Things To Do In Stirling
Looking for things to do in Stirling? Stirling is probably one of the most historic towns in Scotland dominated by the dramatic Stirling Castle set high upon it's volcanic rock and is said to rival Edinburgh Castle in style. It is Scotland's second most visited castle and is definitely worth a visit if you are on a break in Stirling or the surrounding area. Apart from Stirling Castle there is a host of other things to do and see here too.
It is said that Stirling guarded the entrance to the Highlands and whoever held Stirling and its castle controlled Scotland. The centre of the town leading up the hill towards the castle is very old, with cobbled streets and buildings dating back to the 1700's. Worth stopping off at is the old Stirling Jail - now a visitor attraction and the cathedral which is located just below the castle. At the bottom of the hill is the newer town of Stirling. A haven for shoppers with lots of gift shops and the Thistle Shopping Centre which is home to most of the well-known high street stores.
Around the outskirts of Stirling there is a lots to be discovered. The Battle of Stirling Bridge took place here in the 15th century, where Scotland's famous hero William Wallace beat the English as seen in the famous blockbuster movie Braveheart. The Wallace Monument towers above Stirling, and inside there is a replica of Wallace's sword. It is believed the handle of which was covered with the skin of an English soldier! Towards Bannockburn lies the Battle of Bannockburn Visitor Centre and Battlefield – a great place to visit with all the family as it’s where Robert The Bruce beat King Edwards’s army in 1314 resulting in Scotland's independence.
Further afield there are plenty other things to see and do. In Doune there is Doune Castle, scene of Shakespeare's Macbeth, Dunblane cathedral, Stirling University, Bridge of Allan, Callander & the Trossachs and Blair Drummond Wildlife Safari Park is a great day out for the Family. The area surrounding Stirling is good for walking, there are plenty golf courses in the area, with Gleneagles only 30 minutes by car.
Stirling is well connected with Motorway networks and there is a railway station with regular services to Edinburgh, Glasgow and Inverness.
These are just some of the attractions and amenities on offer in this historic part of Scotland. Let’s delve in-depth and see what you must see and do on your next trip to Stirling.
1. Old Town Jail
One of the must see attractions when in Stirling is the Victorian Prison that has been derelict since the 1960’s until 2015 when it was restored into a fantastic visitor centre. Explore the centre with the help of costumed guides that lead the tours round the prison from the cells to the observation tower. Learn all about the gruesome tales from punishments to executions.
2. Stirling Castle
As previously mentioned you can’t come to Stirling and not visit the Castle. Different from Edinburgh Castle, this attraction is seen as more atmospheric. The current castle dates from the 16th century and the one of the main highlights is the Royal Palace. The views and location in which the attraction has makes this a must see part of Stirling. We suggest to come in the afternoon as day-trippers are usually away by 4pm.
3. Bannockburn Heritage Centre
The Battle of Bannockburn is brought to life at the world class Bannockburn Heritage Centre. This visitor attraction uses the latest digital equipment to give visitors the opportunity to understand the battle through its interactive technology.
4. Dunblane Castle
If you’re into gothic architecture then you’re in for a treat at Dunblane Castle. The building has a story to tell with parts of the bell tower dating back to the 11th century. Other parts of the build date to the 15th century which were later restored in the Victorian era. Dunblane is a fantastic castle to come and marvel at.
5. Smith Art Gallery & Museum
This is a great museum to understand the history of Stirling and how it came to be today. One of the highlights is the oldest football in the world that was discovered in Stirling Castle back in 1981. Other exhibitions from local artists are on show throughout the year.
6. National Wallace Monument
One of the highlights of Stirling, sits the National Wallace Monument above the River Forth. Commemorating William Wallace, the monuments gothic nature makes it even more striking. With unrivalled views of the greenery of the lush Forth Valley, this is a trip that needs to be taken on your next visit to Stirling.
7. Doune Castle
Famous people that shaped Scotland’s past including the likes of Bonnie Prince Charlie and Mary Queen of Scots both stayed at Doune Castle. It’s filled with history as well as being one of best preserved castles in the country. It has been the setting of popular movies such as Monty Python in the 1970’s. There are also fantastic views from the gatehouse and castle walls.
Stirling is one of the most historic parts in Scotland. Rich in history, telling the tails of Scotland’s independence through the castles and monuments that stand today.
Whether you’re travelling around the country, take a few days out in Stirling. We have several hotels in the town to choose from so why not find things to do in Stirling while staying in comfort and relaxation courtesy of myhotelbreak?
Make memories with all the family by enjoying these attractions with the UK’s number one short breaks provider.
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20 hotels in this region
Rosslea Hall HotelHelensburgh
Airth Castle HotelAirth
Richmond Park HotelBo'ness
DoubleTree by Hilton Dunblane HydroDunblane
Inn on Loch LomondLuss
Rob Roy HotelAberfoyle
Macdonald Forest Hills Hotel & SpaAberfoyle
Arrochar Hotel, Arrochar, by Loch LomondArrochar
Grange Manor HotelGrangemouth
Macdonald Inchyra Hotel & Spa in FalkirkFalkirk
Macdonald Forest Hills Resort & Spa - Self CateringAberfoyle
Lodge On Loch Lomond HotelLuss
Muthu Ben Doran HotelTyndrum
The Luib HotelCrianlarich