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From Wikipedia (Creative commons license)
Balmoral Castle /bælˈmɒrəl/ is a large estate house in Royal Deeside, Aberdeenshire, Scotland. It is located near the village of Crathie, 6.2 miles (10.0 km) west of Ballater and 6.8 miles (10.9 km) east of Braemar.
Balmoral has been one of the residences for members of the British Royal Family since 1852, when the estate and its original castle were purchased privately by Prince Albert, consort to Queen Victoria. They remain as the private property of the royal family and are not the property of the Crown.
Soon after the estate was purchased by the royal family, the existing house was found to be too small and the current Balmoral Castle was commissioned. The architect was William Smith of Aberdeen, although his designs were amended by Prince Albert.
The castle is an example of Scots Baronial architecture, and is classified by Historic Scotland as a category A listed building. The new castle was completed in 1856 and the old castle demolished shortly thereafter.
Here's what you can see on a visit to Balmoral:
-The Ballroom, which contains an exhibition of paintings, works of art, porcelain, the Balmoral Tartan Collection and other items from the Castle. This is the largest room at Balmoral and the only one actually open to the public. The rest of the interior is a private residence. Exhibitions in the Ballroom change from year to year so if you've visited once, you'll very likely see something else the next time you come.
-The Carriage Hall Courtyard with its exhibition of Royal Heraldry, commemorative china and a display of native wildlife in their natural habitat.Once again, exhibitions are likely to change from year to year in this area.
-A formal garden covering three acres with several Victorian glasshouses, a kitchen garden and water garden
Garden Cottage - Queen Victoria's retreat, where she wrote her diaries and often ate breakfast. It is not open to the public but you can take a peek inside through the window. It is arranged much as it would have been during Queen Victoria's day.
It is closed during August, September and October. Even when it is open to the public, only limited areas can be visited, but those give a fascinating insight into the private life of the British monarchy. Please note that there is an admission fee if you want to visit the castle.
Visit at least the gift shop.
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Please note that it is possible that the information on this page is not accurate or not up to date. Rules or regulations that are not mentioned here may apply when visiting the place or the conditions on the location may have changed.
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