History, Heritage and Archaeology

The upland rural landscape of Eastern Perthshire that we know today is the result of over 6,000 years of people settling, farming and improving the landscape around them. 

Vanora’s cottages are ideally located for accessing some of the best experiences of this long history and the archaeology that accompanies it – right back to Neolithic times.

There is the world famous Meigle Sculptured Stone Museum, which houses one the most important collection of Pictish Stones in Western Europe and the Angus Pictish Trail, a 12 point trail designed to be followed by car, but enthusiastic cyclists and walkers can do it too!

There are 18th century military roads built during the political unrest of the Jacobite period which you can still walk or cycle and there are castles aplenty in easy reach of Alyth, from Glamis to Dunnottar, Blair Castle to Scone Palace.

Dundee, with its excellent Museums about the Jute Industry and RSS Discovery is only 35 minutes drive away.

Alyth, itself around 1,000 years old, has the only Museum out side of Perth in Perth & Kinross, the Auld Arches, founded in the sixth century by St Moluag and one of the earliest places of Christian worship in this part of Perthshire and the famous Den ‘o’ Alyth, one of the areas natural heritage wonders and a site of special scientific interest. Next to the town is the Iron Age Fort of Barry Hill, connected to the famous local story of Vanora (after whom our cottages are named), the Scottish name for King Arthur’s Queen Guinevere. Legend has it that Vanora was abducted by the Pictish King Mordred and imprisoned in his fort on top of Barry Hill. Arthur, convinced that she had committed adultery with him, had her put to death by wild dogs and buried in Meigle Churchyard under a mound which is still called Vanora’s Mound. The story is said to to have been carved into one of the great stone’s now in the Meigle Sculptured Stone Museum which is called the Vanora Stone.