grant, the 9th Laird of Ballindalloch. The Black Watch was formed in 1725 to watch and patrol areas of the Scottish Highlands, and to prevent cattle-rustling and smuggling, after the Jacobite Rising of 1715.
In spite of its history and grandeur, Ballindalloch remains first and foremost a beloved family residence, and there are plenty of personal heirlooms and memorabilia belonging to the current occupants scattered amongst the general finery. Highlights include a fine collection of 17th-century Spanish paintings, one of the finest country house libraries in all of Scotland, the grand dining room with its magnificent fireplace, the vaulted hall and the delightful nursery with its antique toys.
The Rivers Spey and Avon run through the estate, offering excellent fishing, and the cattle that graze here belong to the oldest Aberdeen Angus herd in the world. The beautifully maintained walled and rock gardens are spectacular when in full bloom and offer a tranquil haven during the summer months.
The Castle shop stocks a wide selection of quality Scottish crafts and goods, including the popular 'I Love Food' recipe books written Mrs Clare Macpherson-Grant Russell, mother of the current Laird. Light refreshments are available in the Castle tearoom.