The haunted castles of Scotland
If you are looking for a freaky fun day out on the run up to Halloween we suggest hunting out a haunted castle in Scotland to visit, preferably one with a ghost (or two)!
It will come as no surprise that most of Scotland’s castles have supernatural activity taking place within their walls with reports of apparitions, strange happenings and disturbing noises being made over hundreds of years. After all, some of them have histories stretching back over 600 years!
Here are some that have been recommended to us by our readers who have themselves witnessed certain unusual happenings. I won’t be surprised if I get goose bumps whilst writing my way through these!
This is a castle that was reconstructed, keeping some of the original building, in the 18th Century for the Earl of Cassillis. The earlier castle had been built by Sir Thomas Kennedy who was in fact murdered on the sands of Ayr in 1602. It has been told that whenever a member of the Kennedy family is to get married a ghostly piper is heard playing on the grounds, the sounds of the pipes sending chills to those who hear it. Apparently on stormy nights the piping is also heard which can be exciting to some, but disturbing to others. There have also been reports on a young woman in a ball gown roaming the corridors, perhaps a more recent sighting. To this day no one seems to know who this is – she remains a mystery! OOOOOOOOOH!
Photo credit: www.locomotionscotland.co.uk
This one is a bit creepy! Baldoon Castle is now a ruin but was formerly owned by the Dunbars of Westfield from 1530 to 1800. The castles ghost became the subject of the novel “The Bride of Lammermuir” written by Sir Walter Scott. This young woman was forced to leave the man she loved to marry David Dunbar but by the night of her wedding she had become insane and stabbed him to death in a desperate manner. Ever since the 17th Century she is reputed to roam the castle dressed in white, blood – spattered and sinister. The anniversary of her death is when she is mostly seen by us.
Photo credit: mapcarta.com
Again this castle was reconstructed in the 19th Century but incorporated the original structure dating back to the 13th Century. There was even a Viking fort on the site even earlier than that, so you can only imagine the history and memories held here. For most of its life it has been owned by members of the Hamilton Family and it’s said that the older part of the castle is haunted by a “Grey Lady” who starved to death in the dungeons of the castle because she had the plague. A man has also been seen sitting quietly in the library, and even more unusual, a White Deer has been repeatedly seen on the grounds of the castle whenever a chief of the Hamiltons is close to death!
Photo credit: www.lilybank-arran.co.uk
This seven-story high spectacular castle was initially owned by the Mortimer Family and then the Forbes family who completed the castle in 1626. It is now owned by the National Trust of Scotland and stories have been told of a man haunting the corridors, said to be a young member of the Gordon family who was murdered there by Sir John Forbes. He was forced out of a window at sword point and fell to a painful death. A fiddler has also been seen and heard, but only by members of the Forbes family themselves, perhaps still a loyal member of staff.
Photo credit: www.robertharding.com
Now for some actual spiritual interaction! Quite often ghosts are seen but it is more rare to experience physical actuvuty. Here in Fernie Castle, passed to the Fernie family in the 15th Century, lives a “Green Lady” ghost who is said to have fallen to her death from the high tower many centuries ago. But to this day she lets you know you are around by tampering with the lights and the electrical appliances – the TV being her favourite object! Perhaps this would be one of the perfect haunted castles for your Halloween thrill!
Photo credit: http://ferniecastle.co.uk/fernie-castle-2/
The land here was held by the Ruthven family from the 12th century and Huntingtower Castle used to be called Ruthven Castle. Mary Queen of Scots visited the castle soon after her marriage to Lord Darnley and the 4th Lord Ruthven kidnapped the 15-year-old King James VI and held him in the castle for a year. “My Lady Greensleeves” is the name of the resident ghost and although she is sometimes seen in advance of a death, she is also said to have cured sick people, an unusual occurrence for a ghost! WOW!
Photo credit: www.tour-scotland-photographs.blogspot.com
We loved putting together this post and learning more about the history inside the walls of some of these haunted castles in Scotland. Dating back centuries and centuries it comes as no surprise to us that this sort of paranormal activity goes on. If you are someone that really loves the unknown we suggest you get some of these on the bucket list!
If you don’t know who we are, we let self catering holiday accommodation all over Scotland and these castles are in the vicinity of many of our homes. Pop on over to our website and take a look to see what we have. If you are already staying with us over the next few months see if any of these are close by, if not, there is always next year…..
If you know of other haunted places let us know about them by telling us in the comments section below – we would LOVE to know about them.