The Kelpies is a two and half hour drive from Aberdeen and very close to Edinburgh. If you’re just passing through en route to Edinburgh from Glasgow, this is just off the M9.
We had a wonderful guide who had a natural flair for telling a story. His knowledge on The Kelpies was amazing, insightful and funny. He gave us a 30 mins tour but the time was enough to gather all the information about Scottish culture and the myth associated with The Kelpies. The history of The Keplies goes something like this – a shape shifting seahorse entices people to ride on its back and then dives into a deep loch to drown them. This water spirit has said to haunt rivers and streams of Scotland and was named The Keplies. The Kelpies are said to have backward hooves and could change between horse and water.
However, The Keplies here are Giant structures of Andy Scott’s vision which depict the transformational change of Scotland’s landscapes, endurance inland waterways and the strength of the communities.
His vision for The Kelpies follows the lineage of the heavy horse of industry and economy, pulling the wagons and ploughs, barges and ships that shaped the structural layout of the area. Retaining The Kelpies as the title for these equine monuments, he wanted to represent the transformational and sustainable qualities.
The Keplies stands up to 30 meters tall and each one weighs over 300 tonnes and consists of total 928 steel plates. This structure was completed in just 90 days on site and was completed on November 27, 2013. Though this place was opened for tourists in April 2014 after extending it to Forth and Clyde Canal.
The tour also gave us a chance to see the world’s largest equine sculpture from inside and experience and analyse the engineering and design. It was a lot of information which we gathered in those 30 mins and we continued discussing the complexity of the sculpture even after our guided tour was over. We also took a good long walk along the canal. It is a really good place for picnics and family outings as there is a huge park for kids to play and to explore the surrounding nature.
It is no-doubt a great place to learn about the Scottish mythical beast, take a walk next to the canal and take photographs. However, it is not until you see The Kelpies for yourself that you can comprehend the size of the sculptures!