Elgin Cathedral, known as the 'Lantern of the North', was established in 1224 by Alexander II as the seat of the Bishopric of Moray.
It is second in size in Scotland only to St Andrews Cathedral. Much of the work is in a rich late 13th century style, and is the superb ruin of what many think was Scotland's most beautiful cathedral.
The transepts west towers and parts of the choir and nave survived a fire in 1270. After extensive rebuilding the cathedral survived until 1390 when it was burnt, then again rebuilt, during the 15th century.
The Cathedral was vandalised during the reformation, and eventually fell into ruin. The towers at the entrance to the main chapel are still intact. There are several effigies on the tombs.
There is also a Pictish stone, which is situated at the centre of the
cathedral. There are several symbols inside the walls of the cathedral and there is a great view of the town from the North Tower.
Biblical Gardens Nestling in a quiet corner of Cooper Park, close to the centre of Elgin and adjacent to the Cathedral, lies a piece of ground, some three acres in size, upon which has been established a biblical garden.
The creation of the garden, the first of its kind in Scotland, is particularly appropriate on this site, as Moray has for over fourteen centuries played an important role in the development and changing fortunes of the church, similarly, its close proximity to Elgin's historic cathedral, literally just over the wall! made this site the obvious choice. Click here to download a PDF on Elgin's Biblical Garden.
Whilst using the Bible as its reference point and including all one hundred and ten plants mentioned therin, together with sculptures depicting the parables, it is clearly intended that this garden as well as being of considerable interest to those who study the scriptures, will also encourage anyone who enjoys gardens and gardening, to visit. Obviously, gardens being living things constantly change, not only throughout the season, but also develop and grow through the years, thus sustaining an attraction which may be different upon every visit and thus should encourage one to return time after time, providing the original project captures the imagination.
Spynie Palace was built as a residence for the Bishops of Moray. The cathedral that accompanied the palace has not survived the tests of time. The existing ruins date from the early 1400's and the later 1700's. The original residence was built in 1207 after Bishop Brice obtained approval from the pope to establish a cathedra, Holy Trinity at Spynie.
The tower in it's present state is the combination of early construction and 16th century reconstruction. It has been dubbed David's Tower for Bishop David Stewart. He used the tower as his private residence. The surrounding ranges contained the hall, kitchens and residential areas for supporting the palace.
The palace has been a key figure in several political arenas. Monarchs would stop and use this palace as their residence. The struggle for religion, Catholic vs. Presbyterian, played a big part between early 1500's and late 1600's. Spynie has passed through several hands and families.
Spynie fell into disrepair after 1689. It passed to the state and in 1825, the Barons of Exchequer began care for Spynie. In 1838, they sold the land to the trustees of the Earl of Fife for upkeep. The ruins were returned to the state in 1973.
The museum was founded in 1836, it is independent and is managed by the Moray Society.
The Museum houses many important collections of Natural History, Geology, Archaeology, Science, Art, Ethnography and Social History.
It is best known for pictish stones and unique local fossils. You can learn about the story of Moray, the early farmers who changed the Moray landscape 6,000 years ago, and the Picts who left their strange symbols carved in stone. The exhibitions try to show much of the museums treasures by holding activities, workshops, conferences and courses.
Pluscarden Abbey is six miles from Elgin town centre, and it is one of Scotland's most unusual attractions.
It was founded in 1230 by Alexander II for Valliscaulian monks. It was in the thirteenth century that the monks first came to Pluscarden Abbey.
It is the only medieval monastery in Britain still inhabited by Monks and being used for its original purpose. It is situated in a sheltered, south facing glen against a background of forested hillside, this adds to the beauty of its architecture and the restful atmosphere.
Moray Leisure Centre
Moray Leisure Centre, opened in 1993 and was one of the first Leisure Trusts in Scotland. The composition of the Board of Directors, four prominent members of the community and three local councillors, aligns well with current thinking regarding community involvement.
The Centre, consisting of an Ice Rink, Leisure and Training Pools, Relaxation Suite, Health & Wellness Suite, Child Care Facilities, Pre-School Nursery and Cafe Bar, promotes as its theme throughout " A new concept in health". This is readily reflected in the Health & Wellness Programme, which includes a GP Referral Scheme and Cardiac Rehabilitation Programme.
As well as actively promoting community health the Centre provides a varied programme of classes, events and activities for a broad spectrum of ages and abilities. This results in the Leisure Centre being among the highest in the UK for visits per head of population. As should be expected, visitors to the Centre can be assured of a friendly and courteous welcome as demonstrated by our 4 star Leisure Centre award from the Scottish Tourist Board.
The Moray Motor Museum is an independent museum situated in Elgin in converted mill buildings at Bridge Street.
Pay a visit and take a trip into yesteryear with the car that you used to dream of, or the one that Uncle had. Come along and share in the Moray Motoring Heritage.
The Johnstons Cashmere Visitor Centre
JohnstonsCashmere specialises in providing luxury retailers worldwide with the finest Cashmere knitwear, accessories, homeware and woven piece goods.
In effect they offer a complete cashmere lifestyle, designed with international trends in styling and colour very much in mind, and manufactured in Scotland to the highest standards of quality.
For a complete list of all attractions, click here
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