Fancy running away from civilisation to your very own Ivory tower (of sorts)? This massive castle just twenty minutes from Glasgow is the perfect place for a staycation close to home.
Featuring original Renaissance-inspired features, the Old Rowallan Castle near Kilmarnock provides a tranquil backdrop for guests in the heart of Ayrshire, with acres and acres of secluded grounds to explore. The 600-acre grounds date all the way back to the ninth century, with the castle itself dating back to the 13th century – retaining its beautiful, original architecture to this day.
The listed heritage building is steeped in history, with it being the birthplace of Elizabeth Mure, the second wife of Robert Stewart who later became King Robert II of Scotland. The castle also has connections to Robert the Bruce and his family seal can still be seen on the old range access door and is believed to be the only remaining seal on public display and not in a museum.
On the premises, guests will be transported to an enchanting kingdom that’ll feel more like the kingdom of Arendelle than Ayrshire, with grand bedrooms complete with wooden beams, arched and intricate windows, exposed stone walls reminiscent of another time and traditional castle lighting throughout.
There’s even beautiful roll top baths for you to enjoy a long soak in after a leisurely walk round the grounds or nearby countryside. Elsewhere, guests will find an impressive dining room that’s ideal for channelling your inner monarch, chalice in hand, decked out with warm candlelight and tartan-upholstered chairs.
The whole place has a romantic air to it, so it’s not surprising it’s a popular spot for those looking to tie the knot. There’s four beautiful rooms to choose from, all boasting a sense of history, with period features and luxurious finishes.
The Castle Gallery has been transformed to the perfect place to relax featuring a 55” TV, pool table, card table and a selection of musical instruments. And for those looking to bring more guests along, there is also the option to add two single sofa beds in the turrets within the Castle Gallery.
There is an award-winning restaurant just a short walk away known as the Glasshouse Restaurant, serving decadent dishes that are almost too divine to eat. There is also the option to have a private dining experience that can be arranged prior to your visit.
Every corner of the castle is incredibly photogenic, with many rooms still featuring the original exposed stone walls, some of the castle’s outer walls still intact, as well as a beautiful stone courtyard. Guests can explore the grounds on foot and visit the local neighbours that are a group of Highland Cattle.
There is even the option to play a spot of golf! The Rowallan Estate has its own 19-hole Championship Golf Course designed by winning Ryder Cup Captain, Colin Montgomerie. Plus, two complimentary four balls are included in your stay.
Rowallan Castle, Kilmaurs, East Ayrshire, KA3 2LP