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Day 5

Sunday, July 31 - The Royal Deeside and more, Castles and more Castles

After breakfast at the hotel you will board the coach for a short trip to the North Sea coast near Stonehaven

Your first stop is at Dunnottar Castle where legends come to life.  This dramatic and evocative ruined cliff top fortress was the home of the Earls Marischal, once one of the most powerful families in Scotland. You will discover the importance of Dunnottar – an impregnable fortress that holds many rich secrets of Scotland’s colourful past.

Returning to the coach, you will journey to Banchory on the Royal Deeside and Craithes Castle

Craithes Castle is the principal historical seat of the House of Burnett, a family that shares a similar heritage with the Irvines. Given to the National Trust for Scotland in 1952, this magnificant 16th-century castle is on land granted to the family in 1322. It houses the Horn of Leys, given to the Burnett Family in the 14th century by Robert the Bruce.

Following you visit at Craithes Castle, you will make the short journey to Drum Castle

Drum Castle is the historical home of the Irvines. It is one of Scotland’s oldest tower houses. The Royal Forest and Tower of Drum were given to the Irvine family by Robert the Bruce in 1323. Later a Jacobean mansion house was added, and in the Victorian era the lower hall was converted to a library, now containing a mighty 4,000 books.  The beautiful Garden of Historic Roses is divided into quadrants that show how roses have been cultivated from the 17th to the 20th century. The ancient oak forest adjoins the castle, providing a sense of continuity through the centuries and a home for red kites, roe deer, red squirrels and badgers.

Your visit to Drum Castle concludes with a late lunch in the Dining Room

At the conclusion of your visit, it's back to the hotel