Tioram Castle Ruins

Highland, United Kingdom

Castle Tioram ruins sits on the tidal island Eilean Tioram in Loch Moidart, Lochaber. The castle is the traditional seat of Clan MacDonald of Clan Ranald, a branch of Clan Donald. It was seized by Government forces around 1692 when Clan Chief Allan of Clanranald joined the Jacobite Court in France, despite having sworn allegiance to the British Crown. A small garrison was stationed in the castle until the Jacobite Uprising of 1715 when Allan recaptured and torched it, purportedly to keep it out of the hands of Hanoverian forces. It has been unoccupied since that time, although there are some accounts suggesting it was partially inhabited thereafter including storage of firearms from the De Tuillay in the 1745 Jacobite Uprising and Lady Grange's account of her kidnapping.

The curtain wall is believed to date from the 13th century whilst the tower and other interior buildings are of 15th to 17th century construction. Amie mac Ruari is said to have extended the castle in the 14th century.

The castle is now in extremely poor condition and in 1998 was closed to the public at the request of Highland Council; a major structural collapse occurred at the north west curtain wall in 2000.

The castle can be reached on foot across the tidal causeway, but there is no access to the interior because of the risk of falling masonry.



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Highland, United Kingdom
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Founded: 13th century
Category: Castles and fortifications in United Kingdom


4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Phil Morris (2 years ago)
Absolutely breathtaking ruin. Cannot enter as is dangerous but is clearly sign posted. We were lucky enough to visit on a clear day
Mark Poley (2 years ago)
Castle ruin in a fabulous location. The road leading to it is a single track road with occasional passing places and has some tight corners, making it only suitable for small vehicles (too narrow for motorhomes, and don't even think of bringing your caravan!) Campervans should be OK. There is a small car park for about 10 cars. Once full there's no other parking. Only a short walk along the beach to the Castle set on a prominent spur of land. The footpaths around the castle are not made up, so not suitable for wheelchair users. Walking boots or stout shoes will be a good idea for able bodied walkers. There's no access to the castle but it's really all about the location and fabulous scenery. ??
Neil Campbell (3 years ago)
The other half and I had a great time exploring the area around the castle. It's a shame there's not much information available on site but I get the feeling there used to be. Definitely worth a visit if you're in the area although admittedly getting close to the castle will not be easy for those with mobility issues.
Patrick Macinnes (3 years ago)
A delightful place to explore. The castle is obviously the main event and even though you can't get inside, there's plenty of exploring around most of its island. Lots of gullies and waist-high ferns to walk through, just be careful of uneven ground and some very sharp drops on the loch side of the island. The sand causeway is exposed at low tide so study the tide times if you plan on a visit. The road down to the castle is very bumpy and undulating but is beautifully picturesque; just drive slowly, as there a lot of unsighted bends and hills. Parking is pretty ample but once you get a load of 4x4s and campers in there, it's filled up quickly. And beware of the soft verges under the trees... I stupidly got my wheels stuck pretending to be in a Land Rover - doh! The walk along the beach is lovely and although we didn't try it, swimming will be fine here. Plenty of rocks for the kids to do some mini-monster hunting. Remnants of fires so it's obviously a popular place to set up camp and watch the sunset. The views are spectacular. There is a walk along Loch Moidart that takes you back to Kinlochmoidart if you fancy an explore. The nearest shop is in Acarachle, which is a few minutes drive away.
Joseph Kincaid (3 years ago)
On an isolated beach linked island, the castle is sign posted as dangerous and not to be approached. The road into it is narrow and twisted especially beside the river. The car park is big enough for 10 cars at least but this is a popular place. The walk to the castle is easy and it can be viewed quite close but the entrance is fenced off. A good spot for a walk and photos.
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