THE NATIONAL TRUST FOR SCOTLAND
CASTLES, HISTORIC HOUSES, GARDENS, WILDERNESS
The National Trust for Scotland has in its care some of the most fascinating castles, the most imposing history houses, the most beautiful gardens and the wildest of wild areas in Scotland. Welcome to our world; we hope that enjoy your visit, whether you are interested in history or flowers and plants or scenery and wildlife.
On this page we can give you only a flavour of what to see and do.
Castles and houses: From north to south, a few not-to-missed places. Near Nairn is Brodie Castle In Aberdeenshire there are Craigievar Castle, which is straight from a fairytale, and the magnificent Fyvie Castle, surrounded by woodlands through which you can stroll. On your way down the east coast, near Montrose, you can visit House of Dun and Newhailes near Edinburgh. In the west is Culzean Castle – turrets and battlements, designed by Robert Adam in the 18th century. Nor far from Glasgow is Hill House, designed by Charles Rennie Macintosh, and the finest example of architecture in the early 20th century.
Everyone loves a garden, whether or not they have green fingers! Time and space to wander and admire the work of our dedicated gardeners. One of the best is Inverewe Garden near Gairloch; its position means that the mild Golf Stream brings spring here weeks before it reaches the east coast and the hidden gardens within this garden will entice you to spend the day here. In the South West is Threave Estate where spring also comes early – and the show of daffodils attest to this. On a smaller scale is Malleny Gardens west of Edinburgh, a peaceful walled garden with a collection of old-fashioned roses.
If you are a fan of Harry Potter, you will be familiar with the Glenfinnan Viaduct set in Highland scenery; not far from there is the Glenfinnan Monument, which marks the spot where Bonnie Prince Charlie raised his flag in 1745 before marching south to challenge the English. From the top you can see many miles over the mountains and out to sea.
If your interest lies more in the outdoors, then head for Corrieshalloch Gorge in the Highlands, on the way to Ullapool, and take the winding path down to the bridge over the deep chasm. The tumbling water and the fern-bedecked walls are unique in Scotland. Or join our ranger on a guided walk in Glencoe, surely one of the most evocative of Scottish glens.
The jewel in our crown just now is the new Robert Burns’ Heritage Centre near Ayr. The words of our national poet have appealed to people from all over the world through songs such as “Auld Lang Syne” and the poem “Tam o’ Shanter”; here you can visit the cottage where he was born and then the visitor centre to learn more about him.
The season: Our properties are open from early April to the end of October (but please check before visiting any particular property). Some of our gardens, such as Arduanie, are best seen in the spring, whilst others come to full bloom in the summer. Our website www.nts.org.uk will give you information to help you plan your trip.
The NTS Discovery Pass: If you are spending a few days in Scotland, then our Discovery Pass is excellent value for money. And it’s even better value is our Membership:
Our Guide: If you would like our guide, call us on 0844 493 2100.
Castles, gardens, houses, museums to visit in Scotland