Pitlochry is largely a Victorian town brought into existence as a result of the first purpose built road into the highlands, constructed by General Wade in 1728, to help civilize the glens. Wade’s road was to the south of the much more ancient village of Moulin (today Moulin is on the northern outskirts of Pitlochry).
Pitlochry quickly became a prosperous village, attracting its own mills, distilleries and its first bank in 1836.
Pitlochry benfited from the publicity given to the town as a result of Queen Victoria’s physician. Sir James Clark recommended the air in
Pitlochry for those who were seeking to improve their health. James Clark was recommended by the King of the Belgians in 1834 for the post of physician to the Duchess of Kent, and her daughter, Princess Victoria later Queen Victoria.
The arrival of the railway in 1863 saw an explosion of visitors to Pitlochry on account of the new form of affordable travel.
A lot of new building took place, the style of architecture used is known today as Scottish Baronial, a style of architecture that frequently incorporated feature towers and adorned by small turrets. The magnificent H plan Atholl Palace was completed in 1878, it dominates the sky line as you approach Pitlochry and many visitors today think it is a castle, not a hotel.
Pitlochry is best known for its fish ladder and dam, completed in 1950 as part of the ingenious linear amalgamation of power stations in the highlands. The Pitlochry Fish Ladder allows the salmon to bypass the dam wall each year to their spawning grounds up stream.
Today Pitlochry has the greatest number of hotels, Bed and breakfasts, Guest houses and Self catering cottages north of Perth; it is a very popular tourist destination.