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St Andrews Castle, St. Andrews

4.2
#3 of 15 in Historic Sites in Fife
St Andrew's Castle is a picturesque ruin located in the coastal Royal Burgh of St Andrews in Fife, Scotland. The castle sits on a rocky promontory overlooking a small beach called Castle Sands and the adjoining North Sea. There has been a castle standing at the site since the times of Bishop Roger (1189-1202), son of the Earl of Leicester. It housed the burgh’s wealthy and powerful bishops while St Andrews served as the ecclesiastical centre of Scotland during the years before the Protestant Reformation. In their Latin charters, the Archbishops of St Andrews wrote of the castle as their Palace, signing, "apud Palatium nostrum."The castle's grounds are now maintained by Historic Scotland, and are entered through a visitor centre with displays on its history. Some of the best surviving carved fragments from the castle are displayed in the centre, which also has a shop.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
780 reviews
Google
4.4
TripAdvisor
  • August 20, 2017
    Having an interest in history I was keen to go to St Andrews Castle and look around it. It was very interesting and close to the ruin of the Cathedral - a place inextricably linked to the Castle and t...  more »
  • August 19, 2017
    It was raining the day that I was here. My kids and I visited here. It's in ruins. It's on a hill right by the water. Had to be such a great place back hundreds of years ago. The bathing pond down by ...  more »
  • August 19, 2017
    A beautiful sight especially if you are lucky enough to see him with the Sun. Seems to be on a movie set.
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  • Lovely staff, has loos. Historical walk through interesting and well done in visitor centre. Castle pretty devastated and small but we enjoyed sitting on a bench for half an hour watching the sea.
  • Fascinating, well preserved castle, great for a day out. Siege tunnel is really cool and unique if you're not claustrophobic and don't mind the dark! If you're a St Andrews student you can get in for free if you bring your student ID card and wear your gown, but be prepared to answer endless questions about why you're wearing a bright red cloak in broad daylight...
  • Fantastic piece of the history of St. Andrews. Well worth a visit. Just make sure you buy the combined ticket which gets you in to the cathedral too. The men and counter-mine is a fascinating place to explore although it is low in places so best not wear your best clothes as you might need to crawl if you're tall.
  • Great location. The weather was fab. Worth single penny spent. Dont forget to go inside the old mine shaft. Quite low so be careful if you are tall. The only issue is to find a car park space. Couple of rounds in the area.
  • The price may be subject of intense scrutiny, but I found the castle more fascinating than the cathedral. The exhibition on its history was interactive and well-decorated, the different locations of the castle were accessible and remarkable (especially the dreadful 'bottle dungeon') but above all, the walk (or crawl) in the tunnel ('mine' and 'counter-mine') was amusing. This made it fun in its own right. If admissions tickets isn't your cup of tea, then at least there's a great souvenir shop.

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Where to stay in St. Andrews

less expensive lodging and luxury rental apartments are located around the town center and the university buildings. Be sure to book accommodations overlooking the sea and St. Andrew Cathedral ruins early, because they fill up fast during the good weather months. Rental properties in the town center on narrow streets, such as Market Street, are within walking distance of the main architectural and cultural attractions. Save money by renting a room farther west of the town center. These are residential neighborhoods that are well-connected to the town center but offer quiet nights and inexpensive nightly rates.
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Plans in St. Andrews by other users

19 days in Scotland BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, popular PREFERENCES: June ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 37 days in United Kingdom, France & Hong Kong BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA August, culture, relaxing, historic sites, museums, shopping, fast-paced, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, culture, relaxing, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Fast-paced 3 days in St. Andrews BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM November, popular PREFERENCES: November ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 11 days in St. Andrews & Paris BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, teens, popular PREFERENCES: June, teens ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 10 days in Paris & St. Andrews BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, teens, popular PREFERENCES: June, teens ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 11 days in United Kingdom BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM March, teens, culture, outdoors, historic sites, wildlife, popular PREFERENCES: March, teens, culture, outdoors, historic sites, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in St. Andrews BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES November, popular PREFERENCES: November ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 1 day in Fife BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM September, outdoors, beaches, popular PREFERENCES: September, outdoors, beaches ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 5 days in Edinburgh, Inverness & St. Andrews BY A USER FROM CANADA September, culture, outdoors, beaches, historic sites, popular PREFERENCES: September, culture, outdoors, beaches, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 6 days in Scotland BY A USER FROM DOMINICAN REPUBLIC October, popular PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 7 days in Scotland BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, popular PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 8 days in Grand Manan & St. Andrews BY A USER FROM CANADA September, popular PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium
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