Stirling Castle

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There’s now more than ever to see and do at Stirling Castle. Cross the threshold into the Castle’s Royal Palace and enter an exciting world of plots, passion and intrigue with our costumed performers. A new exhibition focuses on some of the the Castle’s fascinating archaeology including the the Stirling skeltons. There’s also lots for younger visitors including dress-up, musical instuments and games, as well as our new Children’s Tour – History Hunters. Other highlights include the Great Hall, Chapel Royal, Regimental Museum, the great kitchens and tapestry studio.

Castle Opening Times: Open seven days a week, all year.

Facilities include picnic areas, onsite parking and visitor center

Adult £14.00; Child £ 7.50; Concession £11.00

Prices from Adult £14.00

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Facilities

  • Disabled Access
  • Onsite café
  • Gift Shop
  • Toilets
  • Baby Changing
  • Local Transport
  • Business Travellers
  • Great for Families
  • Great for Couples
  • Historical
  • Top-rated

Appears in

  • A Matter of Faith

    The first church on the Castle Hill was raised by Dominican Monks from Dunfermline Abbey, chartered to build a chapel here in 1129 by King David I. Here Robert II founded an altar, dedicated to a sacred relic: a splinter of wood believed to have been part of the Cross of Jesus Christ – the Holy Wood, or, in old English, Holy Rude – which gave the church its name. Nothing of the precious shard remains. It, the chapel, and much of Stirling itself, were burned to ashes in 1406, as the Clan Douglas wreaked fiery revenge on James II for his murder of their chieftain, William, the 8th Earl, at nearby Stirling Castle. A new Nave, South Aisle and oak-timbered roof – much of which still remains – were in place by 1414, and reconstruction neared completion in the 1450s – just in time for another destructive Douglas visitation, in 1455.

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  • A Real Game of Thrones

    The Jacobites supported the exiled Catholic Stewarts, the ancient Royal family of Scotland, who lost the throne with the deposition of James VII of Scotland (James II of England) in1688. Jacobites, often with the support of France, tried to reclaim the Scottish and English thrones through military action for first James and then his son Charles (Bonnie Prince Charlie), in a series of Risings between 1689 and 1746.  James was known as the Old Pretender and Charlie as the Young Pretender! The repercussions of the failure of these Risings led to military suppression of the Highlanders (tartan and bagpipes were made illegal) and ultimately led to the ethnic cleansing of the Highlands through the Clearances. Thousands of our kith and kin left Scotland for Canada, the USA, Australia and New Zealand……were your ancestors among them?

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  • A Wolf in the Fold

    There’s a beast loose on the streets of Stirling…  

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  • Backpacker’s guide

    “Not all who wander are lost” – that said if you’re feeling a little lost about what to do and where to stay on your trip to the heart of Scotland fear not. our helpful guide will point you in the right direction. Stirling has two great hostels in the centre of town both offering warm welcomes to weary travellers. The Willy Wallace Hostel is a family run independent hostel. It is a clean, friendly, well-run budget accommodation provider just a stone’s throw away from Stirling train and bus stations. There are twin and double rooms and dormitories of various sizes. The specially built bunks are adult size, robust and well attached to the wall. The mattresses are comfortable and all bed linen is provided.

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  • Battlefield Stirling

    Morning 

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  • Family Favourites

    Stuck for ideas on what to do in Stirling with the children? Look no further! Here’s a handy list of 5 family friendly activities.

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  • Forgotten Sons

    Every day visitors to Stirling Castle, the National Wallace Monument and Bannockburn Heritage Centre celebrate our historic association with the trials, tribulations and triumphs of Scotland’s Kings and the great heroes of the Wars of Independence. In such distinguished company it’s easy to overlook less celebrated ‘Sons o’ the Rock’.

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  • Grave News

    A burial-ground has occupied the site west of the Holy Rude Church since 1129, when the first Dominican chapel was built here.

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  • Jousting, Beheadings and Celts

    Stirling Castle sits at the centre of a much larger royal landscape and is one of the best preserved Royal Parks in Scotland. The 800 year old park was established by King William I and what we can see today reflects this long history of royal investment and changing fashions.The park performed many roles: its farm fed the castle, it housed the stables and the laundry, held jousts, and witnessed the celebration of royal births. However, it also has a darker history of warring Celts and executions!

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  • Legendary breaks

    Gather your clan for the ultimate Scottish adventure It’s no secret you need to spend a few days in Stirling to really enjoy everything on offer. Journey back in time this summer and discover a unique tapestry of original, historic attractions that tell the Story of our Scottish nation first hand. You will also find plenty of authentic bars, cafes and restaurants and a wide range of shopping, together with a fine selection of accommodation.

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  • Off the Page

    Stirling has no shortage of literary connections. William Dunbar amused the Court of James IV with his ‘Ballad of the Friar of Tungland’, ribaldly recounting John Damian’s attempt to fly from Stirling Castle’s ramparts on man-made wings, and Sir David Lindsay celebrated the beauty of the Burgh in verse, accompanying James V on his many visits. Robert Burns etching his ‘Lines on Stirling’ on a bedroom window at the Wingate Inn (now the Golden Lion Hotel), in April 1787. Sir Walter Scott was inspired by Callander tales of Rob Roy MacGregor, and a cave near Darn Road, Bridge of Allan, is said to have inspired frequent visitor Robert Louis Stevenson’s description of Ben Gunn’s cave in ‘Treasure Island’.

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  • Our Finest Hour

    The strategic importance of Stirling has played a key role in Scottish history and prehistory for millennia from Celts to Bonnie Prince Charlie, thousands of troops have clashed and died to control it. In peace time Stirling’s central location has meant it was ideal for barracks and military training. Following the Union of the Scottish and English Crowns, Stirling Castle fell out of use as a royal residence and in 1661 became one of three permanent bases for the Scottish army. The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders were created in 1881 with their HQ at Stirling Castle and the Argyll and Sutherland Museum explores their fascinating and glorious history.

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  • Outlander

    Outlander follows the story of married army nurse Claire Randal who is mysteriously transported back in time to 1743 and thrown into a new world of dangers where her life is threatened. Forced to marry a young and chivalrous Scottish warrior, an intense affair ensues and Claire is torn between two men from two vastly different lives. The series is based on the best selling books by American author Diana Gabaldon.

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  • Spanish

    ¡BIENVENIDOS A DESTINATION STIRLING!  

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  • Stirling City Breaks

    With a city break in Stirling you can enjoy the best of both worlds. Our historic Old Town boasts the finest concentration of historic buildings in Scotland. Look out for the beautifully preserved medieval and renaissance churches and mansions including the Argyll’s Lodging. Of course – there’s also the splendour of Stirling Castle and the world famous Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders Museum. It’s certainly worth going on a Stirling Walking Tour to really appreciate the wonders of Stirling’s Old Town.

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  • Stirling’s History

    Today, Stirling is a vibrant city, steeped in history yet offering a host of modern day attractions. You will also find plenty of pubs, cafes and restaurants and a wide range of shopping, together with a fine selection of accommodation. Easily accessible by road and rail, Stirling is on the doorstep of Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park as well as a string of vibrant local towns and villages.

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  • Stirling’s Top Attractions

    With so much to see and do in Stirling it’s hard to know where to start. We’ve put together a list of our most popular Stirling attractions below. Of course – you need to explore the royal history of Stirling Castle, relive Robert the Bruce’s momentous experience at the Battle of Bannockburn Experience, or climb the iconic National Wallace Monument. However you can also see the world’s oldest football at the Smith Art Gallery and Museum, explore the Medieval Old Town or hang out with the monkeys at Blair Drummond Safari Park!

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  • The Favoured Place – Part One

    …fair Snowdoun, with thy towris high, Thy Chepell Royal, Park and Tabill Round; May, June and July, wald I dwell in thee. So wrote the Medieval Makar poet Sir David Lyndsay, pondering upon the delights of ‘Snowdoun’ – as Stirling was sometimes known in days gone by. Thoughts, we may safely assume, which were shared by his Royal master, King James V.

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  • Ancestors

    The Favoured Place – Part Two

    Crowned at Stirling Castle, in 1543, Mary Stuart had a turbulent infancy: surviving the siege and strife of Henry VIII’s ‘Rough Wooing’, as he sought to steal the tiny Queen of Scots away – to be raised as consort to his own heir, Edward. Smuggled safety to France, she would return to her homeland in 1561, and to Stirling the following year, narrowly avoiding death, and the fulfilment of her father’s prophesy that their dynasty would ‘gang wae a lass’, when a blaze swept through her Palace apartment in dead of night.

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  • Top Tips

    Top Tips We talked to some Stirling visitors and asked what information they wished they had known before their trip. Here are some of the handy hints and tips they came up with to make your trip run smoothly.

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  • Travel Trade

    Stirling is a deeply historic Scottish City located just one hour from both Glasgow and Edinburgh. Its central location and strong transport links make it the perfect destination and base to explore Scotland. In recent years we have seen over £100 million invested in our visitor offering – Stirling is now one of Scotland’s most popular visitor destinations with a prominent and internationally recognised heritage offering that is allied to an attractive natural hinterland. Statistics published in annual Scottish Visitor Attraction Monitors show that visitor attractions in the city area consistently attract a combined total of over 1.25 million visits per annum. Stirling Castle, Blair Drummond Safari Park, National Wallace Monument, Macrobert Centre and the Battle of Bannockburn Experience are the Top 5 most popular attractions, demonstrating both Stirling’s strong heritage product and its appeal to wider family and cultural markets.

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  • Trossachs Trail

    If you are looking to head out and explore for the day then look no further than the Trossachs Trail. Set on the southern edge of the highlands you can look forward to dramatic scenery and an abundance of Scottish wildlife and outdoor pursuits. Dotted along the trail there are some of Scotland’s finest attractions including the Steamship Sir Walter Scott, Doune Castle, Deanston Distillery and the Blairdrummond Safari Park. There are also a number of charming towns and villages along the trail – perfect for lunch or a Scottish afternoon tea.

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  • WIN A WEEKEND BREAK IN STIRLING

    WALK IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF LEGENDS THIS WINTER Gather your clan for the ultimate winter adventure. Enter our competition to win two nights at the Golden Lion Hotel in Stirling with free entry to three of Stirling’s top historic attractions. Uncover plots, passion and intrigue at the Royal Palace of Stirling Castle, see the legendary Wallace sword, ‘Hall of Heroes’ and one of the finest views in Scotland at the National Wallace monument and stand face to face with 3D warriors at the Battle of  Bannockburn  Experience. Just enter your details below for a chance to win!

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Prices from Adult £14.00

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