Famous fortress still stands guard
Stirling Castle remains one of the most important landmarks in Scotland, writes Brian Crisp
THERE’S no better time to visit Stirling Castle than early morning when the mist is rolling over the hills and the cold air is still grabbing the breath from your chest.
Stirling Castle was the favourite residence of the Stewart kings and queens, arguably the most famous dynasty in Scottish history.
Mary Queen of Scots was crowned at Stirling when she was nine months old. Apparently she cried loudly throughout the ceremony.
It was strategically important during the Wars of Independence.in the 13th and 14th century.
The famous fortress is about an hour by car from Edinburgh and 30 minutes from Glasgow.
The gates open at 9.30am but be early because Stirling Castle is very, very popular – and the carpark often overflows causing traffic chaos along St John St.
Alternatively, and just a thought, if you are not early be late as the bus tours depart about 2pm.
The castle, with its mix of Late Gothic Revival, Renaissance and Scottish Baronial architecture, has superb views over the River Forth to the National Wallace Monument, Ben Lomond mountain and the Ochil Hills.
Most visitors agree that it is Scotland’s finest castle – better even than Edinburgh.
Admission is about $20 (depending on the exchange rate) and parking is about $7.
The castle has reasonable wheelchair access considering it is an ancient building.
It is best to tour the castle with a guide but if you don’t want to follow a group then you can rent an audio tour that