Those who love all types of Medieval castles would possibly place the Doune Castle on top of their travel bucket list. The towering structure built during the 14th century remains a monumental landmark in Scotland. Aside from its vast and elaborate design, it also has a highly colorful history as the residence of the country’s most powerful monarchs in the past.
But what transpired at the Doune Castle since its establishment in the 1400s? Here is everything that you need to know before visiting the popular Scottish tourist destination.
The latest research revealed that Doune Castle was originally constructed in the 13th century but possibly faced major damages during the Scottish Wars of Independence between the late 13th and early 14th centuries. It was allegedly reconstructed in its current form sometime in the late 1400s under the instruction of Robert Stewart, the Duke of Albany and son of the late King Robert II of Scots.
The Duke’s castle remains complete and unchanged over the years. After the Duke’s successors were executed for treason, the castle’s ownership was turned over to the Scottish monarchy. It served as a vacation place and hunting lodge for the members of the royal family. It also became a dower house for the widowed queen consorts of the Scottish kings from 1434 to 1541.
Mary, Queen of Scots, also spent some time at the Doune Castle several times. She occupied several suits located above the castle’s kitchen. Mary’s loyal supporters kept the Doune Castle while the brief civil war was ongoing until she was forced to step down from the throne in 1567.
The ownership of the castle was passed on to the Earls of Moray until the 20th century.
Important Areas To Explore
Tourists will never run out of corners to explore when visiting the Doune Castle. Every inch of the establishment is filled with the country’s rich history. One of the essential parts of the castle includes the Lord’s Hall. It is considered the most extravagant room in the entire vicinity. The area is located in the castle’s principal tower.
Another remarkable place to visit is the Great Hall and the kitchen tower. It is located in the western part of the Lord’s Hall. It functions as the Royal Apartments, or the suite when the royal visitors rest when visiting the castle.
The courtyard and curtain wall are also a favorite among the castle’s guests. It used to house a chapel made for Saint Fillian.
The Castle Today
While the Medieval times were long gone, the Doune Castle remains an extravagant place in the Scottish culture. It was featured in various films and TV shows, including “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” comedy film. The “Outlander” TV series also use it as the location of fictional Castle Leoch from the book series. Other notable fictional appearances of the castle include the first season of HBO’s “Game of Thrones,” where it was used as the set for the fictional kingdom of Winterfell.