Craigievar Castle

We booked another Co-Wheels car today. I think I’ve got the system all figured out and have tried a few different cars now including electric, petrol, and hybrid. Most of the problems I had in the beginning were down to user error, I’m embarrassed to say.

We drove out to Craigievar Castle, about 30 miles west of Aberdeen. The drive was just lovely. We drove to Banchory first and followed the same route we took before Christmas when we went to Ballater but how different it was this time! The countryside is in full bloom now and all the trees covered in leaves so it looked very lush and leafy. It was lovely in winter too but I have to say it was quite spectacular today.

We stopped at Morrisons supermarket in Banchory where I made a fool of myself not once but twice. I bought some small punnets of vegetables to plant in my garden and clumsily knocked one over on the conveyor belt at the checkout and sent dirt flying everywhere. Then when we went to leave, I pushed open an emergency door, not realising it was an emergency exit, and set the alarms off. So we high-tailed it out of there for Craigievar Castle.

Craigievar Castle is the stuff of fairy tales. It’s the sort of thing you might expect to see in a children’s picture book:

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I half expected to see Rapunzel lowering her long hair down from one of the upper windows.

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We went on a guided tour which is the only way to see the inside and I can understand why. All the original furniture and art is still in place, as it has been for hundreds of years. The castle was built in the 1600s by William Forbes. I wasn’t allowed to take photos of the inside unfortunately so I don’t have any to share but it was marvellous. The ceilings were plastered by an Italian artist when the castle was first built and they are impressive. The spiral staircase is a masterpiece, and the rooms were more cozy and inviting than I had imagined castle rooms to be. We went all the way up to the roof where we got to enjoy the splendid views.

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The castle motto is Doe not vaken sleiping dogs which means do not awaken sleeping dogs.

This part of Scotland has so many castles that I think it will be some time before we’ve visited all of them. It’s a lovely place to live, not just because of the interesting history, but also because it’s less populous than other parts of the UK, and there’s some lovely scenery with rolling hills, forests, rivers, and beaches.