The perfect antidote to “droughtlander” is planing a vacation to visit some of the beautiful castles, villages, and highlands in Scotland where Outlander was filmed. From the picturesque hill where Claire first traveled through the stones to the castle where scenes at Lallybroch were shot, here are fourteen Outlander locations worth planning a trip around.
You’ll Recognize It As: Craigh na Dun
While the stone circle that Claire time travels through at Craigh na Dun isn’t real (it’s made of styrofoam), the surrounding scenery at Kinloch Rannoch very much is.
“I have a soft spot for this magical place,” Maril Davis, the show’s Executive Producer, told Travel + Leisure. “It truly lives up to the ‘four seasons in one day’ phenomenon that’s common in Scotland. While shooting up there for season two, we experienced bright blue skies, snow, rain, and gale force winds—all in the span of one hour!”
You’ll Recognize It As: Inverness
While Claire’s story begins in 1940s Inverness, those scenes were shot in the village of Falkland, just an hour’s drive north of Edinburgh. You can actually stay at the guesthouse featured in the show—called the Covenanter Hotel in real life—which looks out onto the Bruce Fountain where Jamie’s ghost is first seen. If you visit, Davis recommends going to Campbell’s Coffee House for a “mean toastie on a cold Scottish morning!”
You’ll Recognize It As: Castle Leoch
This 14th-century castle, just 33 miles northeast of Glasgow, stands in for the fictional home of Colum MacKenzie and his clan in Outlander, but this isn’t the only time you’ve seen Doune Castle on screen. Much of Monty Python and the Holy Grail was shot here and as were the Winterfell scenes in the pilot of Game Of Thrones.
You’ll Recognize It As: Cranesmuir
The charming village of Culross stands in for Cranesmuir, the home of Claire’s friend Geillis Duncan, while the area behind Culross Palace is where Claire’s herb garden at Castle Leoch is filmed.
You’ll Recognize It As: Fort William
This 15th-century fortress doubles as Black Jack Randall’s Fort William, where Jamie is flogged in season one. Blackness Castle got the nickname “the ship that never sailed” because of how much it is shaped like a boat.
You’ll Recognize It As: Duke of Sandringham’s Residence
Scenes from season one inside of the Duke of Sandringham’s home were shot in the Red Drawing Room at Hopetoun House, located in the outskirts of Edinburgh. Exteriors of the estate were also used for Parisian street scenes in season two.
You’ll Recognize It As: Lallybroch
Also known as Broch Tuarach in the show, the exteriors of this 15th-century castle stand in for Jamie’s home in the series. While exteriors are intact, the building is derelict inside. To visit, you’ll need to obtain a special vehicle pass from Hopetoun Estate.
You’ll Recognize It As: Wentworth Prison
Just a 25-minute train ride west of Edinburgh, the entrance and corridors of this 15th-century palace where Mary Queen of Scots was born are much nicer in real life than the fictional prison where Jamie was tortured by Black Jack Randall in the show.
You’ll Recognize It As: Le Havre
When Jamie and Claire escape to France, they dock at the French port of Le Havre. In reality, those scenes were filmed in Scotland at the historic Dysart Harbour and Harbourmaster’s House not too far from Edinburgh.
Drummond Castle Gardens
You’ll Recognize It As: Versailles
While the castle itself isn’t open to the public, you can pretend you’re attending a party at Versailles like Claire and Jamie in season two while visiting the gardens at Drummond Castle.
You’ll Recognize It From: The opening credits
While Glencoe never appears in any specific scene, you’ll know this landscape immediately from the opening credits of every episode. This highland spot is located near Glenfinnan Monument, where Bonnie Prince Charlie started the Jacobite Rising of 1745.
You’ll Recognize It From: Aunt Jocasta’s plantation, River Run
Jamie’s mother’s sister Aunt Jocasta lives off the Cape Fear River (hence the name of her mansion) near Cross Creek. But the Outlander crew had to recreate America in Scotland, and Creiff stood in for North Carolina.
Specifically, the scenes are thought to have been filmed in the Abercairny Estates, located roughly an hour and 20 minutes from Edinburgh.
“[It’s] obviously disappointing that we couldn’t film in North Carolina, but it would have been very sad to leave our Scottish crew in Scotland,” executive producer Maril Davis said in an interview with Access. But she feels that the show’s art department has ” absolutely transformed the world.”
Faskally Forest, Scotland
You’ll Recognize It From: The Mohawk Village
In season four, Faskally Forest, which is located just 30 minutes from Kinloch Rannoch stood in for the Mohawk Village. “[For] probably about a year we researched these longhouses that the Mohawk would build, and we essentially built a village. For literally a month, this Scottish park was taken over by [our cast and crew],” executive producer Matthew Roberts has said of this particular set.
While Outlander author Diana Gabaldon says the fictional Frasier’s Ridge is located “up near Boone and Blowing Rock,” Scotland stood in for North Carolina during filming for season four, but it’s unclear exactly where the scenes at Claire and Jamie’s American home were shot. “There is a right-to-roam law in Scotland, where you can pretty much go anywhere you want,” executive producer Marin Davis told the New York Post. “Because of that, we like to try to protect some of these people [who live near shooting locations] so they don’t have too many people visiting their properties.”
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