August 19, 2011

Castle Country

Where else in the world can you wander aimlessly around the countryside and find a castle practically anywhere? There are many other castle-dense countries out there, I'm sure, but Scotland has to be in the top five. 

Since we're in Argyll and Bute, I thought I'd showcase some of the lesser-known (read: un-tourist-infested) castles out there.
Stalker Castle by . SantiMB .
Stalker Castle, a photo by . SantiMB . on Flickr.

Featured in the movie Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Castle Stalker ("stalker" as in hunter or falconer) is in an amazingly picturesque position. Described as "bewitching" and "dramatic", this is a postcard perfect location. It is privately owned, with tours given by appointment.
Carrick Castle by lusobrandane
Carrick Castle, a photo by lusobrandane on Flickr.

Another privately owned castle (currently under renovation) is Carrick Castle--a keep that was pillaged and plundered in Argyll's rebellion.

Finlaggan castle - Eilean Mòr by arjayempee
Finlaggan castle - Eilean Mòr, a photo by arjayempee on Flickr.
Once the court of the illustrious Lords of the Isles, Finlaggan Castle is now a lonely ruin.According to its website, the castle was probably systematically dismantled in the 14th century (around about the time the MacDonalds were making themselves unpopular).

Gylen Castle and Port a’ Chaisteil by arjayempee
One last place: built in 1582 by Clan MacDougall, the melodramatic Gylen Castle was recently renovated by the very same family and Historic Scotland for the sum of £500,000. It was actually inhabited only 65 years before being burned by the Covenanters. By the way, did you know where the American term "redneck" (meaning a poor, white, usually uncouth and prejudiced Southerner) comes from? The same fiery Scottish Covenanters! Find out more here.

If you want more beautiful photos, check out Castle Sween, Kilchurn Castle, Barcaldine Castle, and Toward Castle.



  1. I LONG to go back to Britain. The castle and abbey ruins get me every time!

  2. Ah, loved that Monty Python humour, and the castle scenes - with all the animals being catapulted - were among the most hilarious ! Yes - beautiful castles.

  3. You know, that's something I love about Britain: the juxtaposition of beautiful history and good fun :)

  4. The most castle dense country in the world is WALES!

    1. That is true! Credit where credit is due.


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