Follow the Castle Trail around the north east of Scotland and you'll also visit some magnificent gardens.
Located in King Street, Elgin (around the corner from the entrance to the Cathedral). The only garden of its type in Scotland. Open daily May to September, between 10.00 am and 7.30pm. Free admission.
B&Bs near Elgin - Brandon Lodge near Portsoy
Scottish Home to the Royal Family. Wander through the large kitchen garden, enjoy the views from the fountain area and admire the impressive rose garden. Riverside paths by the Dee. Short Ranger led walks. Open daily 10am to 5pm from 1 April to 31 July.
B&Bs near Balmoral Castle - Castleview Bed and Breakfast
Near Banchory. Castle with spectacular gardens featuring herbaceous borders in garden "rooms" and unusual topiary. Garden and grounds open all year daily.
B&Bs near Crathes Castle -& Castleview Bed and Breakfast
Near Ellon - The heart of the property is the formal walled garden originally laid out in 1675 by Sir Alexander Seton. In the 1950s, the Trust set about re-creating the gardens following designs dating from the 17th century. Today, Pitmedden features over 5 miles of box hedging arranged in intricate patterns to form six parterres. Grounds open daily all year.
Near Alford. These gardens are a gem set in the small glen beside Kildrummy Castle. Rare arctic and rock plants. Licensed for marriages. Open April to October. Admission charge.
Near Banchory. The original 13th century keep has an adjoining Jacobean mansion house and additions made by Victorian lairds. There are woodland trails and a garden of historic roses in the grounds. Grounds open daily all year. National Trust for Scotland
B&Bs near Drum Castle - Castleview Bed and Breakfast