Craigowan Lodge: The cottage where the Queen escapes tourists from Balmoral

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Craigowan Lodge is a more rustic stone cottage about a mile from the main Balmoral castle. Prince Charles and Princess Diana would often opt to stay in the seven-bedroom house during their visits to the Scottish countryside. However, nowadays Queen Elizabeth spends the first few days of her yearly summer holiday there before the tourist visiting season is over at Balmoral.

Balmoral has been a royal private residence since Queen Victoria’s reign when it was purchased by Prince Albert in 1852.

Initially, when the royal couple visited Edinburgh as newlyweds, the Highlands reminded Prince Albert of his home back in Germany and they decided it would be a perfect place to bring their young family.

Craigowan Lodge is located on the Balmoral estate about one mile from the main house.

In the 1980s, the seven-bedroom stone house was frequently used by Prince Charles and Princess Diana when they would visit Balmoral during the summer months.

Now the lodge is used for the housing of very important guests or sometimes various Royal Family members.

When the Queen arrives at the estate in mid-July, she uses the lodge while the main house is being prepared for her extended stay during the summer months.

While the main castle is still open to the public, Craigowan Lodge is used for privacy by the Royal Family where tourists cannot visit.

In the 2008 obituary of Michael Romanoff, the highest-ranking member of the Russian imperial family, it was reported his family spent most of World War II at Craigowan Lodge.

The lodge has been in the news since 2005 because Queen Elizabeth and the late Prince Philip would often spend the first few days of their summer holiday there.

During each weekend of the summer, the castle is a massive source of income from visiting tourists.

The Queen often arrives at Balmoral before the tourist visiting season is over, which is what Craigowan Lodge is used for.

Craigowan Lodge holds lots of special memories for the Queen.

The lodge is located on the edge of a forest and is reported to be a calm and quiet retreat.

Earlier this year, the monarch is said to have spent time there shortly after the death of her husband Prince Philip, who also enjoyed spending time there.

Speaking on the Channel 5 documentary Secrets of the Royal Palaces before Prince Philip’s death, a former royal correspondent, Wesley Kerr, spoke about the couple’s love for the cottage.

Wesley said: “I don’t imagine that she’s doing the cooking or anything, but she and the Duke are able to be there as an ordinary married couple without the grandeur.

“I think the Queen sees the grandeur in these amazing houses as, sort of, part of the job.

“But the Queen, like anybody else, can only be in one room at a time.

“So one room in a small house is probably a rather nice change.”

The Queen is still at Balmoral, having spent the summer of 2021 there relaxing from royal duties.

On Saturday, the Queen sent her congratulations to Emma Raducanu from Balmoral, after she won the US Open tennis games.

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