GUIDED tours of Balmoral Castle are being offered up for the first time for the lofty price of £100 a ticket.

This summer people will be able to see parts of the royal residence used by the family for the first time since Queen Victoria bought the lease on the Scottish estate in Aberdeenshire in 1848.

But those who want to enjoy the Balmoral Experience will need to fork out £100, which is even more than what you have to pay if you want to tour Buckingham Palace (£95 per person).

If you want to upgrade your “adult only” experience to include an afternoon tea, that’ll set you back £150.

And it doesn’t look like it will be easy to get your hands on a ticket, as they will be limited to just 40 a day when tours run from July 1 to August 4.

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Specifically for the start of the tours, the King has ordered a giant thistle-themed maze for the grounds which people will be able to view – the second new royal maze in 300 years.

The website said: “They will take you on a historical journey through several of the beautiful rooms within Balmoral Castle.

“You will learn about the origins of the castle and how it has been loved by generations of the royal family.

“Travel through time from the purchase of the Balmoral by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, through to present day, where you can see how rooms within the castle are used today by their Majesty’s The King and Queen and other members of the royal family.”

The fully-guided tour will include rooms that are used by the King and Queen when they stay there. There will be no ropes sectioning off parts of rooms or furniture, as it remains a royal home and is not being converted into a museum.

The tour also includes access to the ballroom with a collection of Charles’ watercolour collection depicting scenery at Balmoral, Highgrove and Sandringham as well as a collection of outfits worn by Charles and Camilla, the late Queen and Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother.

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The public will be shown around two dining rooms, one smaller and more formal than the larger family dining room; the drawing room; the page’s lobby; and the red corridor.

Anti-monarchy group Republic has questioned why the public are being charged £100 to see the castle when the King inherited "an estimated £600 million tax-free" when he came to the throne.

The group posted on Twitter/X: "While Balmoral is private property, it still costs the taxpayer a fortune in security, travel and staff. The prime minister has two official homes, No. 10 and Chequers. Why does Charles need a dozen which end up costing us a fortune?"

The group also highlighted the tour costs nearly twice as much as the one at Warner Bros Studios - the UK's most expensive tourist attraction. Studio tour prices start from £53.50 for adults. 

Graham Smith, Republic CEO, added: “Balmoral may well be private, but it is heavily subsidised by the taxpayer, with the public picking up the tab for staff, security and travel to and from the estate. It is also paid for through the exemption of inheritance tax, which would have cost the taxpayer tens of millions of pounds when the Queen died.

“To use this subsidised estate – one of two dozen palatial homes used by the royals – to charge the public £100 a head to visit a few rooms is deplorable. It is another sign the royals are completely out of touch and will exploit every opportunity to get more of our  money into their pockets.

“I hope MPs and MSPs will be asking questions about this profiteering off the back of their public status and subsidised property.”

The tours are being considered a trial to allow staff to assess how the building copes with the increased number of visitors.

Balmoral relies on visitors to pay around half of its £3 million annual running costs. Standard entry costs £17.50 and allows access to just the ballroom and castle grounds.