Visitor Guide to Doune in Stirlingshire. Includes descriptions, sightseeing attractions, transport facilities, directions and timings.

About eight miles northwest of Stirling and three miles due west of Dunblane is the quiet village of Doune, which is worth visiting for its well-preserved late-14th-century courtyard castle, overlooking the River Teith. Built for the Regent Albany, it passed into the hands of the Earls of Moray (who still live there) following the execution of the Albany family by James I.

Phone code: +44 (0)1786

Doune Speed Hillclimb is the most prestigious hillclimb course in Scotland, and hosts a round of the British Hill Climb Championship each year. A few scenes from the film Monty Python and the Holy Grail were filmed at Doune Castle.

Local Sights & Activities for Doune

Sightseeing

Its most striking feature is the combination of tower, gatehouse and domestic quarters, which includes the Lord's Hall with its carved oak screen and musicians' gallery. The 95-foot gatehouse with huge and spacious vaulted rooms and kitchens is complete with medieval rubbish chute. The castle's greatest claim to fame is as the setting of for the 1970s movieMonty Python and the Holy Grail. Since then the Castle has seen legions of Python fans arriving here on a pilgrimage. Apr-Sep daily 0930-1830; Oct-Mar Mon, Wed and Sat 0930-1630, Thu 0930-1230, Fri and Sun 1400-1630. Tel. 841742.

A few miles south of Doune, off the A84 to Stirling, is the Blair Drummond Safari Park, Scotland's only wildlife park, with lions, tigers, elephants, monkeys, rhinos, giraffes, zebras and various other exotic animals. There's a safari bus for those without their own transport. There are also sea lion shows and numerous other kids' activities. Mar to early Oct daily 1000-1730, last admission 1630.£ 10. Tel. 841203. (www.blairdrummond.com)

Castles Nearby

Doune Castle

Built for the Regent Albany, Doune Castle is a magnificent late 14th century courtyard castle that is familiar to film buffs for its role in Monty Python's Life of Brian.

Doune Events

Doune & Dunblane Agricultural Show

A day's show that celebrates local agricultural traditions and heritage

Doune Hotels & Accommodation

Excellent accommodation is provided near the castle at Glenardoch House, Castle Road (01786/841489 ; www.glenardochhouse.com; May-Sept), a eighteenth-century country-house B&B with a riverside garden and two comfy en-suite rooms.

Travel Directions to Doune

There are regular buses to Doune from Stirling, via Blair Drummond. The regular #59 bus between Stirling bus station and Callander stops here.

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