Stirling local information
Stirling is one of Scotland's most historically important cities, clustered around a large fortress and medieval Old Town beside the River Forth. Also known as "The Gateway To The Highlands", Stirling used to be the only connection between the Highlands and Lowlands, and because of this it became of great strategic importance in the wars of Scottish independence.
The city is about 45 minutes' drive from the Four Seasons Hotel in Perthshire, and about half an hour from the major cities of Edinburgh and Glasgow. It is well worth a daytrip to see the many historical landmarks and attractions.
No trip to Stirling, or, indeed, Scotland, is complete without a visit to Stirling Castle. It rivals even Edinburgh's Castle for sheer magnificence as it sits on its high volcanic rock, visible for many miles in every direction. The Castle is in the care of Historic Scotland and is open to the public all year round. Three battles have been fought in its immediate vicinity, two of which were turning points in Scottish history.
The Battle of Stirling Bridge took place in 1297 where the forces of Andrew Moray and William Wallace defeated the combined English forces of John de Warenne, 7th Earl of Surrey and High de Cressingham. It was a shattering defeat for the English, with the bridge itself playing a tactical part, as it acted as a bottleneck for the deployment of the English troops, making it easier for the Scots to defend the onslaught.
Near Stirling Bridge is the Wallace Monument. It is located on the Abbey Craig, a rocky crag from which William Wallace and his men watched the English army gather on the South side of the bridge. This historic monument has 246 steps, with three chambers along the way where you can stop to catch your breath. At the top you can see Wallace's famous double-handed broadsword and learn about his struggle to free Scotland from English rule. The Scottish Hall of Heroes includes other great Scots sculpted in marble, including Robert the Bruce, Sir Walter Scott and Robert Burns.
The Battle of Bannockburn is named after the Bannock Burn, a small stream running through the city before flowing into the River Forth. The battle took place in 1314 and was a significant victory for Scotland's independence. Today there is a large monument and visitor centre located near the site of the battle. In addition, a circular-arch stone bridge, built by engineer Thomas Telford, spans the burn downstream of the battle site.
For more information about Stirling, Scotland or the Four Seasons hotel, please explore the rest of our website. Our best rates are available to book online through the hotel directly.