Duntulm Castle

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Duntulm Castle is situated on the far northwest coast of the Isle of Skye, 23 miles northwest of Portree, 9 miles north of Uig. The Skye Museum of Island Life is 2 miles south of the Castle.

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The image top is of Duntulm Castle from the main road. The area up around the northwest coast, along the north, and down the northeast coast, is one of the most scenic areas of Skye.

The Castle is unstable so you are not supposed to enter, but the views from around the Castle are amazing.

Duntulm Castle was built in the 1300s for Clan MacLeod, then taken over by Clan MacDonald in the 1600s.

Duntulm Castle History

800s - Vikings took control of Skye and other Scottish Islands.

1100s - Scots Kings forced the Vikings out of the Islands by using Scots Clans. Clan MacDonald, Clan Macleod and others were then used to keep control of the Western Isles for the Kings.

1200s - Clan MacLeod took control of Dunvegan in the northwest of Skye with the earliest parts of Dunvegan Castle built at that time.

1200s - Clan Donald becomes the prominent Clan in the Western Isles of Scotland, descendants of Vikings, claiming to be Kings of the Isles.

1300s - the MacLeod's built Duntulm Castle, 37 miles north of their Dunvegan Castle.

1400s - factions of Clan MacDonald took up residence on the Isle of Skye, controlling the southeast area of Skye.

Clan MacLeod and Clan MacDonald had many feuds over Castles and Land. Marriage was used once to try and unite the two Clans but failed. The Government forced peace between the two Clans from the 1600s.

1600s - Clan MacDonald took control of Duntulm Castle and that area known as the Kilmuir Estate.

1730s - the MacDonald's abandoned Duntulm Castle, said to be after a Maid accidentally dropped one of their children from a window onto the rocks below. The Maid was said to have been killed, possibly by being set adrift on a small boat into the North Atlantic. Her ghost now haunts the Castle?

1732 - the MacDonald's of Duntulm begin building Monkstadt House 6 miles south of Duntulm Castle. Some of the stonework from the Castle was used to build the House.

1739 - MacLeod's and Macdonald's of Skye were accused of kidnapping 96 of their own people, men, women and children, in an attempt to sell them as slaves in America. The vessel carrying the people was wrecked off the coast of Northern Ireland, all passengers survived.

1746 - Clan MacLeod and Clan Donald of Skye supported the Government in the 45 Jacobite Rebellion. Many other Clan MacLeod and MacDonald, from other areas, fought and died with the Jacobite's at the Battle of Culloden.

Many Clans on the Jacobite side in the 1745 rebellion had their homes destroyed, cattle taken, and forced to move south to cities or emigrate.

Clans supporting the Government, would retain their Castles, Land, and Titles.

1746 - Bonnie Prince Charlie hid at Monkstadt House before traveling to safety in France. Charlie had dressed as an Irish Maid using the name Betty Burke to help evade capture.

1798 - the MacDonald's move from Monkstadt House to their new Armadale Castle on the southeast side on Skye.

1855 - Major William Fraser bought Kilmuir Estate from the MacDonald's. Fraser was involved in the Highland Clearances, forcing Crofters off their land so as to make way for large scale sheep farming, also to reduce the population, making uprisings less likely. Crofters rebelled against Fraser with some refusing move or pay rent, leading to Fraser calling in Police and Soldiers.

Although the Crofters won their dispute with Fraser, they soon realized making a good living from Crofting was getting tougher each year. By the mid 1900s, most Crofters had left the area. Their descendants can be found throughout the UK, America, Canada, and Australia.

1990 - a large part of Duntulm Castle collapsed into the sea.

2015 - 70cm / 28in four leg plant-eating Sauropod footprints were found on the shore by Duntulm Castle, an extremely rare find of these largest ever animals.

Today- the Castle ruin is a popular place to stop when driving around the scenic north coast of Skye.



Duntulm Castle Photos





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