Visitors to the Scottish highlands can now unravel the legend of one of Scotland’s most important historical figures, Robert the Bruce.

Melrose Abbey

With the help of Visit Scotland, visitors to the Scottish highlands can now unravel the legend of one of Scotland’s most important historical figures, Robert the Bruce.

Get to know the man behind the legend, and the star of the new Netflix series, Outlaw King, by following in his footsteps with Visit Scotland’s new interactive map, On The Trail of the Outlaw King, charting 20 filming locations, and 24 areas that the monarch visited in his life.

From Bruce’s stone in the Galloway Forest Park, to his believed resting place at Dunfermline Abbey, here are some of the historic buildings, lochs, ruins, and battlefields you can explore with your group.

1.    Enjoy two-in-one with a visit to Dunfermline Abbey in west Fife. Used to portray Westminster Abbey in the Netflix series, the religious building is more notably known as the place where Robert the Bruce was laid to rest in 1329. Well, minus his heart.

2.    In the grounds of Melrose Abbey, you will find The Bruce’s heart, where it was buried after it returned from the Holy Land and the crusades, just as The Bruce requested prior to his death. Today, you can see a marker stone over his heart’s location, a signifier of a custom that saw many-a-monarch buried separately from their body at the time.

Image: Battle of Bannockburn momument (Photo Credit: VisitScotland/Kenny Lam)

3.    Rewind to 1314 as you relive the famous Battle of Bannockburn in a 3D immersive experience at the visitor centre in Stirling. Famed as one of the most decisive clashes in the First War of Scottish Independence, you can now visit the very place that Robert the Bruce led Scottish forces to over 700 years ago.

4.    Located at the heart of the Cairngorms National Park, is Rothiemurchus Estate within which you will find the Loch an Eilein, where the ruins of a 13th century castle stand. The area features in Outlaw King during the MacDougalls attack, and as a natural backdrop throughout the series so it’s worth heading to if you’re keen to explore some of the more picturesque film locations.  

5.    Scone Palace, near the city of Perth, is known as the ancient crowning place of Scottish Kings, including the first King of Scots, Kenneth MacAlpin, the real-life Macbeth and, of course, Robert the Bruce. Visitors can head to the property to see a selection of its 100-plus rooms and to delve into the palace’s rich Scottish history.

6.    Head to the top of the hill on the north side of Loch Trool in the Galloway National Park and you will find Bruce’s stone, the huge granite boulder that commemorates the monarch’s first victory over an English army in 1307. Legend has it that Bruce rested against the boulder, savouring his hard-won success.

Main image: Melrose Abbey (Photo Credit: VisitScotland/Kenny Lam)