The castle has been involved in some famous battles (most notably the Battle of Bannockburn, after which Robert the Bruce took the castle from the English), but it was also a royal residence. The Stewart monarchs roamed the gardens, watching archery, playing bowls and mingling with peacocks and cranes. Mary Queen of Scots is said to have fell in love here. Kings hunted red deer and wild boar in the park.
Today you too can wander in those gardens, as well as taking in a regimental museum, the Chapel Royal with its elaborate frieze, and the splendid medieval Great Hall. You can also see a medieval-style feast being prepared in the Great Kitchens and the Stirling Heads, a marvel of Scottish Renaissance carving.
Stirling Castle is in the center of the town of Stirling (you can't miss it!) and is easily reached from both Edinburgh and Glasgow; if you're not driving, a train is probably your best option.