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Balmoral Castle

Overview

Balmoral Castle is open to the public from April to July each year. Group visits can sometimes be arranged outside of that period if the Royal family are not in residence.

Balmoral Estate has a very appealing location amongst the magnificent scenery of Royal Deeside and is located about midway between the villages of Braemar and Ballater. It is easy to understand why it became a favourite holiday retreat of the Royal family. Purchased by Prince Albert in 1852 for Queen Victoria, the Estate has been the Scottish holiday home of the Royal Family ever since.

The Castle itself has an interesting story, as it is not the original building that Prince Albert bought. It was decided that the old building was not adequate for the Royal Family’s needs so another one was built in the grounds nearby. The process took 4 years and the new Castle was completed in 1856. The old building was demolished and a commemorative stone in the grounds of the estate marks the location of its front door.

Balmoral is a key attraction in Scotland, however, we find it disappointing as very little of the Castle is accessible to the public apart from the Ballroom, which has been converted into a constant exhibition displaying pictures of the other rooms in the Castle.

The grounds are extensive and beautiful, and the stables have a collection of Royal carriages and cars. There is an excellent tearoom and shop, but the lack of access to the Castle, which you came to visit, is frustrating and does leave you feeling a bit "stung".

Address:

Balmoral, Ballater, AB35 5TB

Operated by:

Royal Residences

Opening Hours:

2020 Opening times: 1st April until 3rd August, Daily 10 am to 5 pm (last admission 4 pm)

Admission:

£ 12 adult, £ 11 senior, £ 6 children, Family £ 33

Parking:

Yes

Languages:

Audioguides in English, French, German, Italian (£5 refundable deposit)

Accessibility:

Yes

Toilets:

Yes

Shop:

Yes

Cafe/Restaurant:

Yes

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