The Hermit's Castle, Achmelvich

The Hermit's Castle, Achmelvich

The beautiful beach at Achmelvich on the Assynt peninsula of North West Scotland is worth a visit for the unspoilt scenery alone. However, many visitors to this corner of paradise probably leave without knowing that they were a short walk from what must be one of Scotland's most unusual castles. To reach the Hermit’s Castle, cross the campsite and go through the small gate on to An Fharaid Bheag. Head due west for about a quarter of a mile and you will see the castle nestled perched over a small inlet.

The Hermit’s Castle was built around 1950 out of concrete and was reputedly built by an artist from the south of England to use as a retreat. From the outside, the castle looks a bit like the concrete pillboxes that you see dotted around the coastlines of Britain. It seems to grow out of the surrounding rock and could easily be overlooked if not for the distinctive windows and chimney stack.

Inside, the castle has only one very small room which has a single concrete bed and a small fireplace. The small windows let in some light but it still looks like a very damp and gloomy place to stay! Nonetheless, the castle is often used as a bothy by walkers in the area and the views from outside the castle are beautiful, particularly at sunset.

How to get there

Achmelvich is around 3 miles north-west of Lochinver along a single-track road. Follow directions above to reach the castle. Google map.


My stepdad was the warden on Achmelvich Youth Hostel in 1981, I went back for the first time last year (to the beach rather than the YH), it is indeed a beautiful spot.

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