Best castles in Scotland
You have decided to visit Scotland because you are a traveller fascinated by the nature but also history, castles, fortresses, dungeons, clans, struggles. The Scottish castles are not only among the most beautiful castles in Europe, they are also castles with a soul.
From the romantic Eilean Donan Castle to movie-star castles like Stalker Castle, castles on small islands or castles that dominate the richest and most beautiful cities, discover the most beautiful castles in Scotland.
Eilean Donan Castle
Dornie - Western Highlands
Eilean Donan is one of Scotland's most famous castles. You can book flights to Edinburgh and stay for a few days in the Scottish capital or fly directly to Inverness, a two-hour drive from Eilean Donan Castle.
This place is particularly romantic and has been awarded as being one of the best places for a marriage proposal. Eilean Donan Castle is also considered to be the most romantic castle in Europe and the most photographed with Urquhart Castle (Loch Ness Castle).
Opening hours: The castle is open every day from 10.00 to 16.00 (last admission at 15.00 - the castle is closed in January).
How to get there: Book your flights to Inverness (2h drive from Eilean Donan Castle).
Where to stay: "Kinloch Lodge Hotel and Restaurant". Stay near Eilean Donan Castle.
It is one of the most visited Scottish castles, although it has only been open to the public for a short time. For centuries this ancient fortress which dominates the entire city of Edinburgh has been the stronghold of the military. Before that, the castle was the property of the most illustrious kings like Malcolm III or King Davier the first.
In the 13th century, on the death of the King of Scotland, King Edward I of England invaded Scotland. Later, it will be up to the new King of England, Edward III, to fight to reconquer Scotland, which had become independent again.
Visit Edinburgh Castle and immerse yourself in centuries of history that have marked the United Kingdom.
Opening hours: The castle is open every day from 9.30 to 18h.
How to get there: Book your flights to Edinburgh; the castle is located 20 minutes from the airport.
Where to stay: "The Edinburgh Grand" for a 5-star stay near the castle.
Appin - Argyll and Bute
Located near the Isle of Mull and 3 hours from the Scottish capital, Stalker Castle is one of the most beautiful castles in Scotland.
The castle's origin dates back to the 14th century although its current appearance probably dates back to the 15th century. If you are over 40 or you are a film buff you may have seen it in the Monty Python movie or more recently in the Highlander movie.
The castle is isolated on a small island accessible only at low tide.
Opening hours: The castle is not open to the public every day, you must go to its website to book a guided tour (between April and September).
How to get there: Book your flights to Inverness (2.5 hours by car - 4 hours by train) or Edinburgh (3 hours by car - 5 hours by train).
Dunvegan - Isle of Skye
Located on the Isle of Skye, 3 hours from Inverness Airport and 5 hours from Glasgow Airport, Dunvegan Castle is well worth the trip.
Dunvegan was not the first Vegan knight in history. Nor is it the name of the illustrious owner (Clan MacLeod) but the name of the village located nearby. If two of you are travelling and are not both passionate about castles this is not a problem. Dunvegan Castle is worth visiting just for the beauty of its gardens open to the public every day of the week from 10.00 to 17.30.
Opening hours: The castle is open to the public every day of the week from 10.00 to 17.30.
How to get there: Book your flights to Inverness (3h by car).
Where to stay: "Skye Eco Bells" is an Eco Glamping site.
Where will you be landing? Inverness airport? Dundee or Aberdeen or even Edinburgh (2 hours drive ). Just like the Royal Family, you'll be spoiled for choice.
Please note that Balmoral Castle is open to the public from April 1st until July 31st only. Every summer, Balmoral Castle welcomes the royal family for the Highland Games in the village of Braemar, (5-minutes drive from their castle).
If you also want to see this incredible show of strength in the presence of Her Majesty the Queen and family book your flights to Edinburgh or Inverness and your accommodation at the best price around Balmoral Castle and your tours and activities in Scotland.
How to get there: Book your flights to Inverness, Dundee, Aberdeen (1h30 by car) or Edinburgh (2h).
Where to stay: "The Auld Kirk" is a former church that has been converted into a hotel.
Stonehaven - Aberdeenshire
Just 2 hours from the Scottish capital and 1 hour from the pretty town of Dundee, come visit Dunnottar Castle, one of Scotland's finest castles.
Built in the 13th century, Dunnottar Castle has resisted many attacks and the assault of thousands of travellers who come to visit.
How to get there: Book your flights to Dundee (1h) or Edinburgh (2h).
Where to stay: Overlooking Stonehaven Harbour, “The Ship Inn" is located 2km from Dunnotar Castle.
Isle of Mull - Argyll and Bute
You have to be a lover of castles to visit this Scottish castle located on the Isle of Mull. You will not regret the 4- hour drive from Edinburgh (3h30 from Glasgow).
If you are a connoisseur you will immediately notice that changes have been made to the initial style of this 13th century castle. It was restored in the early 20th century and therefore mixes two different styles.
Opening hours: Make sure you set off early, the castle is open every day from 10:30 to 17.00
How to get there: Book your flights to Glasgow (3h30) or Edinburgh (4h).
Where to stay: "Bramble Cottage" is located on the Isle of Mull, 3 km from Duart Castle.
Golspie - Highlands
North Scotland is home to one of Scotland's most beautiful castles. Dunrobin Castle. It is one of the few Scottish castles accessible by public transport, as Dunrobin Castle is just a minute's walk from Dunrobin Railway Station.
If you are an attentive film buff you will have noticed that this castle appears in Stanley Kubrick's "Barry Lyndon".
During your visit you will see that Dunrobin Castle has similarities with Westminster Castle. Indeed, they share the same architect, Charles Barry.
Opening hours: The castle is open every day from 10.00 to 16.00.
How to get there: Book your flights to Inverness (1h15 by car - 3h by train).
Where to stay: "The Steading". Couples especially like the location (15 min from Dunrobin Castle).
Glamis - Angus
Have you ever seen this castle somewhere? Look in your wallet, it appears on the Scottish 10-pound notes. Glamis Castle is often considered one of the most beautiful castles in Scotland and one of the most important from a historical point of view.
It is in this castle that King Malcom I died. Discover the history of this castle and its legends by booking your flights and your accommodation at the best price and your tours and activities in Scotland, such as a whale watching tour.
Opening hours: The castle is open every day from 10.00 to 17.30.
How to get there: Book your flights to Dundee (30 min by car) or Edinburgh (2h).
Where to stay: "Drumshademuir Caravan & Camping Park" located 3km away from Glamis. Castle.
Dalmally - Argyll and Bute
Just a 20-minute drive from Inveraray Castle, Kilchurn Castle is also one of Scotland's best castles.
You have to have a romantic soul to appreciate all the beauty of this castle in ruins. Built in the 15th century the castle will be enlarged and remodeled over the centuries.
This is not a clan war that is at the origin of the decay of the castle but a powerful storm in the 18th century. Since then it has been left in ruin. Good news: the castle entrance is free. Bad news: the ground is waterlogged, do not forget to take boots with you.
Opening hours: The castle is in ruin and is open to all: public, flora and fauna, every day of the week, 24 hours a day.
How to get there: Book your flights to Glasgow (1h30 by car - 2h by train).
Where to stay: The "Graig Villa Guesthouse" located in Dalmally.
Inverness - Highlands
This ruined castle is Scotland's most visited castle. It was one of the most beautiful castles in Scotland and was the subject of many struggles to take possession of it. It ended up being abandoned and even deliberately destroyed so as not to fall into the hands of enemies.
Its popularity is mainly because it faces the legendary Lake ‘Loch Ness’. If you are passionate about history come and visit the castle and if you just want to feed your Instagram thread, you will be able to take pictures from the road.
Opening hours: The castle is open every day from 9.30 to 20.00.
How to get there: Book your flights to Inverness (45 min by car) or Edinburgh (3h30).
Where to stay: The "Ballifeary Guest House" has one of the best rated rentals in Inverness.
Inveraray - Argyll and Bute
The 15th century castle has been completely demolished. This is not the result of a bloody battle nor a struggle for power, but the will of its new owner, Duke Archibald Campbell. In the 18th century the castle was completely rebuilt and underwent new changes over the centuries.
Opening hours: The castle is open every day from 10.00 to 17.00.
How to get there: Book your flights to Glasgow (1h by car - 2h30 by train).
Where to stay: "Loch Fyne Hotel & Spa" has a swimming pool and spa.
Castle Douglas - Dumfries And Galloway
This 14th century dungeon was built on an island in the middle of the River Dee. Like many Scottish castles, it has gone through many battles and has changed owners many times either by force or money. It became a royal castle in the 16th century.
Come and discover the history of this castle by booking your flights to Glasgow or Edinburgh (2 hours by car) and your accommodation at the best price as well as your tours and activities in Scotland, such as a Single Malt Whiskey and Distillery tour in Glasgow.
Opening hours: The castle is open every day from 10.00 to 16.30.
How to get there: Book your flights to Glasgow or Edinburgh (2 hours by car).
Where to stay: The "Ernespie House Hotel" located 10 minutes from the castle.
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