Nestled in the heart of Scotland, straddling both the Highlands and the Lowlands, is the picturesque county of Perthshire. The region, characterised by its verdant rolling hills, sparkling lochs, and extensive woodland, has a distinctive mix of urban and rural living.

Our Perthshire area guide uncovers the tranquil beauty of its countryside, the cultural vibrancy of towns like Perth - Scotland's 'Fair City', and the grandeur of ancient landmarks such as Scone Palace. In addition, we delve into practical matters such as local schools, transport links, and property market trends that potential residents need to consider in this charming part of the United Kingdom.

History of Perthshire

Steeped in rich history, Perthshire was once the political centre of Scotland during the Middle Ages. Known as 'The King's Seat', Scone Palace near Perth witnessed the crowning of Scottish Kings including Macbeth and Robert the Bruce. An area of strategic importance, Perthshire was fought over by the Scots and English for centuries, which is reflected in the fortifications and castles dotting the landscape. The Industrial Revolution brought about transformation as towns like Blairgowley became important centres for textile manufacturing. Today, Perthshire's historical narratives play a substantial part in its uniqueness and charm.


Number one on our list is Scone Palace with its colourful grounds and historic 'Stone of Scone'. The Hermitage, Dunkeld, gives nature lovers a treat with its breathtaking woodland scenery, while enthusiasts of architecture will marvel at Balhousie Castle's Norman-inspired design, relating Perthshire's military history.

Landmarks we love:

  • The Black Watch Castle & Museum, Perth: This 19th century castle provides a poignant narrative of Scotland's oldest Highland Regiment, The Black Watch.
  • Loch Leven Castle, Kinross: Accessible by boat, this island castle is where Mary Queen of Scots was famously imprisoned and forced to abdicate her throne.
  • Blair Atholl Watermill, Blair Atholl: Operating since the 1590s, this traditional watermill grinds organic wheat for its on-site bakery.
  • Fergusson Gallery, Perth: With many works by the Scottish Colourist JD Fergusson, this gallery makes for a culturally enriching visit.
  • Kinnoull Hill, Perth: A nature reserve providing awe-inspiring views of River Tay and beyond, ideal for tranquil walks.

Top 10 things to do in Perthshire

  • Perth Museum & Art Gallery, Perth: Explore Perthshire's history from the ancient past to present.
  • Highland Safaris, Aberfeldy: Experience the Scottish wilderness at its finest.
  • Blair Drummond Safari Park, near Stirling: A fun-filled outing for all the family with its range of wildlife.
  • Drummond Castle Gardens, Crieff: One of Europe's finest formal gardens ideal for a leisurely stroll.
  • Crieff Visitor Centre, Crieff: Discover traditional crafts, enjoy local food and drink, and make your own ceramics.
  • Loch Tay, Kenmore: Indulge in water sports or simply relax to the tranquil lapping of the water.
  • The Scottish Crannog Centre, Kenmore: Step back in time to experience life in the Iron Age.
  • Perth Leisure Pool, Perth: Perfect for family amusement with its flumes, spa facilities and health suite.
  • Auchingarrich Wildlife Centre, Comrie: A day out with a plethora of wildlife and fun outdoor activities.
  • Pitlochry Festival Theatre, Pitlochry: Enjoy high-quality shows amidst stunning views of Ben Vrackie and the River Tummel.

Our recommended areas to live in Perthshire

  • Perth: Known as the "Gateway to the Highlands," Perth combines the accessibility and convenience of urban living with the serenity of rural landscapes.
  • Pitlochry: Renowned for its scenic beauty and outdoor activities, Pitlochry is perfect for nature enthusiasts and those with an adventurous spirit.
  • Blairgowrie: As Perthshire's second largest town, Blairgowrie offers rich history, great schools, and is a well-known centre for soft fruits.
  • Aberfeldy: With beautiful landscapes and proximity to Loch Tay and River Tay, Aberfeldy is ideal for those looking to experience Perthshire’s outdoor lifestyle.
  • Kinross: Located near Loch Leven and a short drive from Edinburgh, Kinross combines countryside tranquillity with seamless connection to major cities.

Best schools in Perthshire

Perthshire's educational institutions are highly regarded, offering excellent primary and secondary options. Perth High School and Perth Academy have excellent reputations alongside independent options such as Kilgraston School for girls and Strathallan School, a leading Scottish boarding school. For higher education, the University of the Highlands and Islands institution, Perth College UHI, offers a variety of courses catering to academic and vocational pursuits.

Transport links in Perthshire

Perthshire provides great connectivity via road and rail. The M90 motorway allows for easy access to Edinburgh while the A9 links Perthshire with Inverness and the Highlands. Multiple train stations ensure easy travel within Scotland with direct services to Glasgow, Edinburgh, and Aberdeen. For international travel, Perthshire is equidistant from Edinburgh and Glasgow airports.

In conclusion, whether you are looking to embrace the outdoors, enjoy city convenience, delve into rich Scottish history, or enjoy a vibrant cultural scene, Perthshire has something unique to offer everyone. The fantastic range of amenities, strong educational institutions, excellent transport links, and the region’s undeniable natural charm make Perthshire an ideal place to call home.

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