Historic sites ready to open for the summer

People can now visit local sites including the iconic Tolquhon Castle.
People can now visit local sites including the iconic Tolquhon Castle.

Kildrummy Castle in Aberdeenshire is one of more than 30 historic sites preparing to open its doors once more for the summer tourist season.

From April 1 onwards, castles, cairns and brochs across Scotland are welcoming visitors as the Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology gets into full swing.

Historic Environment Scotland (HES), the public body that cares for more than 300 historic places across the country including over 70 Historic Scotland tourist attractions, is encouraging tourists and locals alike to get up close and personal with history in 2017.

People in Aberdeenshire can now visit local sites including the iconic Tolquhon Castle and the 16th century Corgarff Castle.

More than 100 new and seasonal staff are in post across the country, ready to welcome visitors and support a vibrant programme of events and initiatives showing that heritage is for all – including Scotland’s first Heritage Awareness Day.

Susan Loch, head of Visitor Operations and Community Engagement at HES, said locals as tourists from far afield are welcome: “It’s always exciting when our seasonal sites re-open after the winter.

“With the weather starting to get warmer and the days longer, it’s the perfect time to come out and explore Kinnaird Head Castle Lighthouse and Museum of Scottish Lighthouses.

“From castles to churches, and from prehistoric forts to atmospheric ruins, our historic sites are full of stories.

“We welcome tourists from all over the world, but we’re hoping local visitors won’t be shy about coming along for an adventure through time in Scotland’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology.”

Running from January 1 to December 31, the 2017 Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology is a celebration of Scotland’s people, our distinct culture and traditions, our historic landscapes, attractions, icons, as well as our hidden gems and amazing stories.

The organisation has started the season with a special membership offer giving families 18 months Historic Scotland membership for the price of 12.

This gives people entry to over 70 paid-for historic attractions across the country as well as to daytime events.

For further information on opening hours, access and locations, visit: www.historicenvironment.scot/