Take a Tour Through Historic Scone Palace
The majestic Scone Palace, along with Scone Abbey and the historic Stone of Scone, has featured prominently in Scotland’s history and is a must-see attraction when exploring the picturesque Perthshire region. A superb example of late Georgian Gothic architecture, the red sandstone building with its castellated roof was designed by renowned English architect William Atkinson and built in 1808 for the Earls of Mansfield. Very little remains of Scone Abbey, and the famous Stone of Scone is now displayed in the Crown Room of Edinburgh Castle, but Scone Palace is a treasure trove of history worth discovering.
The area in which Scone Palace was built was once the capital of the Picts – a Celtic culture from the Late Iron Age and Early Medieval era. The palace itself has been the seat of parliaments over the years and was the venue for the crowning of the historic Kings of Scots, including the legendary Macbeth and Robert the Bruce. Scone Palace remains the home of the Earls of Mansfield, with a large portion of the building and gardens open to the public.
Visitors will have the opportunity to tour through the beautifully preserved formal rooms and galleries on the ground floor of Scone Palace, all of which have antique furnishings and fittings, along with historic artworks. Knowledgeable guides throughout the palace are on hand to share information relating to the items on display and the history behind them. Highlights of the tour include the Dining Room which hosted Queen Victoria and Prince Albert in 1842, the lavishly decorated Drawing Room, and the Library featuring an extensive collection of porcelain. The aptly named Long Gallery is 45 meters long, with its highly polished floor, was apparently used for the sport of curling during the visit of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. An interesting featuring of the gallery is the pipe organ which is still used for weddings hosted at the palace. The tour also includes the three-roomed Queen Victoria’s Suite with its opulent furnishing and embellishments.
The grounds of Scone Palace feature a stone chapel, the Mercat Cross of Old Scone, a hedge-maze and a replica of the Stone of Scone on top of a mound known as Moot Hill, said to have been created by pilgrims bringing offerings of soil when pledging allegiance to the King at his coronation.
While offering a window into the past, Scone Palace is looking to the future by following a Green Tourism Policy which aims to: manage waste in a responsible manner by reducing, re-using and recycling; use energy efficient lighting and appliances; purchase local produce; grow organic produce on-site; promote sustainable tourism; protect the local flora and fauna; and encourage staff and visitors to use public transport.