Scotland castle images are a part of the emotion that makes up every lover of this country's mental picture of his or her dream destination.
A Scotland castle tour – covering mighty ruins reminiscent of struggles of yesteryear, splendid palaces, icons of history and, if the budget allows it, days and nights spent exploring the local countryside and its history from a Scotland castle offering accommodation – is an ideal way to thematize your visit to Scotland, instead of trying to see everything at once.
Because whether you visit Scottish castles spread all around the country, or concentrate just on one region, by making these former focal points of Scottish daily life the dots you join on your map as you travel around, you automatically get to see lots and lots of other aspects of the country, its history and inhabitants.
The Feeling That Is Scotland
In some ways, the castles are Scotland, or at least they embody its spirit.
To me, old walls just seem to radiate an energy that tells us stories of their inhabitants in days gone by. Even when I see a ruin, I picture the people building it, centuries ago, as if it were here and now; I hear the sounds of their voices and the ring of metal on stone, the grunting as they heave yet another piece of the puzzle into place. I hear the cry of the watchman from the battlements as he challenges an approaching horde on horseback.
When you touch the stone of a Scotland castle you can almost feel a connection to a chain of events that reaches back over centuries to a time when life was very different to what it is now.
On a visit to Scotland, castles will likely cross your path everywhere you go. There are many which are well known to all of us, such as Edinburgh castle with its One O'clock Gun, the iconic Eilean Donan on an island in its mystical loch, or the blown-up ruins of Urquhart Castle on the tranquil shores of Loch Ness.
Other Scotland castles, however, are probably not so familiar to you, and these are the ones I'd like to show you on these pages.
First I want to give you a short overview of the history and types of Scotland castle you are likely to come across, ranging from small 15th century towers and fortalices to massive fortifications and princely or royal palaces.
Then I'll take you to some of my particular favourites – the list below will gradually be expanded. They include:
I'll also let you in on some insider secrets about some of the more well known Scotland castles you're likely to come across, that will make your visit that little bit more enjoyable when you see them with the eyes of an insider:
As I say, when in Scotland, castle touring is an ideal way to see the country. And if you have any suggestions of other ones you'd like to know more about, or which you yourself would like to share with other visitors to this website, just use the contact form to tell or ask me about your favourite Scotland castle!