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.

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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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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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Jamie feels the Outlander effect

OUTLANDER star Sam Heughan has been making it big since he shot to fame in the hit sci-fi drama.

The Scots heartthrob’s fortune has soared thanks to the global success of the show. Visit Lallybroch , Jamie Fraser’s home , on our Outlander tours . Phone 07305-294773 for details .

midhope castle, Outlander tours
Lallybroch is Jamie Fraser’s ancestral home

The ‘Outlander’ effect has been credited with boosting Scotland’s economy as the number of visitors to historic sites topped five million for the first time in 2017 with fans flocking to see filming locations for the show.

And it seems its popularity has also boosted Heughan’s bank balance after his company posted an impressive set of results.


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Accounts filed for his firm Cairn Mor Creative show it had total shareholder funds of £1.3 million .


blackness castle, outlander tours
Blackness Castle is Fort William in Outlander

Heughan, 38, set up the company, which is based in Surrey, in April, 2015, after he finished filming the first season of Outlander.

The Scots star plays Highlander Jamie Fraser in the hit show – which is currently airing its fourth season.Last month, fans celebrated the show’s 50th episode as the stars thanked fans for their support.







 





Visit Lallybroch , Jamie Fraser’s home , on our Outlander tours . Phone 07305-294773 for details .

 

We previously told how Sam sent support to she headed to the Golden Globes last week.

And Sam celebrated with as it won big at the RadioTimes Readers Awards in December.

Outlander star Sam Heughan reveals he DID audition for James Bond before Daniel Craig landed the role

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will there be an “Outlaw King” effect in Scotland ?

At Linlithgow Palace, the birthplace of Scotland’s tragic Mary, Queen of Scots, the volunteer guides and workers are preparing for a tourist surge.

This 15th-century palace, a bulwark of the Stuart dynasty, is astonishingly well preserved and already draws visitors who walk among its stone halls and ramparts and admire its little loch.

Outlaw King tours from Private tours Edinburgh . Phone 07305-294773 for more details or contact us online.

But Frances Murray, tour guide and shop manager, knows there are more on the way. Why? Because last week Netflix launched Outlaw King, a production about the life of Robert the Bruce, filmed in part at Linlithgow. And, following the huge success of the Outlander TV drama series, filmed in several Scottish locations, the country knows a thing or two about the TV effect.

“The uplift places such as this get from television shows like Outlander is amazing, and we’re expecting the same from Outlaw King,” said Murray yesterday. “Sometimes, though, we get tourists from overseas who ask to see specific rooms where some of the scenes were shot, and we have to explain that they don’t actually exist. But this is such a beautiful and interesting building that they soon get wrapped up in it.”

The West Lothian palace was only one of several Scottish locations for the new film, which stars Chris Pine as the warrior overlord. The others read like the index of a tourist brochure: Borthwick Castle, Dunfermline Abbey, Glasgow Cathedral and Doune Castle near Stirling. And the beautiful landscapes of Skye are already upstaging the principal actors.

VisitScotland, the national tourist agency, has produced two glossy and substantial brochures that chronicle some recent world-class productions. On the cover of one of them a moody Daniel Craig as James Bond in Skyfall stands beside his silver Aston Martin with the mists of Glen Coe gathering behind him. In 2015 an online poll conducted by USA Today voted Scotland the world’s best cinematic destination. The country’s filmic credits include well-known movies such as BraveheartThe Da Vinci CodeThe 39 Steps and Whisky Galore. But it also makes atmospheric cameo appearances in movies such as 2001: A Space Odyssey, where the ethereal beauty of Harris was deployed by Stanley Kubrick to realise his imagined Jupiter.

Next year another major historical drama built around this nation’s vivid and bloody history will be released in British cinemas. This time it will be Mary, Queen of Scots herself who will get the Hollywood treatment in a film starring Saoirse Ronan as Mary and David Tennant as John Knox .

Tourism, along with whisky and salmon, forms the cornerstone of the Scottish economy. In a recent interview Malcolm Roughead, chief executive of VisitScotland, said: “Tourism is integral to sustaining communities across Scotland by generating income, creating jobs and stimulating social change – and it generates around £11bn of economic activity.” He also reckoned that one new job is created in Scotland for every £60,000 spent by visitors.

VisitScotland has calculated that, taken together, the value of direct and indirect spending represents 4.5% of the Scottish economy, and that visitors’ spending accounts for almost £9bn per year. But recent analysis by the Scottish government suggests that a lot more growth can still be found from the tourism sector’s productivity, and that it was the lowest of six sectors targeted for growth in the national economic strategy. Film and television tourism will be vital components in achieving this growth.

Sam Heughan and some extras carrying swords
 Sam Heughan in Outlander. Photograph: Aimee Spinks/Starz/© 2017 Sony Pictures Television Inc. All Rights Reserved

Fiona Hyslop, culture and tourism minister in the Scottish government, yesterday spoke of her delight that the world’s top film and television producers are now making Scotland one of their first destinations. “Producers now know that when they choose Scotland, as well as magnificent scenery and locations they’re now getting highly-skilled and professional technical crews to go with them,” she said.

Crucially, too, the long wait for a world-class national film studio could soon be over. At last week’s Bafta Scotland awards first minister Nicola Sturgeon referred to the need for a national film studio, saying: “Watch this space.”

Yet some would say that with its remarkable scenery and stunning vistas, Scotland already possesses the best natural film studio in the world.

Outlaw King tours

Take a tour of The Outlaw King film locations in Scotland , featuring Blackness Castle and Linlithgow Palace . Phone 07305-294773 for more details. Starring Chris Pine as Robert the Bruce the lavish Netflix production was filmed at 45 different locations across Scotland .

    • Blackness Castle
    • Linlithgow Palace
    • Bannockburn
  • Doune Castle

Robert the Bruce was born on the 11th of July 1274 in Turnberry Castle and died in 1329 in Cardross. Bruce’s body is buried in Dunfermline Abbey and his heart is buried in the ruins of Melrose Abbey.

The Outlaw King Robert the Bruce was crowned King of Scotland at Scone Palace on the Stone of Destiny.

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Outlander season four – first episode in November

Outlander season four spoilers: Stephen Bonnet star reveals new villain’s ‘unravelling’

OUTLANDER villain Stephen Bonnett is set to rip the Frasers’ lives apart in season four

Outlander season four opening credits given Americana theme

Outlander fans are getting more and more excited for the premiere of season four next month, which is set to plunge Jamie Fraser (played by Sam Heughan) and Claire Fraser (Caitriona Balfe) into an entirely new world as they settle in the American colonies.

Viewers last saw the married couple washed up on the shores of North Carolina in the season three finale last year, following months of turmoil as they navigated their way across to Jamaica and beyond.

Book your Outlander tour now on +44-7305-294773 or book online .

blackness castle tours
Blackness Castle Outlander tours

The new instalment will finally see Jamie and Claire enjoy a settle home life for a brief stint, but the arrival of Irish pirate Stephen (Ed Speleers) has the potential to ruin everything.

blackness castle tshirt
Outlander t-shirts

What’s more, the show’s latest trailer has teased Brianna Fraser (Sophie Skelton) will make the monumental decision to go through the Standing Stones in a bid to find her parents.

This comes after the university student receives a stark warning from Roger Mackenzie (Richard Rankin) Jamie and Claire could be in danger, but it’ll be nothing compared to the horrors Stephen will inflict.

The psychotic character could be set to take a particular fancy to Brianna on the hit time-travelling series, but how will the plot progress? Surely Highlander Jamie wouldn’t let Stephen continue his reign of terror.

Shedding light on his character, the Downton Abbey actor hinted at the timeline to come.

“He’s a tricky man,” Ed told Glamour Online.

“There’s a lot of levels to him, a lot of layers,” he continued. “I think he has a very particular view on the world.

Outlander season 4 spoilers: Stephen Bonnet star Ed Speleers has teased his

Outlander season 4 spoilers: Stephen Bonnet star Ed Speleers has teased his “unravelling” (Image: STARZ)

Outlander season 4 spoilers: Stephen Bonnet star Ed Speleers has teased his

Outlander season 4 spoilers: Stephen Bonnet is the new villain for the latest series (Image: STARZ)

“Whether that’s due to circumstance, whether that’s due to nature, nurture, all of this — what actually he’s really about, who he really is.”

“It will all be unraveled all in good time,” the star added cryptically.

Exact details of the pain Stephen will cause are being kept tightly under wraps, but book-fans can already guess at the torment that’s ahead.

It’s unlikely the pirate will be a worse foe than the infamous Black Jack Randall (Tobias Menzies), however his actions are set to have lasting consequences on the beloved Fraser family.

Meanwhile, The Spy Who Dumped Me star Sam has teased the first meeting between Jamie and his long-lost aunt Jocasta (Maria Doyle Kennedy) in the season opener.

Outlander season 4 spoilers: Stephen Bonnet star Ed Speleers has teased his

Outlander season 4 spoilers: Will Stephen Bonnet cause trouble for the Frasers? (Image: STARZ)

The Scottish actor shared: “[Meeting Jocasta is] a really important moment [for Jamie].

“Jamie’s mother and father have always been a very strong presence in his mind, and in his life.

“For him to meet his last relative — and that she looks and sounds so much like his mother — is really big for him.”

English actress Maria went on to describe her character as “a woman who is clearly nobody’s fool, she doesn’t suffer fools gladly, although she sees them everywhere”.

“She can’t help but be attracted to this incredibly opinionated and empowered woman [Claire],” the actress then added. “She doesn’t meet women like that.”

Outlander season four gifts – t-shirts, phone cases, scarfs, throw pillows and prints

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Droughtlander comes to an end soon

Droughtlander is coming to an end as Season 4 of Outlander is set to premiere in a few weeks . To help fans get through the wait, Outlander stars Caitriona Balfe and Sam Heughan dished on the one thing they cannot live without on set.

Outlander news from Outlander tours

Heughan and Balfe were asked to list the five things they depend on while filming new seasons of Outlander. While the two differed on most of the things, they agreed that they absolutely cannot live without coffee while filming Outlander series four .

The two also adorably said they need each other on set, though for Balfe that’s only because she needs “a tall ginger Scott to take the piss out of it.”

According to Town and Country, the rest of the cast and crew also got in on the fun and listed their requirements during filming. This includes Cesar Domboy, who needs access to Wi-Fi, and Ed Speelers, who always has his music on standby.

The cast members also gave plenty of love to the crew and the fans who are constantly sending them goodies.

Season 4 of Outlander will explore Jamie and Claire’s journey as they set up new lives in colonial America. In the process, the two will face many challenges, including coming to terms with slavery and the brewing American Revolution. Much of Outlander series four was filmed at the Wardpark Studios in Cumbernauld, Scotland .

Another big storyline this season is Brianna’s (Sophie Skelton) highly anticipated reunion with Jamie, which should bring plenty of emotions.

In the meantime, Sam Heughan and Caitriona Balfe are scheduled to make an appearance this weekend at New York Comic-Con. The two will join their fellow cast members for a special panel about the upcoming season. The event, which will be live streamed on the internet, will also feature the likes of Skelton and her on-screen romance, Richard Rankin.

The new season of Outlander kicks off Nov. 4 on Starz.

Visit up to six Outlander film locations in our unique Outlander tours . Phone 07305-294773 for more details or conatct us online .

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