Category Archives: Cairngorms, Aberdeen and Tayside

Cairngorms National Park Glen Tanar


Set of the eastern edge of Scotland’s spectacular Cairngorms National Park Glen Tanar spans 25,000 of breathtaking Highland scenery. From rugged heather moorland to towering Caledonian pine forests to the majestic River Dee. This is a destination for exploring the best of natural Scotland.

 

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Carrbridge


Carrbridge is a village in Badenoch and Strathspey.
It lies off the A9 road on the A938 road, west of Skye of Curr, southeast of Findhom Bridge, near Bogroy.
It has the oldest stone bridge in the Highlands and the nearby ancient pine forest contains the Landmark Forest Adventure Park.

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Invermorison


Invermoriston is a small village 11 kilometres (7 miles) north of Fort Augustus.
The village is on the A82 road, at a junction with the A887.
The village’s most visited attraction is the Thomas Telford bridge, built in 1813, which crosses the spectacular River Moriston falls.
This bridge used to form part of the main road between Drumnadrochit and Fort Augustus but was replaced in the 1930s with the new bridge used today.

Invermoriston’s attractions include a hotel (Glenmoriston Arms) , village shop, clog and craft shop as well as a coffee shop/restaurant.
From the top of the hill above the village, Sròn Na Muic (Scottish Gaelic for “The Nose of the Pig”), one can admire the finest views of the Great Glen.

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Loch an Eilean


Loch an Eilein is a small irregular shaped, freshwater loch in the Rothiemurchus Forest about 5 km (3.1 mi) south of Aviemore.
Loch an Eilein comes from the Scottish Gaelic and means ‘Loch of the island’. The loch is considered to be beautiful and walks around it are popular.

In the late 18th and early 19th century, the loch was used mainly for two things.
On the banks of the loch there is a limestone kiln where the lime stone was collected from a rockface looking over the loch.
Also loggers used the connecting river to float logs down to the wood-treating factories downstream.
Rob Roy and other cattle rustlers used the loch, and one side of the loch is called ‘Robbers Way’.
There are only three remaining houses on the loch side, which are now used by forestry officers.

In the middle of the Loch, on what may be a natural island, are the ruins of a small 15th century castle.
The castle is said to have once been the property of Alexander Stewart the Wolf of Badenoch.
The Jacobites, retreating from Cromdale in 1690, besieged the castle, which was held by Dame Grizel Mor Grant, widow of the fifth laird Grant.
At this time the castle was connected to the shore by a causeway. The causeway was lost when the water level in the loch was raised in the 18th century.

The loch and the forest around it are popular with birdwatchers, walkers, mountain bikers and day-trippers.
Among the birds found on or around Loch an Eilein are the crested tit, redstart, spotted flycatcher, tree pipit, red-throated diver, common sandpiper, whinchat, and the occasional merlin.
 

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Crovie


Crovie is a small village in Aberdeenshire, dating from a time when the sea was the only mode of transport to and from Scotland’s shores.
It comprises a single row of houses. Unlike the similar neighbouring village, Pennan, Crovie is situated on such a narrow ledge that any cars have to be left at the south of the village.
A footpath along the shore to the west leads to neighbouring village Gardenstown.

Crovie was established by families (crofters) who had been moved off the land to make room for the landlord’s sheep.
Here, they operated fishing boats for the landlord and gradually acquired their own craft instead.
The fishing industry declined in the 20th century before ceasing altogether with the storm of 1953, which washed away a number of structures and forced the residents to flee.
Since then most of the buildings have been turned into holiday lets.

 

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Monzie Castle

Monzie Castle

The oldest part of the castle dates from 1634. The main part was completed in 1795 by Robert Paterson, previously clerk of works to the celebrated Robert Adam. In 1908 a serious fire took hold of the castle with only the outside walls remaining. The leading Scottish architect of the day, Sir Robert Lorimer was instructed to restore the castle. His lifelong affinity with traditional Scottish architecture saw him encourage and develop a number of Edinburgh craftsmen and workshops, whose work is on display as part of a harmonious piece of design.

Castle opening times

15th May 2016 until 14th June 2016 from 2pm to 4pm

Entry fee £5

Guests who stay in our holiday cottages for a week or more receive a complimentary tour (subject to availability)

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Dunnottar Castle

Dunnottar Castle
Dunnottar Castle
Dunnottar Castle is a ruined medieval fortress located upon a rocky headland on the north-east coast of Scotland, about 3 kilometres (1.9 mi) south of Stonehaven. The surviving buildings are largely of the 15th and 16th centuries, but the site is believed to have been fortified in the Early Middle Ages. Dunnottar has played a prominent role in the history of Scotland through to the 18th-century Jacobite risings because of its strategic location and defensive strength. Dunnottar is best known as the place where the Honours of Scotland, the Scottish crown jewels, were hidden from Oliver Cromwell’s invading army in the 17th century. The property of the Keiths from the 14th century, and the seat of the Earl Marischal, Dunnottar declined after the last Earl forfeited his titles by taking part in the Jacobite rebellion of 1715. The castle was restored in the 20th century and is now open to the public.

 

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Slains Castle

Slains Castle, also known as New Slains Castle to distinguish it from nearby Old Slains Castle, is a ruined castle in Aberdeenshire. The core of the castle is a 16th-century tower house, built by the 9th Earl of Erroll. Significant reconstruction of the castle has been carried out a number of times, lastly in 1837 when it was rebuilt as a Scots Baronial mansion. At one time it had three extensive gardens, but is now a roofless ruin. Plans to restore the castle have been on hold since 2009.

In 1895 the author Bram Stoker visited the area, staying at a cottage near Cruden Bay, and he may have been a guest at Slains. The castle is commonly cited as an inspiration for Stoker’s 1897 novel Dracula.


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Beatrix Potter

Beatrix Potter
Beatrix Potter
Beatrix Potter, the writer of one of the most famous children’s books of all time, was greatly influenced by the long summer’s holidays she spent in Perthshire in her youth. She was fascinated by the natural world and was a talented artist from childhood.

It was from Eastwood House, Dunkeld that on September 4th 1893, she wrote her now famous picture letter to Noel Moore that later became her first book ‘The Tale of Peter Rabbit’ published in 1902. The following day she wrote another letter to Noel’s brother Eric, about a frog called ‘Jeremy Fisher’.

Her 1905 tale ‘Mrs Tiggy Winkle’ was certainly inspired by the Potters’ old washer woman at Dalguise, Kitty MacDonald.

Beatrix spent many happy hours exploring the local countryside and its influences can be seen in many of her books and paintings. Her interest in the natural world was also very scientific and in particular ferns, mosses and especially fungi became subjects of her art and study

During her time in the area she formed a special friendship with Charles Macintosh, the Perthshire Naturalist. Charles born in 1839, had become a postman for the Dalguise Postal District, his long daily walks delivering the mail allowing him to study local flora and fauna. Beatrix and Charles had a mutual interest in mycology, the study of fungi which brought them together. This led to a long correspondence, Charles even sending down to London by train, specimens he’d collected in the local woods for her to paint.

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Rattray Head Lighthouse

Rattray Head Lighthouse
Rattray Head Lighthouse
Rattray Head, is a headland in Buchan. The Rattray Head Lighthouse was built in 1895. It was built by the engineers and brothers David Alan Stevenson and Charles Alexander Stevenson. In February 1982 it became unmanned and self-working.

The lighthouse is accessible by way of a causeway that is usually underwater being only visible at low tide. It is wide enough for a vehicle to cross.

Remains of several shipwrecks can still be seen on the beach.

Scottish Blue Badge Guide – Piping Scot Tours.
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