Greetings from Braemar Scotland. My springtime Scotland sortie yielded so many valuable meetings and property stays. Many of our clients followed me to the fabulous Fife Arms and the
five-star Balmoral Hotel in Edinburgh. Due to my timing, I was able to also visit the Royal Family Balmoral Castle and its beautiful gardens. Balmoral Castle has been the Scotland home of the Royal Family since it was purchased for Queen Victoria by Prince Albert in 1852, having been first leased in 1848. Queen Elizabeth passed away peacefully here in September. Inspired by seeing Queen Victoria’s ‘A Stag Shot’, a pencil and watercolor drawing for John Brown at Fife Arms, I recently watched Dame Judy Dench in Mrs. Burns. A reminder of the ravishing Scottish countryside.
One of my absolute most delicious afternoons was spent with the owner of an exceptional touring firm in Braemar, where Fife Arms is located. A magnetic personality, owner of a Royal Deeside Premier Luxury firm; he has been a land steward in the area for decades. A well-known local character often to be found in bright yellow wellies with his two chocolate cocker spaniels – Rosie & Peggy – in tow. He is originally from Northumberland, just south of the Scottish Border. Having spent many happy summer childhood holidays stalking the Scottish hills with his parents, grandparents, and siblings he always knew he wanted to live here full time. For over 21 years he managed Invercauld estate (the large estate by Braemar, stretching from south of Glenshee to east of Ballater and north towards Strathdon) until his retirement.
He mentioned he could take our clients out in a modern Range Rover or his two passenger Morgan. I exclaimed, a Morgan? I used to drive a Morgan! He stood up and said come with me, we are going to my house to see my Morgan! With a questioning glance to the Fife Arms ghillies, they smiled and said he is safe – go!
An Elder at Crathie Kirk, he can tell you many behind the scenes stories as well as showing you the grave of Queen Victoria’s favorite, John Brown, in the old kirk yard. He has unparalleled knowledge of the locality and its traditions, is a Braemar Local History Group guide and sits on the board of VisitAberdeenshire, the destination organization covering the north east of Scotland. A tour with him will leave you informed, entertained, well versed in local folklore while sharing the local hidden gems.
In the words of our favorite guide in Scotland “We can take you anywhere in Scotland. We have a stunningly beautiful country with so much diversity in the landscapes and culture, but Royal Deeside is our first and foremost love.”
If you want majestic hills and world class landscapes, royalty, a rich and sometimes bloody history, castles, a rushing river, highland cows – or even a unique visit to Crathie Kirk where the Royal family worship when they are here then he is the tour guide for you. Our clients have followed and raved!
Perhaps a picnic lunch at the late Queen Elizabeth and the Queen Mother’s picnic house with a roaring log burning fire and wide-open views across Balmoral Estate to the mighty Lochnagar – or maybe an eclectic café serving delicious lunches and coffee…?
Our favorite host, a born raconteur, has lived and worked in the area for thirty years, is passionate about the local area and the local community. Several of our clients enjoyed hiking about the Royal grounds with him.
Whatever your interests, whatever your tastes, be you young or old or somewhere in between, a morning, an afternoon, a day or more with this unique and knowledgeable guide will leave you entertained and with far more insight into the area than any guidebook can relate. His genuine interest in each of our clients has led to very successful days, he tailors each bespoke outing to the needs of each guest, whether they be slow strollers or zealous hikers.
There are so many extraordinary and varied areas of Scotland, which he can help you explore and make lifelong memories to take home with you.
Fife Arms enticements: BURNS NIGHT But, if ye wish her gratefu prayer, Gie
her a Haggis. On Saturday 28th January 2023, enjoy an evening of poems, pipers,
and puddings as we commemorate the life of Scotland’s most beloved bard, poet
and lyricist, Robert Burns. Every year, Burns Night is celebrated in Scotland
to mark his unique contribution to Scottish culture and history. This year they
will be joined by Scotland’s Makar, Kathleen Jamie. There is no place more
atmospheric than the Fife Arms to mark this uniquely Scottish event.
‘Fair fa’ your honest, sonsie face,
Great Chieftain o’ the Puddin-race!
Aboon them a’ ye tak your place,
Painch, tripe, or thairm:
Weel are ye wordy of a grace
As lang ‘s my arm.’
Address to a Haggis Robert Burns
KILTED OPEN. Discover one of Scotland’s most dramatic golf courses nestled in a remote valley of the Cairngorms National Park. A true community course, the Braemar Golf Club, provides a unique opportunity to play a round of golf overlooked by golden eagles, stags, and other rare wildlife. From the 12th – 14th May 2023, the Fife Arms is partnering with the club to host a tournament that celebrates the magic of Scotland and its most famous sporting export. The Kilted Open offers the chance for golfers of all levels to play as part of a 4-ball or create their own 4-ball in the Texas Scramble format. Each team has to create a name for themselves and there is a prize for the best name. The wearing of kilts by all players is strongly encouraged.
BRAEMAR LITERARY FESTIVAL. Following the incredible success of the inaugural Braemar Literary Festival in October, we are delighted to confirm that the Festival is returning in 2023. Join us on 29th September – 1st October, for a weekend exploring the creative use of words and
text in their broadest sense, celebrating the works of bestselling authors alongside visual artists, spoken word performers, singer-songwriters, and publishers alike.
What could be better Fife Arms and our Glorious Yellow Wellie wearing Guide? Where do you want to visit in Scotland, we can create unforgettable adventure’s everywhere.