Posts for February, 2024

When is this event?

  1. 2nd March 2024
  2. 9th March 2024

Would you like to learn more about the night sky? Join us at the Discovery Centre in Tomintoul for an all ages stargazing session. We’ll have a briefing in the Discovery Centre before walking down to a nearby stargazing site in a group to look at stars, planets, and constellations and share resources for improving your celestial knowledge.

The Glenlivet and Tomintoul area is one of the best places in the Cairngorms National Park to discover the wonders of the night sky. It is Scotland’s second International Dark Sky Park and the most northerly in the world.

Toilets are available in the Discovery Centre and limited amenities are available in Tomintoul. Please dress appropriately for cold and changeable weather. Lots of layers, along with gloves and hat will make your stargazing experience more enjoyable. Please also wear appropriate footwear for wet and wintry conditions. If conditions are unsuitable on the day of the event the organiser will email attendees.

Join Cairngorms Astronomy Group and Tomintoul & Glenlivet Development Trust for a night of introductory stargazing and star stories during the new moon at Inveraven Church & Pictish Stones. Where do we get our stories of the night sky? What did the Celts see in the night sky? Come along to find out more and have a go trying out our community telescope.

Access to Inveraven Church is off the A95 about half a mile north of the entrance to Ballindalloch Castle, and can be found by following the brown tourist sign directing visitors down the single track road to the Inveraven Pictish Stones.

Parking is available at the bottom of the drive before you arrive at the church or in front of the church building. We will be meeting in the foyer inside the church building before walking up to field above to access the telescope.

As we will be outside, please dress appropriately for cold and changeable weather. Please also wear shoes appropriate for outdoor, wet, and muddy conditions.

Join Cairngorms Astronomy Club and Tomintoul & Glenlivet Development Trust in The Square, Tomintoul for an all ages telescope moon viewing session. The first quarter moon on the 16th is a great time to view and learn about the moon. We’ll meet at Tomintoul & Glenlivet Discovery Centre at 43 The Square, Tomintoul.

The Glenlivet and Tomintoul area is one of the best places in the Cairngorms National Park to discover the wonders of the night sky. Not only does this remote area have stunning dark skies but it also has easy access allowing everyone to enjoy a night sky brimming with stars.

We’ll have the Celestron telescope and a smartphone bracket on the night that will allow you to take the moon home in your pocket!

Toilets are available in the Tomintoul & Glenlivet Discovery Centre.

If the weather isn’t suitable on the day, we’ll endeavour to run an alternative session in the days following.
As we will be outside in March, please dress appropriately for cold and changeable weather. Please also wear appropriate shoes for wet, and wintry conditions.

“Glenlivet it has castles three, Drumin, Blairfindy and Deskie”. This guided walk will take us to the 16th century tower house of Blairfindy and begins outside the iconic Glenlivet Distillery. On the walk in we’ll enjoy stunning views over one of Scotalnd’s most famous glens. You’ll learn a bit about Glenlivet’s rich history and some whisky history too.

Blairfindy Castle was completed in 1564 by John Gordon. In 1586 Blairfindy passed to the Earls of Huntly, another branch of the family, who used it as a hunting seat. A panel above the arched doorway bears the Gordon arms and this date. In its heyday Blairfindy was a fine example of a three storey L-plan tower house and even today shows a remarkable degree of preservation.

A project to stabilise Blairfindy Castle took place in 2019, funded through the Tomintoul & Glenlivet Landscape Partnership, a programme supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund. The castle is now open to visitors for the first time in decades and has been specially adapted to encourage nesting birds and pollinators.

Please park at the The Glenlivet Distillery car park. The walk will start from outside the stillhouse under the green signpost marked ‘Blairfindy Castle 1/2 mile’ (see last photo).

Access is by foot along a dedicated track. Please wear appropriate footwear and clothing for changeable weather.

Toilets are available inside The Glenlivet Distillery Visitor Centre.

Children are very welcome to attend.

Well behaved dogs are welcome.

We would like to express thanks to Foundation Scotland, who fund this event through the Dorenell Wind Farm Community Benefit Fund.

Join us for a walk around Moray’s earliest surviving tower house reputed to have been built for Scotland’s vilest man- Alexander Stewart, the Wolf of Badenoch. Drumin Castle is an impressive medieval fortification standing on a commanding bluff overlooking the confluence of the River Livet and the River Avon. Once we get to the castle, you’ll learn a bit about the architecture, history, and the notorious Wolf, whose evil deeds continue to cast a long shadow in Moray’s history.

“Cathedral and Toun

Wyld wrath did engulf

Lone Lochindorb Castle

The lair of the Wolf”

This castle has recently reopened after masonry repairs. Access to the first floor is once again possible via a narrow, stone staircase. Sensible footwear is recommended.

Please park at the The Drumin Castle car park. This short circular walk will start from the Drumin Castle sign in the lower car park. Access is by foot along a pedestrian trail and will return by a set of steps. Please dress appropriately for changeable weather.

Toilets are not available on site.

Children are very welcome to attend.

Well behaved dogs are welcome.

Funded by Foundation Scotland from the Dorenell Wind Farm Community Benefit Fund.

Heritage Ranger talk: Inveraven Church & Pictish Stones

Join Glenlivet & Inveravon Heritage Ranger Lydia for an introduction to Pictish art and symbol stones. We will be looking at four Pictish Stones discovered in the churchyard of Inveraven, which has been a site of spiritual practice and pilgrimage for centuries. This tour will provide an overview to Pictish art and culture and will show how the Picts contributed to the shaping of modern Scotland.

Access to Inveraven Church is off the A95 about half a mile north of the entrance to Ballindalloch Castle, and can be found by following the brown tourist sign directing visitors down the single track road to the Inveraven Pictish Stones.

Parking is available at the bottom of the drive before you arrive at the church or in front of the church building.

As we will be outside, please dress appropriately for changeable weather.

Children are very welcome to attend. Please note that toilet facilities are not available on site.

Well behaved dogs may attend but must be leashed.

Funded by Foundation Scotland from the Dorenell Wind Farm Community Benefit Fund.

Come for a Wildlife Wander with someone from our knowledgeable team to see some of the amazing wildlife that Spring brings to Insh Marshes.

On this leisurely walk see the lush green aspen leaves trembling and a variety of bird species, including curlew (which we may hear calling), lapwing and snipe (which could be displaying) and song birds singing through the trees. During sunny intervals early butterflies like orange tip and small tortoiseshell will be flying.

We will meet in the RSPB Insh Marshes Car Park – what3words: ///epic.youth.venturing and grid ref: NN775998

Some areas may be rough underfoot. It is unfortunately not suitable for wheelchairs or buggies, and we recommend sturdy footwear.

Come for a Wildlife Wander with someone from our knowledgeable team to see some of the amazing wildlife that Spring brings to Insh Marshes.

On this leisurely walk see the lush green aspen leaves trembling and a variety of bird species, including curlew (which we may hear calling), lapwing and snipe (which could be displaying) and song birds singing through the trees. During sunny intervals early butterflies like orange tip and small tortoiseshell will be flying.

We will meet in the RSPB Insh Marshes Car Park – what3words: ///epic.youth.venturing and grid ref: NN775998

Some areas may be rough underfoot. It is unfortunately not suitable for wheelchairs or buggies, and we recommend sturdy footwear.

Come for a Wildlife Wander with someone from our knowledgeable team to see some of the amazing wildlife that Summer brings to Insh Marshes.

On this leisurely walk, the breeding season is well underway so young birds and other creatures like roe deer will be keeping their parents busy. Lapwing chicks will be feeding, running and hiding while relying on their camouflage and their parents to defend them. The marshes and trail are full of life and colourful scented flowers including orchids

We will meet in the RSPB Insh Marshes Car Park – what3words: ///epic.youth.venturing and grid ref: NN775998

Some areas may be rough underfoot. It is unfortunately not suitable for wheelchairs or buggies, and we recommend sturdy footwear.

Come for a Wildlife Wander with someone from our knowledgeable team to see some of the amazing wildlife that Summer brings to Insh Marshes.

The breeding season for birds is coming to an end, however there is still plenty of other life to be seen on the marshes and in the meadow. Colourful wild flowers include sweetly scented orchids, which attract beautiful butterflies and dragonflies. We will lookout for the scarce Scotch Argus butterfly which feeds on flowers like sunshine-yellow Rock Rose.

We will meet in the RSPB Insh Marshes Car Park – what3words: ///epic.youth.venturing and grid ref: NN775998

Some areas may be rough underfoot. It is unfortunately not suitable for wheelchairs or buggies, and we recommend sturdy footwear.


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