Duart Castle, Isle of Mull – Clan MacLean
Standing on a coastal crag on the eastern tip of the Scottish Isle of Mull, Duart Castle has served as the historic seat of Clan MacLean since the 14th century.
Despite serving as the clan seat for over 700 years, the castle itself was actually constructed by the MacDougall Clan and only came into the hands of the MacLeans the century after. This happened after the wedding of Lachlan Lubanach MacLean of Duart to Mary, daughter of John of Islay, Lord of the Isles and Lachlan would go on to construct the castle’s keep.
Later in history, Duart would come under attack on numerous occasions during the 17th century. Firstly, an attack by the government forces of Clan Campbell during the Wars of the Three Kingdoms would be repelled in 1649 before six ships loyal to Oliver Cromwell would become shipwrecked near the castle in 1653.
Clan Campbell would eventually take the fortress from the MacLeans in 1691 after their surrender and the castle would be destroyed by the family – who would scatter the stones of the building’s walls around the Isle.
The structure would be fully abandoned only 60 years later in 1751 and would not come into the possession of the MacLeans again until it was purchased by Sir Fitzroy Donald MacLean in 1911. He would completely restore the previously ruined castle to its former glory and it remains a popular tourist destination to this day. The castle houses fascinating attractions such as the beautiful great hall and the interesting Clan MacLean exhibition and is not to be missed by anyone interested in their Scottish heritage.
In popular culture, it has also been featured on camera in numerous different shows such as the cult classic, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and the 1999 film, Entrapment, which features Sean Connery (a man who can trace his family lineage back to the MacLeans).