Blair Atholl, Struan, Calvine and Killiecrankie

Blair AthollThe Blair Atholl area of Highland Perthshire is situated on the southern edge of the Cairngorm massif.  As a result, Blair Castle was built to guard this important route north.  Blair Castle is the home of the Atholl Highlanders, Europe’s only legal private army.  The ranks of the Atholl Highlanders consist of estate workers, butchers and bakers.  They parade annually for the Duke of Atholl on the last Saturday in May in front of Blair Castle.  The same weekend also sees the first Highland Games of the Season.  The annual 4 day Blair Castle International Horse Trails and Country Fair is also hosted over the last weekend in August.

The narrow Pass of Killiecrankie was the only accessible route north.  It was here in 1689 that the Government army, under General McKay, passed through before taking part in the Battle of Killiecrankie.  The government troops were routed by the Highlanders under Bonnie Dundee and fled south.  You will be able to learn about the battle at the Killiecrankie Visitor Centre, run by the National Trust for Scotland.

The main village in the area is Blair Atholl, where you will find a variety of small shops, Scotland’s oldest working water mill and two caravan and camp sites.  Blair Atholl Garage offers petrol and car servicing and a break down and recovery service for the busy A9. There is also the Atholl Country Life Museum, started by local farmer John Cameron, who has collected an impressive range of artefacts from the area’s past.  Well worth a visit.

At Bruar you will find the Falls of Bruar that attracted Queen Victoria and Robert Burns.  The latter wrote a poem to the Duke asking him to clothe the falls with trees.  This he did 5 years after the poet’s death in 1844.  You will also find an exclusive shopping experience at the House of Bruar that attracts hundreds of thousands of people each year.

 To go to the Blair Atholl Area Tourism Association's web site www.blairatholl.org.uk

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