The doors are opening virtually.

Date Published: 10 September 2020

​In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, it has been agreed that Doors Open Days 2020 will go digital this year to ensure that people in Aberdeenshire and across the country can continue to safely explore Scotland's buildings.

Not only will the digital format enable local residents to enjoy an insight into North-east architecture from the comfort of their own home, they will be able to take a peek inside  buildings the length and breadth of the country without the need for travel.

Doors Open Days is Scotland's largest free festival which celebrates heritage and the built environment, new and old.

Every September you can explore hundreds of fascinating buildings across Scotland for free.  Some open up once a year, some just once in a lifetime.

Among the Aberdeenshire highlights throughout the weekend of September 19-20 are a virtual tour of the Duff House Mausoleum given by the Duke of Fife, a 3D walking tour of Fraserburgh, video tours of Braemar Castle, 1 High Shore Banff, the Macduff Knowes Tower War Memorial, the Tullich Church and Carved Stones project at Ballater and Aden Estate & Farming Museum, a virtual tour and digital quiz from Alford Heritage Centre, 'Priests and Pipes talk from St James' Church Stonehaven and stunning 360-degree digital tours of Peathill Kirk, Pitsligo Castle and the Sandhaven Meal Mill.

The full list of participating North-east venues features: 

St Cyrus National Nature Reserve
Tod Head Lighthouse
St James Episcopal Church, Stonehaven
Tolbooth Museum
Beannachar Camphill Community
Community Larder, The Haven, Stonehaven

St Margaret's Church, Braemar
Braemar Castle
Christ Church, Kincardine O'Neil
Alford Heritage Museum
St Margaret's Church, Huntly
Birse Community Trust
Raemoir House
Tullich Church and Carved Symbol Stones Collection

Aberdeenshire Ranger Service – Doors To The Past
Aberdeenshire Ranger Service – Nature Doors, Under The Sea
All Saints Episcopal Church, Whiterashes
Garlogie Mill Beam Engine and Turbine House

National Decommissioning Centre

Aberdeenshire Farming Museum

Fraserburgh Heritage Centre
Sandhaven Meal Mill
Peathill Kirk & Pitsligo Castle
Macduff War Memorial
Duff House Mausoleum
Portsoy Church Centre
Salmon Bothy, Portsoy
1 High Shore, Banff
Fraserburgh Walking Tour

Clare Tierney, Aberdeenshire's Doors Open Days Coordinator, said: "It has been great to see how the venues taking part have been able to adapt to the different approach this year, and we are very grateful for all the effort being put in to provide digital content for this year's event.

"Aberdeenshire has a wealth of interesting historical and important buildings – and lots of fascinating stories to accompany them – and this digital approach will help us to showcase our rich heritage to a new audience from far and wide.

Chair of Scottish Civic Trust, Colin McLean, added: "We at Scottish Civic Trust are excited to support the new direction for this year's Doors Open Days as a digital festival. By taking the festival online we are not only keeping our venues and communities safe, but offering support to organisations across Scotland to develop their digital literacy.

"We hope that our support will give venues confidence to have a continued online presence, and that digital engagement will become a mainstay of heritage outreach in the years to come."

The Aberdeenshire event will be taking place on the weekend of September 19-20 with links to the various online tours, photos, quizzes and talks going live from 9am on the 19th until the end of the month at   

In the week leading up to the weekend tasters of what's to come will be posted daily and on the dedicated Facebook page​. 

You can also find out more at Please use the following hashtags if you would like to support Doors Open Days on your social media accounts: