The Castle of Mey, Caithness. Hand Picked Places to Visit in Highlands and Islands, Scotland
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The Castle of Mey, Caithness

The Castle of Mey

Mey, Near Thurso
Caithness
Highlands and Islands
KW14 8XH
Tel: +44(0)1847 851473
Fax:+44(01847 851475
Map
Email: click here
The Castle of Mey online: information and bookings

The Castle of Mey, built in the 1560s ,was bought by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother in 1952, while mourning the death of her husband, King George VI. Falling for its isolated charm and hearing it was about to be abandoned she decided to save it.

So began the Queen Mother’s love affair with the Castle & Gardens of Mey. Situated about 14 miles east of Thurso and six miles west of John O'Groats, it stands on rising ground about 400 yards from the seashore, overlooking the Pentland Firth and the Orkney Islands, a short journey from the port of Scrabster. Having acquired the most northerly castle on the British mainland, The Queen Mother restored it and created the beautiful gardens that can be seen today. For almost half a century Her Majesty spent many happy summers at Mey. A tour of the Castle & Gardens of Mey affords visitors a rare opportunity to enjoy her summer home much as she left it after her last visit in October 2001 before she died at the age of a hundred and one in March 2002. The tour passes through the hall, drawing room, Equerry’s room, The Queen Mother’s study, the main bedroom floor, dining room, butler’s pantry, kitchen and gardens. The traditional Scottish walled garden which has two new rose gardens and is surrounded by fruit and herbaceous borders and the East Garden were created out of a wilderness by The Queen Mother and both are part of the tour.

Other highlights include the wonderfully extravagant jardinière centrepiece in the front hall overflowing with fresh flowers, a stunning portrait of The Queen Mother with her corgi Ranger above the fireplace in the Equerry’s room, the personal memorabilia, treasured family photographs and gifts that still adorn the table in the library, the Royal Coat of Arms tapestry in the dining room, and the visitors’ book in the drawing room.

In 1996 The Queen Mother created The Queen Elizabeth Castle of Mey Trust so that the castle could continue in perpetuity for the benefit of the people of Caithness. The Castle & Gardens of Mey are open from the beginning of May to the end of September but are closed for the last few days of July and the first week of August.

There is a visitor centre with a tearoom and gift shop and an animal centre.

The Castle of Mey, Caithness

Facilities
Historic House, Gardens, Car Park, Private Group Tours, School Tours Available, Animal Centre, Dogs allowed in grounds but not in castle, walled garden or animal centre Film location.

Additional Services
Available to let is the Captain's House which is furnished and equipped to a high standard, sleeps six in one double and two twin rooms. The new 20ft conservatory overlooks the enclosed garden and offers panoramic views over the Pentland Firth to Orkney.

Admission
House and Garden
Adult: £11.00
Child: £6.50
Seniors: £9.75
Family £29.00
Garden only
Adult: £6.50
Family: £19.00

In all cases children under 5 free, parking free.

Opening Times
Open daily 18th May to 30th September 2016
Closed 25th July to 7th August 2016 inclusive*
Castle open 10.20am to last entries 4.00pm
Free parking - limited disabled access.
*Dates subject to change, please see website

In case of alteration, please check prices, opening times and any specific important information before booking or visiting

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