Our Scottish Road Trip

During our visit to Scotland we decided to take a road trip up the coast of Angus as far as Stonehaven and then turn inland to see the Pine Forests, visit the queen at Balmoral and then turn back and head back through the Cairngorms in search of some snow.

During our visit I purchased an Explorer pass which can gain you entry into 77 properties all over Scotland, including Edinburgh Castle and Arbroath Abbey was included and was on our route up the coast, so our first port of call for the day.

Arbroath Abbey

You enter the Abbey into a small shop and museum which depicts the timeline of the Abbey in an interactive way which the kids really enjoyed.

Arbroath Abbey

The museum also tells of the story of the day the Stone of Destiny came to the abbey in 1951 which was used for centuries in the coronation of the monarchs of Scotland

Stone of Destiny

Arbroath Abbey itself is the ruins of a Tironensian monastery, founded by William the Lion in 1178, who is buried there.

William 1 Grave

The Abbey is also famously associated with the Declaration of Arbroath of 1320, which asserted Scotland’s independence from England.

Declaration of Arbroath of 1320

Whilst all this was fascinating, for the kids it was the chance to run around and explore the grounds that kept them entertained.

Arbroath Abbey

We met the gardener who was marking out where rooms would have been in the abbey who engaged the kids with things to see and rooms to explore.

Arbroath Abbey

He also pointed out doors that we completely missed where you could go up to the upper floors of the Abbots House and get a spectacular view of the abbey from above.

Arbroath Abbey

Abroath Abbey is an ideal place to visit if you want to spend a day exploring Angus, as you cannot spend much more than an a couple of hours there.

Arbroath Abbey

Once we had finished exploring we continued our trip up the coast in search of Dunnottar Castle, stopping first at Lunan Bay, reportedly one of the most beautiful beaches in Scotland.

Lunan Bay

The kids had a blast running up the sand dunes and then sliding back down them again.

Lunan Bay

We then headed up to Dunnottar Castle which is the castle that Disney based Merida’s castle on for Brave. You can read all about our visit here.

Dunnottar Castle Rainbow

It was then time to head inland for a glimpse of Scotland’s every changing scenery from the coast, through the pine forests.


Our one disappointment was that being February, many of the tourist attractions were closed to visitors until April, but we did stop for that all important photo by the gates of Balmoral.

Balmoral Castle

Once we found Braemar Castle we then headed back south along the A93 through the Cairngorms.

Braemar Castle

The only way I can describe the drive is one straight out of a car advert.


The road was empty, the scenery stunning and the farther in we got, the more snow we found as the road climbs higher than anywhere else in the UK, passing by the ski runs of Glenshee.


We weren’t cruel enough to keep driving though, we did stop for some snow play too.


Having a snowball fight with a spectacular sunset going on behind you is a very special experience.


I did feel a little sorry for those who had tried to come skiing as there was not enough snow to ski.


Once we were snowballed out, it was then time to head back through the glens, back to our holiday cottage in Angus.


This was by far my favourite day out during our holiday as we saw so much of the country and it has made us promise that we will return as there is so much more to see!

Country Kids

The Places We Will Go

22 thoughts on “Our Scottish Road Trip

  1. You packed so much in! And what gorgeous photos – I had heard how stunning Lunan Bay and Dunnottar were, what amazing views. And great to bump into someone at Arbroath to let you into a few secrets. #countrykids

  2. This Scotland trip of yours is seriously making me want to visit. The pass you bought sounds amazing value and a great way to plan your days around places of interest. I thought the old Abbey alone looked wonderful to explore, but add in the sand dunes, snow play and the most amazing scenery, no wonder this was your favourite day. What wonderful memories you have captured here.

    Thank you for sharing with me on #CountryKids

  3. I love the sound of the A93, I love a road trip. I think you’ve been quite lucky it wasn’t too snowy and you could still get around. #ThePlacesWeWillGoLinky

  4. Such a wonderful adventure. Something I would love to do. The Explorer Pass is an excellent idea to get, very much worth it. Love all the history and scenery, just perfect.

  5. This looks amazing. Love all those old ruins and you can see how the castle in Brave was based on Dunnottar. The scenery you drove through is breath taking – looks like the same ones used in Skyfall??

  6. I love all these photos!! Lunan bay looks beautiful with those sand dunes!! and Abroath Abbey also looks beautiful. We are visiting Scotland in April for a road trip – so I might look into the explorers pass – thanks for the tip #CountryKids

  7. I am so glad you enjoyed your time up here in Scotland. I really should explore more of my own country. I am just glad the snow fall we had did not stop you in any way and if anything it added to the fun 🙂 If you ever venture back I recommend Aberdeen, Cullen and Inverness. Cullen is very quiet but gorgeous and both Aberdeen and Inverness are scenic and full of places to explore x

  8. Its been a long time since we headed up to Scotland. It’s such a lovely place but just that little bit too far for us for a weekend getaway. Would definitely love to go back

  9. Your photos make me want to pack our bags and go tomorrow. It’s a great post for Scottish inspiration. I am book marking now thank you. We lived in Scotland for awhile. Such a beautiful country

  10. You’ve made us really want to visit Scotland now! It looks amazing, your photos are gorgeous and wow to get to play in the snow! So much fun! Thanks for linking up to #ThePlaceWeWillGoLinky xx

  11. Just my kind of road trip. Lots of amazing scenery and plenty of history on route. I’ve never been as far up as Angus. It must have taken you ages to get there!

  12. Beach and snow in one day! The beach looks amazing and I can see why it’s thought to be one of the prettiest. The explorer passes sound like great value for money. Stopping by from #CountryKids

  13. Amazing photos, looks like a fantastic trip. I am eager to go back to Scotland as we haven’t visited for a couple of years now. Will definitely have a look at getting an explorer pass-looks like great value #CountryKids

  14. This looks wonderful. Glad you had such a great time. I love living in Scotland and being able to do this and go to so many beautiful places is amazing. xx

  15. Beautiful pictures, and such a gorgeous country! We are heading to Scotland for our summer holiday after having an amazing time there last year and I can’t wait to explore some more! x

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