Best Scottish Castle Wedding Venues

November 27, 2023

Getting married in a Scottish castle is a fairytale for many engaged couples. They offer the same grandeur of a stately home, with added history and a splash of Scottish lore. Every Scottish castle is architecturally unique, with no two looking the same. There's a regal ambience and charm about every castle, and usualy a grand staircase that's perfect to pose for photographs on. They make for perfect luxury wedding venues, though not always with the luxury price tag. So sit back with a cup of tea, let's get into some of the best Scottish Castle wedding venues and some things to consider if you're planning to book one for your dream wedding day.



Exclusive Use Wedding Venues


One of the best things about hiring a grand castle for your wedding day is that they can very often be hired for exclusive use. When you've got all your friends & family staying in all the unique and quirky rooms in the castle, it has a real party atmosphere for the whole weekend. You'll feel like you own the place rather than just visiting it. Some castles may have a higher fee for exclusive use, so if you can't stretch your wedding budget to that you can expect members of the public to also have access to the castle and lodgings during your wedding day.


Beautiful Gardens & Grounds


With the exception of Edinburgh Castle, most Scottish Castles come complete with their own private grounds. Whether it's a gorgeous walled garden with sculpted hedgerows and delicately arranged flowers, or a wild woodland with a secret swing or an emaculate lawn and impressive driveway, the addition of nature & greenery to your wedding photography makes the most perfect packdrop for newlywed portraits. If you love the idea of an outdoor wedding, then a Scottish Castle's grounds make for a beautiful ceremony setting or drinks reception location too.


Catering & Wedding Suppliers


Some castles may restrict catering to their own chef and menu options, or give you the option of selecting from their preferred caterers. It may be the case that you can only select the caterers they allow on site, and that may be extended to the florists, bakery and other wedding suppliers too. If you love the idea of a Scottish Castle, but maybe want a bit more flexibility on your wedding vendors, it's best to discuss this up front with the events coordinator before you put down any deposit or sign any contract with the venue - and ensure any agreements have been made in writing too.


Lighting Conditions


Scotland might not be known for its warm, bright summers, but they do happen - trust me. When it comes to your wedding venue though, a bright atmosphere may be something you are looking for. Castles are designed to be a fortress as a well as a dwelling, and because of that many of our fine Scottish Castles don't have a lot of natural light pouring in. That's not to say all castles are dark & dingy, in fact many are not. Whie castles have been fitted with huge stained glass windows that allow natural light to flood the room, many are in keeping with their original design and as such rely on artificial lighting to brighten the room. From a photography perspective, this mean that your wedding photographer may have to use flash if you want your images to look their best and be lit correctly.


Bridal & Groom Suites


One of the best things about having your wedding at a Castle, is that you'll have access to a private suite to get ready in the morning. Having your own dedicated space to get ready with your friends is ideal, and with bridal or honeymoon suites typically larger than the average hotel room, it means that you won't feel too overcrowded in the morning as you're getting ready. There's nothing worse than feeling like you're tripping over suitcases or getting in the way of the make up artist on your wedding day, and with a big open space you can spread your things out and still have plenty of room to dance with your bridesmaids or lay your dress out if it's got a long train.


Large Weddings


If you're planning a large wedding, then a Castle is almost certainly going to have the capacity to accommodate all your guests - even if overnight guests may need to stay close by rather than in rooms in the Castle itself. Most castles have at least 1-2 large banqueting or ballrooms, meaning that you can have a large guest count without your wedding party packed into a room - and with a gorgeous courtyard or rose garden, your drinks reception can spill outside into the open air too.



Luxury Scottish Wedding Venue Castles



1. Drumtochty Castle


At the top of my list has got to be Drumtochty Castle, located in the wild woodland glen of Aberdeenshire. This 19th-century castle is known for its distinctive architecture, secluded setting and gorgeous grounds as well as its awe-inspiring ballroom. It offers a romantic setting in the heart of the lush Aberdeenshire countryside, perfect for couples who want a private celebration surrounded by nature. The castle's vast grounds and beautiful interiors provide ample opportunities for stunning wedding photography, including in the nearby woodlands or down by the pond.

2. Dundas Castle

A stone's throw away from Edinburgh is Dundas Castle, another Scottish gem. This 15th-century castle boasts a blend of medieval and modern luxury, offering couples the chance to experience a traditional Scottish wedding. The castle's Auld Keep is a popular choice for ceremonies, providing a historical and atmospheric setting. However, couples should consider that the Keep can only accommodate around 110 guests. Nevertheless, the photography opportunities are endless with its stunning architectural features and 17 acres of manicured gardens.


3. Carlowrie Castle

Located in West Lothian, Carlowrie Castle provides a fusion of contemporary art and classic elegance. This venue offers both indoor and outdoor weddings, with its 32-acre ground including a walled garden and vineyard. The castle's modern and luxurious interior is a unique backdrop for wedding photos. However, one thing to consider is the accessibility for guests as the castle is situated a bit off the beaten track.


4. Cornhill Castle

Situated in the heart of the Clyde Valley, Cornhill Castle is a breathtaking venue with a panoramic view of the River Clyde. Your ceremony can take place outside with gorgeous views of the hills behind, or you can opt for the pavillion with its ivory canvas ceiling and fairy lights. The grand ballroom is perfect for larger weddings, and is an ideal blank canvas for wedding styling that matches your vision. The castle's exterior, with its traditional Scottish Baronial façade, provides a beautiful backdrop for wedding photography. The Balmoral Suite is simply awesome, with 3 floors of luxury and a champagne room in the turret! While weather can be unpredictable at any time of year in Scotland, it's worth noting that if you're planning a winter wedding that the roads can be a little hazardous when it's snowing.


5. Melville Castle


At the end of the winding driveway is one of Edinburgh's most recogniseable castles. Melville Castle has gorgeous grounds for your wedding, and is ideal for both large and smaller weddings. Get ready in the gorgeous wedding suite with beautiful natural light and dance the night away in the pavillion that's adjacent to the main castle building. The grounds are beautiful, with lots of woodlands as well as open space for variety within your wedding photography.


Ultimately, getting married in a castle is a truly magical experience, but couples should consider factors such as cost, accessibility for guests, and weather conditions. Every castle has its unique charm and potential drawbacks. Still, the grandeur, historical ambiance, and the stunning photography opportunities they provide make castle weddings an unforgettable experience.

Ultimately, getting married in a castle is a truly magical experience, but couples should consider factors such as cost, accessibility for guests, and weather conditions. Every castle has its unique charm and potential drawbacks. Still, the grandeur, historical ambiance, and the stunning photography opportunities they provide make castle weddings an unforgettable experience.

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