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Dunadd Fort, Lochgilphead

(50+ reviews on the web)
Geologic Formation Historic Site
Dunadd is an Iron Age and later hillfort near Kilmartin in Argyll and Bute, Scotland and believed to be the capital of the ancient kingdom of Dál Riata.DescriptionDunadd is a rocky crag that may have been one time an island and now lies inland near the River Add, from which it takes its name, a little north of Lochgilphead (NR 836 936). The surrounding land, now largely reclaimed, was formerly boggy and known as the Mòine Mhòr 'Great Moss' in Gaelic. This no doubt increased the defensive potential of the site. Detailed analysis of sea-level changes in the region argue that the Dun was an island or promontory into historic times, and that receding sea levels left the fortification open to siege and seizure in the 6th to 7th centuriesHistoryOriginally occupied in the Iron Age, the site later became a seat of the kings of Dál Riata. It is known for its unique stone carvings below the upper enclosure, including a footprint and basin thought to have formed part of Dál Riata's coronation ritual. On the same flat outcrop of rock is an incised boar in Pictish style, and an inscription in the ogham script. The inscription is read as referring to a Finn Manach and is dated to the late 8th century or after.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • A short climg up a hill to the remains of an ancient fort. Plenty of boards to let your imagination run riot. Good views from the top. It is a shame that the ancient carving and language has not been ...  more »
  • The location is well signposted and easily accessable, but includes a steep walk at the upper part. The view from the top is magnificient and one can imagine that the place was chosen for a fort. One ...  more »
  • A short walk up a path to the hill, and great for kids to clamber around. Good views across the valley and around in all directions.  more »
Google
  • One of the best historical places we visited in Scotland. It was not on our bucket list but a lady at the Kilmartin Museum told us to check it out. I'm glad we did. She said the views are what Scotland looked like a long time ago. Not only were their views very impressive but the information about the historical ruins was also very interesting.
  • Of my entire visit to Glasgow and the west side of Scotland, Dunadd Fort is still my favorite. The feeling of history you get being where the kings of old had walked is just an experience unlike any I have had. From the hike to the stone 'entrance', to scaling rocks for a better vantage over the bog, it is a history and hiking enthusiast's dream.
  • Fun, short and easy walk to the top. Great views and fascinating history (some further reading likely required).
  • view from the top is quite simply stunning! This rocky outcrop may not be the biggest hill or have the most historical sights to see, but what it lacks in artifacts or buildings it makes up for with the sheer weight of history. The climb is not the easiest and you need to have the right pair of shoes, but once you get past the half way mark it opens up to a plateau and from there its just a short climb to where our Kings were invested with royal power. By placing their foot in to the incised rock they were symbolically married to the land. A must visit for any lover of Scottish history.
  • Magical and moving experience to climb to the top while taking your time to look at the site