Josh was at a conference this week, so Mom and I saw another gorgeous day and hopped in the car with the kids!! This was our 6th or so time to visit Dunnottar Castle, kids in tow. Before I get to the awesome pictures (not b/c my photography is good, but because Dunnottar is just splendid on a brilliant blue day), I will add a few tips for making it work with little ones .
Dunnottar with Kids
- The drive is lovely, especially if you exit for Stonehaven and drive along the coast. It doesn’t take much extra time and is totally worth it. Stonehaven is a sweet little town, too, and is worth a detour for lunch or just strolling if you have a few minutes.
- Try to go on a pretty day. Ha- as if you could control that. Regardless, it’s on the coast, so wear layers because it’s often chillier at the castle than on the mainland.
- Buggies/strollers are a no-go. You might use one to get from the car park to the steps, but they obviously serve no purpose on the steps.
- Therefore, be prepared to carry kids or wear a backpack carrier if possible. There are TONS of stairs, but they are totally doable. I promise. We do encourage our walkers to walk themselves on the way down since they’ll have the most energy then.
- Pack a picnic. There are so many lush spots for a great, grassy picnic. However, there are not trash cans/rubbish bins, so bring a plastic bag to collect your remains.
- There are toilets that are easily accessible once at the castle.
- Tickets are 5 GBP or 7 GBP for a season pass. It’s obviously worth a season pass even if you go just once more. We try to go every month or 6 weeks because we love it so much. Kids 3 and under are free. 4 and older are £1 each. Also, if you get the season pass, you have to provide your own picture on your membership card, or they mark it the first visit and charge you full fare the second. We just cut out some pictures we had on hand and used those.
- Bring some pence to toss in the pond. Luke loved doing that!
- Keep your eyes on your kids- there are some precarious spots that would tough for a toddler to negotiate on his or her own.
On the way home, Rebekah was chatty patty, and I was concentrating on the road. I think it was when we asked Rebekah to play the quiet game that I realized how quiet her little brother had been. I looked back, and this is what I saw:
Oh my word- love him. NO paci or wash cloth, and not a fuss. He just conked out. Fortunately, it was just for a few minutes and he was game for Burger King fries. I am sure you are wondering if it messed up his nap- thank you for asking, it did not. He crashed for another 2 hours and woke up chirping- love that kid.