How Far Is Balmoral From Edinburgh?

Are you planning a trip from Edinburgh to Balmoral? If so, this article will let you know exactly how long the trip is, alternative routes and what to expect when you get there. First up – how far is Balmoral from Edinburgh?

How Far Is Balmoral From Edinburgh

Going Straight There

The direct route from Edinburgh to Balmoral covers approximately 94 miles (151 kilometres). You will take the A90 and A93 which should take around two and a half hours if you’re travelling by car. This is the most straightforward option as well as the most efficient.

Exploring Alternative Routes

While the direct route is the preferred for most people, there are alternative paths that offer scenic beauty and unique attractions along the way.

Let’s explore some of the best ways to get from Edinburgh to Balmoral:

The Coastal Route

If you’re a fan of coastal views and picturesque towns, this route is for you.

Starting from Edinburgh, you can head east towards the beautiful coastal region of Fife. You’ll be able to take in the stunning views of the North Sea as you drive through charming fishing villages like Anstruther and Pittenweem.

Beautiful Coastal Region Of Fife

Keep moving along the coast until you reach the city of Dundee. Here, you can take a break and visit popular attractions like the V&A Dundee museum.

From Dundee, drive inland towards Balmoral and enjoy the beauty of Scotland’s landscapes along the way.

The Cairngorms National Park Route

For nature enthusiasts and outdoor lovers (that’s all of us here!), this is the route for you – you’ll be able to experience the wonderful Cairngorms National Park.

You need to follow the A9 north from Edinburgh and pass through the Cairngorms region, known for its breath-taking mountains, picturesque lochs, and vast forests.

A pit stop at Aviemore offers outdoor activities including hiking, skiing, and wildlife spotting.

As you continue your journey, you’ll be lead all the way to Balmoral. Capture glimpses of Scotland’s unspoiled wilderness as you make your way there.

The Castle Trail Route

If you’re fascinated by Scotland’s rich history and majestic castles, this route will fulfil all of your desires.

You’ll need to take the A90 from Edinburgh towards Aberdeen (also known as the Granite city).

Whilst you’re in Aberdeen, visit the impressive Dunnottar Castle. It’s perched dramatically on a cliff overlooking the North Sea.

Dunnottar Castle

From there, you can continue to follow the Castle Trail which winds through the scenic Aberdeenshire countryside, passing by iconic castles such as Crathes Castle, Craigievar Castle, and Braemar Castle.

Finally, you’ll arrive at Balmoral. Get ready to explore the renowned Balmoral Castle itself.

Choosing The Best Route

Deciding which route to take depends on your preferences, how long you’re willing for it to take and the type of experience you’re looking for.

If you’re looking for a direct and efficient journey, the traditional route will always come out on top.

However, if you want to immerse yourself in Scotland’s diverse landscapes, the coastal route may be the one for you.

What To Do In Balmoral Once You Arrive

Once you reach Balmoral, you’ll find yourself surrounded by a wealth of natural beauty and attractions worth exploring. Here are some highlights of the areas surrounding Balmoral:

Balmoral Castle and Gardens

The main attraction in Balmoral is the iconic Balmoral Castle. The castle serves as the private residence of the British Royal Family and is open to the public during the summer months.

Take a guided tour of the castle’s opulent interiors and learn about its history and royal connections. After that you can wander through the stunning Balmoral Gardens, which showcase a diverse range of plants, flowers, and scenic views.

Royal Lochnagar Distillery

Whisky enthusiasts should not miss the opportunity to visit the Royal Lochnagar Distillery. It’s located near Balmoral Castle and holds a royal warrant.

The distillery has been producing exceptional single malt Scotch whisky since 1845. Take a guided tour where you can learn about the whisky-making process and even have a taste test.

Cairngorms National Park

As mentioned earlier, Balmoral is situated within the Cairngorms National Park.

Cairngorms National Park

Being a vast area of natural beauty and outdoor activities, you should consider extending your stay to explore the park’s diverse landscapes, which include mountains, lochs, forests, and abundant wildlife.

Take part in hiking, mountain biking, wildlife spotting, or even skiing during the winter months. The Cairngorms offer countless opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers to immerse themselves in Scotland’s stunning wilderness.


The charming village of Ballater is located just a few miles from Balmoral and is often referred to as the “Gateway to the Cairngorms.”

It’s a picturesque village known for its traditional architecture, quaint shops, and local eateries.

Explore the High Street, browse unique boutiques, and sample delicious Scottish cuisine in one of the village’s cosy restaurants.

Ballater also serves as a base for outdoor activities in the Cairngorms, with many hiking trails starting from the village.

How Far Is Balmoral From Edinburgh

Take The Trip To Balmoral From Edinburgh

The distance from Edinburgh to Balmoral shouldn’t really matter if you drive. The possibilities for experiencing the best of Scotland’s outdoors should be enough to tempt you.

Whether you opt for the direct route or choose to venture along one of the other routes we’ve described, you’ll be sure to end the journey on a high.

Embrace the opportunity to explore Scotland’s captivating landscapes, historic sites, and natural wonders, making your journey from Edinburgh to Balmoral an unforgettable experience.