Saddell Castle was built by David Hamilton, Bishop of Argyll, between 1508 and 1512 from the stones of the ruined Saddell Abbey. The castle was gifted to James Hamilton, 2nd Earl of Arran by Bishop James Hamilton, as payment of debts and taxes in 1556. The Earl of Arran exchanged it with the Chief of Clan MacDonald of Dunnyveg, James MacDonald in exchange for James's lands on the Isle of Arran. The castle was ransacked and burnt in 1558 by Thomas Radclyffe, 3rd Earl of Sussex, Lord Deputy of Ireland under orders of Queen Mary I of England in retaliation of James's involvement in Ireland against the English. The castle was later rebuilt and enlarged together with a trap door in the main entrance passage, which upon activation, sent unwanted visitors into a dungeon which had no exits. In 1607, the Clan Donald lands in Kintyre, including Saddell, were conveyed by King James VI to Archibald Campbell, 7th Earl of Argyll. The castle fell into disrepair when Saddell House was built c. 1774. The castle was bought and restored by the Landmark Trust, which now rents it out as a self-catering property.



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Founded: 1508-1512
Category: Castles and fortifications in United Kingdom


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User Reviews

Adrian Bond (9 months ago)
Landmark Trust property, so you can hire it for 3, 4 or 7 days. Saddell Castle is located right on Saddell beach. This is the location where they shot the video for the 1979 hit Wings song 'Mull of Kintyre'. Parking is right at the entrance of the saddell estate about 4 cars only, and it is about a 10 minute walk to get to the beach, if you dawdle. But it is worth it! Once on the beach you get amazing views and lots of wildlife, seals, too many sea birds to mention and the odd otters too. If you are driving down the 'long and winding road' from Skipness to campletown (not the faster straight road) it is worth 45 minutes or so to enjoy the beach and maybe get over a little car sickness! Views of Aaran are great on a clear day...
kyle potter (9 months ago)
Had a nice walk along Saddell Bay and had the amazing opportunity to see a pod of wild dolphins.
Martin Wassall (10 months ago)
It's a 16th century castle and you can stay in it. What's not to love?
Robert Stephens (10 months ago)
Shame you can't look around it.
Cheryl Clarke (12 months ago)
Parked in the small car park in Saddell itself and then walked down and along the beach and back. The castle said private so didn't venture too near to the castle itself, but lovely stretch of beach for a short walk (around 2 miles of walking from car park and back).
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