Situated just off the A68 – a major road running from Darlington in England to Edinburgh – in the pretty village of Lauder, Thirlestane Castle is a brilliantly unique travel destination. Located just 20 minutes from Melrose, a trip to Thirlestane can easily be tied into visiting other big houses such as Abbotsford.
An impressive 16th century castle, Thirlestane is located near other major attractions in the Scottish Borders and is just 40 minutes south of Edinburgh. If you’re looking to explore beyond the Thirlestane Estate during your trip, we can help organise joint itineraries with other historic houses and castles in the region.
All travel trade enquiries are welcomed. Our team are on hand to answer information requests, arrange bespoke tours or familiarisation visits and to supply the materials needed to build itineraries. We’re able to facilitate group and FIT tours and arrange for accommodation and experiences for the during of the clients stay.
- Information, advance booking and invoicing
- Familiarisation visits for your staff or key clients
- Group and FIT itineraries
- Luxury accommodation
- Updates on new developments and opportunities
- Specialised, themed and exclusive experiences
Castle Highlights include:
- Exquisite 17th Century Dunsterfield gold gilded plasterwork ceilings
- Connections to key historical figures including Bonnie Prince Charlie and Mary Queen of Scots
- The Castle has been in the Maitland family for over 400 years
- Edward Maitland-Carew and his family currently live at the castle and Edward is available to give private tours
- Toy Museum ‘School Room’ featuring Georgian, Edwardian and Victorian toys
- Beautiful grounds and walks
Each group will be allocated one of our friendly, experienced tour guides, who will impart their wealth of knowledge and bring the castle’s fascinating history to life. Tours last approximately one hour, after which guests are invited to visit the gift shop, where they can pick up a ‘wee mindin’ of their time at Thirlestane, from keyrings and mugs to Tweedmill and Harris Tweed products.
Bespoke catering and private dining can be arranged for your visit, in one of the castle’s elegant State Rooms, or the rustic Victorian Kitchen. The castle’s grounds offer some beautiful routes for a post-dinner walk and for our more adventurous groups, there’s a variety of fun, local activities and experiences that can be organised as part of your trip.
Free coach and car parking is available on site. Coach drivers and tour guides are welcome to enter the castle for free and will be provided with complimentary refreshments.
Tours can be pre-booked throughout the year, at our special group rate.
We offer groups:
• Specialist tours
• Bespoke catering and private dining
• Dedicated dining space for groups
• Beautiful grounds for walks
• Exclusive use for groups on days the castle is closed
• Activities and experiences
• Special group rates
• Free coach and car parking
To request our Groups brochure please contact us.
Our overnight stay tour package is the perfect blend of luxury and history, designed to also give you a little taste of Scotland. Guests will reside in one of the castle’s elegant suites and have access to our communal areas, including the vaulted cellar and courtyard, where they will find toasty fire pits. Guests will also receive a private guided tour of the castle, by an expert guide.
Our guests certainly don’t go hungry, as in the morning they’ll enjoy breakfast from our continental hamper, packed full of goodies from local suppliers, including Overlangshaw organic eggs, Belhaven Smokehouse smoked salmon and Rora Dairy natural yoghurt. Every suite will also receive Scottish welcome tray, including a nip of whisky, Mackies of Scotland Potato Crisps, Borders Biscuits and a welcome gift from The Maitland family.
Every stay can be personalised as our guests see fit, with exclusive State Room dining, an exclusive tour with Edward Maitland-Carew and a range of outdoor activities available upon request.
To request a copy of our sample FIT Packages please contact us.
A trip to Thirlestane Castle isn’t complete without some refreshments and we have a variety of menus to chose from and spaces to chose from.
We work with award-winning caterers and chefs, to create the perfect menu for every occasion. From a light lunch served in our tearoom and to a two-course table service lunch in our rustic Victorian Kitchen, to a full service dinner in our State Dining Room hosted by Edward and Sarah Maitland, we can work with you to create a bespoke dining option that suits your needs. Sample menus and prices are available upon request.
May we recommend:
- Afternoon tea in the Victorian Kitchen
- Individually packed picnic lunches
- A light lunch consisting of soup, sandwiches and traybake
- A served two course lunch or Scottish Platter
- Silver service lunch or dinner in the State Rooms
Thirlestane Castle – The Home of Memorable Experiences.
Looking to add a little extra something to the itinerary? We offer a range of special experiences which are exclusive to FIT and group bookings. These include bespoke dining experiences in the State Rooms, whisky tasting in the Vaulted Cellars, falconry on the Front Lawn, clay pigeon shooting, a bagpiper’s welcome and a private guided tour by Edward Maitland-Carew, who is a resident of the castle plus much, much more.
If you have any ideas for new and exciting experiences, please get in touch as we are always keen to try something different.
May we recommend:
- Whisky & Gin Tasting
- Highland Games
- Archery or Clay Pigeon Shooting
- Private Guided Castle Tour
- Country Dancing Demonstrations
- Bagpiper’s Welcome
Q1. What is the discounted group price for a guided tour ticket?
A1. £12.50 per person.
Q2. To qualify for the group discount, what size does the group have to be?
A2. 10+ people.
Q3. How much is catering and activities?
A3. All costs are bespoke. We can provide prices and menus on request.
Q4. Are groups required to book in advance?
A4. Advance booking is recommended due to demand.
Q5. What are the payment terms?
A5. Full payment and final numbers are required 14 days in advance of your visit. Deposit required to secure booking.
Q6. Do you host familiarisation visits?
A6. Yes, we welcome familiarisation visits for your staff or key clients.
Q7. Is the castle fully accessible?
A7. No, not all of the castle is accessible for visitors with mobility issues due to stairs – please enquire for more details.
Q8. Can coaches drive straight up to the front of the castle?
A8. Yes, the coach drop-off point is right in front of the castle’s main steps. We also offer complimentary coach parking.
Q 9. Do you offer complimentary refreshments for the coach driver?
A9. Yes, we offer a complimentary refreshment to the driver. Advance notice preferred.
Q10. Do you offer any free places for the tour leader/organiser?
A10. Yes, we offer a free place for tour leader/organiser.
Q11. Are your grounds available for groups to walk around in?
A11. Yes, we have several walks for visitors to enjoy.