Diana Gabaldon takes her own Outlander tour

BEST-SELLING author Diana Gabaldon got to experience the Outlander effect for herself when she hit the tourist trail of the show’s top locations.

Outlander news from Private tours Edinburgh

The US writer stunned fans of the Jacobite telly phenomenon at the weekend as she turned up at Culross in Fife and nearby Falkland Palace.

” sizes=”620px” srcset=”https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 180w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 360w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 540w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 720w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 900w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 1080w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 1296w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 1512w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 1728w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 1944w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 2160w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 2376w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 2592w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 2808w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 3024w” alt=” Diana relaxes in Culross Palace gardens, used as fictional Castle Leoch herb garden in series” data-credit=”Colin_Hattersley” data-sizes=”auto” data-img=”https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?strip=all&w=960″ data-srcset=”https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 180w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 360w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 540w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 720w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 900w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 1080w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 1296w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 1512w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 1728w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 1944w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 2160w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 2376w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 2592w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 2808w, https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/03/NINTCHDBPICT000476673527.jpg?w=960 3024w” />

COLIN_HATTERSLEY
Diana relaxes in Culross Palace gardens, used as fictional Castle Leoch herb garden in series

It was almost like a surprise royal visit as gobsmacked tourists mobbed the 67-year-old, who happily posed for selfies and signed autographs.

Diana said: “It’s always fun being in Scotland but usually I’m stopping somewhere for research purposes. So it’s been nice to just feel like a tourist for a change.”

The Scottish Sun joined The Outlander creator for the day with tour company Mary’s Meanders, who specialise in the show’s location visits.

First stop was Culross, which doubles, as the fictional village of Cranesmuir in the TV series.



Photographer Graham Harris Graham, who runs The Outlander And Beyond fine art gallery in the town, praised the Arizona-born writer.

The 54-year-old told Diana: “I would like to thank you for paying my mortgage — seriously.”

Next up she visited ancient Falkland Palace, with its famous Bruce Fountain.

Outlander fans will know that’s where the ghost of Sam Heughan’s Jacobite character Jamie Fraser visits time-traveller lover Claire Randall (Caitriona Balfe).

Outlander’s Sam Heughan teases fans with ‘new tv show’ set in Miami

Spanish fan Ana Garcia was completely overwhelmed when she spotted her idol.

The tearful 46-year-old from Barcelona, who works for a mobile phone company, said: “I came here to visit Outlander locations but never expected to see the woman who made it all happen. I will never forget this moment.”

The show has seen a huge boom in Scottish tourism

Victoria Arias was also delighted to meet the woman whose books have sold 35million copies and been translated into 40 languages.

The 30-year-old French blogger said: “This is my third time in Scotland to visit Outlander locations but the first time I’ve met Diana.

“It was fantastic to see the person who started it all in a place where it is actually filmed.”

Diana’s visit came after tourist chiefs announced visitor numbers continue to rocket — up 67 per cent from 887,000 to 1.5million a year — on the back of the TV smash which is shown in 87 countries around the world.

But humble Diana said: “The Outlander effect is sort of a miracle — I had nothing to do with it other than writing the books.”

The mum of three was working as a professor at Arizona State University when she first began writing her story “for practice” — after famously seeing actor Frazer Hines play a Jacobite warrior in a 1969 repeat of Doctor Who.

It has since spawned nine books — with the latest, Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone, out later this year. And the fifth TV series — which is shown on Amazon Prime in the UK — will start filming around Scotland from next month.

We joined Diana on a scouting mission

But aside from all the official stats, Diana also receives personal testimonies about how Outlander has changed people’s lives.

She explained: “When we were filming an episode from the first series in Culross there was a little shop up the back street where myself and another writer went for a sandwich.

“But all we had on us were £20 notes and the owner didn’t have any change.

“I said ‘”We’re with the film thing and he said he knew because we had our cans — headphones — over our arms. He told us he’d trust us to come back and settle up later.

Outlander’s Sam Heughan reveals celeb crush and tells fans his favourite Scottish words

“But just as we left he came rushing after us and said, ‘I saw your name on your headphones and I’ve just realised you’re Diana Gabaldon — for you everything is free. Take anything you want’.”

She added: “Then there are people who make crafts and do art — there are thousands of Facebook pages that sell Outlander gear.

“One woman wrote to me saying she has a business doing stencils to go on bedroom walls of Outlander erotica and asked if she could use some of the more romantic quotes from my books.

“So there are these spin-offs all around the world, although Scotland is where you can see the direct financial impact it has had.”

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Outlander author Diana Gabaldon has received an award for boosting Scottish tourism

Outlander author Diana Gabaldon has received an award for boosting Scottish tourism through her fantasy saga.

Outlander news from Private tours Edinburgh .

The US writer, 67, received an International Contribution to Scottish Tourism award at the Scottish Thistle awards.

It comes as VisitScotland published a paper detailing how sites used in the TV adaptation have seen visitors soar.

The report says that set-jetting is a growing trend in Scotland, partly due to the “Outlander Effect”.

Ms Gabaldon has told in many interviews how she was inspired to write the Outlander series after watching an old episode of Doctor Who.

Her lead character Jamie Fraser is based on the kilted companion Jamie McCrimmon, played by Frazer Hines, who appeared during the Patrick Troughton doctor era.

Outlander follows a romance between Jamie, a Highland poacher and Claire Randall, a World War Two nurse who is catapulted through time to the Jacobite era.

OutlanderImage copyrightSTARZ/AMAZON PRIME
Image captionCaitriona Balfe and Sam Heughan in Outlander

It was adapted for TV in 2014 for US network Starz, with Sam Heughan and Caitriona Balfe in the lead roles. Filming continues to be based in Scotland, with many Scottish locations doubling as France, the Caribbean and North America.

On receiving the award, Ms Gabaldon said: “It’s fabulous. I hear a great deal from fans of mine who have read the books and seen the TV show, who come to Scotland because they all write to tell me how wonderful it was and they send me souvenirs of their trips.

“I have a stack of postcards as well as a small number of Loch Ness monsters scattered around the house.”

‘Truly extraordinary’

The Outlander Effect and Tourism paper, published on Thursday, reports that attractions that appear in the Outlander TV series have seen visitor numbers soar by 67% since 2013, from 887,000 to 1.5million.

Doune Castle, near Dunblane, which doubles as the programme’s Castle Leoch, has seen the largest surge – 226.5% between 2013 and 2017.

Numbers at Blackness Castle, near Linlithgow, which features as Black Jack Randall’s headquarters, increased by 181.7%.

And Glasgow Cathedral’s visitors increased by 66.8% after it was screened as a French hospital.

Doune Castle, which featured in Outlander, welcomed 142,091 visitors last year

All Scottish visitor attractions were surveyed to discover how screen tourism and Outlander has impacted on their business.

Almost all respondents considered screen tourism as positive for the industry and a fifth of attractions located next to filming locations said they saw an increase in visitors.

Malcolm Roughead, chief executive of VisitScotland, said: “The impact of Outlander on Scotland has been truly extraordinary.

“It has been amazing to see the global reaction to Diana Gabaldon’s stories of adventure, romance and Scottish history – and the subsequent television adaptation – and seeing it translate into visitor growth for Scotland.

“Screen tourism continues to be a growing trend, however it is Outlander which has been the story in recent times, inspiring millions of visitors, from the USA to Europe and even China, to embark on their own Scottish adventure.”

Fiona Hyslop, cabinet secretary for culture, tourism and external affairs, added: “Scotland’s wonderful landscapes, rich history and culture continue to captivate visitors from home and abroad, making tourism one of our most important industries.”

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is Shetland the ideal solution to Droughtlander ?

Outlander stars Claire and Jamie are just about to start filming series five . But what are Outlander fans to do in the meantime ? Some fans  need a way to fill the void that the Outlander break has caused. Shetland could be the perfect show for your needs. Outlander news from Private tours Edinburgh

Shetland is on its fifth season already, but there will be many who haven’t heard of it.  The good news is you can easily watch it on Netflix.

Lallybroch tours

So, should you watch Shetland to get through Droughtlander? Here are some reasons it could be perfect for you.

 It’s got a range of Outlander actors

For those who want something that immediately connects them to their favorite series, Shetland immediately has you covered. Douglas Henshall is in every single season as lead character DI Jimmy Perez.

Outlander fans will remember him as Taran MacQuarrie in four episodes of the first season. He first appeared in “Lallybroch” and his last appearance was in “Wentworth Prison.” Unfortunately, there’s no coming back for Henshall in the time-traveling drama so you’ll want to watch Shetland if you need to see him in action.

Henshall isn’t the only Outlander actor in the series. The likes of Stephen Walters, Clive Russel, and Steven Cree have appeared in the British series.

Outlander tours on Tripadvisor

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Sam Heughan shares about his early years before Outlander

Sam Heughan ( Jamie Fraser ) shares about his early years before Outlander

“When I was a child I was lucky to get taken to a lot of live shows by my parents, then I moved to Edinburgh as a young teenager. They had a free ticket scheme for previews at the Lyceum Theatre and we would regularly attend. It was a great insight into the acting world as sometimes things would go wrong and you’d see “behind the curtain” many a time – it made me realise there was a whole world of people working behind the scenes and all the hard work that goes into a single production.”

Jamie Fraser Outlander tours
Sam had a few jobs before his acting career took off –   “I applied to go to university to study film and English. I knew I was interested but didn’t know how to get into the industry. After taking two years out I finally applied for drama school. During that time (and in fact more as a “jobbing actor” I’ve done a whole variety of things: Bar/cafe work, an usher at the theatre, reception work, worked at Harrods, delivered sandwiches by bicycle in winter, temp at NHS and most proudly I served whisky at a sushi bar. ”

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Outlander castles, whisky and lochs tours

Our Outlander castles, whisky and lochs tours feature a visit to two Outlander castles  – Midhope Castle ( Lallybroch ) and Doune Castle ( Castle Leoch ) – plus a tour of Deanston Distillery , producer of Highland malt whisky .

  • private tour
  • Midhope Castle ( Lallybroch )
  • Doune Castle ( Castle Leoch )
  • Deanston distillery
  • Loch Lubnaig
  • Loch Lubhair

Doune Castle

doune castle , outlander

Originally dating to the 13th Century, Doune Castle near Stirling plays Castle Leoch, home to Colum MacKenzie and his clan in Outlander TV series .

It also features in the 20th century episode when Claire and Frank Randall visit the castle on a day trip. Doune has appeared several times on screen and was widely used in Monty Python and the Holy Grail. It also represented the castle Winterfell in Game of Thrones.

Once a Royal residence, Doune Castle was rebuilt by Robert Stewart, Duke of Albany in the late 14th Century.

doune castle, outlander tours

Visitors spend up to one hour at each location .

Deanston Distillery

In 1785 the Deanston Cotton Mill opened its doors. Designed by one of the fathers of the industrial revolution, Richard Arkwright, Deanston was at the forefront of new beginnings as Scotland moved from agriculture to industrialisation.

In 1949 Deanston’s historic and long running commitment to sustainable energy was secured with the installation of new electrical turbines which to this day provide all of its  electricity using water from the river and original lade.

In 1974 Deanston produced the very first bottle of Deanston Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky.

The standard tour at Deanston costs £9 per person ( not included on tour price )

Each tour warmly welcomes you into the heart of the distillery, where Deanston makes award-winning Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky. Here you will see a traditional open top mash tun, gleaming copper stills and a must-see vaulted maturation Warehouse 2B. Join the experienced tour guides on a journey through time, taking you back to the past as a cotton mill and through the evolution of Deanston. The Standard Tour finishes off with a tasting of Deanston 12 year old whisky .

Guided tour of the distillery Includes a tasting of Deanston 12 year old , £5 voucher towards the purchase of any bottle of Deanston 70cl single malt whisky in the distillery shop

Duration: 50 minutes

Every drop of Highland Single Malt is a marriage of the finest local ingredients and the skill of the craft to create the wonderful, fresh, honeyed sweetness that Deanston is known for. The Distillery has a  commitment to using a traditional, hand crafted approach to our whisky embodies the honesty of our community. Our adherence to traditional methods combined with the skills and experience of our distillery team makes Deanston the unique single malt it is today.

Deanston Distillery was used as Jared’s wine warehouse.

Midhope Castle

Lallybroch is the ancestral home of Jamie Fraser , filmed at Midhope Castle .

midhope castle, Outlander tours


Scenes were shot at Midhope Castle near the Hopetoun Estate near South Queensferry.
Midhope was built in the 15th Century and was built by John Martyne, laird of Medhope. It was rebuilt in the mid 1600s and remains much the same today.
Visitors are asked to admire Midhope from a distance as the interior remains largely derelict.

Midhope Castle is the external location for fictional Lallybroch, the family home of character Jamie Fraser , and it is located on the Hopetoun Estate .  Midhope Castle dates back to the 15th Century and although the exterior is relatively intact the castle is derelict inside. For Midhope Castle tours booking enquiries and availability check phone 07305-294773

Toll free number 1-866-233-2644

on  or online .

 

 

Exclusions

Lunch, snacks and entrance fees are not included in the price .

 Outlander castles, whisky and lochs tour – £250 ( private tour for up to 4 passengers )

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Outlander gets a name check on the Simpsons

Outlander has been a big success but now it can finally claim respect from the only thing that really matters: The Simpsons.

Outlander news from Outlander tours

On Monday, series star Sam Heughan, 38, tweeted out a video he’d recorded of a Simpsons episode that joked about the romantic drama.

The episode, which originally aired in November, shows a jury of Springfield residents deliberating Homer Simpson’s career as a TV recap writer and a negative review he wrote for Outlander.

The highest honor: On Monday, Outlander star Sam Heughan, 38, tweeted out a video he'd recorded of a Simpsons episode that joked about the romantic drama


The highest honor: On Monday, Outlander star Sam Heughan, 38, tweeted out a video he’d recorded of a Simpsons episode that joked about the romantic drama

‘This is better than any award…..’ tweeted the Scottish heartthrob.

His co-costar, Caitriona Balfe, 39, replied, ‘Whaaaaaaaaaaat???????? HOOOmer M G ..!!!! Well I can now die happy! @Outlander_STARZ @SamHeughan @TheSimpsons.’

In the episode, number 647, Krusty the Clown is accused of trying to run Homer down in his car after the bumbling cartoon father gave Krusty’s TV show a bad rating.

Sam included a clip of the Simpsons episode recorded from his phone in the tweet.  ‘The celebs are moving in!’ Celebrity Big Brother reveals cast

Outlander gifts – Outlander mugs

Stamp of approval: 'This is better than any award.....' tweeted the Scottish heartthrob; pictured with Caitriona Balfe, 39, on Outlander


Stamp of approval: ‘This is better than any award…..’ tweeted the Scottish heartthrob; pictured with Caitriona Balfe, 39, on Outlander

Barely containing herself: Sam's co-star Caitriona replied, 'Whaaaaaaaaaaat???????? HOOOmer M G ..!!!! Well I can now die happy! @Outlander_STARZ @SamHeughan @TheSimpsons'; pictured in Beverly Hills in January


Barely containing herself: Sam’s co-star Caitriona replied, ‘Whaaaaaaaaaaat???????? HOOOmer M G ..!!!! Well I can now die happy! @Outlander_STARZ @SamHeughan @TheSimpsons’; pictured in Beverly Hills in January

The jury members judging him seem more concerned with Homer’s misjudgment of the time traveling erotic drama than Krusty’s crime. 

‘It was justifiable Homer-cide,’ says Patty Bouvier, Homer’s long-suffering sister-in-law.

‘He gave Outlander a B minus!’ interject her sister Selma.

Another juror pipes in with, ‘That show knows what it wants to be! Come on.’

‘Oo, I’ve heard that gets really good about eight episodes in,’ says Judge Roy Snyder, before finding Krusty not guilty of trying to kill Homer.’Sometimes life takes unexpected turns’: Outlander season

He deserved it: 'It was justifiable Homer-cide,' says Patty Bouvier, Homer's long-suffering sister-in-law. 'He gave Outlander a B minus!' interject her sister Selma


He deserved it: ‘It was justifiable Homer-cide,’ says Patty Bouvier, Homer’s long-suffering sister-in-law. ‘He gave Outlander a B minus!’ interject her sister Selma

Embracing it: Another juror pipes in with, 'That show knows what it wants to be! Come on'

+6

Embracing it: Another juror pipes in with, ‘That show knows what it wants to be! Come on’

Peak TV: 'Oo, I've heard that gets really good about eight episodes in,' says Judge Roy Snyder, before finding Krusty not guilty of trying to kill Homer


Peak TV: ‘Oo, I’ve heard that gets really good about eight episodes in,’ says Judge Roy Snyder, before finding Krusty not guilty of trying to kill Homer

The Simpsons, which is the longest-running American sitcom, has been on the air since 1989.

Although its episodes aren’t as well-received now as they were in earlier seasons, it’s still a prestigious honor to be mentioned in one.

Outlander isn’t exactly wanting for recognition, though. The Starz original series has repeated been nominated for the Golden Globes, the Saturn Awards and the People’s Choice Awards since its 2014 debut.

Lead actress Caitriona has been nominated for the Golden Globe for Best Actress each year since 2016, though she has yet to win. 

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