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Top 5 Castles near Edinburgh

If you’re heading to Edinburgh and you’re looking for the perfect way to explore the wild Scottish landscape, then why not visit some of the regions best castles, ruins and fortresses? Pick up your car hire at Edinburgh airport and head out to some of our top castle choices.

1. Edinburgh Castle

Of course, if you’re visiting Edinburgh then a trip to the city’s world famous castle must be on the cards. Edinburgh Castle is a world famous icon and it makes up part of the old and new towns of Edinburgh’s World Heritage Site. The oldest part of Edinburgh Castle is Saint Margaret’s Chapel, which was built during the 12th century; visitors like to explore the Great Hall, which was built in 1510 by James IV, don’t miss the Half Moon Battery which was commissioned by Regent Morton in the late 16th century. Edinburgh Castle is Scotland’s number one paid tourist attraction and ticket prices range from £9.90 to £16.50.

2. Direlton Castle

This romantic, 12th century is located in East Lothian, just a short drive in your Easirent hire car from our Edinburgh Airport branch. Take a walk around the castle’s renowned Victorian gardens and their Arts and Crafts herbaceous borders which have been authenticated by the Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s longest.

3. Tantallon Castle

Take advantage of your Easirent hire car and head to North Berwick, where Tantallon Castle is perched atop a cliff edge, looking out over Bass Rock. Once a stronghold of the Douglas Family the towers of Tantallon Castle offer unparalleled views out across the North Sea, where visitors can try to spot the gannets plunging into the sea in search of fish. The castle was besieged by James IV and V but was originally destroyed by Oliver Cromwell’s troops in a siege of 1651.

4. Craigmillar Castle

Craigmillar Castle is one of the most perfectly preserved castles in the whole of Scotland and it definitely merits a visit while you’re in the area. Built in the 1400s, the castle is nestled in the midst of stunning gardens and pastureland. The castle plays an important part in the history of Mary Queen of Scots who fled here after the death of Riazzo, and it is thought that Craigmillar Castle is where the plot to murder Mary’s husband Lord Darnley was hatched.

5. Crichton Castle

Take a trip to Midlothian, which is easily reachable by hire car from our Easirent branch in Edinburgh Airport and visit Crichton Castle. This large and sophisticated castle has an Italian Renaissance style façade which was added by the Earl of Bothwell between 1581 and 1591. There is parking available nearby and entry prices range from £2.70 for a concession and £4.50 for an adult.

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