Our private group visits five unique Scottish castles. This tour visits Midhope Castle , Blackness Castle , Stirling Castle , Doune Castle and Linlithgow Palace , birthplace of Mary Queen of Scots, scene of the Outlaw King .
Looking for things to do in Edinburgh ? How about taking a tour from Edinburgh of Scotland's historic castles and film locations ? In 2019 the Mary Queen of Scots film came out , closely followed by the Outlaw King , starring Chris Pine , about the life of Robert the Bruce , King of Scots . Linlithgow Palace features in both of these films .
Five ancient Scottish castles feature in this tour –
Our unique Five castles tour costs £280. Full day tour from Edinburgh
What makes our tours unique ?
1 Blackness Castle
Blackness Castle goes back to 1440 . The castle provides the setting for Fort William, as the original fort no longer exists.
The castle is long and narrow because of the shape of the rock on which it is situated and it is sometimes called ‘ the ship that never sailed ‘ . It guards the bay at Blackness and is only a few miles from Linlithgow Palace . The first castle was built in the middle of the 15th century by Sir George Crichton , Earl of Caithness , a member of one of the most powerful families in Scotland . King James II acquired Blackness in 1453 when he annexed the lands of the Crichtons . From then on the castle was mainly used as a prison . In 1543 Cardinal Beaton was held here for a month . Rebuilding started in the 1530s under the direction of Sir James Hamilton of Finnart who also worked at Linlithgow Palace and Stirling Castle . He was instructed to make the castle safe from artillery , and he achieved this by making the south and east walls very thick . A new tower was built at the south end . In the 1560s , in the reign of Mary Queen of Scots , a Spur was built to protect the main gate . In the 1870s the castle was the main ammunition depot for Scotland .The Castle is a popular location for historical re-enactments and has changed little in 600 years . Doune is one of the best preserved medieval castles in Scotland.
Hamlet has scenes filmed at Blackness Castle and Dunnottar Castle.
Director: Franco Zeffirelli
Starring: Mel Gibson, Glenn Close, Paul Scofield, Alan Bates, Ian Holm, Helena Bonham Carter, John McEnery
The tour spends up to an hour at each location .
Originally dating to the 13th Century, Doune Castle near Stirling plays Castle Leoch, home to Colum MacKenzie and his clan in Outlander TV series .
It featured in the first episode of Outlander in the 20th century episode when Claire and Frank Randall visit the ruined castle on a day trip.
Once a Royal residence, Doune Castle was rebuilt by Robert Stewart, Duke of Albany in the late 14th Century.
Doune has appeared several times on screen and was widely used in Monty Python and the Holy Grail. It also represented the castle Winterfell in Game of Thrones.
This royal pleasure palace and birthplace of Mary Queen of Scots became the backdrop for some of the most harrowing scenes of the TV show Outlander .
Depicted as Wentworth Prison, the prison corridors and entrance were used in episode 15 of the first series when Jamie Fraser was brutally incarcerated by his adversary, Black Jack Randall.
Built in the 1400s and 1500s, the now-ruined palace is set among the spectacular surrounds of Linlithgow Loch and Peel.
4 Stirling Castle
Stirling Castle is one of Scotland’s most impressive castles due to its imposing position and impressive architecture.
From Stirling Castle’s ramparts, visitors can take in views of the Forth Valley and Ben Lomond , as well as two of Scotland’s most important battle sites – Stirling Bridge (1297) and Bannockburn (1314). The castle is at the head of Stirling’s historic old town.Like Edinburgh Castle , Stirling sits on a volcanic rock dominating the city skyline .
Stirling Castle is not only one of Scotland’s grandest and most imposing castles, it was also a real favourite with Scotland’s kings and queens. And their investment in it demonstrated just how much they loved to use it, as well as their desire to ensure it both impressed all who visited it, and represented a statement of their power and wealth. James IV created the Great Hall, the largest medieval banqueting hall ever built in Scotland, and James V’s Royal Palace, with its lavishly decorated Renaissance façades, was a masterpiece of the period.
Major conservation work has been carried out at Stirling Castle over many years to preserve the attraction as a major national and international monument. The refurbishment of the Great Hall was completed a couple of years ago . A particular feature of the Great Hall is stained glass windows featuring clan crests . A number of banquets and concerts are held in the Hall throughout the year .
5 Midhope Castle ( Lallybroch )
Get a glimpse of the ancestral home of Jamie Fraser at Midhope Castle .
Scenes were shot at Midhope Castle on the fringes of the Hopetoun Estate near South Queensferry.
Midhope was built in the 15th Century and was built by John Martyne, laird of Medhope. It was rebuilt in the mid 1600s and remains much the same today.
Visitors are asked to admire Midhope from a distance as the interior remains largely derelict.
Midhope Castle is the external location for fictional Lallybroch, the family home of character Jamie Fraser , and it is located on the Hopetoun Estate . Midhope Castle dates back to the 15th Century and although the exterior is relatively intact the castle is derelict inside. Castle tours can be booked on 0131-549-9785 or online.
Phone Private tours Edinburgh on 07305-294773 for details and bookings .
Book tours of Scotland on +44-7305-294773
View our Castle Pictures gallery
Private Tours Edinburgh offers professional tours of Scotland with an expert guide on hand to give advice & information . Phone /text +447305-294773 for more details of special offers and new tours . Outlander tours visit Lallybroch ( Midhope Castle ), Castle Leoch (Doune Castle) and other locations . Game of Thrones tour to Doune Castle. Four castles tour including Stirling Castle is five star rated .Tour the amazing scenery of Glencoe and the Highlands. Falkirk tour to the Kelpies & the Falkirk Wheel .Shore excursions.Private Tours Edinburgh also offers bespoke private tours
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