Tarbert Castle Ruins

Argyll and Bute, United Kingdom

Tarbert Castle was a strategic royal stronghold during the Middle Ages and one of three castles at Tarbert. The castle overlooks the harbour and although pre-14th century in construction, the tower dates back to 1494 and the visit of James IV to the Western Highlands.

In 712, Tarbert was burned by King Selbach mac Ferchair of Cenél Loairn and of Dál Riata and in 731 by his son, Dúngal mac Selbaig.

King Edward II of England handed control of the castle to the Scottish King John II de Balliol in 1292. A fortified structure was built in Tarbert during the 13th century. It was reinforced with the addition of an outer bailey and towers in the 1320s by Robert the Bruce, to protect it against the Lords of the Isles. A towerhouse was added in the 16th century, which is the most noticeable part of the remains. The castle occupies high land above the village, providing views up Loch Fyne and beyond to the Firth of Clyde. This castle was captured from John MacDonald of Islay, Lord of the Isles by James IV of Scotland as part of his campaign to destroy the power of the Lords of the Isles in 1494. In 1687 the castle was involved in another skirmish when Walter Campbell of Skipness Castle seized it as a stronghold for Archibald Campbell, 9th Earl of Argyll as part of actions in support of the Monmouth Rebellion in England.

There are only a couple of standing walls left and they are considered unstable. The castle has a very commanding view of the water approaches.

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Details

Founded: 14th century
Category: Miscellaneous historic sites in United Kingdom

More Information

en.wikipedia.org

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User Reviews

Warren Cartwright (6 months ago)
It’s a very cool old castle ruins, surrounded by a lovely park. While it was a bit rainy and windy, we had a nice time exploring and learning a little more about the castle, the town and the local history. Well worth a short stop.
Emma MacIsaac (8 months ago)
An amazing historical ruin. Well worth a visit.
Beth Parker (10 months ago)
Good ol’ typical Scottish wet n windy day however didn’t stop us walking up to see the castle ruins. Was absolutely stunning views and would love to go back on a sunny day. Good few stairs up so probably not the best if your mobility isn’t great, however absolutely loved the walk up and exploring.
Craig Learmonth (2 years ago)
Beautiful views and great nature trails around about
Together We'll Face The World (2 years ago)
Nice elevated view over Tarbert and the marina, but there's very little Castle to see, just some ruins with sheep eating the grass around it. There are a few info boards about its history and that it's part of the Kintyre Way walking route
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