This morning, we departed our lodgings in Pitlochry and proceeded as follows:

Pitlochry, Scotland

First, across the valley to view the 9th century Pictish stone at Dunfallandy. To access the stone entailed a short walk via a farmyard and a flock of sheep and lambs.

Dunfallandy Pictish Stone

Rural Scene, Dunfallandy, Scotland

Next, north to Braemar via a 45 minute drive through stunning Highlands scenery including Glenshee.

Glenshee, Scotland

On arrival at the popular village of Braemar we stopped for refreshment and a short walk around the village centre.

Braemar, Scotland

Next we moved on to the Royal residence of Balmoral.  Here we were able to explore the grounds, well maintained gardens and ballroom of the castle. There are also walks along the banks of the River Dee which runs close by.

Colourful Flowers at Balmoral Castle, Scotland

Balmoral Castle, Scotland

River Dee at Balmoral, Scotland

After about 90 mins at Balmoral (including lunch) we walked to nearby Crathie Kirk which is where H.M. the Queen worships when at Balmoral. Inside was a local lady who provided anecdotes on the Royal Family’s interaction with local people.

Crathie Kirk, Scotland

Next, we drove across pleasant countryside into Aberdeenshire and on to Dunnottar Castle, the spiritual home of Clan Keith. This ruin is located on a promontory jutting into the North Sea which provides a natural defensive position. The castle ruins were resplendent in the bright sunlight.

View from Dunnottar Castle, Scotland

Dunnottar Castle, Scotland

Next we moved on to our lodgings near Stonehaven. Later we dined at a good seafood restaurant overlooking Stonehaven harbour.

Stonehaven Harbour, Scotland

Tomorrow, we visit St. Andrews and the Fife Coast.

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