Airth Castle overlooks the village of Airth and the River Forth. According to an account attributed to Blind Harry, in 1298 William Wallace attacked a previous wooden fortification on this site to rescue his imprisoned uncle, a priest from Dunipace. A later castle was destroyed after the defeat of King James III at Sauchieburn in 1488. The southwest tower is the earliest part, dating to the period immediately thereafter. An extension was added on the east side in the mid 16th century. Airth Castle was owned by the Bruces, Jacobite sympathizers who were forced to sell after the failure of the 1715 rebellion.

The castle is a major historic building that retains much medieval fabric. As such, Historic Environment Scotland has designated it a Category A listed building. Within the castle grounds stand the ruins of the former parish church of Airth.

The castle is currently operating as a hotel and spa.



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Founded: 15th century
Category: Castles and fortifications in United Kingdom

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3.9/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Fiona Fletcher (3 months ago)
Had lovely few days Good food lovely grounds for wee walk. Enjoyed time in pool and spa. Staff great will definitely be back soon I hope
joe strachan (3 months ago)
This was the worst experience of a hotel stay I have ever had. The room was awful. Chairs and carpets grubby. Furniture was chipped and scratched. The service in the restaurant was average at best but the food was poor. Even the soup was cold! Breakfast was an unmitigated disaster. I would strongly advise against booking this hotel.
Caitlin Goddard (4 months ago)
Absolutely gone down hill. Everything that could have went wrong did, we spent most of our stay waiting on our food arriving at each meal, it took between 2 to 4 hours to even be served breakfast or tea. The hotel is disgusting, no covid procedures in place or deep cleaning at all. Rooms were disgusting, the poor staff were run off their feet because management had overbooked and under prepared. Ruined our weekend and its impossible to get any kind of compensation, even if you aren't served dinner but have already paid for it you will not get a refund
Alan Bradshaw (5 months ago)
A magnificent building and venue for weddings and similar events. Sadly closed and has been for some time due to Covid. Interesting area to walk in.
Ravinder Bindra (11 months ago)
I am a wedding photographer from Fife and I recently shot a wedding at Airth Castle. The venue itself is very nice. An impressive building and lovely interior. I felt most welcomed by the staff and the food and service was fantastic. I really liked the restaurant and will be back for some more food. I can see the appeal of the venue and would love the opportunity to shoot here again. I have attached some pictures from the wedding.
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Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

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Glimmingehus is the best preserved medieval stronghold in Scandinavia. It was built 1499-1506, during an era when Scania formed a vital part of Denmark, and contains many defensive arrangements of the era, such as parapets, false doors and dead-end corridors, 'murder-holes' for pouring boiling pitch over the attackers, moats, drawbridges and various other forms of death traps to surprise trespassers and protect the nobles against peasant uprisings. The lower part of the castle's stone walls are 2.4 meters (94 inches) thick and the upper part 1.8 meters (71 inches).

Construction was started in 1499 by the Danish knight Jens Holgersen Ulfstand and stone-cutter-mason and architect Adam van Düren, a North German master who also worked on Lund Cathedral. Construction was completed in 1506.

Ulfstand was a councillor, nobleman and admiral serving under John I of Denmark and many objects have been uncovered during archeological excavations that demonstrate the extravagant lifestyle of the knight's family at Glimmingehus up until Ulfstand's death in 1523. Some of the most expensive objects for sale in Europe during this period, such as Venetian glass, painted glass from the Rhine district and Spanish ceramics have been found here. Evidence of the family's wealth can also be seen inside the stone fortress, where everyday comforts for the knight's family included hot air channels in the walls and bench seats in the window recesses. Although considered comfortable for its period, it has also been argued that Glimmingehus was an expression of "Knighthood nostalgia" and not considered opulent or progressive enough even to the knight's contemporaries and especially not to later generations of the Scanian nobility. Glimmingehus is thought to have served as a residential castle for only a few generations before being transformed into a storage facility for grain.

An order from Charles XI to the administrators of the Swedish dominion of Scania in 1676 to demolish the castle, in order to ensure that it would not fall into the hands of the Danish king during the Scanian War, could not be executed. A first attempt, in which 20 Scanian farmers were ordered to assist, proved unsuccessful. An additional force of 130 men were sent to Glimmingehus to execute the order in a second attempt. However, before they could carry out the order, a Danish-Dutch naval division arrived in Ystad, and the Swedes had to abandon the demolition attempts. Throughout the 18th century the castle was used as deposit for agricultural produce and in 1924 it was donated to the Swedish state. Today it is administered by the Swedish National Heritage Board.

On site there is a museum, medieval kitchen, shop and restaurant and coffee house. During summer time there are several guided tours daily. In local folklore, the castle is described as haunted by multiple ghosts and the tradition of storytelling inspired by the castle is continued in the summer events at the castle called "Strange stories and terrifying tales".