The Best of Scotland Holidays team hit the road last weekend and had a trip to the North East of Scotland.
Sunday was a grey day but perhaps apt when heading to the grey city! First stop en-route was Glamis Castle reputed to be the most haunted Castle in Scotland! The team enjoyed a fantastic tour where they learned about the history of this great Castle which has been the ancestral seat to the Earls of Strathmore and Kinghorne since 1372, inspiration for Shakespeare’s Macbeth, the childhood home of HM Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, and birthplace of HRH The Princess Margaret.
Next stop was the breath-taking Dunnottar Castle perched on the cliffs at Stonehaven. This dramatic ruined cliff top fortress was the home of the Earls Marischal, once one of the most powerful families in Scotland.
Our journey continued just a short trip up the road to the historic 4* Maryculter House. Steeped in history dating back to the Order of Knights Templar in 1227AD, Maryculter House boasts beautiful original features and an atmosphere to match. We were shown road the various bedroom types and public areas. With lots of exciting plans in the pipeline this hotel is really one not to be missed! We enjoyed a delicious Sunday Lunch before setting of to our next stop for the day.
A 20 minute drive took us to 5* The Marcliffe Hotel, Spa and Restaurant. This would be our digs for the night and what a great place to lay our heads! We were shown road the various categories of rooms and perused the delicious dining options our guests could enjoy which include 35day aged Scottish Beef, fish, lobster and seafood dishes and extensive wine-list with over 400 bins and over 100 Single Malt Whiskies. Facilities include the Spa offering hydrotherapy treatments and massages along with the games room and also a putting green at the front of the hotel! The team made the short journey into the City Centre to visit the Christmas Market before retiring for the night.
After a great nights’ sleep and a hearty breakfast we made our way to the 4* Ardoe House Hotel. Three miles from the City Centre on the edge of Royal Deeside Ardoe House was built by Soap Merchant Alexander Ogston and retains many of its original features. With 120 bedrooms and great spa facilities it is well positioned for exploring the local area.
From here we headed to the fabulous 4* Meldrum House in Old Meldrum. Just a few miles from the City this 13th century baronial mansion house is set in a 240 acre estate with its own golf course and driving range. We viewed various bedrooms in the modern extension along with a couple of lovely suites in the original building. A short drive on our golf buggies took us to the driving range where we met with Neil Marr who put us through our paces using their Trackman system to allow us to view our swing and see where improvements could be made.
After a light lunch in the lovely 1236 Cave Bar of Meldrum House we headed to Glen Garioch Distillery which is just round the corner. One of the oldest operating distilleries in Scotland Glen Garioch specialise in producing precious small batch scotch whisky. We took part in the 1hr Founders Tour where our expert guide Chris explained the various processes involved and we finished up with a tasting (well Jacqui took hers home for later as designated driver!)
We had a wonderful time in Aberdeenshire despite the dull weather. There is so much to do from fantastic golf courses to an abundance of Castles and distilleries so if you are interested in visiting the area let us know!