A Rural Adventure with Highland Safaris

A Rural Adventure with Highland Safaris

A few weeks ago, we were kindly invited to Highland Safaris HQ, just outside of Aberfeldy, to find out about the amazing projects they have been up to recently.

If you haven’t heard about Highland Safaris, please allow me to give you a quick introduction. Highland safaris is a 5-star visitor attraction based in Highland Perthshire that shows you rural Perthshire like you have never seen it before. They offer a variety of tours of the local area through their fleet of Land Rovers and also have some great attractions including the red deer centre, gold panning and a delicious little cafe.

Having been born and bred in rural Perthshire, I naively thought there I wasn’t going to see much that would surprise me. How wrong I was. The whole trip was an unforgettable experience from start to finish, packed with new and interesting activities.

Here’s a little insight into our Highland adventure!

Mountian Safari

The first order of the day was to take one of their legendary safari trips to explore rural Perthshire. There are a variety of safari packages available at Highland Safaris including:
– Mountain Safari
– Forest Safari
– Mountain Safari Trek
– Biking Safaris
– Walking Safaris
– 4x4 Off Road Driving
– Special Interest Safaris
– Seasonal Safaris
We opted for the Mountian Safari, as we were hoping to see some Autumnal views of Perthshire.

The trip started with meeting Colin, our amazing safari guide. He gathered us around a map of 3D map to show us the route for the adventure we were about to embark on, as well as pointing out a few key features on the map including Schehallion and the idyllic Loch Tummel.

Once Colin had finished briefing us on the adventure we were about to undertake, he showed us to his Land Rover. We all climbed in and set off on our Safari trip. As we made our way along the road, Colin shared his vast knowledge of the local eco-system and history with the group. He explained the dark colour of the Falls of Keltney was due to the peat-lands the water passes through upstream, he also told us of the ‘woodland corridor’ initiatives that were being taken to help support and encourage indigenous wildlife to settle and freely move around Scotland’s National Parks.

It wasn’t long until the country roads disappeared and we were climbing a dirt track. As we made our way up the dirt road surrounded by towering pine trees, Colin took the opportunity to tell us about the woodland and how many of the trees we see today in Perthshire are not indigenous to our region but were rather man made to help keep up with demand following the Second World War.

When we reached the top of Farragon Hill we were rewarded with some of the most stunning views of Perthshire I have ever seen. With the bitter wind blowing straight through us, we took shelter in the nearby shelter Highland Safaris hand built for its visitors and passing hillwalkers. It wasn’t long before the fire was on and Colin revealed some Kenmore shortbread biscuits (which were delicious!) and of course a wee dram of Dewars Whisky.

Before we knew it, our time was up on the mountain and we were back in the Land Rover heading back to Highland Safaris HQ.

Red Deer Centre

Once we arrived back at Highland Safaris HQ, we were ushered into the Red Deer Centre. The Red Deer Centre is home to Highland Safaris’ very own heard of red deer, where visitors can get up close and admire Britain’s largest native land mammal.

George, the deer expert in charge of the centre that day, started the experience with a short introduction to red deer, how the seasons affect their behavior and their reproductive cycle.
Once he had shared his knowledge with us, we were ready to meet the animals. Armed with a cup of pellets, we were lead to the back of the centre to what looked like a raised decking. Geroge let out a roar, at which point a small heard of deer appeared from around the corner and trotted towards where we were waiting. The deer knew exactly what was about to unfold and as they lined up along the fence waiting to be fed.

Soon enough the food was eaten and we were all lead back into the centre. There was one more surprise install for us. George disappeared into another room for a moment or two and quickly emerged with a beautiful Barn Owl! We were introduced to, Ossian, the very sweet bird that was sitting on George’s gloved arm. George and Ossian were like a well-rehearsed double act, with George explaining some of the unique features of these amazing birds of prey and Ossian demonstrating on queue.


Whilst you’re here…

After a long day exploring rural Perthshire, the Highland Safaris cafe is the perfect place to put your feet up and a bite to eat. Or if a safaris trip isn’t your thing, why not try your hand at gold panning or even a Loch Tay safari?

Gold Panning

Armed with your own pan & bucket of dirt, scoop & swirl in Scotland’s Only Gold and Gem Panning Centre.

> Find out More <

Highland Safaris Cafe

The Highland Safaris Cafe is the perfect place to relax with a cuppa and reflect on an unforgettable day.

> Find out More <

Loch Tay Safaris

Experience this unique boat trip, bringing the heritage and history of Loch Tay to life!

> Find out More <

One fact (amongst many) that has stayed with me since our highland adventure is a passing comment Colin made on our way back from the mountain safari. He told me that the word safari originated from the Arabic word ‘safar‘ which means ‘to make a journey’. Highland Safari certainly take the true meaning of the word to heart, as all their activities are created to not only take its visitors on a physical journey but also an emotional and educational journey too.

The day was an unforgettable adventure and should definitely be experienced by both visitors and locals alike. Find out more about Highland Safaris or book your adventure at highlandsafaris.com

A Sma Glen Mystery

A Sma Glen Mystery

It was a quiet night at the Foulford Inn on the night of the 9th of October 1926.  Outside it was blowing a gale, two men stood at the bar, grateful to be inside, where it was warm and dry.

Elizabeth Gorrie, the 24-year-old daughter of the owners of the inn, was sitting in the parlour when she thought she heard some shouting outside, She was sure someone was shouting “hey” this happened three times.  Elizabeth went into the bar and told her mother, they ran out to see a horse-drawn delivery van standing directly in front of the inn.  Slumped in front was 63-year-old Alexander Chalmers from 7 West High Street Crieff.

Chalmers worked for D & J McEwen in Crieff and would travel up the Sma’ Glen and along Glenquaich acting as a mobile grocers shop. Although severely injured and rambling when pulled out of his van at the Foulford Inn on the night of the 9th of October. He Stated he had been to a dance when he had not, he also said two or three times that had been attacked, he was not so incoherent as to not know the name of the owner of the Inn calling him John and asking for his horse to be taken care off. The two lamps were found, one lying at the side of the road, the other 500 yards away on the way to Buchanty, a route the delivery van had not taken.

Was the death of Alexander Chalmers due to a supernatural occurrence, was he attacked by a “Mist Man”.    The Dundee Evening Telegraph dated on the 16th of May 1927, some seven months after the death of Chalmers tells a strange story.  Under the heading  “The Mist-Man in the Sma’ Glen” the writer tells of an eerie experience he and his friend witnessed in the Glen.   The two men who were cycling when they were caught up in a dense mist, one of them looked around and saw quite clearly a tall man wearing a long overcoat walking over the moor about 50 yards away.  The man leaving his bike ran towards the stranger who had disappeared behind a small hillock. When the cyclist rounded the mound there was no sign of the strange man, there was nowhere he could have hidden no trees or buildings just bleak, desolate moorland.  He could see clearly for 200 yards in every direction. The man in the long coat had just vanished into thin air.  It was no trick of the light or figment of the imagination as both the cyclists had seen the stranger.  In an atmosphere of increasing menace, both cyclists mounted their bikes and “lost no time in getting away”.

Whatever happened to Alexander Chalmers be it an accident or something more sinister in the Sma’ Glen one stormy night in 1926 will remain a mystery.

Mi Rewards – the loyalty programme that rewards the whole city

Mi Rewards – the loyalty programme that rewards the whole city


How would you like to be part of a loyalty programme that rewards you without you having to do anything? If you’re out shopping, you don’t have to remember to carry a loyalty card or find an app on your phone. If you’re a local business, you don’t have to install new software or provide extra staff training. It really is as simple as it sounds!



Mi Rewards is the brand-new programme that rewards you through a clever, secure process where you link your debit/credit cards to your Mi Rewards online account. Every time you spend £1 on one of these cards in a participating business, you get one ‘Mi Point’. Once you have enough Mi Points, you’ll be sent a free Perth Gift Card! That’s more money going back into Perth’s businesses, keeping spend local and benefiting the whole city.

How did Mi Rewards come about?

Perth, was the first city in the UK to have it’s own Gift Card that people can buy and give as gifts to friends, family, colleagues or employees. This model has now been replicated in towns and cities across the UK.  The team behind the Gift Card wanted to develop a way to reward people for spending, too. It made sense to link the two together in a programme that’s the first of its kind in the UK, possibly in Europe.


How does it work?

We know that simple is best when it comes to technology. So we’ve made the Mi Rewards registration process easy and quick. Here’s what you do:


Fill in your details (name, email address, home address etc)

Choose a password

Pop in the details of one or more of your spending cards – Visa Debit, Visa or Mastercard. (Your card details are not seen by any of the businesses you visit.)

And that’s it! Now whenever you spend money in one of our registered shops, cafés, salons, clinics or leisure providers, you’ll start earning points right away!

You can check your points at any time, too, by logging into your account

Points means prizes (and perks and Gift Cards!)

Those points will accumulate and earn you Perth Gift Cards to spend in over 50 local businesses. Even better, in the meantime we’ll send our customers regular perks and give you the chance to win fantastic prizes. (See our competition at the end of the article!) And to say a big thanks for shopping locally, we’ll also throw in some random acts of kindness.

Perks that we’ve offered so far include:


Where can you Earn Mi Points?

Already more than 40 Perth businesses have registered with Mi Rewards, including gift shops such as Boo Vake and Silver Linings Design Studio, eating places such as Tabla and Grayson’s Wine Café, salons such as Charlie Taylor and The Cutting Room and health providers such as The Althos Clinic. You can earn them while having fun at Willowgate Activity Centre, Alba Airsports or Perth Leisure Pool. And you can earn them paying for a show at Perth Theatre / Perth Concert Hall or a film at Perth Playhouse!

‘Tis the season to start building Mi Points

Over 1100 customers have now registered for Perth’s Mi Rewards programme and earned points on over £10,000-worth of spend. With the pre-Christmas shopping season upon us, what better time for you to join them and start building your balance? You’ll earn 1 Mi Point for every pound you spend, so think of how that’ll all add up. Wouldn’t it be a treat to get perks, prizes and a Perth Gift Card in the New Year?



Enter our competition and win a £500 Perth Gift Card

Everyone who registers on or before 21st December will be put into a draw to win a £500 Gift Card! We’ll do the draw on the last Friday before Christmas – what a fantastic gift for our lucky winner.

Are you a business and you’d like to know more?

It couldn’t be simpler – just contact us on support@mi-rewards.com or call 01738 444376 we’ll get that information over to you.



The Black Watch Castle & Museum win BIG

The Black Watch Castle & Museum win BIG

Award Success for The Black Watch Castle and Museum

The Black Watch Castle and Museum was the proud winner of the 2018 Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality business of the year at the prestigious Courier Business Awards held on Saturday 27th October.

A Courier Business Awards spokesperson said,

“In a very competitive category, the judges were blown away by the growth, ambition and commitment to quality demonstrated by Anne Kinnes and her team at The Black Watch Castle and Museum.  Over the past year there have been increases in visitor numbers, an expansion to the premises and the team has ventured into the wedding and events market. There was no question The Black Watch Castle and Museum fully deserved to be recognised for the second consecutive year in the Tourism and Hospitality section of the Courier Business Awards.”

Anne Kinnes, CEO, The Black Watch Castle and Museum, explains,

“We are thrilled to have won the 2018 Courier Tourism and Hospitality Business of year. This award gives deserved recognition to the Castle and Museum team for their unwavering commitment to pushing the boundaries and their continued dedication to providing our visitors with a world class experience. I would like to thank my hardworking team of staff and volunteers, without whom successes such as this would not be possible.”

Caroline Warburton, VisitScotland Regional Leadership Director, tells us,

 “On behalf of VisitScotland, I’d like to congratulate Anne and her team on this thoroughly-deserved award. The Black Watch Castle and Museum has grown to become one of Perthshire’s most popular historic attractions, engaging and inspiring visitors through excellent customer service and exciting exhibitions. To win for the second year running shows that staff continue to remain passionate and committed to offering visitors the best experience possible.”

The Courier Business Awards recognise and reward business and individuals from across Dundee, Fife, Perthshire and Angus for their talent, innovation and excellence within their respective fields.

To find out more about The Black Watch Castle and Museum visit theblackwatch.co.uk

Perth Christmas Light Switch On Celebrations

Perth Christmas Light Switch On Celebrations

’s big, bright and brimming with stars, Perth’s Christmas Light’s Switch On is this year’s must-see festive celebration with a fantastic line-up of sensational acts making their way to Fair City to kick-start the season’s glorious Winter Festival.
20 Great Dog Walks in Perthshire

20 Great Dog Walks in Perthshire

What makes a great dog walk? Quite simply, it has to be loads of fun for your four-legged friend. They love water to splash in, trees to run amongst, open plains to stretch their legs, and plenty of things to sniff. Beautiful scenery, good parking and a nice café nearby are bonuses for you, too!

With those criteria, Perthshire has so much to offer. So who better to team up with for this guide than those fantastic folks at Dog Friendly Perthshire? Baxter and co asked their loyal fans for their favourite Perthshire dog walks and they came up with some fantastic ideas. Read on to discover 20 of Perthshire’s best!


1) Aberfeldy to Kenmore

Rebecca Vass recommends the fields on the river path from Aberfeldy to Kenmore, saying they’re “a lovely easy walk”. If you want to do the whole walk, you’ll pass Taymouth Castle and end up at the beautiful Loch Tay. Here’s Rebecca’s handsome boy, Hugo, enjoying his adventure.

2) The Hermitage and Pine Cone Point

Fiona Reid suggests the hugely popular and family-friendly Hermitage near Dunkeld. She says, “There are several different paths and the walk up to Pine Cone Point is very worthwhile.”

Gill Morton adds that she loves “the Braan walk at the Hermitage – beautiful scenery all around.” Here are Gill’s cute canine companions enjoying the view!

3) Dunkeld Riverside

Fiona Reid has another great suggestion for us that she enjoys with her cute dogs: “If you’re looking for a lovely, easy riverside walk, you can’t beat Dunkeld. You start near the cathedral and take the path by the side and along to a fork where two paths are signed. One is riverside, one goes through the trees.” As Dunkeld Cathedral is two minutes’ walk from the main street, you’ll have plenty of café options at the start or the end!

4) Five Mile Wood, Stanley

Lee Henderson says she loves “Five Mile Wood at Stanley; amazing place for your dogs and a great walk.” The Woodland Trust describes it as “Ideal for dog walking or running. Fairly flat, open, wide path.”

5) Moncreiffe Hill

Mike Sime says that “Moncreiffe Hill is a great walk with fantastic views.” His photo certainly confirms that! Trisha Riddick agrees, adding her wonderful photo of her dog: “Love Moncreiffe Hill. Lots of great sniffs for Breagha. This was taken at one of the hill forts overlooking Perth one evening.” With plenty of different walks, and good car parking, it was also the ideal place for a recent get-together of 21 Golden Retrievers from all parts of Scotland.

6) Forgandenny to Bridge of Earn

Katie Francesca Vallot has a less-travelled but equally scenic walk for us to try: “My favourite big walk is from my home village, Forgandenny, to Bridge of Earn through Dunbarney Estate and back around through Glenearn Estate.” At around an hour long, and with plenty of varied countryside, this is a great leg-stretcher for you and your pooch.

7) Loch Faskally & Linn of Tummel

Graham Jones recommends the circular walk “around Loch Faskally via Linn of Tummel and Coronation Bridge. Mack loves it too.” Here’s a cute photo of Mack peeping out from behind a tree on his walk near the stunning loch.

8) Birnam Hill

Stevie Hughes’s recommendation, along with a photo of his beautiful dog Penny, is for Birnam Hill: “It’s a great circular walk on a good waymarked path. Great views in all directions from the top. This is Penny on the summit Cairn.” You can start the walk from Birnam itself or at the old Birnam Quarry on the B867.

Craig Lockhart agrees that Birnam Hill is a great Perthshire walk, with a photo of his beautiful dog: “Birnam Hill all the way!”


9) Kinclaven Bluebell Wood

Vicky Reid is fond of Kinclaven Bluebell Wood, describing this photo of her happy dog: “This part of the walk always feels like you’re in an enchanted forest.” Kinclaven, near Ballathie, is well known for the beautiful carpet of bluebells that adorns the forest floor in late spring, so you’ll love it too. (Please keep dogs and humans off the bluebells, though, as they are easily crushed and grow slowly – thanks!)

Caroline Storey loves it too – here’s a photo of her lovely companion in the same wood on a sunny day.

10) Ben Vrackie

Stevie Hughes has another favourite adventure: “For a more strenuous walk, I love taking Penny up on Ben Vrackie from Moulin. Great path from the car park to the summit. It is not a Munro but still a substantial climb. The views from the top on a good day are sensational.” Penny looks like she loves this walk, too!

11) Killiecrankie

Joyce Kepinska Stuart’s recommendation is: “Definitely Killiecrankie Walk.” This walk covers the famous and scenic Pass of Killiecrankie and the picturesque Linn of Tummel. It offers so much to the canine and human walkers, including monuments, bridges, viaducts, woodland rich in wildlife and the wonderful Loch Faskally.

12) Grandtully along the Tay

Suzzanah Kidd has a picture of her super dog Freddie “on our fave walk along the Tay through Grandtully. It’s an easy stroll with plenty of fields to play in and spots for paddling.” Sounds ideal! While you’re in Grandtully, you can also visit award-winning Iain Burnett The Highland Chocolatier for sustenance afterwards…

13) Quarrymill

Danielle Gow and her lovely dog Skye “vote for Quarrymill. There’s a nice big field to run around mad, there’s water that’s not too deep to have a dip in, there are different paths, so you can choose to walk up the hill where it’s quieter and have a run around the woods, or a path through the woods which is more relaxing or the main path next to the water. Nice café too for the humans, where dogs can sit outside and there’s a bowl of water. There are also car parks at either end which is a bonus!” Quarrymill is easy to get to, as it’s on the main road from Perth to Scone Palace. The Macmillan Coffee Shop is open from March to October and staffed by a fantastic band of volunteers; proceeds go to Macmillan House (Perth).

14) The Knock of Crieff

Jenna Windross says, “The Knock of Crieff is a great walk.” From the top of this wooded hill you’ll see amazing views of Strathearn. Here’s a photo of Jenna’s beautiful dog enjoying the view!

15) Corbenic Poetry Path

Elaine Macfarlane says, “Corbenic Poetry Path is our latest new discovery and it’s a beautiful walk with loads of fascinating installations and some stunning natural features too.” This unique walk through a variety of terrains including open hillside, moorland, woodlands and riverbanks, offers much more than exercise and fresh air. Small poems, written word carvings and sculptures on the route make this one of Perthshire’s most peaceful and tranquil locations. Looks like Elaine’s adorable dog loves it too!

16) Glen Tilt circuit

Rhonda Philip recommends the Glen Tilt circuit; here’s her photo of her sweet dog Bella “enjoying a welcome break.” This walk, which starts near Blair Atholl, takes you along one side of the beautiful glen and back along the other. It’s a 4- to 5-hour circuit so if your doggy chum is on the elderly side, you can still do part of it and have a great walk.

17) Pitmedden Forest

Maria Whitter’s favourite Perthshire walks include “Pitmedden Forest near Abernethy; there are loads of trails and free parking.” Maria’s lovely dog clearly thinks this woodland walk, which straddles the Perthshire-Fife border, is fantastic, too!

Lana Elise also loves Pitmedden Forest, saying that she and her dog “venture everywhere” and that they love Perthshire’s mountains, too. That’s the great thing about our county – we have so many options!

18) The Ochils

Sandy Robb also loves Perthshire’s hills, saying, “You can’t beat the Ochils; so many summits and you don’t need to be really fit to climb them.” His beautiful dog looks happy on the hills, too!

19) Faskally Woods

Wee Les Smeidy answered our call for recommendations with these photos including her fantastic dog Harris: “We have had a lovely afternoon walk around Faskally Woods and Pitlochry. Though it was a bit rainy and misty, the colours in the hills were just stunning. We then walked through the town and had a lovely late lunch in Café Calluna.”


20) Kinnoull Hill and Deuchny Wood

We couldn’t do this article without mentioning a classic Perth walk – the ever-popular-with-pooches Kinnoull Hill and Deuchny Wood. On any day of the week you’ll meet lots of friendly dogs, discover dozens of trails and enjoy some spectacular views, all within a five-minute drive of Perth city centre. Here’s a photo of Kinnoull Hill in autumn, and a lovely one by Deborah Wallace Photography of Monty enjoying the sunlight in Deuchny Wood.

Christmas Nights Out in Perth

Christmas Nights Out in Perth

As the nights draw in and the year comes to a close, our thoughts turn to the Christmas celebrations. Whether it’s a party with your office colleagues, a date with someone special or a fun night out with friends and family, we all deserve to put on our glad rags and enjoy the festive spirit. So, just for you, we’ve gathered a sparkling selection of some fantastic Christmas nights out in Perth!

1) Party Nights

Mercure Hotel

Book your Christmas party at Mercure Perth Hotel for a fun-filled evening of festive dining, indulgent cocktails and dancing to the sounds of the DJ at A Glistening White Christmas Party. Whether you’re celebrating with friends, family or colleagues, the Mercure has the festive celebration to suit your party, your pocket and your date. From intimate party lunches, mid-week festive celebrations, full-on glitz and glamour party nights, or even an after-party in January, Mercure has it all.

How to book: Book by calling 01738 481607 or emailing christmas@mercureperth.co.uk.


Parklands is offering special Festive Party nights, where you can bring your friends or colleagues to enjoy a luxury-three course dinner served in the 63@Parklands restaurant, followed by some great sounds provided by the resident DJ.

The hotel also offers accommodation up until the morning of the 25th December, and a selection of festive menus over the Christmas period. Menus can be personalised to your own requirements.

How to book: Book at Parklands online or by contacting the hotel on 01738 622451.

The Grampian Hotel

The Grampian Hotel is hosting fun-filled Festive Party Nights on 1st, 8th and 15th December, as well as pre-Christmas lunches and dinners from 1st to 22nd December and Festive High Teas from 1st to 24th December. They’re also taking bookings for their Hogmanay Party too!

How to book: Contact The Grampian Hotel online to check availability and book your festive party night, lunch, afternoon tea, high tea, dinner or Hogmanay party.

The Royal George Hotel

Whether you are looking for a traditional Christmas party night or a festive dinner with friends, The Royal George Hotel in Perth city centre will help your party go with a swing!

The Party Nights, including disco, are on 8th, 14th, 15th, 21st and 22nd December from 7.30pm at £30 per person. There are also discounted Early Turkey Party Nights on 1st and 7th December, available with disco for £24 per person.

How to book: For further information or bookings please contact the hotel reception on 01738 624455.

Huntingtower Hotel

Huntingtower Hotel is offering Party Nights on Friday 7th, 14th, 21st, Thursday 13th, Saturday 8th, 15th, 22nd, and Sunday 16th December. Your special night will include a pre-dinner glass of bubbly, a three-course meal and coffee, party hats and novelties, then a disco and photo booth. They also offer a Hogmanay Party Night if you’re really planning ahead!

1) Delicious Christmas Evening Meals

63 Tay Street

63 Tay Street’s Christmas Day menu will be a luxury set-5-course affair. The menu will become available nearer the time, but the main feature will be specially selected free-range turkey with all the festive trimmings. The afternoon will be finished off with locally roasted bean coffee and homemade Petit Fours.

View 63 Tay Street’s Christmas brochure

The Post Box

The Post Box, which is featured in the Michelin Restaurant Guide, invites you to enjoy a Festive evening dinner in their city centre restaurant. Courses include Smoked Salmon, Roast Turkey, Pan-Fried Hake and Drambuie & Hazelnut Chocolate Mousse. Vegetarian and vegan options are available on request.


Award-winning Tabla Indian Restaurant offers you a sumptuous Christmas feast with a difference, including Dakshin Fried Fish, Haggis Bonda and Green Lentil Patties for starter; and South Indian fish, chicken, lamb or vegetable dishes for mains, accompanied by delicious drinks and welcoming service.

View Tabla Restaurant’s Christmas Dinner Menu brochure


Award-winning Tabla Indian Restaurant offers you a sumptuous Christmas feast with a difference, including Dakshin Fried Fish, Haggis Bonda and Green Lentil Patties for starter; and South Indian fish, chicken, lamb or vegetable dishes for mains, accompanied by delicious drinks and welcoming service.

View Tabla Restaurant’s Christmas Dinner Menu brochure


At this busy and hectic time of year, Deans is at hand to help make part of the “Festive Rush” easier, more relaxing and more enjoyable. Come with your family or friends to enjoy the open fire and fine food, accompanied by great drinks and a festive atmosphere. On offer for your night out is a Party Dinner or À La Carte Dinner (and there are also Party Lunches and À La Carte Lunches). Courses include Shetland Salmon, Cheese & Apricot Soufflé, Ochil Venison and Pithivier of Mushrooms. Desserts feature Valrhona Chocolate Cheesecake, Clementine & Raspberry Pavlova and many others.

View Deans’ Festive menus

3) Shows and Events

Of course, Christmas nights out aren’t just for workmates or big groups – here are some you can do with your friends and family!

Perth’s Winter Festival

Perth’s Winter Festival is an exciting calendar of events running from Hallowe’en in October to Chinese New Year in February. It brings a seasonal extravaganza of markets, shows, family fun and cultural events to Perth. With the Riverside Night Lights, the Christmas Lights Switch-On and everything in between, you’ll have a host of nights out to choose from over the festive season!

Find out more about Perth’s Winter Festival

Snow White and the Seven Dames

Whistle up your best booing, hissing and singing voices and help Snow White and friends live happily ever after in Perth Theatre’s dame-tastic family panto!

From Fri 30th November to Sat 5th Jan

Find out more about Snow White and the Seven Dames

Childline Christmas Concert

The annual Perth ChildLine Christmas Concert is organised by the NSPCC and Perth & Kinross Council Education & Children’s Services. Now in its 17th year, the evening promises to entertain and get you into the festive spirit. The Perth & Kinross Instrumental Music Service will present a variety of ensembles including Perth Youth Orchestra, bands and choirs in a joyous evening of Christmas music, carols and popular classics.

 Find out more about Childline Christmas Concert

Kilgraston School Christmas Concert

Through music and drama, the students of Kilgraston School will re-create some of the original “Portraits of Christmas” on stage: of Mary, Joseph, Jesus, the Shepherds and the Wise Men. Come along for a wonderful and uplifting evening celebrating the Christmas Story! 

Find out more about Kilgraston School Christmas Concert

The Polar Bears Go Up

The Polar Bears are moving up in the world. They’ve lost their balloon and they need to get it back. It’s time to get up, step up, climb up, jump up. One thing’s for sure, the only way is up! The Polar Bears Go Up is non-verbal and deaf-friendly. For ages 2-5. 

Find out more about The Polar Bears Go Up

Phil Cunningham’s Christmas Songbook

Now a Perth festive tradition, Phil Cunningham is once again calling his musical pals together and re-opening his Christmas songbook.

Eddi Reader, Karen Matheson, John McCusker and Phil will lead you through a great fun night of modern and traditional Christmas music. Featuring Kris Drever, Ian Carr and Kevin McGuire along with a special guest Brass Band. Book early to avoid disappointment!

 Find out more about Phil Cunningham’s Christmas Songbook

The Green Room

There are also gigs and Pups In The Pub nights in The Green Room throughout December. Check out the Gig Calendar for more details!

RSNO Christmas Concert Featuring the Snowman

We’re walking in the air… It isn’t Christmas until The Snowman has taken you on his magical journey through the winter sky. Enjoy this special showing of the festive classic on the large screen, accompanied live by the RSNO and narrated by guest presenter Jamie MacDougall. Perfect for the whole family, this is a Christmas party filled with seasonal favourites, carols old and new – and, of course, a chance for everyone to sing along! 

Find out more about RSNO Christmas Concert Featuring the Snowman

Things to do in Autumn in Perthshire

Things to do in Autumn in Perthshire

There’s so much to do in Perthshire during the “season of mists and mellow fruitfulness”. If you like getting outdoors among the red and gold leaves, there are so many ways to do it. If you prefer to wrap up warm indoors, we’ve got music gigs, theatre shows and much more to keep you cosy and entertained. From the Russian State Symphony Orchestra to Halloween fright nights, from the Fair City Enduro to kayaking on Loch Tummel, we reckon we’ve got something for everyone! This is a selection of highlights – for full listings check out Perth City Centre’s Events Calendar.

1) Outdoor Fun 

Run Club

Wednesday, 24 October

Further. Fitter. Faster. Join Colin, Live Active’s experienced, enthusiastic and energetic running coach for a running club for experienced and advanced runners. Over 8 weeks your technique and running performance will be improved through a range of athletic drills and training sessions that will include Fartlek, Interval and Hill running.

Find out more about Run Club

Fair City Enduro 2018

Saturday 27th October

Ever dreamt about shredding super-sick trails dressed as a Badger? Fair City Enduro, listed as one of Red Bull’s “must do” MTB Events in the UK, takes place around Halloween and is a mix of breath-taking trails, views… and outfits. You and hundreds of other bikers start the day in the city centre before climbing high above the city to some seriously tasty trails.

Find out more about Fair City Enduro

Kayaking on Loch Tummel

Sunday 28th October, 10:00am – 1:00pm

Loch Tummel is one of the best kayaking locations in Scotland. Wrap up warm and let Outdoor Explore guide you through the fabulous scenery, listening to tales and historical facts. This 2- to 2.5-hour-long guided tour is novice-friendly as there are single or double kayaks. Costs £45pp, but if you have your own kayak and kit, you can claim £20 off.

Find out more about Kayaking on Loch Tummel

The Perth 5K, 10K and kids 1.5K MoRun 2018

Sunday 4th November, 9:30am – 12:00pm, North Inch, Perth

MoRunning is back this November and they are proud to be returning to Perth! Brand new medals, more partners, great entry benefits and, of course, continuing their support for the Movember Foundation. So, all you MoBros and MoSistas, make sure you follow MoRunning on Facebook and get your entry secured. All the MoRuns have limited places so don’t miss out!

Find out more about Perth 5K, 10K and kids’ 1.5K MoRun 2018

2) Music, theatre, books and museums 

Alex Nye: The Art of the Ghost Story

Wednesday 10th October, 7:30pm, Innerpeffray Library

What better as Halloween approaches than to share a spooky evening with the writer Alex Nye? Alex will share her inspiration behind the writing of a new and haunting mystery, with the aid of atmospheric sounds, music and images. This will be a lively end to the 2018 season in the beautiful Innerpeffray Library. Alex will base her talk around her novel For My Sins, a “lost memoir” written by Mary, Queen of Scots herself!

Find out more about Alex Nye: The Art of the Ghost Story

Horsecross Voices

Various dates, Perth Concert Hall

A fun, informal singing group for adults. No previous singing experience or music reading is required. Featuring special themed nights throughout October and November including “Songs from around the world”, “Feel Good Scottish Songs” and “The Proclaimers”! Age 18+.

Find out more about Horsecross Voices

The 306: Dusk

Wednesday 10th to Saturday 27th October, Perth Theatre

A powerful new piece of music theatre about memory and forgetting, friendship and betrayal, exploring what the Great War means to us today. Co-commissioned with 14-18 NOW, it is the concluding part of the 306 Trilogy, following 2016’s The 306: Dawn, and last year’s The 306: Day.

Find out more about The 306: Dusk

Hairspray by Ad-Lib Theatre

Thursday 11th October, 7:00pm, North Inch Community Campus

The 1950s are out, and change is in the air! Hairspray is the family-friendly musical piled bouffant-high with laughter, romance and deliriously tuneful songs. It’s 1962, and Tracy Turnblad has one dream – to dance on the popular “Corny Collins Show.” When she finally gets her shot, she’s transformed from social outcast to sudden star.

Find out more about Hairspray by Ad-Lib Theatre

Drovers’ Tryst Ceilidh

Saturday 13th October, 7:00pm, Strathearn Artspace

Put on your dancing shoes and come to celebrate on the final night of the Tryst at Strathearn Artspace. Doors open 7pm, dancing will start at 7.30pm.

Find out more about Drovers’ Tryst Ceilidh

Richard Thompson in concert

Saturday 13th October, 7:30pm – 10:30pm, Perth Concert Hall

Richard Thompson is one of this country’s greatest songwriters and most distinctive guitar virtuosos, capable of breath-taking drama and sublime delicacy, hailed by Rolling Stone as “a perennial dark-horse contender for the title of greatest living rock guitarist”. His songs have been covered by everyone from Alison Krauss to Robert Plant.

Find out more about Richard Thompson in concert

A Celtic Autumn – Wood & Smoke

Sunday 14th October, 10:00 – 1:00pm, The Scottish Crannog Centre

The ancient loch dwellers who lived in crannogs were well-prepared as they entered winter with foods and fuel to keep them going. These preparations, such as woodworking, turning and whittling demonstrations, are featured in this event, with a chance to try them out. Smoked and cured foods, berries, apples and mushrooms, and rich meaty stews, will all be on offer for a donation.

Find out more about A Celtic Autumn – Wood & Smoke

St John’s Kirk: Morrison’s Academy

Sunday 14th October, 3:00pm, St John’s Kirk

St John’s Music, running throughout autumn, winter and early spring, is a series of organ recitals and concerts promoted by the Kirk. It aims to showcase the best of local music-making and to provide a platform for the many talented performers in and around Perthshire. This concert features pupils from Morrison’s Academy.

Find out about St John’s Kirk: Morrison’s Academy

Traditional Scottish Music Night – third Monday of every month

Monday 15th October, 8.30pm – 11.00pm, Greyfriars Bar

If you enjoy playing traditional music, come along to Greyfriars Bar on the third Monday of every month for an informal and fun evening. All welcome – from complete beginners to experienced musicians! Meet from around 8.30pm.

Find out more about Greyfriars’ Traditional Scottish Music Night

Russian State Symphony Orchestra

Wednesday 17th October 2018, 7:30 pm, Perth Concert Hall

A fantastic evening of rich Russian romanticism with a superb international orchestra. Rachmaninov’s second symphony wears its heart on its sleeve with lush melodies and one of the most gorgeous slow movements ever composed. Chloë Hanslip plays Prokofiev’s ravishing first violin concerto and the programme is rounded off with the yearning beauty of a suite of movements – Tchaikovsky’s evergreen Swan Lake.

Find out more and get tickets for the Russian State Symphony Orchestra

Let’s Inherit The Earth

Thursday 25th October, 7:30pm, Birnam Arts

Award-winning Dogstar Theatre Company teams up with Sweden’s Profilteatern to create a punk musical comedy about global warming, environmental destruction and mass extinction. Come and enjoy eighty minutes of theatrical mayhem on the greatest existential threat outside The White House! Performed by a brilliant Scottish and Swedish ensemble.

 Find out more about Let’s Inherit The Earth

Pitlochry Festival Theatre shows

Throughout October

There’s so much going on at Scotland’s Theatre In The Hills this autumn that we can’t fit it all in! Highlights of this season include smash-hit musical Chicago, The Rise and Fall of Little Voice and The Last Witch, the powerful story of the last woman to be sentenced in Scotland for witchcraft.

Find out what’s on at Pitlochry Festival Theatre

There But Not There installation

Until 11th November, Black Watch Castle and Museum, Perth

To conclude the Black Watch Castle and Museum’s centenary programme they will host this silhouette installation until 11th November 2018. This project is linked to the There But Not There national initiative to educate all generations about the ultimate sacrifice made during the First World War.

The display features a 6-foot outdoor “Tommy” sculpture with 13 transparent silhouettes throughout the venue creating a remembrance trail. Each silhouette commemorates and shares the stories of some of the many Black Watch soldiers who displayed great courage, making the ultimate sacrifice. There is an exhibition of artefacts kept for years by soldiers’ families as a way of remembering those who did not return from the conflict.

Find out more about There But Not There installation

3) Amazing Events 

The Enchanted Forest

Until 4th November, various times, Faskally Wood (shuttle buses from Pitlochry)

This unique and spectacular event promises visitors a truly enchanting experience that they’ll never forget. Set amidst the stunning autumn woodland of Forestry Commission Scotland’s Faskally Wood in Highland Perthshire, The Enchanted Forest is Scotland’s premier sound and light event. The 2018 show, entitled Of The Wild, combines breath-taking visuals, interactive special effects and a dazzling music score to make it a magical show for all the family.

Find out more about The Enchanted Forest

Spirits of Scone – Halloween Frightfest!

Thursday 25th to Wednesday 31st October, 6:00pm, Scone Palace

This October, round up your most fearless of friends and make your way to the Spirits of Scone, a fright-fest like no other! The nights are dark and the grounds will be transformed into a truly terrifying playground for menacing ghouls and horror film freaks. They’re lurking in the woods and hiding in the maze; this is where your nightmares come to life!

Find out more about Spirits of Scone – Halloween Frightfest!

History and Horror Tour of Perth City Centre

Friday 26th October, 8:00pm, Perth City Centre

History and Horror Tours are running a free tour of Perth City Centre as part of Perth’s Halloween weekend celebrations. Find out about the dark past of Perth on this walking tour of the city. Tours last for about 1 hour 15 minutes, and the recommended age is 8+. (Wear appropriate clothing and shoes for walking outside in our indecisive Scottish weather!)

Find out about History and Horror Tour of Perth City Centre

Perth’s Halloween Party

Saturday 27th October, 6:00pm – 9:00pm

Zombies, ghosts, and creepy crawlies will come out of the woodwork for free Halloween entertainment where the crowd become part of the performance. Dress up in your favourite Halloween costume and join in the parade from Horsecross Plaza or, if you’re feeling brave, try your luck in the misty maze and the zombie run.

Find out more about Perth’s Halloween Party

Murder, Mystery and Intrigue

Friday, 9 November 2018 from 7:00pm – 11:00pm

Ballathie House Hotel welcomes “Complete Mystery”, Scotland’s leading theatrical Murder Mystery Company, as they bring you an evening to remember. But be prepared… these are no ordinary sit-down Murder Mysteries. They ask all guest investigators (yes, YOU) to tread the crime scenes and gather the evidence as the story unfolds. You will find yourself in the midst of the action and witness the darker side of human nature as it happens!

For more information, visit the Ballathie House Hotel website, email email@ballathiehousehotel.com or call the Reservations team on 01250 883268

4) For the kids (young and old)


Sunday 7th October, 2:00pm, Pitlochry Festival Theatre

A show about eating and being eaten! With surrealist humour, an imaginative storyline and colourful characters including Giant Daisy, Dr Poo and Conceptual Cow, this show invites children and grown-ups to think about the fascinating world of food chains and our place in the natural world.

Find out more about Eaten

Willowgate Activity Weeks

Week 2 – 15th to 19th October, 9:00am – 5:00pm 

These fun-packed October holiday weeks, for ids aged 7 to 15, will keep them entertained – and tire them out! You can book for a full week or individual days. An example programme is as follows:

Monday – Kayaking, Canoeing & Aqua Zorbing

Tuesday – Raft Building & Bushcraft

Wednesday – Highland Games, Archery & Commando Challenges

Thursday – Stand Up Paddleboarding & Gameshow Bonanza

Friday – Mixed Paddlesports, Build your own assault course & Field Archery

Find out more about Willowgate Activity Week

Black Beauty

Saturday 13th October, 11:00am – 12:30pm or 2:00pm – 3:30pm, Perth Theatre

From the cosy horsebox they call home, Andy and Andy take the bit firmly between their teeth and tell the classic tale of Black Beauty as you’ve never seen it before. Saddle up, jump on and gallop headlong into a story where loneliness gives way to hope, friends become heroes, and courage saves the day. Blending storytelling, music and puppetry, this vibrant re-telling of Black Beauty offers fun and adventure for fans of the book, classic TV show and those brand-new to the tale, and will warm your heart during the coldest of autumn days.

Find out more about Black Beauty and book tickets

Charlie Ward

Monday 15th – Friday 19th October, starting at half-hour intervals

In a makeshift hospital behind the front line in 1914, the war’s casualties are treated. To boost morale, staff arrange for a Charlie Chaplin film to be shown for the bedridden, with the ward’s ceiling serving as the silver screen. For one soldier, the flickering images, whirring projector and Chaplin’s comic timing trigger complex emotions and memories. Cast from the trenches to childhood, from trauma to dreams, the film sets him on a journey into a personal no-man’s-land. An immersive sound installation for a small audience, lasting about 15 minutes. Includes some periods of total darkness. Age Guidance: 12+

Find out more about Charlie Ward

Perthshire Rugby Camps

Thursday 15th & Friday 16th November, 9:00am – 3:00pm

Join in the fun and play this energetic and enjoyable sport, in Perthshire Rugby Camps’ October holiday dates. The camps are for boys and girls in P4 to S2. To book a place on any camp date, please email Rory McKay at rdo@perthshire-rfc.co.uk. Each day costs £10.

Stuff by Sylvia Dow

Thursday 1 November, 7:30pm – 8:40pm, Birnam Arts

Stuff is about the hoarding of memories, emotions and things. Today the Council is coming to clear Magda’s house. She must find a way to deal with the constant shifting of stuff in her house and her head, as she revisits the past and struggles with the present to find a way to face the future. Told with humour and tenderness, this will resonate in its view of our attachment to things, and our need for attachment to each other. Suitable for age 12+.

Perth’s Halloween Party: Saturday 27th October

Perth’s Halloween Party: Saturday 27th October

Perth’s Halloween celebrations get bigger and better every year!  We invite you to enjoy a Halloween Party in Perth where we promise you a spooktacular extravaganza of ghoulish delights! Here’s a quick look at what you can expect at this years celebration.

Halloween Parade (18:00)

The fun kicks off with the Halloween Parade, this year leaving from Horsecross Plaza and ending at King Edward Street – dress up and join in!

Zombie Maze and The Tents of Doom!

The Zombie Maze is back! Bigger, better and more terrifying than ever – are you brave enough? If scares are your thing then Zombie Horroween has plenty to offer!  Suitable for Adults and Teenagers. You can find the Zombie Maze on Mill Street this year!

Music – The Horizon Stage (Mill Street from 18:00)

The music will feature performances from some brilliant local bands, performers and lots of fun family entertainment.

The Steve Ferringo Band: Taking to the stage at 18:15, the Steve Ferringo Band have now been in force for over 10 years, tantalizing audiences on both sides of the continent, and are an incredible Hulk of a band… loud, extravagant, voluptuous, and visual. Including Hit Songs from artists such as Kaiser Chiefs, Oasis, Madness, Kings of Leon, Robbie Williams and, err… Beyoncé?! Lead singer Steve Ferringo is eccentric as are the band, who look, play and sound like nothing you’ve ever heard before… Frenzied and exciting – a totally unbelievable experience. If you only go out of your way to see one band this year, make sure it’s The Steve Ferringo Band – the band, other bands come to see!!

The Irritable Owls The Irritable Owls are one of Scotland’s top good time Ska Bands and will be rocking our Horizon stage at 19:45. Hailing from The Fair City, John Ramsay (vocals/accordion), Mike Lee (guitar), Colin Scott (bass) and Dave Bone (drums) have been entertaining audiences all over Scotland with feel good classics from The Specials, Madness and Bad Manners to name but a few. The uniqueness of a midi accordion out front, producing the sound of a full brass section, stands the band apart from all the rest! Get your dancing shoes on and we’ll see you down the front!

Music – The Family Stage (Kind Edward Street from 17:00)

Our Family stage will be rocking all night with some eerie entertainment from some brilliant local artists! Here’s what you can expect to see on the night:

Who Time
Introduction 17:00 – 17:10
Ad Lib Flash Mob 17:15 – 17:25
Phoenix Cheer Leaders 17:30 – 17:45
Parade arrives 17:45 – 18:15
Onda 18:15 – 18:30
Dance Bank 18:30 – 18:50
Fair City Baton Twirlers 18:55 – 19:15
Inspire 19:20 – 19:30
Julie Young 19:35 – 19:50
Letham Majorettes 19:55 – 20:10
Howler Presentation 20:10 – 20:15
Sweeny Tod 20:15 – 20:30
Loudest Scream 20:35 – 20:50
Mass Time Warp 20:50 – 21:00


Our firewalk returns to the City of Perth Halloween Night for the second year in a row. This is your chance to experience the rare opportunity of walking barefoot across hot coals, all while raising money for your chosen charity.

To enter, get in touch with Brian at BMoyes@pkc.gov.uk or give him a call on 01738 475294.

Halloween Howler – Skinnergate (18:30)

This is a fun obstacle run for children aged 6yrs through to 12yrs within the City Centre of Perth. Children will enjoy running and climbing over obstacles while being chased by spooky but ‘not to scary’ Halloween characters. Prizes for 1st, 2nd, & 3rd places for boys and girls! Every child receives a goody bag and a great medal for braving the course! Runs start from outside Perth Concert Hall & Museum following a route around St. John’s Kirk, returning back to the High Street. Book your spot today.

Plus much, much more!

Perth City Centre will be full of fun for all the family with Storytelling, Face Painting, Funfair Rides, Apples Dooking and fantastic food and drink.

Come join the fun!

Caution: While there will be something for all ages, parts of the city will be zoned as unsuitable for  younger children due to the scarier entertainment on offer. Parental discretion is advised.

Other Spooky Celebrations in Perth City Centre 

Halloween Flag Making

Saturday 13th October, Various times, Perth Civic Hall

Make your very own Halloween flag! Lots of recycled materials are available, but feel free to bring along any scraps that you would like to include in your creation! 25 free spaces are available in each workshop. Find out more here.

Halloween (2018)

Friday 19th October, Perth Playhouse 

Lovers of horror films are working themselves into lather over the release of the new Halloween film which is set 40 years after the original which first introduced the terrifying character of Michael Myers. Find out more here.

Perth: No Fair City

Thursday 25th October, 16:30, Waterstones


Meet the author and hear the dark tales of Perth’s past.

Beetlejuice 2

Friday 26th October, Perth Playhouse 

A follow-up to the 1988 comedy, “Beetlejuice”, about a ghost who’s recruited to help haunt a house. Find out more here.

History and Horror Tour of Perth

Friday 26th October, 20:00, Horescross Plaza

Tour commences from Horsecross Plaza. Limited free places. Find out more here.

Victorian Style Seance

Friday 26th October, 20:00, Effie’s Tearoom 

Set in the stylish surroundings of one of Perth’s famous tearooms, experience magic and suspense of a Victorian Style Séance with hopefully visits from the ‘Spirits of Old Perth’. Find out more here.

Mini Ghost Hunt/Investigation

Friday 26th October, 22:00, Effie’s Tearoom 

Set in the stylish surroundings of one of Perth’s famous tearooms, experience a mini-investigation and ghost hunt as it unfolds.

Perth : No Fair City

Saturday 27th October, 12:00 noon, Waterstones


Meet the author and hear the dark tales of Perth’s past.


Lakeland Treasure Hunt

Saturday 27th October, 09:00- 17:30, Lakeland Perth

Pop into Lakeland this Saturday and take part in their spooky treasure hunt. It’s free to enter and the winner will win a hamper full of tasty goodies!

Little Terrors Candy Apple Making

Sunday 28th October, 16:00, The Bothy 

Bring along your mini monsters and let them create and decorate their very own candy apple, the perfect Halloween treat. Find out more here.

Spritis of Scone

25th – 31st October, 18:00 – 21:00, Scone Palace

There’s a frightening chill of Halloween in the air… This October, why not round up your most fearless of friends and make your way to the Spirits of Scone, a fright-fest like no other! The nights are getting dark, and the grounds will be transformed into a truly terrifying playground for menacing ghouls and horror film freaks. They’re lurking in the woods and hiding in the maze; this is where your nightmares come to life!  Find out more here.