Aberdeenshire’s castles feature prominently in a revamped Scottish publication which also highlights nearby attractions.
The region is known as ‘Scotland’s Castle Country’ and with an impressive tally of 300 castles, stately mansions and ruins scattered across the landscape, there are more castles per acre than anywhere else in the UK.
Scotland’s Castle trail brochure, which has been given a complete redesign, is a joint project between VisitScotland, Historic Scotland, National Trust for Scotland and Aberdeenshire Council.
It now features 18 castles in Aberdeenshire from Balmoral to Braemar and Corgarff to Craigievar. Leith Hall has also been included this year for the first time.
Aberdeenshire’s castles provide a wealth of history to explore - from gruesome tales of battles fought, to strolls through romantic family estates. Coming in all shapes and sizes, each castle holds a different story to tell, from striking clifftop ruins to grand fortresses and royal residences in the countryside.
A total of 70,000 brochures have been printed, 30,000 of which are being distributed at airports and via accommodation providers and attractions in Aberdeenshire, Dundee, Fife, Perthshire, the Highlands and the Central Scotland.
Brochures will also be available in VisitScotland Information Centres, National Trust for Scotland and Historic Scotland properties and throughout Aberdeenshire.
Philip Smith, VisitScotland regional director, said: “The Castle Trail is incredibly popular with our visitors, both domestic and international, and I am delighted this inspirational brochure has been refreshed for the new season. It provides essential information for anyone visiting these fantastic properties right across Aberdeenshire.
“In 2015, Scotland’s Year of Food and Drink, it is also great to see some local ‘foodie’ attractions highlighted in the brochure, such as Royal Lochnagar Distillery, near Balmoral Castle; and Touched by Scotland Gallery and Restaurant, near Leith Hall.”
Belinda Miller, Aberdeenshire Council’s head of economic development, said: “Aberdeenshire has such a wealth of beautiful castles to visit and many have gardens and other family friendly facilities, making for a great day out.
“We’re happy to support the updated Castle Trail brochure and we hope many visitors to the area will enjoy discovering the secrets behind the castles walls.”
Scotland’s Castle Trail includes Dunnottar, Crathes, Drum, Castle Fraser, Tolquhon, Haddo House, Fyvie, Delgatie, Duff House, Huntly, Spynie Palace, Balvenie, Leith Hall, Garden & Estate, Kildrummy, Corgarff, Braemar, Balmoral and Craigievar.
For further information on Scotland’s Castle Trail, including a suggested four-day itinerary and downloadable map, visit www.visitscotland.com/castletrail