The Best Castles Near Loch Lomond

Scotland’s Loch Lomond is located in the center of the country and is an enormous Loch that attracts an abundance of tourists annually, both for its gorgeous natural landscape, as well as for its plethora of historic and fascinating castles.

This list will highlight the best castles near Loch Lomond, as well as their key highlights, location, and opening and closing times.

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Where to Stay at Loch Lomond

The Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park is a stunning area to stay while visiting the castles. You can book a rental car or book guided tours to see the best castles near the famous Loch Lomond area.

Cameron House on Loch Lomond: Located on the shores of Loch Lomond in the Trossachs National Park, the Cameron House offers luxurious bedrooms, a rooftop infinity pool, four restaurants and an exclusive spa. You can join loch excursions with the hotels' cruiser boat or play golf at the 18-hole championship golf course. Book your stay here.

Oak Tree Inn: This award-winning family-run Country Inn is located on the east shore of Loch Lomond. You can choose from individually decorated, traditional bedrooms or cosy cottages. After a day of exploring the castles, you can enjoy a drink in the shade of a 500-year-old oak tree. Book your stay here.

The Loch Lomond Arms Hotel: The traditional Inn is in the village of Luss, close to the shores of Loch Lomond. It offers individually designed rooms, a cosy pub and a restaurant which serves local dishes. Book your stay here.

How To Get Around Loch Lomond

The easiest way to visit the castles near Loch Lomond is by car, as some are in remote areas of Scotland. 
I recommend booking a car through Discover Cars. They have the best price, you can compare all rental car agencies’ prices, and you can modify or cancel your booking for free. Click here for more information on the latest prices and availability.

A great way to see the castles is by booking guided day trips from Glasgow to visit Loch Lomond and some of the beautiful castles. Click here for more information.

Alternatively, you can take the ScotRail train. Click here for more information about train tickets.

The Best 9 Castles to Visit Near Loch Lomond

1. Dumbarton Castle

Famous for having the longest recorded history of any stronghold in the entirety of Scotland, Dumbarton Castle is a stunning and historic castle that is perched upon a large plug of volcanic basalt, otherwise known as Dumbarton Rock.

The rock in which the castle is situated is believed to date back an incredible 334 million years ago; the castle that stands today was originally built in the Middle Ages, though it has changed shape and style throughout the years. Today it is open to the public, who are captivated by its expansive history.

Where: Dumbarton, Scotland
When: Middle Ages
Style: Medieval
Open for visit: Yes, click here for more information.

2. Carrick Castle

Located upon the west shore of Loch Goil, which is in the Cowal peninsula in Argyll and Bute in Scotland, lies the beautiful and historic Carrick Castle, which is a tower house that dates back to the 14th century.

The castle was built by the Campbell clan at the end of the century, as they were particularly dominant in the area at this point in time; later, in the year 1563, Mary, Queen of Scots, visited the castle. Today, Carrick Castle is open to the public, and it is privately owned.

Where: Loch Goil, Scotland
When: 14th century
Style: Medieval
Open for visit: Yes.

3. Doune Castle

Doune Castle is an impressive medieval stronghold that dates back to the thirteenth century and is located near to the scenic Scottish village of Doune, in the Stirling region of the center of Scotland.

It is believed that after the castle’s initial construction, it was heavily damaged in the midst of the Scottish Wars of Independence before it was later rebuilt in the 14th century by Robert Stewart, Duke of Albany, who was the son of King Robert II of Scots, and has remained in this style since then.

Where: Doune, Scotland
When: 13th century
Style: Medieval
Open for visit: Yes, for more information, check here.

4. Inveraray Castle

Located in Scotland’s western county of Argyll lies the stunning Inveraray Castle, which is a large and architecturally impressive country house. It is idyllically perched upon the shores of Loch Fyne, which is the longest sea loch in the entirety of Scotland.

The castle was originally constructed in the middle of the 18th century and was constructed in line with the principles of Gothic Revival architecture, which was immensely popular at the time.

The castle is famous for its heritage, but it is also well known for its role in modern history; in the year 2012, the Christmas episode of Downtown Abbey was partially filmed at the castle.

Where: Inveraray, Scotland
When: 18th century
Style: Gothic Revival
Open for visit: Yes, for more information, check here.

5. Stirling Castle

Situated upon a large and dramatic crag that forms part of the Stirling Still lies the breathtaking Stirling Castle; it is gloriously enveloped by luscious green natural scenery and a landscape that goes on for miles and miles.

The majority of the castle that remains in existence today dates back to the 15th and 16th centuries, though there is a small amount that does date back to the 14th century.

The castle has had a long history of being a Scottish royal residence, as well as a defensive fortress, playing a key role in several important conflicts. Today, the castle is open to the public and houses a fascinating museum that exhibits the castle’s impressive and expansive heritage.

Where: Stirling, Scotland
When: 14th century
Style: Renaissance
Open for visit: Yes, check here for more information.

Check out: Famous castles to visit in Scotland. 

6. Rothesay Castle

Idyllically located on the Isle of Bute in western Scotland lies the stunning ruined Rothesay Castle, which dates back to the turn of the 13th century, when it was built either by Alan Fitz Walter, Steward of Scotland, or his son Walter.

During the Middle Ages, the castle played a primarily military role, and it served as a stronghold; during the 16th century, the castle was expanded and modernized, and many critical additions were added, including four round towers and a forework that was all surrounded by a moat.

Since 1961, the castle has been in the hands of the state and is now regarded as a Scheduled Ancient Monument and is managed by Historic Scotland.

Where: Isle of Bute, Scotland
When: 13th century
Style: Medieval
Open for visit: Yes, for more information, check here.

7. Castle Campbell

Castle Campbell is located in the town of Dollar, in the Clackmannanshire region of central Scotland, and is a stunning medieval fortress that dates back to the 12th century.

The early castle no longer exists, and instead, the one that stands today was constructed around the year 1430 for John Stewart, Lord Lorne, or one of his kinsmen.

The castle served as the lowland seat of the earls and dukes of Argyll between the 15th and 19th centuries; like many historic castles in Scotland, Castle Campbell was also visited by Mary, Queen of Scots, during the 16th century.

Today, the castle is open to the public, and many visitors are drawn to its fascinating history and gorgeous surrounding landscapes.

Where: Dollar, Scotland
When: 12th-century origins
Style: Medieval
Open for visit: Yes, for more information, check here.

8. Drummond Castle

Situated in Perthshire in Scotland lies the beautiful Drummond Castle, which is a historic landmark that offers visitors a wonderful history, as well as stunning grounds and gardens.

The origins of the castle date back to the 14th century, when the lands of the castle were owned by the Drummond family, who constructed the original tower house.

Over the following centuries, more additions were added, and the castle was expanded and renovated, including in the 17th century, when the castle was reconverted into a mansion style. Today, the castle is an A-listed building and is a very popular tourist site.

Where: Perthshire, Scotland
When: 14th-century origins
Style: Neo-Gothic
Open for visit: Yes, check here for more information.

9. Dundonald Castle

Situated upon a hill that overlooks the scenic Scottish village of Dundonald lies the beautiful Dundonald Castle, which is a large fortified tower house that was constructed for Robert II after he came to power in Scotland in the year 1371.

During this time, the castle was primarily used as a royal residency for Robert II and his son, Robert III. Throughout the following centuries, the castle changed shape multiple times and also changed its primary function depending on the needs of the time.

Where: Dundonald, Scotland
When: 14th century
Style: Medieval
Open for visit: Yes, for more information, check here.

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