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Scottish anchorages

Aros castle

This castle can be visited from a small and surprisingly sheltered anchorage just off the pier by the White House (conspic. as they say). The trouble is the owner clearly does not like folk stepping off their boats into what turns out to be his back garden (not that you would know from the Sailing Directions, or indeed by a casual look from your boat). So, if he seems to be around it is less hassle to anchor off the castle itself which is rather scenic, a longer row to the shore and less shelter, but OK for a visit.


In fact the 13th century originally McDougall castle is not all that interesting. It is fairly ruined and overgrown, having become derelict by the start of the 18th century. It does not seem to be looked after by, I understand, the owner of the White House. Although there is more left of it than of Ardtornish castle the position is not so exciting, but the views from the castle are lovely (there is a public access circular path through the woods). It is in a very strategic position half way up the Sound of Mull, and commanding the direct land route through Salen to the west of the island. But the castle itself is only really worth visiting if you collect castles and wear the hood up on your anorak.


I suppose you could walk round to Salen, but it is a bit far along a road for not a lot.


There is a ruined medieval chapel, Cill an Ailein, a couple of kilometres west-northwest of the castle which I have not seen but it must be difficult to find in the forestry plantation.


And there is a bit of a beach below the castle — not much, gravel rather than sand, but enough to satisfy undiscriminating children.



View from Aros castle The White House at Aros castle

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The White House (conspic.) from the castle

A fine view down the Sound of Mull from the castle