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“Day out”
Review of Cawdor Castle

Cawdor Castle
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$16.33*
and up
Cawdor Castle Admission Ticket
Ranked #2 of 9 things to do in Nairn
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: Re-opens 13th April 2019 A romantic fairy-tale castle that has been the home of the Thanes of Cawdor since 1370, Cawdor has evolved into a charming family mansion and the most outstanding of stately homes. The dramatic medieval tower, dungeon, turrets, battlements and drawbridge, belie an enchanting interior of fine art, tapestries and furniture which create the warm and welcoming feel of a home rather than a museum. The castle, set in stunning grounds with three beautiful and varied gardens, is surrounded by the magnificent Cawdor Big Wood, one of the finest woodland areas in Europe, threaded with colour coded nature trails to explore. Visitors are invited to enjoy a delicious lunch or tea with home-baking from our mouth-watering menu in the courtyard café, then browse the exciting range of gifts and goodies in our three shops and, time permitting, have fun on the putting green and short 9-hole golf course which provides enjoyment for all abilities.
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities, Stroller parking
Reviewed July 14, 2013

We went to Cawdor and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. The Castle is supposed to be haunted but the staff claim not to know much about it, although apparently there are lots of creaks and groans around the place. It kinda gave you a chilling feeling at one point going up stone stairs to the first bedroom but otherwise it was just a family home.

The grounds are lovely and well worth roaming around, I liked the walled garden especially. We visited the cafe which is a little expensive but got a good cup of tea and there is a bookshop as well. You can spend a fair bit of time reading all the literature as you go round, so depending on that determines how much time you spend. On a nice day I would be happy to just walk the grounds and browse in general, would go back.

It also has a quaint drawbridge and inner courtyard and of course, a small gift shop.

Thank whitwham
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"lady cawdor"
in 32 reviews
"gardens are beautiful"
in 38 reviews
"family home"
in 29 reviews
"dowager countess"
in 36 reviews
"flower garden"
in 13 reviews
"formal gardens"
in 12 reviews
"self guided tour"
in 24 reviews
"gift shop"
in 44 reviews
"own pace"
in 14 reviews
"holly tree"
in 12 reviews
"on display"
in 18 reviews
"information boards"
in 12 reviews
"open to the public"
in 12 reviews
"soup"
in 15 reviews
"well worth the visit"
in 13 reviews
"golf course"
in 16 reviews
"maze"
in 113 reviews
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802 - 806 of 1,182 reviews

Reviewed July 13, 2013

You can explore this castle on your own very interesting,and the gardens are beautiful.Did not visit the restaurant but had a coffee from the snack bar.

Thank Rita1948
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 12, 2013

As we rounded the corner when the castle came into view, I squealed in delight. Cawdor Castle is not a fortress military castle. It is a perfect picturesque palace that I would dream about as a little girl thinking about where a princess would live. The castle even comes with a secret garden behind a wall and heavy door.
You can't take pictures inside the castle as you take the walking tour because it is still lived in. You get to see a few beautifully furnished bedrooms, staircases, a couple of kitchens and a dungeon type of cellar. Its not much but I do not regret the tour at all. It is all made very homey and what a treat to actually see a castle beautifully furnished with tapestries and well loved furniture. I wouldn't have traded the opportunity at all.

The gardens are beautiful. Everything was just so lovely.

Thank MichelleK20127
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 12, 2013

As others have said what sets Cawdor Castle apart from many other historic sites is the strong sense that this is a real living family home welcoming you to share its (very long) history. The public rooms are used by the family, the art is an eclectic mix of the centuries-old and the very modern, nothing is posed or fake, what you find is a marvellously diverse ensemble where things sit together because that is how the family like it, not because they have been forced into an artificial "storyline". The explanatory labels in each room, written by the 6th Earl, are full of dry humour and personality. The staff are knowledgeable, charming and helpful.

Outside the gardens are also a delight, and the nature trails simply beautiful - they must be even more stunning when the great banks of rhododendrons are in bloom. We enjoyed it so much we went back again the next day as well to see all the bits we had missed. Make the trip, it's completely lovely.

Thank RobinCH
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed July 8, 2013

Finally a castle that is not dead, or full of fake reconstitution / wax characters.
Though you cannot visit every room since it is still a family house, you get to see rooms with books, flowers and other living proofs that is inhabited. Of course the furniture covers different eras, but it is understandable.

Special mention for some of the paintings (and not just the old official portraits), the witty explanations (great sense of humour) and the tapestries.

A real highlight: the walks in the three gardens, especially the formal flower garden and the forest!

Great attraction.

Thank Peter_Euskadi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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