Scotland 24/7 - The definitive guide to travel and tourism in Scotland



Balhousie, in North Perth, is not a true castle, although it does incorporate a 16th century towerhouse. It is a large mansion built in 1860. Balhousie served as the seat of the Earls of Kinnoul, and overlooks the North Inch of Perth. The Hay arms appear on one wall, and a skewputt on another is dated 1631. The main block basement has two cellars and a kitchen without the usual connecting passage. The wing contains a wide stair from the entrance to the hall. A stair to a third story and attic in the main block are later additions.

The tower was held by the Eviot family until 1478, when it was sold to the Mercers, and later passed to the Hays, who owned it in 1631. In 1962, it became the regimental headquarters and museum of the Black Watch. The museum spans three stories within the castle, and one wing serves as offices for the regiment's officers. Like many of the Highland Regiment museums, this one contained keepsakes, medals, campaign pennants, and other memorabilia from the regiment, which was founded in 1739. Many believe that the regiment was named for the distinctive dark tartan (or sett) that they wear. However, it is likely that they were called the "Black Watch" because the word for black, dhu, also means 'hidden' or 'covert', and may refer to their task to spy on the Jabobite rebels.


Other places to visit
Alyth Folk Museum, open only in summer, has collection of agricultural and domestic artefacts.

Secluded and unsignposted village built on private property. Houses overlook village green split by rushing burn.

Barry Hill
Remains of Pictish fort on top of hill. Guinevere, King Arthur's queen, is said to have been imprisoned here for loving Pictish prince. View rewards climb.

Village, dating from 19th century, on River Tay. Birnam Wood mostly birch and oak. Terrace Walk along right bank of Tay passes oak said to be last survivor of original Birnam Wood featured in prophecy of Macbeth's death.

Blairgowrie and Rattray
Scotland's largest working water wheel on view at Keathbank Mill. Heraldic crests centre here. Two towns linked by 19th-century bridge over River Ericht. North of town, river rushes through 200ft deep gorge overlooked by 17th-century Craighall.

Branklyn Garden
Described as finest 2 acres of private garden in country. Gardeners from all over world come to see collection of plants including rhododendrons, alpines, and herbaceous and peat-garden plants.

Bridge of Cally
Peaceful village in sheltered gorge at meeting place of River Ardle and Black Water. Choice of walks through deciduous forests.

Camperdown House and Country Park
European brown bears, wolves, lynxes, arctic foxes, reindeer, raccoons and golden eagles can be seen at wildlife centre. Other activities include golf, horse riding, tennis and Adventure Park. House has golf museum tracing sport's history.

From Law of Dundee, hill of volcanic rock in centre of town, views of surrounding areas including docks. Iron Age hill-fort and War Memorial here. McManus Galleries have displays of history and art including Dutch, French, Italian and British paintings, and oldest known astrolabe -- dating from 1555. Barrack Street Museum has natural history exhibits. Steeple of St Mary's Tower, dating from 16th century, now museum of church and local history. Ruins of Mains of Fintry Castle in Caird Park. Mills Observatory has displays on astrology and space travel, and allows public to use telescopes. Traditional methods of sweet making explained at Shaw's Sweet Factory- Frigate Unicorn, oldest British-built ship still afloat is now museum for Royal Navy. 11115 Discovery, Captain Scott's ship, has displays of ship's history, with actors reliving events on board. In suburb of Broughty Ferry, 4 miles east of town, Broughty Castle houses museum of whaling and local life.

Ruined cathedral dates from 12th century, 14th-century choir now houses parish church. Cathedral and High Streets have restored 17th-century houses, one of which has metal ell, measurement for cloth, on wall. Scottish Horse Museum has memorabilia of one of Scotland's two Highland yeomanry regiments.

Iron Age hill-fort enclosed by strong rampart -- said to be site of Macbeth's castle.

Pictish symbol stone in ruins of Eassie church. Cross and figures carved on one side; elephant men and animals on other.

Fowlis Easter
St Marnock's Church dates from 1453 and has medieval painted panels, bronze alms dish and bell dated 1508. Jougs -- iron collars for tying up wrongdoers -- still hang from oak doors. Nearby Fowlis Castle built early 17th century.

Glamis Castle, childhood home of Queen Mother and birthplace of Princess Margaret, reputed to be most haunted stately home in Britain. Six-storey tower built in 15th century, but wings, turrets and castellated parapets added in the 17th century. Collection of tapestries, paintings, furniture and weapons. Parkland and formal garden laid out by Capability Brown; also 2lft high sundial with 84 dials. Angus Folk Museum in Kirkwynd has collection of furnishings, clothes and tools used by local community over last 200 years housed in 19th-century cottages. Glamis Stone nearby has intricate carvings.

Glen Clova
From gentle, forested slopes around village of Clova, glen narrows to wild mountain home of red deer, wildcat and ptarmigan.

Glen Isla
River Isla runs through picturesque valley for 17 miles. Loch fishing, horse riding and cross-country skiing. Highland Adventure Centre at Knockshannach, east of Kirkton of Glenisla.

Glen Prosen
Roadside cairn in memory of Captain Scott and Dr Wilson, who planned their Antarctic exploration at Dr Wilson's home in the glen. Walks through birch woods along glen.

The Hermitage Woodland
Walk leads through wooded area containing numerous exotic trees, beneath 19th-century railway bridge, along River Braan, past 18th-century bridge to folly over-looking waterfall.

Highland Motor Heritage Centre
Classic and vintage cars, costumes and accessories displayed in authentic period settings. Driving game, free slot-car racing and motor heritage videos.

Huntingtower Castle
Remains of castellated mansion consisting of two medieval towers, linked by--another tower in 17th century. Ceiling timbers carved with scrolls, fruit and the faces of dragons and other animals. Fragments of colourful wall paintings remain.

Ramparts and ditches of timber fortress built by Roman general Agricola in AD 83.

Three-storey house is the start for Victorian walk which passes wooded river bank where Queen Victoria once took tea, then 4 mile climb up Kindrogan Hill where surrounding mountains are indicated on circular map.

Village overlooking Carse of Gowrie, River Tay and Ochil Hills. Kinnaird Castle dates from 12th century -- restored in 1855 and now private home.

Kirkton of Glenisla
Ruined Forter Castle stands 4 miles north-west of village. The village itself is on River Isla.

Birthplace of author and playwright J.M. Barrie, creator of Peter Pan. His home now houses Bane Museum. On hill behind the graveyard where Barrie is buried is cricket pavilion with camera obscura. Views north towards highlands and south across Strathmore Valley.

Loch of Kinnordy
Freshwater loch with large numbers of nesting water birds. Observation hides.

Loch of the Lowes
Loch is part of Scottish Wildlife Trust reserve. Hide allows for viewing of water birds and pair of nesting ospreys. Visitor centre has wildlife exhibition and several small aquaria. Woods surrounding centre populated by roe and fallow deer.

Megginch Castle Gardens
The grounds of this 15th-century castle have a physic garden, 16th-century rose garden, astrological garden and 1000-year-old yews.

Meigle Museum contains 25 Pictish and early Christian carved stones, found in churchyard.

Beech hedge, 100ft high and 580yds long, forms eastern border of Marquis of Lansdowne's home -- said to be largest hedge of its kind in world.

Ancient city, made Royal Burgh in 1210, though few old buildings remain. St John's Kirk conse-crated in 1243, but now mainly 15th century. From here, John Knox preached his sermon on idolatry that resulted in church wrecking throughout Scotland. Restored mill from 18th century produces flour and oatmeal in the traditional way. Fair Maid of Perth's House, once home of Catherine Glover, heroine of Sir Walter Scott's novel, now a craft shop. Black Watch Museum and Gallery holds treasures of High-land regiments. Perth Art Gallery and Museum has displays of local history, art, natural history and archaeology. Whisky blending explained at Dewar's distillery. Walk up Kinnoul Hill to folly at top, views of surrounding area.

Village of 18th-century cottages and houses. North-east stands a prehistoric burial mound.

Reekie Linn
Impressive waterfall where River Isla cascades into deep gorge.

Scone Palace
Pink-stone castellated mansion, enlarged in 1803 around 16th-century and earlier buildings. Place where kings of Scotland were crowned. Interior reveals china, ivories, clocks and exquisite French furniture -- including Marie Antoinette's writing table. Grounds include pinetum, wood-land garden, children's play-ground and picnic area. Elaborately decorated chapel on Moot Hill in front of palace.


Well-preserved example of Iron Age earth house, comprising pas-sage, long gallery and small inner chambers. Close by is dovecote shaped like house, built 1595.


» Abernethy
» Aberfeldy
» Alyth
» Auchterarder
» Balhousie
» Balvaird Castle
» Birnam
» Blair Castle
» Blairgowrie & Meigle
» Branklyn Gardens
» Burleigh Castle
» Castle Menzies
» Crieff
» Dunalastair
» Dunkeld
» Dunning
» Elcho Castle
» Fair City Of Perth
» Fortingall
» Glen Lyon
» Grandtully
» Huntingtower Castle
» Innerpeffray
» Kenmore
» Killiecrankie
» Kinross & Loch Leven
» Loch Rannoch
» Loch Tummel
» Muthill
» Perthshire
» Pitlochry
» Scone Palace
» Perthshire Accommodation
» Perthshire Restaurant
» Perthshire Infocentre