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“Nice castle!”

Dunstaffnage Castle & Chapel
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US$41.61*
and up
Historic Scotland Explorer Pass
Ranked #5 of 46 things to do in Oban
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Visit the mighty stronghold of the ‘Kings of the Isles’ where Jacobite heroine Flora MacDonald was believed to have been held in prisoner. On an immense rock overlooking the Firth of Lorn near Oban stands the remains of one of the oldest stone castles in Scotland and the former stronghold of the MacDougalls. Built around 1220 by Duncan MacDougall, the son of Earl Somerled, known also as the ‘King of the Isles’, Dunstaffnage Castle was built at the height of the battle between Scotland and Norway for control of the Hebrides and was even once besieged by Robert the Bruce during the Wars of Independence. Its formidable stone curtain still has the power to inspire awe in visitors while Dunstaffnage Chapel, concealed amongst the trees, offers a stunning example of 13th century architecture.
Reviewed 14 July 2014

Visited on the way out of Oban and this is a good stop on a nice day. Historic Scotland site. Good, informative boards telling you about the castle. Great views from the upper walls. Pleasant walk from the car park.

Thank robbieM1955
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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255 - 259 of 430 reviews

Reviewed 14 July 2014

Beautiful old castle - I believe one of the oldest still standing in Scotland. It's located just outside Oban on a small peninsula with fantastic views from the towers. Nice easy visit - and part of the Historic Scotland pass. Worth a stop!

Thank Garrick S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 July 2014

We are Historic Scotland members so made a beeline for this place. The staff member in the little shop was very friendly, knowledgeable and helpful. We picked up a quiz in the exhibition room above the shop and this was a good challenge for my 8yr old daughter. This is such an interesting place architecturally as it's built on a rock plug and has two obvious ages to the buildings. It was great to be able to walk all the way to the top of the battlements and there's a great view. The newer building has recently been opened to the public but is pretty empty and bland. This could really do with some displays and interpretation. We also took the short walk to the chapel which had some quite interesting memorials. My husband agrees with one of the other reviews that it would make a great refuge in a zombie apocalypse!!

Thank Ruth H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 July 2014

Don't be put off by the drive through a housing estate and industrial area to get here. The castle itself is compact and fascinating. Would make a good refuge in a zombie apocalypse...

Thank mymster
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 June 2014

If it isn't, it must be the next oldest, since it dates from the mid-12th century and is connected to Somerled, Lord of the Isles.
Being a well-designed medieval castle, people with mobility problems can't go inside (the entrance is half way up the curtain wall) and unless the Manager has read (and acted upon) the complaint I left with the Custodian, they can't use the disability toilet either, since it is kept locked from the inside - despite having a RADAR key facility.
All that aside, it is in beautiful spot not far from the loch side and close to the Ocean Explorer Centre (which has a rather nice cafe). For those of us interested in old buildings, there is also a ruined medieval family chapel which still retains much of its walls and has decoration on the reamining lancet windows.
The Custodian is an extremely helpful and cheerful young lady and is obviously proud of the castle she looks after. Well worth a visit.

Thank TheTomeRaider
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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