The Angus Tour – Explore our Rich Heritage

No. of Days

3

Transport

 

Theme

  • Heritage Attractions

Season

  • Spring
  • Summer

Highlights and Delights

Our diverse three-day itinerary has been created to help you discover the best cultural experiences Angus has to offer among some of the most beautiful locations in Scotland.

From thought-provoking museums and inspiring art galleries to a historical railway experience and spectacular castle with royal heritage, Angus offers many memorable and educational cultural experiences. The area’s restaurants and coffee shops offer some fantastic food and drink as well.

Discover why Angus is the perfect place to create some special memories while learning more about Scottish history and culture.

DAY 1 – BRECHIN AND EDZELL

Welcome to Brechin and Edzell

Day 1 begins in Brechin, where you will enjoy a memorable railway experience and explore the town’s museum. Brechin is known for its cathedral, one of only two Irish-style cathedrals with an 11th century round tower remaining in Scotland.

You will also visit Edzell to enjoy a wonderful dinner and an evening stroll. Edzell is a hidden gem with some incredible walks and stunning locations. It’s known for The Shakin Brig (shaking bridge), a suspension bridge that crosses the River North Esk and runs alongside the village.

Travel information

Brechin is just a few minutes from the main A90 dual carriageway that runs through Angus, linking it to Dundee and Aberdeen.

Edzell is a short, 10-minute drive (or 30-minute cycle) from Brechin along the A966. Download the Visit Angus app for convenient access to an interactive map of local electric charging points on your iOS or Android phone.

  • Town House
  • Caledonian Railway
  • Lunch
  • Cathedral
  • Glenesk Retreat
  • Dinner

Location 1: Brechin Town House Museum

Explore the history of Brechin and its people at the Brechin Town House Museum. The museum offers a rich and fascinating collection of objects, photographs, artworks, and archival material.

Enjoy an ever-changing programme of contemporary exhibitions, including visual art installations and a variety of fascinating talks. You will learn more about the ancient Picts, the Jacobites and 20th century history. Use the museum’s detailed model of the town as it was in 1822 to see what’s changed when compared with modern-day Brechin.

The museum is located within a historic municipal building that was constructed around 1789-90 in the centre of the town, replacing a medieval tollbooth. The municipal building originally consisted of an assembly hall, a courtroom, a jail and a council chamber.

The ground floor of the townhouse became home to the Brechin Town House Museum in 2003 and now offers an excellent opportunity for you to learn more about this ancient area of Angus.

  • Location: 28 High Street, Brechin, DD9 6ER
  • Opening times (1 April to 31 October 2022): Wednesday to Saturday, 11am to 4pm
  • Entry: Free
  • Accessibility: Disabled access with disabled parking nearby
Brechin Town House Museum

Location 2: Caledonian Railway

Visit Brechin’s Caledonian Railway next to take in the sights, smells, and that special feeling of sitting in a traditional coal or diesel-powered train as it gradually pulls away from the station.

The trains run along a four-mile branch line between Brechin and the countryside stop of Bridge of Dun, a former stopping place for royal trains.

During the 19th century, the small town of Brechin began to grow and become known for its produce, namely textiles and whisky. To allow the town to continue growing, a method of moving large quantities of materials in and out of the town was required.

Two methods of transport were suggested for the job; canals and railways. Due to the geography of Brechin and the River South Esk, building a canal was not feasible and so a railway line was constructed.

Originally built in 1848 as a branch line between Brechin and Bridge of Dun, Brechin station was expanded in 1885 to accommodate more passenger and freight trains.

However, due to increased competition from motor vehicles, the line closed to passenger services in 1952 but remained open to freight traffic until 1981. Today, Caledonian Railway is a classic and well-preserved railway – and one of the most popular attractions in Angus.

Enjoy the collection of classic locomotives and coaches, and shop for souvenirs at Brechin Station. This is an excellent volunteer-run destination and a long-standing local charity. All funds are reinvested into the restoration and preservation of the railway.

Many fantastic events run throughout the spring and summer at Caledonian Railway. There are Diesel Saturdays and Steam Sundays, as well as the chance to enjoy afternoon tea on a train and days out with Thomas the Tank Engine. Events must be booked in advance.

  • Location: 2 Park Road, Brechin, Angus, DD9 7AF
  • Opening times and entry costs: Please check the Caledonian Railway website
  • Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible with accessible toilets
Caledonian Railway, Brechin

Location 3: Lunch at the Whistle Stop Cafe

Enjoy a light lunch and delicious home baking at The Whistle Stop Café, situated on Platform 1 of Brechin Station. This charming family-run coffee shop sits within a historic station building at the Caledonian Railway.

The café offers a wide range of high quality, locally-sourced food, drinks, and home baking throughout the day.

Choose from a range of tasty light lunches, including soup, sandwiches, and toasties. Follow lunch with a slice of cake and a coffee, and you’ll be ready for the rest of the afternoon.

  • Location: The Station, Park Road, Brechin, Angus, DD9 7A
  • Opening times: Wednesday to Sunday, 10am to 3pm
  • Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible with accessible toilets
Whistle Stop Cafe Brechin 700 x 500

Location 4: Brechin Cathedral

Before leaving Brechin, spend 15 minutes or so admiring one of Brechin’s most stunning landmarks. Brechin Cathedral is an ancient Parish Church that has stood in this picturesque town for nearly 1,000 years. The Round Tower that stands at the southwest corner of the church is one of only two of a kind in Scotland and dates from AD 1100.

Use the Visit Angus app to get a closer view of the cathedral’s beautiful stained glass windows using the 360° images.

  • Location: 6 Church Street, Brechin, DD9 6EU
Brechin Cathedral

Location 5: Glenesk Retreat & Folk Museum

Spend an enjoyable and informative afternoon at The Glenesk Retreat and Folk Museum. The museum is located near the small hamlet of Tarfside, a beautiful location within Glenesk, around 30 minutes from Brechin. It was once the site of a cottage built by Captain Wemyss in the 1840s as an escape from life at sea.

The museum was founded in 1955 by historian and local schoolteacher Margaret Fairweather Michie MBE, who wished to capture a way of life that was quickly disappearing. Today, you can enjoy a remarkable collection of over 30,000 artefacts that tell the story of Glenesk life and the local area. The museum is now a charity run by local volunteers.

Every object in the impressive collection tells a story, from the Bronze Age to the mid-20th century. The main displays on the ground floor change regularly and feature a wide range of fascinating items from irons and basket-hilted swords to bibles and bustles. You’ll find the temporary exhibitions on the upper floor.

Outside, there is a lovely woodland walk and nature trail around the grounds where you will come across their collection of ploughs and millstones and a beautiful sundial. The Agricultural Display building is also home to a group of bats that have become part of a special educational project called High Rise Bats.

The museum’s location is also perfect for long walks among the stunning Glenesk hills.

The museum is currently open by arrangement only using their online contact form, emailing enquiries@gleneskfolkmuseum.org, or by calling 01356 648070.

  • Location: Near Tarfside, Glenesk, Brechin DD9 7YT
  • Opening times: Advanced booking required
  • Entry: Free (donations welcome)
  • Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible with lift to upper floor

Location 6: Dinner at the Panmure Arms Hotel

The Panmure Arms Hotel, located on Edzell’s main street, is a family-run hotel that prides itself on quality and service. The hotel has several dining areas to suit your personal preference, from the lounge bar with its friendly atmosphere to the quieter front lounge, situated at the front of the hotel.

Both dining areas serve a wide selection of freshly-prepared food using locally-sourced ingredients whenever possible. Choose from traditional meals like the haggis and black pudding bonbons, steak and fish dishes or food with an international flavour like sizzling chicken fajitas and freshly-made pizza.

There are also some tempting dessert options to choose from, including homemade white chocolate and Bailey’s cheesecake.

Many of the items on the menu can be made vegetarian or gluten-free. A vegan menu is available on request, and a children’s menu is also available. The hotel is recommended for its great atmosphere, attentive staff and standard of its food.

  • Location: 52 High Street, Edzell, Brechin DD9 7TA
  • Opening times (advance booking recommended):

Friday to Monday: 12pm to 8pm
Tuesday to Thursday: 4pm to 8pm

  • Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible
Panmure Arms Hotel, Edzell

DAY 2 – FORFAR AND GLAMIS

Welcome to Forfar and Glamis

Day 2 begins in Forfar, a traditional market town full of history and memorable experiences. Discover ancient buildings like the Pictish fort at Castle Hill and learn more about the Forfar witches. The town has many excellent places to eat.

You will also spend some time in Glamis on Day 2. Glamis is home to Glamis Castle, the childhood home of the Queen Mother and legendary setting for Shakespeare’s Macbeth.

Travel information

Forfar is just a few minutes from the main A90 trunk road. Travelling from Edzell takes around 25 minutes by car on the A90. There are eight locations with electric vehicle charging points spread across the town.

Glamis is located just 5 minutes from the main A90 dual carriageway and only 10 minutes away from Forfar by car or bus along the A94. You can also reach Glamis from Forfar with a pleasant 30-minute cycle through the Angus countryside.

  • Angus Archives
  • Meffan Museum
  • Lunch
  • Glamis Castle
  • Dinner

Location 1: Angus Archives and Restenneth Priory

Based near Forfar’s Restenneth Priory, Angus Archives collects and preserves the written and photographic heritage of Angus. This collection is available to the public – an excellent opportunity to investigate the possibility of any long-lost Angus ancestors or just learn more about what life was like here in the past.

Visit the Search Room to look through extensive photograph collections, a fascinating local history book collection, plans of buildings, and family histories. The team based in the archives have comprehensive local knowledge and will be happy to help you.

And just a short walk from the archives, you’ll find Restenneth Priory. This is a sacred place of enduring importance – the site of an ancient church that enjoyed royal favour. Robert the Bruce buried his young son Prince John here in the 1300s.

Call 01307 468644 or email angusarchives@angusalive.scot to book an appointment for Angus Archives. You can visit Restenneth Priory without an appointment anytime before dusk.

  • Location: Hunter Library, Restenneth Priory, Forfar, DD8 2SZ
  • Opening times (Angus Archives): Thursday to Saturday, 10am to 4pm (by appointment only)
  • Opening time (Restenneth Priory): Daily, anytime before dusk
  • Entry: Free
  • Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible with accessible toilets
Angus Archives, Forfar

Location 2: Meffan Museum and Art Gallery

Continue the morning in Forfar at the Meffan Museum and Art Gallery on West High Street. You can learn more about the town here, including the history of the Forfar bridie and the story of the Forfar witches. You can also discover the mysterious Picts, thanks to the museum’s collection of enigmatic sculptured stones.

The museum also includes an accurate recreation of an old, narrow cobbled street called The Vennel. Peer inside several traditional shops, including Peter Reid’s sweet shop, a clock maker’s workshop, a baker’s shop with bread and bridies on display, and a shoemaker’s where you can watch shoes being made and mended.

There is also a diverse range of impressive artwork on display in the gallery from local, national and internationally-renowned artists.

  • Location: 20 West High Street, Forfar DD8 1BB
  • Opening times: Thursday to Saturday, 10am to 3pm
  • Entry: Free
  • Accessibility: Full disabled access with lift to upper galleries. Accessible toilets.
Meffan Museum

Location 3: Lunch at the Castle Club

Established in 1987, the family-run Castle Club offers heart-warming homemade cooking using only the best in local produce.

Choose from a selection of delicious, freshly-cooked dishes from the exciting lunch menu full of traditional Scottish dishes and food with an international twist. There’s something for all tastes here, from fish dishes, homemade lasagne, and homemade steak pie to salads, chicken enchiladas and vegetable tortillas.

All the food is cooked on the premises and made with fresh local ingredients.

Conveniently located in the town centre, Castle Club is not far from some of Forfar’s main attractions, including Forfar Loch. Perfect for a walk before or after your meal.

  • Location: 100 Castle Street, Forfar, DD8 3HR
  • Lunch service:

Monday to Saturday: 12pm to 2pm
Sunday (high tea): 4pm to 7pm

  • Accessibility: Steps with no disabled access
The Castle Club, Forfar

Location 4: Glamis Castle and Gardens

Just ten minutes drive from Forfar, Glamis is home to Glamis Castle, the childhood home of the Queen Mother and legendary setting for Shakespeare’s Macbeth.

Enjoy a self-guided tour of this historic 1000-year-old castle using your own mobile device or pre-book a space on one of the informative and entertaining guided tours. Take in the glorious details of the castle’s stunning paintings and antique furniture as you listen to stories about former Royal residents and famous visitors over the years.

The castle’s majestic grounds and gardens are beautiful all year round and offer the opportunity for an unforgettable walk in an exceptional location. There are four different routes to choose from, including a walk around the Italian Garden. Look out for resident roe deer, hare, pheasants, squirrels, otters and other woodland creatures on the Nature Trail and River Dean walks.

The beautiful walled garden features a Monet-style bridge over an ornamental pond and an impressive large central fountain. Enjoy cakes, coffee and other refreshments in the castle’s Victorian Kitchen Restaurant (open from 11am daily).

You can also take home something special from the gift shop to help remember your visit.

  • ​​​​Location: Glamis, Forfar, DD8 1RJ
  • Entry (includes access to the castle, gardens, grounds and tour):

Adults: £15.50
Senior (60+) or student: £12.00
Child (5 – 16 years old): £10.00
Family (2 adults + max 3 children): £50.00

  • Tours: Must be booked in advance
  • Opening times: Daily, 10am to 4pm
  • Accessibility: Partial wheelchair access with accessible parking and toilets

Location 5: Dinner at Armstrong’s Bar and Restaurant

After a busy second day, it’s time to relax and enjoy dinner and drinks at the wonderful Armstrong’s Bar and Restaurant. This newly-refurbished bar and restaurant offers an extensive menu and superb wine list, as well as a relaxed and contemporary atmosphere.

The dinner menu includes fine, home-cooked Scottish cuisine that uses fresh, local produce. This main dinner menu is complemented by the popular high tea, Sunday carvery, and Wednesday steak night menus.

Armstrong’s is renowned for its quality of service, affordable prices, and enjoyable atmosphere. Diners recommend the traditional dishes served here for their taste and presentation, and are particularly impressed by the scallops, deer, and sirloin steak, and also mention the varied selection of wines, ales and whiskies.

  • ​​Location: Roundyhill, Glamis, DD8 1QT
  • Opening times:

Monday to Thursday: 11.30am to 11pm
Friday and Saturday: 11.30am to 1am
Sunday: 12:30pm to 11pm

  • Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible with accessible toilets
Armstrongs Restaurant, Glamis

DAY 3 – KIRRIEMUIR

Welcome to Kirriemuir

On Day 3, travel to Kirriemuir, a picturesque town with narrow, cobbled streets and unique attractions like the birthplace of Sir JM Barrie, author of Peter Pan.

Kirriemuir is known as the ‘Gateway to the Glens’, thanks to its ideal location for exploring the beautiful Angus Glens.

Travel information

Kirriemuir is located just 10 minutes from the main A90 dual carriageway. The town is around 10 minutes from nearby Glamis by car or bus on the A928 (or 35 minutes if you’re cycling).

Travelling around Kirriemuir is easy and especially enjoyable on foot or by bike. There are eight locations with charging points for electric vehicles across the town.

  • Barrie's Birthplace
  • Police Museum
  • Lunch
  • Star Rock Shop
  • Gateway to the Glens
  • Camera Obscura
  • Dinner

Location 1: JM Barrie’s Birthplace

Sir JM Barrie, author of the Peter Pan story, spent his childhood in a small, traditional weaver’s cottage in Kirriemuir. The cottage is now a fascinating museum exploring Barrie’s life, his route to success, literary and stage works, as well as his enduring connection with Kirriemuir.

Visit to see the writing desk that Barrie used when creating the Peter Pan story, as well as the original costumes used in the very first production of the Peter Pan play.

The house also includes a Victorian bedroom and a washhouse in the yard, which was used as Barrie’s very first theatre. It was here that the young author performed his first play at the age of seven and that provided inspiration for the Wendy house in Peter Pan.

Children of all ages will enjoy exploring the fun, jungle-themed garden that includes a life-sized driftwood sculpture of Tick Tock, the crocodile.

On his death on 19 June 1937, Barrie was buried in Kirriemuir Cemetery next to his parents and two of his siblings. The cemetery is a short 10 minute walk from Barrie’s birthplace.

  • Location: 9 Brechin Road, Kirriemuir, DD8 4BX
  • Opening times:

1 April to 31 October: Open Friday to Monday, 10.30am to 4.30pm
1 November to 31 Mar 2022: Closed

  • Entry:

Adult: £8.00
Family: £20.00
One adult family: £14.50
Concession: £7.00
Young Scot: £1.00

  • Accessibility: The cottage is not wheelchair accessible
JM Barries Birthplace, Kirriemuir

Location 2: Tayside Police Museum

The Tayside Police Museum is a small volunteer-run museum located in the existing police station on Reform Street. It’s one of only a few police museums in Scotland.

Here you can explore the history of policing in Dundee City, Perth & Kinross, and Angus from the early 1800s through to the 1980s.

Enjoy some unique and fascinating artefacts, including uniforms, equipment, weapons, as well as documents and photographs. There are displays dedicated to Special Constables, Awards & Medals, and the Police Pipe Band. You can also venture into the old prison cells and try on some of the costumes.

There is also an exhibit referencing the last person to be hanged in Dundee, William Henry Bury. He went to the gallows in 1889 for the murder of his wife. He claimed to be Jack The Ripper during his confession to the crime.

It’s recommended to check the museum’s website to confirm exact opening times before visiting.

  • Location: 15 Reform Street, Kirriemuir, DD8 4BS
  • Opening times: Thursday to Saturday: 11.00am to 3.00pm
  • Accessibility: Level access from the street and ground floor accessible toilets
Tayside Police Museum

Location 3: Lunch at 88 Degrees

Conveniently located on the town’s high street, 88 Degrees serves custom-roasted coffee, homemade cakes and light lunches that include salads, soups and quiches.

Enjoy some unique and freshly-made lunch options like sourdough focaccia filled with prosciutto, brie, and mini yellow peppers or croissants filled with chicken, avocado, and mayonnaise.

Visitors recommend 88 Degrees for its quality coffee, tasty food, attentive staff, and friendly atmosphere.

  • Location: 17 High Street, Kirriemuir, DD8 4BA
  • Opening times:

Monday to Tuesday: Closed
Wednesday to Saturday: 10:00am to 4:00pm
Sunday: 10:00am – 3:00pm

  • Accessibility: Disable access with accessible toilets

Location 4: Stop off at the Star Rock Shop

Kirriemuir is home to the oldest sweet shop in Scotland, the Star Rock Shop.

Established in 1833 by David Ferguson, it still trades today from the same premises in the Roods, making it the oldest producing and continuously trading sweet shop in Scotland. Originally a mason from Brechin, Ferguson created the sweet ‘Star Rock’ following an accident that left him partially blinded and unable to work.

The unchanged Star Rock recipe has been handed down through the generations. The recipe is taught to each new owner of the shop, who then continues to make the rock in the shop’s kitchen at the back of the premises.

The traditional flavours include original lemon, butterscotch, cinnamon, clove, ginger, mint and a ‘medicinal’ humbug flavour. Other traditional sweet treats include tablet, treacle toffee and fudge.

You can also satisfy your sweet tooth with some more recent creations like Iron Brew Humbugs, Saltire Rock, and Banoffee Toffee.

It’s recommended to check the shop’s website to confirm exact opening times before visiting.

  • Location: 25 Roods, Kirriemuir, DD8 4EZ
  • Opening times:

Monday: Closed
Tuesday: 10.00am to 4.30pm
Wednesday: 10.00am to 4.30pm
Thursday: 10.00am to 4.30pm
Friday: 10.00am to 5.00pm
Saturday: 10am to 5.00pm

Star Rock Shop

Location 5: Gateway to the Glens Museum

Kirriemuir Town House was built as the town’s jail and courthouse. It has been at the heart of Kirriemuir since its construction in 1604. The Town House is now home to the Gateway to the Glens Museum. This was opened in 2001 after the building was carefully restored and conserved.

This museum tells the story of Kirriemuir and the Angus Glens. It offers a programme of exhibitions including a detailed model of the town as it was in 1604. Other exhibitions include a natural history and wildlife diorama, and a display of rare archaeological finds from the area, such as the Glasswell coin hoard.

Visit the museum to uncover the history and personalities of the town, including Sir JM Barrie, geologist Sir Charles Lyell, and AC/DC singer Bon Scott. You can enjoy recordings of local people, interactive displays, illustrated talks, and children’s events throughout the year.

  • Location: The Town House, 32 High Street, Kirriemuir, DD8 4BB
  • Opening times (1 April to 31 October 2022): Wednesday to Saturday, 11am to 4pm
  • Entry: Free
  • Accessibility: Disabled access to the ground floor only. Accessible toilets.
Kirriemuir Gateway to the Glens Museum

Location 6: Kirriemuir Camera Obscura

Gifted to the town by Sir JM Barrie, creator of Peter Pan, this remarkable attraction provides a glimpse back in time with some fascinating historic technology on display. One of only three in Scotland, the Camera Obscura is housed in a purpose-designed turret room in Barrie Pavilion on Kirrie Hill.

The knowledgeable guides will show you the striking 360° views of the beautiful surrounding countryside from on top of the hill. Look north to the Cairngorm Mountains, and you’ll see the imposing Airlie Monument on top of Tulloch Hill.

Enjoy tea and freshly-ground coffee from the Sacred Grounds Coffee Company (based in Arbroath) in the main pavilion. There’s also a selection of tempting treats to go with your drink, including scones with local jam and clotted cream, Kirriemuir gingerbread, a selection of cakes or strawberry tarts. The cafe sells cold drinks, ice creams, sweets, crisps and hot drinks to take away, as well as a selection of books and souvenirs.

As with some other locations in the town, it’s recommended to check the Cafe Obscura website to confirm exact opening times before visiting.

  • Location: Barrie Pavilion, Kirrie Hill, Kirriemuir, DD8 4PR
  • Opening times (April to October): Saturday, Sunday and Monday: 11am to 4pm
  • Entry: Free
  • Accessibility: Partial disabled access with accessible toilets
Kirriemuir Camera Obscura

Location 7: Dinner at Glenisla Hotel

After a busy day, it’s time to enjoy a quality dinner in the Glenisla Hotel. The hotel’s restaurant serves excellent home-cooked food from a varied menu that has something to suit all tastes.

Enjoy classic Scottish dinner options like haggis, neeps and tatties, Cullen Skink soup, and Balmoral chicken. Alternatively, you can try something a bit different, such as the trio of venison (venison casserole, medallion, and sausage).

There is a selection of vegetarian and vegan options too, including an appetising vegetable tagine pie. The hotel’s food is made using produce from local suppliers whenever possible, including their beef, venison and fish.

Diners recommend the hotel for the generous portions of high-quality food and reasonable prices. It’s best to reserve your table before your visit by phoning 01575 582366.

  • Location: Kirkton of Glenisla, PH11 8PH
  • Opening times (advanced booking recommended):

Wednesday and Thursday: 12pm to 11pm
Friday and Saturday: 12pm to midnight
Sunday: 12.30pm to 11pm

  • Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible with accessible toilets
Glenisla Hotel, Angus

Accommodation

Angus offers a broad choice of places to stay during your visit, from traditional cottages and coach houses to comfortable hotels in convenient locations.

The Angus Tour

Design your own adventure on The Angus Tour

Map of Angus in Scotland

It's easy to get to Angus by car, coach, train or air