Categories: Travel

Several Beautiful Heritage Locations To Visit in Scotland This Season

With so much more to offer this year and with Shetland preparing for its first orbital rocket launch, Scotland is becoming even more stunning with new trails on the horizon, and the opportunity to discover some exciting new attractions. Over twenty Historic Environment Scotland (HES) sites have reopened their doors to welcome visitors for Spring, as well as several heritage locations too that include several castles, gardens and architectural heritage sites that are set to bring in millions of visitors over the summer. If you’re planning a trip to Scotland this year why not pay a visit to some of our handpicked gems to experience with your loved ones and create unforgettable memories? 

Braemar Castle

Built by the Earl of Mar in 1628, Braemar Castle has been a hunting lodge, fortress, garrison and family home. An iconic 17th-century landmark in the heart of the Cairngorms National Park. The castle’s future rests with the small community of Braemar, and over the past ten years, the village has been working to raise funds and gradually conserve and restore the castle to provide even better facilities for future visitors. As a result of the communities’ efforts, Braemar Castle is opening its doors following a £1.6 million restoration programme to re-render the exterior. Opening times: Thursday to Sunday 11 am – 4 pm, last entry 3 pm.

Craigievar Castle

An example of the best of Scottish Baronial architecture, Craigievar Castle fits naturally amongst the rolling hills of Aberdeenshire. The elegant pink tower of Craigievar Castle was completed in 1626 and is amongst the most loved in Scotland. The castle is currently undergoing a major conservation project to carry out essential maintenance work, including refreshing the lime wash that gives Craigievar its distinctive and beloved pink colour.  Visitors will be treated to a grand reveal in the coming months when the new exterior is unveiled.

Kailzie Gardens

Kailzie Gardens is a renowned garden and woodland a mile east of Peebles in the Scottish Borders, with 20 acres to explore. Kailzie Gardens also boasts the popular Courtyard Café that has become a firm favourite with locals. Their seasonal shop offers local produce, gifts and plant sales, as well as a children’s nature trail and a chance to have a go on the Gardener’s 18-hole putting green or a game of pétanque. Opening times: 10 am – 4 pm (closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays)

The Japanese Garden at Cowden

Known as “Sha Raku En, or “a place of pleasure and delight” which entails the theme of the Japanese garden. Founder Ella Christie describes this as a unique and utterly authentic bridge between Scottish and Japanese culture. She says that there are many unique plants and trees, as well as structures with Japanese cultural significance, and there are several walks surrounding the garden as well. Those looking to embrace serenity should look no further than the beautiful grounds of The Japanese Garden at Cowden. The woodlands and gardens are adorned with an array of exceptional plants and flora which are elevated by the tranquil essence of its Japanese-inspired design and structures, creating a unique and utterly authentic bridge between Scottish and Japanese culture. Admission: £9.25 per person. Opening times: Open 6 days a week (closed on Tuesdays), from 10.30 am – 5 pm

Da Gairdins Shetland

This 60-acre site (of which one-third is maintained woodland and gardens) is an area of outstanding natural beauty on the Westside of Shetland. Avid wildlife watchers can experience the diversity of Shetland’s wildlife as, due to its proximity to the sea and the salt marsh dividing the gardens between the sea, the area is a magnet for nesting and migrating birds. Wander around and sit on one of the many benches to witness first-hand the fact that Shetland is not a tree-less landscape like many would believe, but instead is an oasis of life, with a surprisingly mild climate, thanks to the North Atlantic Drift which surrounds this captivating location. Opening times: 7 am – 10 pm

Carolside Mansion and Gardens

Carolside is an 18th-century mansion set in beautiful parkland flanked by wooded hills, nestling in a bend of the River Leader. Carolside is one of Scotland’s finest Private Gardens and is best known for its collection of historic roses, many of them rare today and is home to the National Collection of Gallica Roses. Opening times: 11 am – 5 pm each Saturday and Sunday from 01 May- September 2024

Image credit – Visit Scotland


Tahira Khan is our Features Writer & NCTJ-accredited Journalist. She has experience in the Wellness industry and loves travelling. She is a firm believer of authenticity and we at BMM are exactly that. Her expertise lies in travel, wellness & lifestyle. One of Tahira's favourite quotes... 'The most beautiful thing in the world, of course, is the world itself' - (Wallace Stevens)

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