Live /

Many historic places are still open for visitors, outwith Level 4 COVID protection areas. Book in advance and check if Scottish Government travel restrictions apply before travelling.

x

Fergus the stable boy looks after the horses and animals at Urquhart, but always has to be on the lookout for wolves! Go with him to find out how people lived in the middle of the wild wood.

Can you help Fergus mount a wolf-guard to protect the castle?

Welcome to Urqhuart Castle

I’m Fergus and I look after the horses and animals.

Did you know, most of Scotland was once covered by a great forest, full of wolves, boars, badgers, deer and other animals?

Here at the castle, we had to protect our animals from wolf-attack. Or sometimes, our neighbours would raid us and steal our animals!

Come with me to explore castle life in the wild wood!

Hay You!

The sound of horses hooves once clip-clopped through the gatehouse, as horses came and went, carrying riders, lugging supplies and pulling carts. The horses wore iron shoes to protect their hooves on stony ground.

What letter of the alphabet looks like a horseshoe?

Can you make the shape with your hands?

The Wolfguard at the Citadel

You need to put a guard on watch to keep a look out for wolves.

Can you find a high place in the castle, where you can see across to the wild wood on the other side of the loch?

What’s the time, Mr Wolf?

Find some space where you can play this game. You can do it with two or more people.

1. Everyone stands in a line. One person stands out on their own, with their back to the other players. They are the wolf.

2. Players call out ‘What’s the time, Mr Wolf?’ Wolf says a time, ‘Four o clock’. Players silently creep forward four steps, trying to get close to the wolf.

3. If a player touches the wolf, they win.

4. If the wolf shouts ‘dinner time!’ the wolf can turn around and if they can catch someone near them, then the wolf wins.

Timber! at the Watergate

You see those trees in the wild wood on the other side of the loch? Imagine you want to bring some here to make roofs for the castle buildings.

How would you get them here?

Remember, there were no cars or lorries when people lived in the castle!

Dinner Time in the Great Hall

Find the great hall. This was where enormous feasts were held for everyone in the castle.

Musicians played, and acrobats tumbled to entertain everyone.

People ate fish from the loch, and LOTS of meat. Can you name the animals these meats come from?

Beef?
Pork?
Mutton?
Venison?

What are your favourite foods? Make a menu for your feast.

It's furrr-eezing by the Grant Tower!

Look up from the bottom of the Grant Tower. Lots of these rooms were bedrooms. Some had fireplaces, but it was often cold and windy, so people made warm clothes and wove thick blankets to wrap themselves in.

Can you name the animals these warm materials could come from?

Wool?
Leather?
Fur?
Feathers?

Ram-raided at the lochside!

Over a month in Spring 1545, the MacDonald Clan raided the castle, and stole all our things, including LOTS of animals, and three boats!

Imagine you were raiding the castle, can you find a good place to tie up your boat?

As well as blankets, mattresses, furniture, pots and pans, they stole: sheep, cows, goats, horses, pigs, geese.

Can you IMAGINE the noise?!

Make a noise like each of the stolen animals!

- 3,377 sheep
- 2,355 cows
- 2,204 goats
- 395 horses
- 122 pigs
- 64 geese

Download the trail

Download a printable version of the trail.