Our stay in the grounds of a Scottish Castle.

Icehouse Cottage.

I can hardly believe that only last week, we were staying in a beautiful cottage in Scotland. A cottage in the grounds of a Castle no less. Two castles in fact !  Lochinch Castle in Dumfries and Galloway is  home to the Count and Countess of Stair. The castle was built in the mid 19th Century some years after their original residence ‘ Castle Kennedy’ was burned to the ground. The ruins of Castle Kennedy can also be found on the Lochinch Estate and the Castle Kennedy Gardens are open to the public. Seventy Five acres of sculptured gardens and woodland to wander in. In November we more or less had it all to ourselves!

Our home for the week was the cosy single story Icehouse Cottage situated close to the original remains of a Victorian Icehouse. With it’s pretty furnishings, toasty wood burner and idyllic location, we couldn’t have wanted for more. Hugo was especially happy led in front of the fire after long walks around the grounds. πŸ™‚



The ruins of Castle Kennedy.

On our very first walk we came across three deer just wandering through the forest. πŸ™‚  In fact every walk, thereafter, we would spot roe deer, red squirrels , woodpecker, pheasants, buzzards and other wildlife amongst the canopy of the trees. They became such common sights that it wasn’t even a surprise when we spied deer along the treeline of the woodland  behind the back of the cottage. I’m sure if we had erected a trampoline, the John lewis advert would have come to life there and then!

Lochinch Castle.



There are two Lochs on the Lochinch estate poetically named The Black Loch and The White Loch. Both hold lots of wildlife and the White Loch is a site of Special Scientific Interest due to its winter waterfowl and rare invertebrate  fauna and flora. I’m not quite sure why my dog has two tails in the above photograph….





I think my favourite part of the Castle Kennedy Gardens is The Walled Garden, which somehow reminded me of a Secret Garden. Autumnal colours were out in force and flowering shrubs still bloomed. So beautiful.




We loved our time in South west Scotland and Lochinch Cottages  ( there are two more in the castle grounds) provided an ideal base to explore Dumfries & Galloway. And a Winter Break there?  Well why not! Being out of the tourist season means you can (almost) imagine your lording over your own estate. πŸ™‚

As we left we saw a deer wading through the Black loch. πŸ™‚

14 thoughts on “Our stay in the grounds of a Scottish Castle.”

  1. Oh my word what a beautiful place. I love Scotland, my Mum’s Scottish and I had many childhood holidays there. That photo of the gateway with the red leaves is just stunning. I couldn’t get my head round the two tailed dog photo! I thought it was a human dressed as a black rabbit!! What would a psychologist have to say about that I wonder?? Thanks for sharing your trip 😊

    1. I always had scottish holidays as a child ( my dad loved it there and one o my aunts and uncles lived there) so its actually my first time back ( apart from edinburgh and glasgow) since childhood. A human dressed as a black rabbit! My photography skills are getting worse.lol.;)

  2. Beautiful photos. I love the entrance to ‘your secret garden’. We visited Castle Kennedy in the height of summer, it wasn’t as mysterious and tranquil as your experience. I love D & G , it is a relatively undiscovered gem! Gorgeous pics of Roe deer, well done! I fancy a trip there in autumn. Thanks for sharing. πŸ™‚

    1. We were very lucky in a way as we had the whole place practically to ourselves. Barely saw a soul. Must be lovely in the summer though with all the flowers and warmer weather. It was a lovely place to stay. πŸ™‚

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