Glamis Castle: Gorgeous Fairytale Castle Connected With Macbeth

Glamis Castle, the ancestral seat to the Earls of Strathmore and Kinghorne, has been standing for over 650 years.

It’s located in the village of Glamis in Angus, Scotland, just north of Dundee in Eastern Scotland:

It’s open to the public (see below for more info) and is a popular wedding spot, with the castle’s fairytale look and gorgeous gardens proving popular with couples tying the knot.


Haunted

Glamis is considered to be one of the most haunted castles in the UK. There were some reports of several guests seeing a bearded figure scaring everyone in the upper rooms of the castle. A lonely boy can also be seen just outside the room of Queen Elizabeth.

The most famous ‘ghost’ of them all is the Monster of Glamis, thought to be a family member born with what would now be called birth defects. Alas, according to the story, the child was seen as a ‘monster’ and was held prisoner at the castle all of his life, until he was bricked up leading to his demise. A very sad story.


History of Glamis Castle

Glamis Castle c1850

Here are some of the edited highlights of Glamis and its castle.

Pre Castle & Macbeth

The site on which Glamis Castle now sits was the scene of some of Scotland’s bloody history – usually involving the violent death of its many monarchs and nobles. For example King Malcolm II was murdered at Glamis in 1034.

But Glamis’s most famous ‘historical’ event of the time concerns its association with Macbeth. William Shakespeare made Macbeth the Thane (or Lord) of Glamis in the opening scenes of The Tragedy of Macbeth, but there’s little historical evidence to support a connection with Scotland’s famously murderous King.

Glamis Castle Is Built

Glamis Castle was built in 1372 by Lord Glamis and granted to John Lyon four years later. The castle has been part of the Lyon (or Bowes-Lyon as it came to be known) family ever since.

The title Lord Glamis was created in 1445 for Sir Patrick Lyon (1402–1459), grandson of Sir John.

James V, ‘Witches’ & Earls

In 1528 Janet Douglas, wife of the 6th Lord Glamis, was accused by James V of Scotland of treason and of being a witch – at a time when James V was feuding with the Douglas family.

She was burnt at the stake in 1537 and Glamis Castle was claimed by James V. It was handed back to the Lyons family in 1543 and in 1606, Patrick Lyon, 9th Lord Glamis, was created Earl of Kinghorne.

Bowes-Lyon

In 1767 John Lyon, 9th Earl of Strathmore and Kinghorne, married Mary Eleanor Bowes creating the Bowes-Lyon family.

Queen Mother & Princess Margaret

The most famous member of the Bowes-Lyon family was Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon, born in 1900 to the 14th Earl and his wife. She spent most of her childhood at the castle.

In 1923 she married Prince Albert, Duke of York, who became King George VI, and gave birth to Princess Elizabeth, the future Queen Elizabeth II and Princess Margaret (the letter at the castle).

On King George’s death in 1953 she became Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother.


Directions To Glamis Castle

By Road

The castle is on the A94 north of Dundee.

Glamis Castle estimates the journey time to be the following from local major towns:

Source: Glamis Castle

By Rail

The nearest train station to Glamis Castle is Dundee Train Station. However, it is still 12 miles from the castle or bus and so you’ll need to take a taxi or bus from there.

By Bus

You can catch a bus from Dundee Bus Station and Dundee Seagate Bus Station to the castle. Here’s the timetable.


Castle Opening Times and Cost of Entry

The castle is open from March 30th to October 31st, 10 am to 5:30 pm.

Admission: Adult £ 15.50, Senior £ 12, Child £ 10, Family £ 50 (covers 2 adults + 3 children), Under 5 yrs free