Arran – the castles

Brodick Castle

With a couple of friends we rented an apartment in Arran over the May Day Bank Holiday. It was a long time since we’d been and it was their first visit – it was definitely a success, but, as with our earlier weekend in Galloway, the weather was a bit iffy. Still, we got out and about and there was plenty to see.

It was a disappointment to find that Brodick Castle is closed this year, presumably for maintenance. However, the gardens were open and we spent a whole morning wandering about.

Later that day, we went to Lochranza Castle, a 13th century ruin which can be visited free of charge. What a beautiful setting!

The following day, we had lunch at the Kildonan Hotel and took a short walk afterwards to see Kildonan Castle. This is also 13th century, though there’s much less of it left and it’s not accessible – it’s actually in someone’s garden! The modern standing stones at the hotel were interesting too.

Next time: the walks.


53 thoughts on “Arran – the castles

  1. karen207 August 7, 2017 / 11:52

    Hi Anabel,
    Nice images of the castles and gardens. What prompted the stone sculptures at the Kildonan Hotel? They look as if they’re in a very particular layout. Was there a reason for that?


    • Anabel Marsh August 7, 2017 / 13:12

      I actually don’t know! There was nothing to explain it and we looked at them after we’d left the hotel, so if there was anything inside we missed it.


  2. maristravels August 7, 2017 / 11:57

    The grey granite echoes the grey skies beautifully, but I must admit I was relieved to get to the two bottom pictures and see some blue! I’m a pampered southerner, of course, more used to blue than grey. Love the castles – and the greyness – so pleased to learn about them.


    • Anabel Marsh August 7, 2017 / 13:06

      The photos were taken over two days – one dull, one bright. (Oops, answered two comments at once to start with, now corrected. Doh!)


  3. edgar62 August 7, 2017 / 12:44

    Goodness, it’s been so long since I was in Arran. I doubt if I would recognise anything after all this time. Our minister came from Arran – the Revd. James Currie of Drumadoon. The photographs were excellent and the gardens looked lovely.


    • Anabel Marsh August 7, 2017 / 13:08

      Thank you – actually, most things have not changed that much!


  4. Pit August 7, 2017 / 14:23

    English castles, Scottish castles, Welsh castles: I love them all! Thanks for taking me around, Anabel, and have a great week,


  5. hilarymb August 7, 2017 / 14:42

    Hi Anabel – sounds like a lovely weekend … despite the weather. I wonder what those sculptures are – I’d love to know more about them. The gardens look amazing – and the scenery in Arran must be so beautiful, if brooding at times … cheers Hilary


    • Anabel Marsh August 7, 2017 / 14:51

      No further info on the sculptures, I’m afraid. Arran is beautiful – in all weathers but, as with everywhere else, I prefer a little sun!


  6. restlessjo August 7, 2017 / 16:31

    Many years ago we spent a week on Arran, with mixed weather, I seem to remember, Anabel, but a beautiful island. We managed the gardens but not the house at Brodick too. 🙂 🙂


    • Anabel Marsh August 7, 2017 / 16:54

      Mixed weather is almost a given! It is a beautiful island, Scotland in miniature as it’s often described.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Donna August 7, 2017 / 20:04

    Great photos, Anabel (and John). The settings are stunning! I look forward to reading about the walks!


  8. Ronnie August 7, 2017 / 20:29

    It is nice to see a wee bit of Arran. I had some great times visiting the island in my younger days.


    • Anabel Marsh August 7, 2017 / 20:48

      It’s a great wee island, we don’t go often enough. Glad to have prompted some memories!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. the eternal traveller August 7, 2017 / 21:30

    Fancy having a castle ruin in your back garden! It’s a shame they don’t share it. I like the idea of blethering on a bench. What a nice way to spend some time with a friend.


    • Anabel Marsh August 7, 2017 / 21:52

      Yes, you really had to squint round the fence to see it properly.

      I thought of calling that photo Two old biddies blethering on a bench, but thought my friend might be offended! If you’re reading this, Val, I don’t mean it 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Jemima Pett August 7, 2017 / 21:56

    Never been to Arran – but would go just to see those castles! I’ve heard of Lochranza – but mainly because he was a racehorse in the 1960s or 70s 🙂


  11. Birgit August 8, 2017 / 03:16

    Some great photos of the gardens….love that artistic bench. It would be so great to see these old castle ruins and just walk around them…like you just did!


    • Anabel Marsh August 8, 2017 / 07:24

      Thanks, I love exploring old castles, the older the better!


  12. Green Global Trek August 8, 2017 / 09:57

    I love castles and your photos remind me of that! Lochranza especially. It is such a gorgeous setting.



    • Anabel Marsh August 8, 2017 / 10:52

      It is – even in dull weather it’s so atmospheric.


  13. Ellen @ The Cynical Sailor August 8, 2017 / 12:13

    There are so many places I didn’t get to visit when we lived in Scotland, but the one that really disappoints me the most is Arran. Probably because my hubby visited a few times, but I never got to go 🙂


  14. Ann Coleman August 8, 2017 / 23:06

    Great photos! You are so lucky to live in an area where there are old castles!


  15. BeckyB August 9, 2017 / 07:24

    Wonderful . . . . .no wonder MrB & I keep thinking we might move to the glorious Scotland. Love Lochranza Castle in particular.


  16. Jessica (Diverting Journeys) August 9, 2017 / 14:09

    I actually think I like the Bavarian summerhouse best of all! It looks like a good place for a witch to live and make tinctures and tisanes from the herbs in the garden…I think every castle could use a resident witch!


    • Anabel Marsh August 9, 2017 / 18:23

      Yes, it does look like a witch’s house! Unfortunately, the path around it was closed so we couldn’t get inside to check if there were any witches living there.

      Liked by 1 person

  17. Blue Sky Scotland August 11, 2017 / 10:40

    Three great locations there. Arran is a cracking island for places to visit.


  18. rosemaylily2014 August 12, 2017 / 07:34

    Stunning locations Anabel – the 13th century ruins of Lochranza are especially picturesque 🙂


    • Anabel Marsh August 12, 2017 / 10:15

      Aren’t they?! Even though it was quite cold we lingered for a long time just drinking in the scenery.

      Liked by 1 person

  19. mukhamani August 12, 2017 / 17:17

    So beautiful, seeing all the photos I was thinking about the people who lived in them 🙂


  20. Kathleen Jennette August 13, 2017 / 18:24

    You are one of the first blogs I read after changing over from Blogger and wiping out my old blog, and still my fave. I am passing this along to you (don’t know if you are interested) but I am doing the pass the nominating to a fave. I have nominated you for the VB Award. You deserve many awards 🙂


    • Anabel Marsh August 13, 2017 / 22:25

      Thank you for all those kind words! *Blushes* I’m ambivalent about awards and challenges – my feeling at the moment is that I have a pile-up of posts waiting to be written so wouldn’t have the time. However, I appreciate very much that you picked me!

      Liked by 1 person

  21. jazzfeathers August 16, 2017 / 08:53

    I’m envious. I love castles. My favourite here in Lochranza Castle 🙂


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