Local Castles & Gardens
CASTLE STALKER - Appin village is itself the home of Castle Stalker one of the most photographed castles in Scotland. You can walk or cycle along the new cycleway to reach it or it is a 5 minute drive. The Castle's picturesque appearance, with its bewitching island setting against a dramatic backdrop of mountains, has made it a favourite subject for postcards and calendars, and something of a mainstay image of Scottish Highland scenery. Visit the website for further info.
BARCALDINE CASTLE - is situated west of the main road between Appin & Oban. Sitting just a few hundred metres from the shore of Loch Creran, the castle lies to the south-west of the township of Barcaldine from which it takes its name. Also known as the Black Castle perhaps due to the dark colour of its stones, this L-shaped construction was built in the 16th century by Sir Duncan Campbell of Glenorchy who was also known as Black Duncan and Duncan of the Seven Castles. Said to be haunted by the Blue Lady, a Campbell maiden whose ghost plays the piano! The castle offers Afternoon Teas during the summer from Wednesday to Sunday, from 1pm until 4.30pm. Reservations required. Tel: 01631 720598.
DUNSTAFFNAGE CASTLE - looks square and impenetrable with round towers. A MacDougall stronghold until 1309, it was seized by Robert the Bruce who appointed the chief of the MacArthurs as Captain of the Castle. Bonne Prince Charlie's heroine, Flora MacDonald, was held prisoner here for a short time in 1746. It is located 5 miles north of Oban, it was to here that the stone of destiny was brought over from Ireland via Iona. In the mid-ninth century with the Norsemen attacking from the west, the seat of power was moved to Scone, near Perth. The Stone was used at the coronations of subsequent Scottish kings until it was taken by Edward I to Westminster Abbey in 1296. The Stone was returned to Scotland on Saint Andrews' Day, 30 November 1996 and can now be seen in Edinburgh Castle.
KINLOCHLAICH is the West Highlands largest nursery garden centre and is in the village of Appin. The old walled garden, built circa 1790 by John Campbell, sits hidden against the Highland landscape. Like many gardens in the Highlands, the mild climate of the Gulf Stream allows many different plants to thrive. They have developed the Garden Plant Centre within the ornamental gardens since 1975, and it has become one of the leading plant nurseries in Scotland.
DRUIMNEIL HOUSE & GARDENS is also located in Appin. The House was built in 1850 and has all of the best traditions of Mid-Victorian architecture, with high ceilings, a winding staircase and traditional fireplaces. The Gardens are open to the public from Easter to October and overlook Loch Linnhe and the Sound of Shuna.