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Birnam Oak in winter

Birnam Oak

Oak is commonly used for beer barrels, wine casks, church pews, pulpits, staircases and panelling.

Birnam Oak

The sole survivor of the wood that played a significant part in Shakespeare’s Macbeth.


The Birnam Oak in winter © Edward Parker

The Birnam Oak (Quercus petrae) simply reeks of history.

“I will not be afraid of death and bane till Birnam Forest come to Dunisnane.” Macbeth, Act V, Scene III

The tree is believed to be part of the wood from which Malcolm's soldiers cut branches to disguise their attack on Macbeth at Dunsinane Hill, 15 miles / 24 km to the south east. Today, the gnarled and ancient oak certainly looks medieval – its lower branches rest wearily on crutches and the first 3 m / 10 ft of its trunk are hollow.


From the A9 take the Birnam and Dunkeld exit.


Car parking is provided on-street within Birnam village centre.

All other facilities including toilets and refreshments are available in both Birnam and Dunkeld.

Opening Times

Visit the tree at any time of year.

Public Transport

Take the train or bus to Dunkeld & Birnam and walk from the centre of either town.

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