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Humans first inhabited Scotland some 8,000 years ago. Over time, the people living in the highlands and beyond began building their homes. First, those homes were simple structures meant only to keep families safe and dry. But, over time, those homes became more grandiose and noble. And everyone wanted one. In fact, officials estimate there are some 3,000 castles still standing around Scotland.
Though some remain closely-guarded family estates—like the British Royal Family estate of Balmoral—there are a few that even those without royal blood can sleep in too. Here are ten castles around Scotland that travelers may rent to feel a little bit more regal on their next Scottish getaway.
Located one mile southeast of Duns, guests can rent the stunning Langton Castle. The castle, which comes with 12 bedrooms and 12 bathrooms, is surrounded by lush woodland and grass parks, which make it feel completely isolated from the outside world. At the home there’s plenty of fun to be had thanks to its billiard room, croquet set ready on the lawn, and clay pigeon shooting range out back. Inside, guests will find luxurious bedding and furnishings and plenty of space for 26 guests. Starting at $12,747 / two nights
Is a 26-person estate not quite big enough? Try the Braehead Estate, which comfortably houses 30 guests instead. The home, located in Ayrshire, comes with 250 acres of private land along with a few perfectly manicured gardens to roam in. The ample space recently underwent a renovation, but it kept its old-world charm intact thanks to its Victorian-era decor. Guests renting the house will also have their every need tended to thanks to its full-time staff who are on hand to ensure your stay is simply divine. Starting at $25,491 / two nights
In the village of Dalkeith, located an easy ride away from Edinburgh, sits Logan Manor. The three-and-a-half-acre private estate is a nature lover's dream thanks to its curated gardens and the tranquil sounds of the River Esk, which runs directly through the property. Inside the home, built in 1703, guests will find room for 10 in its five bedrooms that each come with en-suite baths. On the home’s patio, guests will also find an oversized hydrotherapy tub where they can look out at the scenery and soak their cares away. Starting at $3,358 / three nights
If finding the most Cinderella-esque castle is on your travel bucket list, then look no further than Scotland’s Timeless Castle. Located just outside of Lauder, guests can rent one or more of the castle’s four private apartments, which come with eight en-suite bedrooms. Each apartment comes over-the-top regal style that will make everyone feel like royalty, including thick bedding, custom moldings, and oversized chandeliers. Guests also have the option to rent out the castle’s grand hall for events or dinners. They also have the opportunity to bring their furry friends along too as the castle is pet-friendly. Starting at $3,864 / three nights
The Fortalice, built in 1560, was once reduced to rubble by the Duke of Argyll in 1640. The castle home was restored to its original glory and recently went through a final reservation to include seven stunning bedrooms. The home also comes with a Great Hall, which houses a massive log fireplace, as well as a hand-painted ceiling. It’s an ideal spot for a small wedding or family reunion. Outside, guests can take in the views of the Perthshire countryside surrounding the home, a well as a manicured lawn for lounging. The best part? There is limited WiFi available so guests can completely unplug from the world. Starting at $8,462 / seven nights
Lock Tay Manor
Loch Tay Manor, built in 1753 as a summer hunting lodge for the Earl of Breadalbane, was built with fun in mind. The manor, located on the banks of Loch Tay, which is the largest loch in Perthshire and one of the deepest in Scotland. Since its original building date, the home has been meticulously updated to include every modern amenity you’d ever need. Now, the house can accommodate up to twenty-nine people in thirteen bedrooms, making it an excellent spot for family or friend gatherings. The home comes with an oversized living room to gather in, as well as a formal dining room for fancy meals together. The manor also has a library, a game room, a media room, and massive gardens spread out over two acres to explore. Starting at $7,899 / two nights
Located above the River Tay a short distance from the village of Scone and the city of Perth, travelers can find the Scone Palace. It’s a place that will most delight history buffs as the palace was once the seat of parliament and was the location where both Macbeth and Robert the Bruce were crowned. The home still boasts valuable antiques, paintings, and artifacts in its halls. The expansive palace can accommodate up to 27 guests across thirteen well-appointed bedrooms and 12 bathrooms. Nobody will feel like they got the short end of the stick with rooms as each one looks out on the property’s park. The palace’s State Rooms, typically open to public tours, are also available to rent for events. Pricing available upon request
Loch Lomond Manor, built in 1901, now stands as a historical National Monument. Husband and wife duo Alexander and Maggie built the home at the turn of the century. The two were a part of the Glasgow boys and Glasgow girls, a group of creators and artists. Their spectacular creations are still found in the house today. The home comes with six bedrooms, making it large enough to house 12 guests. It also comes with oversized tubs to relax in, an entertaining room, chef’s kitchen, drawing room, and plenty of land to explore all day. That property is also child friendly and even hides a swing or two in the garden for kids of all ages to find. Starting at $2,686 / three nights
Just 20 minutes outside of Glasgow would-be travelers can rent the Ayrshire Castle, one of Scotland’s most exclusive holiday homes. The castle, built in the 15th century as a wedding gift for Princess Mary, daughter of James II of Scotland, and was also once both a court and a prison, is now up for grabs for group getaways. The massive castle can comfortably fit 14 guests. And we mean comfortably as each room comes with wood-burning stoves and romantic four-poster and-carved beds. The home comes decorated with plenty of medieval charm including chains holding up the beds, fur rugs, and tartan fabric covering just about everything. Pricing available upon request
Massive groups looking for a one-of-a-kind experience should book the Callander House, the private residence of the contemporary Scottish artist Stuart McAlpine Miller. The home, built in 1835, has been completely modernized and is a true oasis thanks to its twelve private acres of land in the Highlands. The home is large enough to accommodate 22 guests in 12 bedrooms. There is also space for everyone to come together, including the massive reception room and morning room. In the morning room, guests will also find a grand piano so they can tickle the ivories. But, perhaps the best room in the house is its library. Filled with books, the library is a perfect place to curl up with a good read and a nice Scottish whiskey before bed. Starting at $17,260 / seven nights