This morning, I collected guests in Edinburgh and then, after navigating through the maze of road works in the city, drove north to Stirling and its famous castle. This is a very popular visitor attraction comprising a former royal palace (James IV and V) and military fortification dating back to the 14th century and earlier. We joined in a Castle tour led by a very competent tour guide which included visits to the Great Hall and Chapel Royal. As the weather was dry and sunny we enjoyed superb views over the local countryside, the Ochills and Wallace Monument. Stirling Castle was key to the control of Scotland in medieval times and close by were fought two critical battles affecting Scotland’s independence from England: Stirling Bridge in 1297 and Bannockburn in 1314.

Edradour Distillery, Scotland's smallest

After Stirling, we drove further north to Tullibardine Distillery in Perthshire where we joined in a small group distillery tour led by Gavin, a good tour guide who clearly has a passion for the product of this privately owned distillery. We had a light lunch here in the distillery restaurant.

After Tullibardine we drove north again, to join in a tour of Edradour Distillery, Scotland’s smallest.See image below. It was interesting to observe the owner wearing a boiler suit assisting with some manual work on the access path. Apart from its own niche output, Edradour is part of the Signatory Group which specialises in rare and unusual whiskies which can be purchased in the Distillery shop.

Finally, we headed into Speyside and Grantown-on-Spey and our lodgings for the night at An Cala Guest House. En-route we stopped for images of the Spey valley which was flooded, no doubt as a function of the snow melt arising from one of the worst winters on record.

This is the flooded Spey Valley near Grantown on Spey

Stills at Tullibardine

Tullibardine Distillery

Gavin, genial host at Tullibardine

Note tapestries which were specially woven.

Inside Chapel Royal at Stirling Castle

Great Hall at Stirling Castle

Royal Palace at Stirling Castle

Entrance to Stirling Castle

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