Kirriemuir - also called ‘The Wee Red Toun’ after the local red sandstone from which many of the buildings are constructed – is a charming place with winding narrow streets, lying in the foothills of the Grampians and overlooking the wide, flat expanse of Strathmore (the big, flat valley). Locally known as Kirrie, it is a small town 5 miles north of Forfar. Known as the 'Gateway to the Glens' - makes a captivating base for exploring the beautiful glens of Angus.
Kirriemuir has many famous sons, the best known is the author JM Barrie, the creator of Peter Pan. His birthplace, now owned by the National Trust forScotland, contains an imaginative exhibition featuring life-size figures, theatre posters and stage costumes. There is a statue of Peter Pan in the middle of the town.
Barrie gifted the camera obscura to the people of the town from which you can enjoy stunning panoramic views of the surrounding countryside.
Another of Kirrie’s sons was Bon Scott, of AC/DC, and the ‘Bonfest’ weekend in May, organised by ‘DD8’ a community run recording studio and youth project , attracts thousands of the band’s fans to the town. There is a statue of Bon in the car park on Bellie’s Brae..
‘Live in the Den’ takes place in July and there are many other Gala Days, Beer Festivals, Highland Games and other events in the area throughout the year
Another of the highlights of the social calendar is the Kirriemuir Festival of Traditional Music and Song in September, featuring ceilidhs, music and storytelling sessions.
Also in September, the Gateway to the Glens 10k run starts and finishes on Kirrie Hill. The route encompasses both road and trail and has a bit of a 'sting in the tail'.
The annual Fireworks and Bonfire Night takes place on Kirrie Hill in November and is well attended by locals and visitors. The hot drinks, soup and snacks sold in the Pavilion are much appreciated on a cold winter's night.
Winter sees the Christmas Fair and the switching on of Christmas Lights - the lights are organised by a Community Group and paid for by fund raising throughout the year. It is also time for the annual pantomime in the Town Hall
Birdwatchers will enjoy a visit to the nearby Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) reserve at Loch of Kinnordy, home to many wetland birds, viewable from hides and boardwalks, and to the Scottish Wildlife Trust (SWT) reserves at Lintrathen Loch and Montrose Basin.
Walkers and climbers will find plenty to occupy them – from some pleasant short, reasonably flat walks, to the slightly higher Sidlaws to the south and the challenge of Munros in the Cairngorms National Park which begins a few miles north of the town.
- JM Barrie's Birthplace
- Gateway to the Glens Museum
- RSPB Scotland Loch of Kinnordy nature reserve
- Lintrathen Loch
- Glamis Castle
- Montrose Basin
- House of Dun
- Meffan Museum, Forfar