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Cawdor Castle, Seat of the Thanes of Cawdor

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Cawdor Castle, Seat of the Thanes of Cawdor Cawdor Castle, Seat of the Thanes of Cawdor

Cawdor Castle, Seat of the Thanes of Cawdor

Cawdor Castle ticks a lot of boxes. Architecture hounds and castle-gazers will love Cawdor's orderly handsomeness. It's so mise en place it almost doesn't feel real. History buffs will dig the six centuries of events, families have multiple avenues to keep kids happy, and your average tourist like me finds a well-rounded castle package close to Inverness.
The post Cawdor Castle, Seat of the Thanes of Cawdor appeared first on Traveling Savage.

It seems that everyone and their great granny has heard of Inverness. I remember speaking the name for the first time and thinking it had a certain magic to its enunciation. I was so beguiled by it that my first, somewhat disastrous, trip to Europe in 2003 included a stop in Scotland’s northernmost city, and I’ve been back many times in the ensuing 17 years.
The plain reality, however, is that Inverness just isn’t that interesting.
And while that statement is bound to stir the pot, allow me to counter by saying that the area around Inverness, on the other hand, is rich with interesting and varied sites like Culloden Battlefield, the Clava Cairns, Glen Affric, and Cawdor Castle among many others.
As a purveyor of fine castle experiences, I find Cawdor Castle to be particularly noteworthy. It’s a tidy, handsome fortress that balances museum showpiece with homey gentry all while dragging along a dubious Shakespearean connection. There’s a lot to like here, some questionable things too, and my most recent visit coincided with same-day visits to nearby Culloden and Clava.

Wedged in the pretty Allt Dearg valley between Inverness and Nairn, Cawdor Castle is in excellent condition and usually very busy. The green grounds seclude the castle from the tiny, winding B roads, and once through the gates with ticket in hand the grounds become apparent. Here you’ll find a luxurious panoply of gardens including romantic walled, flower, and wild gardens, not to mention a golf course.
Cawdor Castle itself invites you inside with a recessed gate between stout ranges with conical towers. Clan Campbell’s motto, “Be Mindful,” graces golden arms in various places leading into the castle interior.
Perhaps this strikes you odd. After all, this isn’t Campbell Castle. Cawdor Castle’s oldest stones probably date from before 1454, but that’s the earliest date associated with the castle. It was then that William Calder, 6th Thane of Calder (later spelled Cawdor) was granted the license to fortify the site. Cawdor Castle began as a tower house, which was not uncommon, but an incredibly neat detail is that it was built around a living holly tree (which died in 1372 according to scientific analysis). The Cawdors later married into the Campbells and the castle was upgraded, expanded, and renovated time and again over the centuries.

The castle remains a home to this day, and you get that vibe in the dim, yellow-cast rooms filled with 600 years of treasures, priceles...
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Cawdor Castle, Seat of the Thanes of Cawdor Cawdor Castle, Seat of the Thanes of Cawdor


News source: Traveling Savage
Publication date: 13-02-2020 16:09
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