Strategically placed Huntly Castle, at the confluence of rivers Deveron and Bogie,
some 40 miles north-west of Aberdeen, was quite a palace in its time
and still worth a visit today if you are in the area.
Although damaged, it has a splendid armorial freize over the main entrance door and carved fireplaces.
Closed Thursday afternoons and Fridays in wintertime.
Famous visitors include James IV in 1496 and Mary of Guise stayed here in 1556.
A motte and bailey arrangement was first built here in the 12th century for the Norman baron, Duncan ("of Strathbolgyn"), Earl of Fife.
The earthworks can still be seen.
Later in around 1400, an L-plan tower house was constructed on the site.
Subsequently the 4th Earl of Huntly rebuilt much of his grandfather's home
but it was changed again in the 17th century by the first Marquess of Huntly.
Open all year, the castle is owned by Historic Environment Scotland.
Phil Wright has information and photos on his site too.
Not to be confused with Castle Huntly at Longforgan near Dundee.