Beyond Edinburgh Castle

One thing I’ve noticed since moving to Edinburgh is how nice it is to have castles within a 45 minute driving distance in every direction. It’s quite crazy, but really nice for day trips. As much as I love Edinburgh castle, it’s nice to see something different. So, here’s my guide to the castles I’ve been to so far.

Dirleton Castle

Found in North Berwick, Dirleton castle is a really nice visiting spot. The gardens are really nice and, in good weather, it’s really good for pictures (although that can be said for most places). The views are nice and you can actually go on top and sight see there. Worth the visit and I believe the 124 bus from Edinburgh gets you straight there in an hour!

Tantallon Castle

Also in North Berwick (I really should get out more…) is Tantallon castle. Honestly, I enjoyed the views from the beach and didn’t want to pay admission price (although I don’t think it’s more than £5) but when we drove past it later it looked worth it. You can go up on it but, as with most castles, Tantallon is just what remains of what it once was. Really, really pretty remains though!

I’m including the picture I took from SeaCliff beach because it’s an incredibly pretty place to visit and it also leads me to my next castle.

Auldhame Castle

I started to think this place does not exist, it’s quite difficult to find. Again, not much is left of the castle but it was so empty and nice that I had to share it with you. You can tell people visit it; there is ash left in a make shift fire pit I can only assume someone camped around. I also found a sock.

The arches left are incredibly pretty and it is so green. It also has a roofed bit. I was really pleasantly surprised at how nice this was to visit for a little while – the beach is also wonderful, so it’s good to see whilst you’re there.

Blackness Castle

Near the village of Blackness (hence the name), Blackness castle is another great find. It has a little museum which shows some old aerial images of Edinburgh which is quite great. Films were filmed there, too. This is probably the best preserved castle in this list – and it is really special. You get a nice view of the water and a cute gift shop. What’s more, it’s about a 20 minute drive from Beecraigs Country Park where you can see some Highland cattle – which makes it really worth going to.

I would mention Stirling castle or other popular spots (I hear Alnwick is also very nice), but these are my personal finds which I thought I would share with you. Enjoy exploring!