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Visiting castle Brodick

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Thursday 26 May, visiting castle Brodick

Tree in Brodick Castle gardens Wooden bench, Brodick Castle gardensThe day starts dry, we did not expect that. Today we go to Brodick Castle where once the Dukes of Hamilton resided and later the Duke and Duchess of Montrose. Now the building is managed by the National Trust for Scotland. Before we reach the castle we have to walk through a part of the magnificent garden that was designed by the Duchess of Montrose in 1923.
The wooden seat on the right is made out of one piece of wood.
Brodick Castle Brodick CastleAlready in the 5th century there was a fort here and later a stone castle that was severely damaged during various skirmishes in the 15th century. In 1510 a new castle, a tower house, was built, but in the mid-19th century the building was expanded considerably. The Hamiltons have been in possession of it for more than 500 years.
In the castle there is still a lot of old furniture to be seen, some from the 17th century and a lot of silver and porcelain. Only there were a bit too many deer antlers on the wall, to our taste.
Otter Feeding the birdsAfter a tour through the castle we go to a small exhibition where stuffed animals and information about the flora and fauna in the neighborhood can be found. The most impressive is the otter, which Teije saw in our garden a few days ago. The animal also knows now that food is easy to get because yesterday another chicken disappeared.
Afterwards we drink a cup of coffee and the birds quickly come to get some pieces of the cake I ordered.
Feeding the birds Feeding the birds Feeding the birds Feeding the birdsThe birds are pretty cheeky and some eat out of my hand. They keep on coming and there goes my delicious cake!
A good opportunity for Teije to practice with his new camera and he has made a lot of photographs.
The crow is giving directions Sheltering from the coldA crow shows the way to the parking lot but we first walk through the rest of the castle gardens. The castle is not always open but the garden and the Brodick Country Park are. There are many walks and here and there are some places where you can sit to rest or just enjoy the garden. You can see that the gardens are well maintained but we still like the wild, natural part best.
Brodick Castle gardens The sea from Brodick CastleThe castle is obviously on a hill and the paths through the park go up and down. We have a beautiful view over the bay of Brodick where once a formidable fleet of Normans has been sailing.
In the natural parts of the garden rivers, waterfalls and ponds can be seen.
Brodick Castle gardens The Bavarian Summer HouseThe different seating areas and hiding places on the terrain are good for us because sometimes there is some rain falling. Fortunately not yet continuous because we find this a beautiful park to walk through and we have not seen everything yet.
Right the so-called Bavarian summer house from where you have a very nice view over the sea. The 11th Duke of Hamilton had it built in 1848 for his wife, Princess Marie of Baden. All the workers who worked on the cottage came from Bavaria. The ceiling is completely covered with pine cones.
A fallen tree Flower in Brodick Castle gardensThis tree will have given a big blow when it fell over, the diameter is at least one meter.
The Duchess of Montrose, who designed the garden, planted many new palms and flowers that were native to the British Isles. Especially rhododendrons that are already in bloom you see a lot, but there is also a walled garden with fruit trees.
The beach at BrodickThe gardens run all the way down to the beach that would look a lot more inviting on a hot and dry day. We have seen many more castle gardens but this one is to one of the nicer ones, we think.
After this extensive visit we go to Brodick for some food and groceries and then the rain starts to fall again so we go back to our house and turn on the stove.
Our cottage near LamlashBy 5 o'clock the sun suddenly starts to shine again and our white house looks beautiful. But it is very cold, so we do not stay outside for a long time, just check whether the chickens are locked up properly. The owner has strengthened some fences, but we are not sure if that will keep the otter outside now that he has had a taste of chicken.


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