The best of Scottish Castle gardens - Cawdor
|Cawdor is a small castle near Inverness, with well-established gardens|
Castles are synonymous with Scotland, but few have gardens like Cawdor (above), within a stone's throw of Inverness. This is less imposing than Dunrobin, considerably smaller and has a colourful, well-kept garden and a well-publicised association with Shakespeare's 'Macbeth', in which the principle character is made 'Thane of Cawdor'. It is also the main tourist attraction in this area, so make sure to arrive early to get ahead of the crowds.
|The maze garden, with its spectacular laburnum planting in May|
|The Paradise Garden in May|
|'The Sun' slate sculpture at Cawdor Castle by James Parker|
|The Paradise section of the ancient walled garden at Cawdor|
The ancient Walled Garden at the castle was remodelled by the incumbent Lord Cawdor in 1981, with the help of his surviving wife Angelika, the current Dowager Countess, and is very different in character to the Flower garden, save for the Paradise section (above), although equally well planned to give colour and interest throughout the seasons. There is a holly maze here too, surrounded by impressive laburnum arches and spectacular when in flower in May (above).
If you visit Cawdor Castle on a Tuesday or Thursday during high season - May to September - you can either walk or drive to neighbouring Auchindoune House (above), with its peaceful Tibetan garden and charming kitchen garden (below) which was laid out by Arabella Lennox-Boyd. It is very different in spirit and much less grand than the castle gardens, but well worth visiting.
For full information on opening times and prices, please visit the Cawdor Castle website.
|The neighbouring gardens at Auchindoune are very different in spirit|
|The kitchen garden at Auchindoune was laid out by Arabella Lennox-Boyd|