With the historic city of Stirling a stone’s throw away and miles of Scottish countryside enveloping Dunblane from every corner, a stay at the DoubleTree by Hilton Dunblane Hydro should be at the top of your priority list this coming autumn. Our hotel will provide the perfect launching pad for the ten diverse, enriching activities listed below which our location can offer you.
1. Explore Stirling Castle
Stirling Castle is unmissable when you’re in the area and rightfully comes in at number 1. Laden with shining historical gravitas, this Renaissance architectural gem was home to a series of Scottish monarchs, including Mary Queen of Scots. Explorer passes are available for those who desire access to other renowned landmarks of Scottish history. Did you konw that Stirling Castle was named Scotland's best visitor attraction by the Scottish Outdoor & Leisure Awards in November 2016? Beating off competition from Edinburgh Zoo and Dynamic Earth.
2. Admire Dunblane Cathedral
A 12th century medieval masterpiece, Dunblane Cathedral still has the ability to immerse visitors into Scotland’s majestic past. A principal attraction for all our guests, its simple proportions, clustered shafts, and graceful clerestory windows are a source of awe for history buffs and culture enthusiasts alike.
3. Get Whisk-ied Away by Deanston Distillery and Visitor Centre
No visit to the Highlands would be the same without a whisky tour pencilled into your day. The crisp Perthshire air and the kick of Deanston Distillery and Visitor Centre’s dram are meant to be experienced in unison. You’ll find this quaint whisky-making hub at the dramatic entrance to the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park. If whisky isn't your thing, why not visit Allanwater Brewhouse in nearby Bridge of Allan?
4. Experience Nature at the Blair Drummond Safari and Adventure Park
Praised as the “wildest day out in Scotland”, admission to the Blair Drummond Safari and Adventure Park offers wild animal reserves, an adventure playground, a boat trip around Chimp Island, a pets farm, lemur land, a flying fox attraction, a Giant Astraglide, sea lion shows, a birds of prey centre and display, and pedal boats. Remember, the park closes for winter on 30 October 2017 and reopens 17 March 2018.
5. Discover Dunblane Walks
If you’re keen on nature, explore the great walks among our picturesque and rural setting. Head to Holmehill to spot roe deer and bats, or visit Knockmafuddy & Hydro grounds, a small secluded woodland area to the north of the hotel. Autumn's the perfect time of year for picking brambles on Holmehill and in the Laighhills.
6. Peek Around Doune Castle
Doune Castle is a favourite among TV producers, having been featured in Game of Thrones and Monty Python. It’s easy to see why the splendid Lord's Hall – with its carved oak screen, musicians' gallery and double fireplace – is one of the most striking medieval courtyard castles in Scotland that plays host to some of Britain’s most beloved shows.
7. Leaf Through the Leighton Library
A bibliophile’s dream – but also an unmissable stop for anyone interested in covering all of Dunblane’s cultural stops – the Leighton Library houses 4500 volumes in 89 languages, bequeathed by Robert Leighton. Bishop of Dunblane in the 17th century and later also Archbishop of Glasgow.
8. Visit the National Wallace Monument
Pay homage to the Guardian of Scotland, Patrior and Martyr Sir William Scott on Abbey Craig, outside the historic centre of Stirling. The National Wallace Monument commemorates the life of this outstanding character overlooking Scotland’s victorious moment at The Battle of Stirling Bridge.
9. Swing in Style at Dunblane New Golf Club
Why not play one of Scotland’s favourite sports in some of the most picturesque scenery of Perthshire? Dunblane New Golf Club offers all the goods at highly competitive rates, with 18 testing holes and plenty of stimulating views to siphon off a Dunblane day in good style while practising your swing.
10. Journey Through the Old Town Jail
You can retrace the footsteps of ancient prisoners and understand what crime and punishment entailed for the delinquents of the era during live performance tours that run every 30 minutes at the Old Town Jail. More sweeping panoramas await from the rooftop observation tower after walking through the grim and gruesome history of the prison.
With this healthy itinerary for your visit keeping you on your toes, you’ll surely have worked up an appetite to whet. Award-winning Scottish chef Nick Nairn is there to cater to your palate at The Kailyard, so you know where to head when you need your fix of fresh, locally sourced food that never wavers from the best in town.