Group Tours

Thirlestane Castle is a magnificent 16th-century castle located in the Scottish Borders, just over half an hour south of Edinburgh. Situated just off the A68 - a major road running from Darlington in England to Edinburgh - in the pretty village of Lauder, it is the ideal stop off for coach tours.

Throughout its long history dating back over 400 years, Thirlestane Castle has belonged to the Maitland family, one of the most famous in Scotland.
Edward Maitland-Carew and his family currently live at the castle and Edward is available to give private tours.

The castle is located near other fascinating attractions in this part of southern Scotland, and we can help to organise joint itineraries with other historic house and castles in the region.


Tours will be given by one of our experienced, local guides who will take your group around the castle explaining its unique history and pointing out important highlights from the collections.

Please allow approximately one hour to take in the ambience and learn the importance of one of the oldest and finest castles in Scotland. The Castle Gift Shop allows guests to pick up a ‘wee mindin’ of their time at Thirlestane, from keyring and mugs to Tweedmill and Harris Tweed products.

Tour Highlights include:

  • New for 2021, Toy Museum ‘School Room’ - featuring Georgian, Edwardian and Victorian toys
  • The splendour of the State Drawing Room
  • Exquisite 17th century Dunsterfield gold-gilded plasterwork ceilings
  • One of the most extensive family portrait collections in Scotland, representing the work of famous artists such as Romney, Reynolds, Lawrence and Lely
  • Connections to key historical figures including Bonnie Prince Charlie and Mary Queen of Scots.
  • The Duke’s Bedroom with a fine four poster bed

The Castle offers groups:

  • Special group rates
  • Free coach and car parking
  • Free entry and refreshments for coach driver and tour guide
  • Bespoke catering and private dining
  • Beautiful grounds for walks


A trip to Thirlestane Castle isn’t complete without some refreshments. We have a variety of spaces to choose from and menus to enjoy, including:

  • An individually packed Picnic Lunch served in our Tea Room, Victorian Kitchen or Rose Garden
  • A Light Lunch (soup, sandwich and traybake) served in our Tea Room or Victorian Kitchen
  • A two-course Served or Buffet lunch served in our Tea Room or Victorian Kitchen

Visitors can also enjoy Afternoon Tea in our grand State Drawing Room or a Silver Service lunch or dinner in the State Dining Room. We can provide sample menus on request.


To make a visit even more memorable, we offer a range of experiences in the Castle Grounds including;

  • Archery and Clay Pigeon Shooting
  • Highland Games
  • Whisky & Gin Tasting
  • Falconry and Country Dancing demontrations


Our 5-star accommodation located in the South Wing of the castle is perfect for groups of up to 16 people. Groups can self-cater, stay on a B&B rate or be fully catered for.


Guided Tour from: £10.50 per person 
*Catering and activities at an additional cost - prices on request.


For more information and a copy of our Groups brochure, please email or call Jacqueline Miller on +44 1578 722430.