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Eilean Donan Castle

One of Scotland’s most stunning castles, this icon has been featured in movies ranging from Highlander to The World is Not Enough.

Eilean Donan Castle is among the most photographed monuments in the country. This comes as no surprise considering its dramatic setting on an offshore islet, overlooking the confluence of three sea lochs and surrounded by the mountains of Kintail. Wander through the castle’s interior to see its impressive collection of historic weapons, Jacobean artifacts and period furniture.

The original castle on this site was built in the early 13th century to defend the lands of Kintail from the Vikings. Damaged and rebuilt several times over the centuries, the castle you see today was restored by Colonel MacRae in 1932. The current incarnation incorporates the ruins remaining from the castle’s last destruction in 1719. Begin your exploration at the visitor center on the mainland across from the castle, which also includes the ticket office.

Cross over the narrow stone bridge leading to the castle’s islet. The bridge is one of the most famous aspects of the castle, although it’s actually a recent addition, constructed during the 1930s restorations.

Visits start with the introductory exhibit in the castle’s southwest wing. Learn about the history of the castle and see models detailing its various designs over the centuries. Next, head to the sea gate in the castle’s courtyard for wonderful views of Loch Alsh.

Continue into the castle’s main keep, where three floors are open to the public. Look inside bedrooms, troop quarters and a grand banqueting hall.

As you explore, notice photos of scenes filmed at the castle from the movie Highlander as well as a sword used at the battle of Culloden in 1746. Look inside kitchens, which have been laid out to resemble how they might have looked during a grand banquet. Follow side passages leading to the battlements for beautiful aerial views over the surrounding area.

Eilean Donan Castle is 9 miles (14 kilometers) east of Lochalsh. A number of tour companies offer daytrips. The castle has an admission fee and is open daily, with regular closures for holidays. Don’t miss one of Scotland’s most picturesque castles.

Popular Activities at Eilean Donan Castle

Make the most of your time spent at Eilean Donan Castle. Here is a list of some of the top things to do:

Why don't you consider purchasing a Full-Day Tour to the Isle of Skye & Eilean Donan Castle from Invernes or a 3 Day Isle of Skye and Highlands with Jacobite Steam Train?

If you're chasing even more options, take a look at our Kyle things to do page.


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Top Eilean Donan Castle Hotel & Accommodation Deals

See all 172 properties near Eilean Donan Castle
Eilean Donan View
Eilean Donan View

Eilean Donan View

12 Frances Street, Dornie, Kyle, Scotland
     
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Situated near the beach, this cottage is 0.4 mi (0.7 km) from Eilean Donan Castle and within 12 mi (20 km) of Plockton Harbour and Loch Carron. Glenelg Brochs is 19.5 mi (31.3 km) away.

    Balmacara Hotel AU$376
    Balmacara Hotel

    Balmacara Hotel

    Balmacara, Kyle, Scotland
       
      3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Nestled on the beach, this Kyle hotel is within 6 mi (10 km) of Skye Bridge, Plockton Harbour, and Eilean Donan Castle. Loch Carron and Caisteal Maol are also within 9 mi (15 km).

      Sealladh Mara
      Sealladh Mara

      Sealladh Mara

      DORNIE,, Kyle, Scotland
         
        3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Situated in Kyle, this bed & breakfast is 1.4 mi (2.2 km) from Eilean Donan Castle and within 9 mi (15 km) of Skye Bridge and Loch Carron. Plockton Harbour and Glen Shiel are also within 12 mi (20 km).

        Highland Shores
        Highland Shores

        Highland Shores

        Highland Shores Sallachy Dornie, Kyle, Scotland
           
          3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

          Situated in Kyle, this cottage is 2 mi (3.2 km) from Eilean Donan Castle and within 12 mi (20 km) of Plockton Harbour and Skye Bridge. Glen Shiel and Loch Carron are also within 12 mi (20 km).

          Old School House
          Old School House

          Old School House

          Old School House Letterfearn, Kyle, Scotland
             
            3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

            Situated in Kyle, this cottage is 4.3 mi (7 km) from Glen Shiel and within 12 mi (20 km) of Eilean Donan Castle and Five Sisters of Kintail. Plockton Harbour and Glenelg Brochs are also within 25 mi (40 km).

            Druidaig Cottage
            Druidaig Cottage

            Druidaig Cottage

            2 Druidaig Cottage Letterfearn, Kyle, Scotland
               
              3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

              Situated in Kyle, this cottage is 4.3 mi (7 km) from Glen Shiel and within 12 mi (20 km) of Eilean Donan Castle and Five Sisters of Kintail. Plockton Harbour and Glenelg Brochs are also within 25 mi (40 km).

              Kings Arms Hotel
              Kings Arms Hotel

              Kings Arms Hotel

              King Street, Kyleakin, Isle of Skye, Scotland
                 
                2.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Situated in Isle of Skye, this hotel is 0.6 mi (0.9 km) from Caisteal Maol and 1.5 mi (2.4 km) from Skye Bridge. Plockton Harbour and Skye Serpentarium are also within 9 mi (15 km).

                Creag Mhor Cottage
                Creag Mhor Cottage

                Creag Mhor Cottage

                Creag Mhor Cottage 6 Sallachy, Kyle, Scotland
                   
                  3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Situated in Kyle, this cottage is 4.7 mi (7.5 km) from Eilean Donan Castle and within 12 mi (20 km) of Skye Bridge and Glen Shiel. Plockton Harbour and Caisteal Maol are also within 16 mi (25 km).