Planning to go Stirling Castle from Edinburgh on a day trip and Stirling in general?
It’s one of the best trips from Edinburgh and I highly recommend it and this is how I did it and what you can expect.
You could make it a half day trip if you wanted to see other places in Scotland that day on a longer tour.
I go into the details of how to go about visiting at the bottom of the post.
Stirling Castle From Edinburgh Day Trip
It’s an easy 10 minutes walk from Stirling train station to the castle wandering through Stirling old town.
Along the way you’ll see some historic monuments such as the remains of a 1570’s townhouse and the Mercat Cross.
Then there’s the Robert The Bruce Monument near the entrance to the castle itself.
The outside building you will see are from the 18th century and once inside the castle most of the buildings you will see date from around the 15th century.
The castle has been a very strategic place throughout ancient Scottish history due to its strategic location and natural fortifications as it’s surrounded on 3 sides by cliffs.
Inside and wandering around you can find out all the information you need on the castle.
Needless to say this is one of the most important, historic, and best castles in Scotland.
The castle is partly built on the side of a cliff.
Great views from Stirling Castle’s ramparts. Especially beautiful in winter.
One of the castles towers.
Church of The Holy Rude and Graveyard
The Church of the Holy Rude dates back into medieval times when it was first built in 1129, but since then newer additions and renovations have been made.
The graveyard is newer dating from the 16th century.
It is located just a few hundred metres below the castle.The church has been very important throughout Scottish history due to its location next to Stirling Castle, which itself held numerous Scottish royals in the past.
It has been used for royal coronations in Scotland for centuries and is still used today for that (one of only 3 churches in all of Britain).
Church of the Holy Rude graveyard..
Stirling Church of the Holy Rude.
Graves in the Church of the Holy Rude graveyard.
Some of the graves in the graveyard are very old. Notice the skulls.
View onto Stirling Castle from the church of the Holy Rude.
A nice place to go for lunch or a snack after seeing the castle and church (or before) is Darnley Coffee House which is only a few minutes walk away, where you can find delicious homemade soups and cakes along with a good coffee or tea.
Or if you would prefer a pint of good ale to relax (or whatever drink you prefer) then head to the nearby Settle Inn which is the oldest pub in Stirling and has a great atmosphere.
Stirling Castle Day Trip Advice
An option is to combine Stirling Castle on a tour from Edinburgh with other places involved.
For example these tours take you on a one day trip that lasts several hours so you could get a lot more things done:
Coming from Edinburgh it’s easy to get to Stirling.
If you aren’t in Edinburgh yet and looking for places to stay take a look at places to stay in Edinburgh here.
If you decide you would like to spend the night in Stirling it’s a nice place to chill but apart from the castle and cemetery there isn’t much else to do there.
If you stay you can find places to stay in Stirling here.
You can easily get to Stirling Castle from Glasgow as well, it’s around the same distance as Edinburgh. I just say Edinburgh in this post as that’s where I visited from.
The best way to get to Stirling Castle (if you don’t do a tour) is by train.
The average train time is around 50 minutes and you can see schedules for trains from Edinburgh to Stirling here.
Interested in more castle ideas for the U.K.? This is my post about visiting St Michaels Mount in Cornwall. Another must see castle in the U.K.
Video about the trip to Stirling Castle:
The best guidebook for travelling Scotland I recommend is Lonely Planet Scotland. I have written for Lonely Planet and respect them a lot as a guidebook company.
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