Nestled in the North of Scotland, Morayshire boasts an encompassing natural beauty that will captivate the hearts of all who choose to call it home. Its stunning landscapes range from sun-soaked beaches to thriving woodlands, creating a nature lover's dream come true.

In this area guide, we delve deep into the enchanting world of Morayshire. Its diverse charms include peaceful country living, historical splendour and a wealth of cultural events. We will illuminate the benefits and practical information of living in Morayshire such as property prices, school options and efficient transportation, as well as shedding light on some of the hidden delights that this region offers.

History of Morayshire

Morayshire or simply Moray, is steeped in a rich history which dates back thousands of years. Its historical significance is etched into the landscape in the form of Pictish stones and ancient castles. Notably, it was home to Macbeth of Scotland before he became King. The region played an integral part during the Scottish Enlightenment with the establishment of several schools. Today, Moray prides itself on its Scotch Whisky production with more than half of Scotland's malt whisky distilleries nestled within its borders.


Morayshire houses some of the key landmarks of Scottish history including the spectacular Spynie Palace, the grand Brodie Castle, and the majestic ruins of Elgin Cathedral. Each tells a unique tale of Moray’s past, transporting visitors back in time and offering a glimpse into Scotland's rich historical tapestry.

Landmarks we love

  • Birnie Church: Located near Elgin, this historic church is one of the oldest and most significant religious sites in Morayshire. Its tranquil aura makes it a beautiful and spiritual retreat for those exploring the region.
  • Bow Fiddle Rock: A remarkable natural sea arch, Bow Fiddle Rock is a unique gem located near Portknockie. It's a must-visit landmark presenting an unparalleled opportunity to indulge in the stunning beauty of Morayshire.
  • Duffus Castle: Situated on the outskirts of Elgin, Duffus Castle is a ruined stone keep that offers visitors a step back in Scottish history. Its spot atop a mound offers great views of the surrounding countryside.
  • Findhorn Bay: For nature and bird lovers, this is a paradise. The bay has a wide variety of bird species and is one of the most popular birdwatching spots in the UK.
  • Covesea Lighthouse: Set on the Moray coast, this iconic landmark provides breathtaking views of the surrounding landscapes and the North Sea. It's also a prime location for viewing the Northern Lights!

Top 10 things to do in Morayshire

  • Speyside Cooperage: Discover the art of coopering in the world’s only working cooperage with public accessibility. A visit here allows you to witness the amazing craftsmanship of the coopers as they work on whisky barrels.
  • Johnston's of Elgin: Visit this 200-year-old mill and explore the luxury of cashmere clothing. Johnston's of Elgin is one of the last vertical mills in the UK.
  • Speyside Distilleries: Sample single malt whiskies during a guided tour. Moray has more whisky distilleries than any other region in Scotland. They're scattered along the Malt Whisky Trail which stretches from Benromach to Glenfiddich.
  • Moray Firth Dolphins: Enjoy boat rides to spot Bottle Nose dolphins.
  • Lossiemouth Seafest: Indulge in a variety of seafood at this delightful festival that celebrates Moray's fishing heritage.
  • Explore Findhorn: Visit the Findhorn Foundation and Eco-Village. It is a model for sustainable living and offers various educational experiences for its visitors.
  • Millbuies Country Park: Walk around the loch and enjoy nature at its best. Ideal for picnics, fishing, or just a leisurely stroll.
  • Elgin Museum: Dive into the history of Moray at Scotland's oldest independent museum.
  • Walk The Dava Way: An old railway track turned walking path. This 23-mile-long route runs from Forres to Grantown-on-Spey offering pleasant walks and beautiful sights.
  • Visit Culbin Forest: Engage in peaceful walks, bike rides and spot various bird species in this thriving forest reserve.

Our recommended areas to live in Morayshire

  • Elgin: As the commercial and administrative centre of Moray, Elgin presents an attractive prospect for a range of buyers. With a robust selection of amenities, excellent schools, and scenic parks, the city is perfect for families and professionals alike.
  • Forres: A charming town known for stunning parks, historical sites and local community events. Added to this, the schools are excellent, making Forres an ideal place to raise a family.
  • Findhorn: If seaside living is your dream, Findhorn should be your first choice. With its sandy beaches and lovely coastal walks, it offers a serene lifestyle. The vibrant community, local eateries, and Findhorn Foundation make it a unique place to live.
  • Lossiemouth: Often referred to as the Jewel of the Moray Firth, Lossiemouth is famed for its spectacular beaches and marina. Its thriving community and array of outdoor activities make it a welcoming place for families and nature enthusiasts.
  • Fochabers: A picturesque village on the east bank of the River Spey, Fochabers boasts historic charm, thriving local businesses, and exceptional schools. It offers a warm community atmosphere in a tranquil setting.

Best schools in Morayshire

Morayshire is home to a selection of great schools that provide quality education. The primary schools such as East End Primary School or Anderson’s Primary School are well-rated and offer supportive learning environments. For secondary school options, Elgin Academy and Forres Academy are notable for their strong academic results and extracurricular programs. Gordonstoun in Elgin, with its royal history, provides elite private education from primary to secondary levels and is noted for its heavy emphasis on character education alongside academic pursuits.

Transport links in Morayshire

Morayshire has good regional transportation connections. Regular stagecoach buses serve towns such as Elgin, Forres, and Lossiemouth, and the area is connected by two major rail lines which provide services to Aberdeen, Inverness and beyond. The scenic roads of Morayshire offer fantastic driving routes, while Inverness Airport is less than an hour away and offers flights to UK and international destinations.

In conclusion, Morayshire has a lot to offer. Whether you are a history buff, an outdoor enthusiast, or simply someone seeking a peaceful place to call home, Morayshire is sure to meet and exceed your expectations. Its rich tapestry of history, gorgeous landscapes, renowned whisky distilleries, and plentiful recreational activities make it a wonderful place to live. Adding to these merits is a fantastic selection of schools and easy transport links, making Morayshire not just a place to live, but a place to thrive.

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