Or at least that is what it felt like this weekend. Finally.
I had planned a trail walk with friends a few weeks ago, but we kept having to postpone because of bad weather. And this was one trail, where having good visibility makes a difference.
Yesterday we finally managed to get on the road and get to Balmoral. Owned by the Queen (not the Crown), most people will have heard of Balmoral Castle, but most people who visit the castle will not have heard of or been to the many fantastic trails that are on the larger estate. The most famous of the trails takes you through the woods adjoining the castle and along a number cairns, or memorials, to various members of the royal family and most of them commissioned by Queen Victoria. (Wikipedia – Balmoral Cairns).
One of the challenges of the trail is that it is not waymarked. One needs a map, and preferably a friend who knows the way. I had both, but we still managed to get lost a couple of times. (Btw, even tho there is public access to the majority of the estate, this is not an area you want to get lost because I imagine that it is likely that estate security will show you the way, and one does not like to bother them.) Fortunately, we realised pretty quickly when we got off trail.
Anyway, 9km /3.5h of exploring in gorgeous sunny weather got us this:
Great photos. I didn’t realise the public had access to Balmoral. I love the Victorian pyramid for Albert.
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It’s a pretty impressive pyramid, and it’s kinda cool how it emerges through the trees after pretty steep ascent on a forest path.
Yeah, the estate is accessible by the public. Some of my favourite places are on the estate, like Loch Muick, but they are on the other side of the mountain in pic # 8.
The castle grounds are open to visitors, too, except when the family is in residence. Then visitors to the estate are politely asked to keep their distance – tho no limitation on the public access otherwise.