Dunrobin Castle and Gardens, Golspie

4.7
#1 of 71 in Things to do in Caithness and Sutherland
Castle Tourist Spot
With 189 rooms, Dunrobin Castle and Gardens is the biggest estate in the north of Scotland. Long the official home of the dukes of Sutherland, this imposing castle is often described as "the jewel in the crown of the Highlands." Though the site has its origins in the Middle Ages, most of the present buildings and gardens were added in the 19th century, with elements modeled on the work of French architect Viollet-le-Duc. The French influence extends into the gardens, which were inspired by the famous gardens at Versailles. The castle houses a museum of animal trophy heads, shot by the Sutherland family on various safaris, along with an important collection of archaeological artifacts. Stop by for the falconry display, held daily in the manicured gardens. Put Dunrobin Castle and Gardens into our Golspie travel itinerary planner to see other points of interest to visit during your vacation in Golspie.
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Reviews
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968 reviews
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4.7
  • This is the most beautiful castle we visited on our road trip to Scotland. Not as big as Edinburgh Castle or as old as Urquhart Castle- but very pleasing to eyes. You get an insight into the royal lif...  more »
  • We arrived just as the castle was opening, which was good, as it did get busy. There are plenty of 'wow' rooms to see inside - beautiful ceilings, for example - and I'd say it's just what you'd expect...  more »
  • What a wonderful place to visit. So much history and so many beautiful rooms and antiques to see. Would highly recommend a visit here - better than most other castles I've visited. Had a lovely lunch ...  more »
Google
  • I have never seen anything quite like this. It's absolutely breathtaking. Beautiful views over the sea, beautiful gardens, and please visit the little museum with it too. It's fascinating. It has lots of taxidermy animals and other ancient treasures.
  • Stunning Castle. The gardens are beautiful. The falconry display was impressive. The onsite museum gives an insight of the extensive travel and collecting the family has done. Best castle I have seen. The cafe is brilliant. 5 star.
  • Once the home of the Earl of Sunderland, you can walk around the landscaped gardens and explore the house too. They have a small cafe with a limited selection of food and drink. Well worth stopping in if you're in the area. Great views towards the sea and beach.
  • The castle was very interesting and the gardens were very nice. Also watched the bird show and that was very good. It was quite expensive to get in though, the castle is not dun - robin yet! 😂
  • While most visitors spend only an hour at Dunrobin, my husband and I thoroughly enjoyed an entire day. We arrived before the opening, and enjoyed looking at the architecture in greater detail than if we had simply breezed past on way to greater sights. We enjoyed a leisurely wander through the castle, not simply looking at objects and admiring the wealth of a great family, but having time to study the design, and appreciate that these are a family's possessions. The floral arrangements throughout featured items from the castle gardens, and were exquisite. We enjoyed the morning falconry display so much that we decided to lunch on premises and stay for the afternoon show and stay for the afternoon presentation. The light, fresh fare at the cafe was perfect for us, followed by a browse through the gift shop ( we made our actual purchases at end of day to avoid carrying items). Then, on to the gardens, where I found inspirations for my garden at home, to be implemented on a much smaller scale. The African rhubarb towering overhead was something I'd never could have imagined, looking at my petite specimen at home. Formal gardens as well as casual offered opportunities to stroll and learn. The resident cat was charming, a virtual twin of my furry friend at home. The falconry display was amazing, and so educational! The falconer (Colin?) referred to the raptor food as "chicken McNuggets ", and had children mesmerized. He entertained youngsters, educated adults, and acted truly in partnership with the birds in his care. The blinding speed of a falcon or eagle, compared to the silent , deadly glide of an owl just overhead must be experienced to be appreciated . I write this 2 years after my visit, and I am still enchanted by all that Dunrobin Castle has to offer.

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