Stirling Castle has occupied its crag-top vantage point overlooking the Forth Valley for nine turbulent centuries. Kings and queens have been crowned, sieges thwarted and battles won and lost, shaping the course of Scottish history. Though the venue has lost none of its imposing presence on approach these days, the arrival is much more welcoming. The 300-capacity Great Hall – Scotland’s largest medieval banqueting hall – and the recently completed King’s and Queen’s apartments offer guests a glimpse of life during the Rennaissance court thanks to elaborate interiors. Tours of both can be built into events. For smaller group dining or pre-dinner drinks, there’s the atmospheric Chapel Royal with capacity for 200 seated guests, while the beautiful Queen Anne Garden, which has views of the surrounding countryside, can be used for piping and drum recitals or even clan reenactments.