Monday, June 15, 2009

Castles of Scotland - Drum Castle

No trip to Scotland is complete without viewing at least one castle. Scotland is famous for them and boasts over 3,000 castles. Many of them are modest looking, some are just ruins, others are a pile of rocks. But the majority of them are living, breathing castles, still intact and well-taken care of. Many of the castles are open to the public and provide tours during the summer months. Some still have caretakers or their rightful owners living in them. Whatever type of castle it is one thing is for sure, you can't find these bad boys back at home.

My castle-traipsing trip occured on a beautifully frosty Boxing Day. I regret we did not have enough time to leave Aberdeenshire (highlighted in dark blue, above left) but thankfully the castles that we did see that day (and one that we didn't see, damn you Queen Elizabeth!) were some of the best in the country.

We started off with the compact and picturesque Drum Castle, said to be one of the oldest occupied castles in Scotland. But as you can see, it's been very well taken care of.

Drum Castle has an interesting history. It's tower (believed to be one of the oldest in Scotland) was started back in the 13th century, although the rest of the castle was expanded in the 17th century.

Robert the Bruce - one of Scotland's greatest kings and most courageous warriors - gave the castle to William Irvine - a faithful Scots soldier - in 1332, as a sign of gratitude. Though the castle was attacked and ransacked about three times, it was home to the Irvine family for more than six and a half centuries, a full 24 generations of unbroken succession.

The castle has a lovely "backyard" with 18th century gardens spanning over 300 acres.

It's from behind that you really get an idea of the solidness of the place.

There is also a wee chapel on the grounds, built in the 16th century for the family. As usual, the church had shut it's doors to me but by peeping through the keyhole I could make out wonderful stain-glass designs inside.

6 said they wanna go too:

Anonymous Anonymous wanderlusted...

looks gorgeous!!!
did u got to Scotland Castle (is that what its called???)

2:15 PM  
Blogger Kristin wanderlusted...

So incredible!

8:46 PM  
Blogger TheBeautyFile wanderlusted...

WOW...This really makes me want to go. I LOVE a gorgeous castle (or two!)

7:34 AM  
Blogger deep_in_vogue wanderlusted...

Oh goodness it looks amazing!! I recently read a book on Scottish myths and ever since I've been fascinated by all their living history. Visiting Scotland and its castles is definitely high up on my list. Thank you for this lovely post!

10:37 AM  
Blogger janettaylor wanderlusted...

Beautiful places!


12:24 PM  
Blogger Hanh, Life-in-Travel wanderlusted...

beautiful!! gorgeous castles!!!


8:03 PM  

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