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Loch Fyne

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Inveraray Castle
It’s a place straight out of a fairytale, and that is exactly how I will always remember it. I do not know how else to describe what is an imposing, chateau reminiscent Castle located on Loch Fyne, near Loch Lomond in Scotland. The Castle is very, very different to any others you will see on an historic trip through Scotland in that it is very much still lived in, and thus the interior is almost without exception perfectly preserved and indeed decorated to the highest standards. Much of this is down to the fact that the castle suffered a horrific fire in the 1970s, and was lovingly brought back to life and restored by the then Duke of Argyll, resident member of the Campbell clan, whose seat this home has been since the early 13th century. Each time I go, I try to move away from the impression it first gave me as being more like a miniature outpost of Versailles than of a Scottish castle, but somehow that is still how I describe it today. It is very accessible, rarely crowded, easily done in 2 – 3 hours and well worth the drive and visit. I love it. Nothing more I can say! Meg Via

Inveraray Jail
Having just left the beauty and grace of nearby Inveraray Castle, the last thing I wanted to do was to visit the dungeons and jail of nearby Inveraray Town, yet here I was, being dragged kicking and screaming by my visiting friends. It killed me to admit it – and I’m actually not sure that I ever did so aloud – but it was well worth the visit. The town has gone above and beyond both in terms of keeping the jail in unbelievable condition, and in working to make it an utterly believable and captivating experience. Actors are on-hand to play the roles of jailers, prisoners, judges, and others in what is a total experience of life in a courthouse and jail in the early to mid 19th century. You can watch a trial, talk to prisoners and jailers, and even be put in a cell yourself, as my friends did to me. I quickly allowed them to take photos and laugh and then made a hasty exit, as there is something so current-day real about the place that it makes you feel guilty for crimes you never committed. Kids love it, as do adults. I can’t say enough about how impressive it is. If you go to the castle, then here, then to lunch in the village, you will have truly had an enjoyable day out. Meg Via

 

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