Kelburn – the perfect spot

Whether you’re looking for a day out, or a weekend away, Kelburn is a perfect spot to visit and here’s 5 reasons why…

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Kelburn is on the North Ayrshire coast, just outside the seaside town of Largs. We’re also a short drive to other coastal towns with Troon, Saltcoats, Irvine, and Ayr all less than an hour’s drive away.

Hop over to the Island of Great Cumbrae from Largs, or go further afield and explore the islands of Bute and Arran from other nearby ferry ports.

The Firth of Clyde is a favourite for sailors and Largs Marina is just a short walk from Kelburn. The Marina offers a number of eateries, including SCOTTS, who offer a discount to our guests.

Explore our grounds to discover incredible views overlooking the Firth of Clyde and over to the Isle of Arran.

… And Country

Kelburn is based around a woodland glen which has been forged over thousands of years by the Kel burn. The grounds offer a number of walks which showcase this stunning natural environment. Wildlife is commonly found in the glen and includes roe deer, foxes, and squirrels, plus an array of birds, both native and visiting.

Enjoy our garden, where colour can be found almost all year round. And seek out the number of heritage trees on site, including the two 1000 year old Yew trees.

If you would like to venture further afield, there’s plenty nearby – North Ayrshire is known for its rural countryside. Use The Coig to explore the area using pre-planned road trip ideas!

For the Kids

Kelburn is full of magic and adventure!

Explore our unique Secret Forest – a fairy tale maze that twists through our woodland. Discover a Giant’s Castle, a crocodile swamp, a witch’s cottage, and much more! (Please note: Entry into the Secret Forest is £3pp)

Conquer the Wild Wild West in our Saloon, complete with watch tower and jail or test your agility and balance with tunnels, bridges and swings on our Adventure Course.

Please note: Our indoor playbarn is currently closed due to COVID-19.

For the History

Kelburn has been home to the Boyle family since the 12th century. The castle is thought to have been built in the 13th century, and although no one knows the exact date of the first stone laid, the castle was there during the Battle of Largs which was fought between the Scots and the Norwegians in 1263.

Largs itself offers more information about the Battle of Largs – you can visit Vikingar! on the seafront or attend the Largs Viking Festival (cancelled in 2020, but due to run August 2021). Find out more about the Viking history in Largs here.

You can learn more about Kelburn’s history by following the History Trail, sign posted throughout the grounds. (Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, our museum is currently closed.)

For the Art

In 2007, Kelburn brought together some of world’s leading graffiti artists to create a unique burst of colour on the south side of its castle. In 2011, this mural was named as one of the world’s top 10 examples of street art by author and designer Tristan Manco – on a par with Banksy’s work in Los Angeles and the Favela Morro Da Providencia in Rio de Janeiro.

However, the castle is not the only piece of artwork at Kelburn. Everywhere you look, there’s flecks of creativity – the Boyle family history in cartoon form (drawn by Don Aldridge and displayed in one of the Centre Buildings – currently closed due to COVID-19), the unique and fantastical Secret Forest, the wooden sculptures leading the short glen trail, and even the hand painted signposts all show that Kelburn encompasses imagination, and that is what makes for the most spectacular memories!

Not too far from Kelburn is West Kilbride – Scotland’s Craft Town. Visit for an array of exhibitions, workshops, and shops. Find out more here. 

If you do visit us, please share your memories with us on social media and leave us a review on Google or TripAdvisor.