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Dunstaffnage Castle

September 28, 2010

Dunstaffnage Castle stands, gloomy and dramatic, at the mouth of Loch Etive. In many years visiting Oban I had often seen the castle at a distance, but had never been close. We were inspired to visit by reading Andrew Greig’s latest novel Romanno Bridge, which has its dramatic conclusion at Dunstaffnage Castle. Romanno Bridge is a fast-paced thriller and well worth the read, though you might find it helpful to read its predecessor novel The Return of John Macnab first. Anyway, Greig sums up the atmosphere of Dunstaffnage Castle really well.

Dunstaffnage Castle

The castle was built in the early thirteenth century as a stronghold for the MacDougalls. It was occupied in various forms, latterly by the Campbells, until 1810. There is much to see and the views from the ramparts are quite superb.

We approached it first on a dusky evening in September. It was not open, but I am glad we saw it in that light, for it is just how it is depicted in Greig’s novel. There were few people about. It was like wandering back in time. I was pleased we saw it like that, for that first impression will live in my mind.

There is a lot to see in the castle, and in the ruins of the nearby chapel. But if you visit don’t miss the nearby shoreline, with its quiet little coves and wonderful views across to Benderloch and Morvern.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. David Carter permalink
    September 28, 2010 9:48 am

    The “Captain of Dunstaffnage” was the traditional head of the Duke of Argyll’s private army. The eldest son of the family still bears this Scottish title.

  2. October 8, 2012 5:02 pm

    Hi, my name is Sara, I am working as a sustainbale tourism consultant in North Devon and I was wondering if I can use your photo of the Dunstaffnage Castle for my presentation about Eco-museum. I will probably also publish the presentation on my website: Sustainble Tourism World, can I?
    Please let me know

    Sara Vitali

  3. October 8, 2012 5:04 pm

    Hi Sara, very welcome but would appreciate a credit please, Cheers,John

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