One Castle, Three Circles, lots of Cows

the one castle of the post: Drum Castle

The One Castle: Drum

On our last visit to Drum Castle, the one castle of this post, it was raining. So on the way to explore circles, we took a walk through the gardens, having missed them before. They were filled with the bright sights and scents of summer, the castle peeking round corners and through trees everywhere we went.

Originally posted 2015.

medieval tower in the one castle

Circle 1: Cullerlie

Cullerlie Stone Circle is unusual for Aberdeenshire in that it is not a recumbent circle. There’s only one photo as we were distracted by an elderly dog from the farm that wanted us to throw a stick.

Cullerlie Stone Circle, next up from the one castle

Circle 2: Sunhoney

More animals awaited at Sunhoney; an excited herd of cows ran alongside the path with us…

path to Sunhoney

They then jostled and jiggled for the best view at the perimeter of the circle enclosure.

lineup of cows

I fear we were a disappointment. There were signs that other visitors may have danced (trampled grass) and provided snacks (rolled oats all over the place) whereas we mainly sat quietly and took photos.

Sunhoney Stone Circle

The recumbent stone at Sunhoney has many carved cup marks but lichen and light conditions were not helpful in capturing them on camera (note rolled oats though).


The cows gave us doleful looks as we left and did not follow us back down the path.

Circle 3: Midmar Kirk

There were no animals to greet us at Midmar Kirk Circle, again an unusual site, situated in a churchyard.


While it was common for churches to be built on older sacred sites, it is unusual for the originals to have been left intact (almost, there are a few stones missing).

standing stone and graves
church and stones

Finishing with an apology to the cows – we’ll try harder next time – and the view from the roof of Drum:

window in Drum Castle roof, one castle

My Books (also featuring one castle!)

Scottish Historical Fiction from Ailish Sinclair

Set in a fictional castle in Aberdeenshire, Ailish Sinclair’s debut novel, THE MERMAID AND THE BEAR, features the Scottish witchcraft accusations and a love story. Her second book, FIREFLIES AND CHOCOLATE, was inspired by the kidnapped children of Aberdeen.

one castle more, Delgatie!
One castle more, Delgatie!

Amazon UK

Amazon worldwide


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15 Replies to “One Castle, Three Circles, lots of Cows”

  1. Your photos fill me with longing- I long to be there. When you’re in a stone circle you realize what ancient actually means. It’s a surreal experience. Very powerful places- and I’m not new-agey.

  2. Lots of magical places, what a lovely day out! As you say, it is quite amazing that those standing stones were left alone in a churchyard, it would be fascinating to find out why.

  3. This is so interesting! I had never heard of recumbent stone circles before, so have just spent the last hour on Wikipedia learning about them and stone circles in general and the cup marks. What fascinating people humans are. What amazing mysteries we leave behind. 🙂

    Thank you for sharing your beautiful photos!

  4. It is all so beautiful. I will never get to see in person so I thank you for letting us all see through your lens of the camera.

  5. My family and I are going to Scotland in June after we visit family in England, and I’m excited just seeing your photos and posts. I need to start researching on places to visit in Edinburgh and St. Andrews!

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