This 'Castle' and grounds are marvellous. The management of this attraction is first class and the gardens, particularly the walled garden are immaculate (they were when we visited on 14 June 2014). The facilities at the visitor centre are very good - restaurant, shop, ice-cream, toilets. If you're lucky to visit on a sunny day you can see the Mull of Kintyre and Ailsa Craig. There is also a very good cafe 'The Stables' where they sell excellent various types of teas and the best carrot cake I've ever tasted. The 'Castle' (not a fortification, more a huge house) is superb to visit. Although there are guides in most of the rooms, it is worth going on the 1 hour tour - the armoury room is just phenomenal. The walled garden must not be missed and a very helpful gardener is in attendance. Plants are for sale (reasonably priced). The Swan Lake and Pagoda are worth a visit, It is a long walk from the Castle, approx 20 minutes, but you can drive there (slowly) through the grounds passing the walled garden on the way. There is a small cafe at the lake. All the staff we met were extremely pleasant and helpful. Yes, the entrance fee may be expensive, but you need a whole day to see the place and it is cheaper to join the Scottish National Trust which gives you free entry to this and and their other properties. You may think this is a gushing praise for an attraction, but it was a beautiful sunny day when we visited and the management and staff of the attraction made the day.
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