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“In James Bond's footsteps”

Eilean Donan Castle
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Isle of Skye Day Trip from Inverness
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Owner description: This picturesque castle, built in 1220, holds the title of the most photographed castle in Scotland.
Reviewed 31 July 2012

Interesting however rather busy (due to the time of the year). Explanations by guides in tartan outfit

1  Thank SeniorWarden
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 31 July 2012

One of Scotland’s most iconic images is that of the magnificent Eilean Donnain castle which is familiar to millions of people around the world mainly from its use in various films and TV series as the most seminal of Scottish locations.

It has featured as a location for movies such as Highlander (1986), Loch Ness (1996) and Made of Honour (2008) bringing its existence to the attention of millions around the globe.
Situated on a tiny island in Loch Duich in north-west Scotland, named after Donnan of Eigg, a martyred Celtic saint, the castle stands guard over the confluence of three sea lochs just to the south of the Kyle of Lochalsh peninsula on the main road leading south from the Isle of Skye near the village of Dornie.
The site is well served by buses running from Skye to Oban and has adequate car parking for those with their own transport.
The island shows signs of habitation from the 6th century onwards although the first traces of the castle as we know it date from the 13th century under the ownership of the MacKenzies of Kintail. In 1511 the castle came under control of the MacRae clan. In May 1719 the Royal Navy was sent to the castle which housed a small Spanish force sent there in support of the Jacobite cause after the failure of the uprising of 1715. The RN bombarded the castle for two days resulting in its ruin.
Between the years of 1919 and 1932 Lt.Col. John MacRae-Gilstrap set about reconstructing the castle and also built the iconic arched bridge linking the island to the mainland and today newer additions include a field gun from the First World War and a memorial to the men of the MacRae clan who died in that conflict.
For modern day visitors the castle is served by a well-appointed visitor centre selling souvenirs, traditional jewellery and mementoes as well as a café and ticket office. Inside the castle itself there are numerous reminders of its turbulent history from Viking relics to displays showing the reconstruction, all with descriptions, which add up to a fascinating visitor experience almost unmissable if you visit Scotland.

2  Thank Iain M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 July 2012

We visited this amazing castle in June. It was a glorious day outside the castle and it just got better inside. We met a wonderful guide, Richard MacLennan. He answered all of our questions and also gave us more Scottish history than I ever learned in school. There were not many people there and no tour groups so he had the time to spend with us. Wish we could have taken him with us on the rest of our tour of Scotland. Don't miss this magical place!

Thank Sharon M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 July 2012

This was intended to be the highlight of our visit - this is the famous castle that sits on the Loch and its image is used worldwide as one of the emblems of Scotland. It is indeed a beautiful building from a distance in that setting, and perfectly picturesque. However, the closer it gets, the less attractive it becomes, as you notice rather modern aspects such as the external rendering. Upon arrival it turned out there was a massive visitor centre peddling the usual tourist tat. You have to go in there to purchase tickets to even be allowed to cross the bridge to the castle - we had no desire to go inside the castle, we just wanted to walk around the outside, but the price is the same regardless. Having parted with six pounds each at 4.40 pm we walked across the bridge and around the castle. As we had paid we did take the tour of the inside, which was horribly disappointing - the whole place is a pastiche. It was a ruin until the 1930s when some rich bloke saw a vision in a dream of what it should look like and began to restore it. So the outside is a 20th century pastiche of a Scottish castle, and the inside is nothing more than a wealthy home from the 1930s. We left over the bridge at about 5.15 pm to find people were entering at no cost - they open the gates to all at 5pm for free. When we had specifically asked the ticket desk if we could just see the outside of the castle without paying to go inside, it was disingenuous of them not to tell us that if we waited 20 minutes, yes we could. This whole place is a pastiche, just designed to grab money from gullible tourists. View it from the car park for nothing and then move on (or turn up after 5pm).

5  Thank Simon B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 July 2012

The castle is very nice from the outside and the surroundings are exceptional. The inside are very tight in some areas and the same passages are used for incoming and outgoing tourists alike. Going there on a nice day and I the evening when the tourists buses are not there make it better to enjoy the castle.

The children are provided with a booklet that makes it easier for them to visit the castle. The guide information provided in the room is also good however the accent is scottish and myself and unless you understand English well it may be difficult to understand them.

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

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