Discover Dunrobin Castle in Sutherland
In a country renowned for its ancient history and magnificent buildings, Dunrobin Castle in Sutherland, Scotland, stands out as exceptional. With its beautifully manicured gardens, majestic architecture, and richly embellished interior, the castle offers the perfect venue for a family outing or a special occasion. Boasting 189 rooms, and dating back to the early 1300s, Dunrobin Castle is the largest of the great houses of the Northern Highlands region of Scotland and is considered to be one of the oldest of its kind to be continuously inhabited, having served as the home to the Earls and Dukes of Sutherland.
While the origins of Dunrobin Castle date back to the Middle Ages, the building was renovated and extended to the design of renowned architect Sir Charles Barry in 1845, with its conical towers and spires giving the exterior a distinct French château feel. This French theme was carried into the gardens of the castle, where the designer is believed to have been inspired by the formal style of the famed Gardens of Versailles. Most of the interior of the castle was destroyed by fire in 1915 and restoration work was done by Sir Robert Lorimer, with intricate wood carvings as a principal feature.
In addition to exploring the magnificent building and strolling through the tranquil gardens, visitors to Dunrobin Castle can enjoy demonstrations of the ancient art of falconry. Each day at 11:30 and 14:00 the resident Falconer puts the golden eagles and peregrine falcons through their paces on the lawn of the Castle. Visitors are told about the different hunting methods used by birds of prey and these are demonstrated by the birds in a series of breathtaking displays of speed, skill and control. Visitors are given the opportunity to hold and feed these beautiful birds, while taking photographs to remember the experience by.
The museum in the Dunrobin Castle grounds was originally built as a summer house and now contains a collection of archaeological relics, ethnographic items and trophy heads of animals from African safaris. Among the most noteworthy of the items on display are a collection of Pictish cross-slabs and symbol stones believed to have been carved up to 1,500 years ago. Certainly, Dunrobin Castle has plenty to keep the whole family busy for a pleasant day’s outing.