Top 5 Scottish Castles

Inverness Castle

Scotland is famous for many things, like its Highlands, craggy landscape, kilts and bagpipes, and not to forget, castles. Scottish castles always have a reputation for something, whether it is for being haunted, very old with a bloody history, or the filming site for various movies. If you’re visiting Scotland, taking a look at a castle or two is an obligatory part of any sightseeing tour. Of course, there are more than a few castles to choose from in Scotland, and since they all have something interesting about them, it can be difficult to choose. So here are our choices for the top 5 Scottish castles.

Inverness Castle

Any castle built in the location of Inverness Castle would likely be a good castle, thanks to the beautiful natural surroundings. But on the other hand, this particular castle would look fetching even in a bog! Inverness castle was built in 1836, so it is quite recent, but it was built on the site of a defensive structure dating back to the 11th century. Unfortunately, visitors can’t enter the castle, but the grounds are open to the public and you can take a good look at the building on all its sides.

Braemar Castle, Aberdeenshire

photo by Bert Kaufmann

Braemar Castle is the ancestral home of the Clan Farquharson and it dates back to the late Middle Ages. The castle was built as a hunting lodge, but later became an important garrison, and today it is leased by a charity which opened it up for the public. There are lots of antiquities on display in the castle, and of course, it is reputed to be haunted by quite a large coterie of ghosts.

Kilchurn Castle, Argyll and Bute

Kilchurn Castle has been in ruins for quite some time, but in the case of castles, a ruined state does not necessarily mean that it no longer holds any interest. Kilchurn Castle is located in a spectacular setting, on the shores of Loch Awe, and it is one of the most photographed sights in Scotland. Visits are only allowed in summer.

Duntrune Castle, Argyll

photo by Patrick Mackie

Duntrune is the oldest continuously occupied castle in Scotland, and owned by the Clan Malcolm. The castle dates back to the 12th century, and thus an important historical site. Those visiting the castle can stay in self-catering cottages near the castle. The ghost of this castle is also out of the ordinary: a handless piper (a handless skeleton was discovered in the castle during renovations).

Edinburgh Catle

Edinburgh Castle is not only an important symbol of the city, but of the entire Scotland. The castle perched on the hill is one of the most recognizable sights in Scotland, and a very popular visitor attraction. The castle is restored and in addition to displays and furnished rooms, it frequently features reenactments and various activities.

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