House of the Binns

West Lothian | Blackness | Stately home | ★★★

[House of the Binns]

The House of the Binns is a grand country home set on the side of a hill (or ben - which became corrupted to give the name "Binns") above the tidal Forth close to Blackness Castle. Uniquely among National Trust for Scotland attractions, the property is still home to the family who originally built it: the Dalyells, who have lived here for over 400 years. All tours are fully guided, fully accompanied by the screeching of the estate's resident peacocks, and designed so you visit the most impressive rooms towards the end. Among the highlights are some particularly fine ceilings, commissioned for an expected visit of Charles I in 1633 (which never came to fruition!). Sadly, photography isn't permitted. Afterwards it's worth taking the short hike up to the estate's highest point at Binns Tower. This folly was allegedly the result of a wager over who could come up with the most frivolous way to waste a load of money - the tower being the winning suggestion.

[Binns Tower]

📌 House of the Binns ★★★
Location: Off A904 a mile south of Blackness, G.R.: NT 051786 ///commuted.entitles.affair
Open (2019): House: Saturday to Wednesday afternoons, June to September; Grounds: daily
Cost (2019): House: £10.50 (adults), £7.50 (children), free for National Trust for Scotland members; Grounds: free

[Peacocks strutting their stuff in the grounds]


[There are two ways up to Binns Tower. The north option has good views over the Forth...]

[...while the south path visits a cave where General Tam Dalyell used to escape to for peace and quiet]

[House of the Binns from the front]


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