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Caisteal Bharraich, (Castle Varrich)

Caisteal Bharraich is a small tower rebuilt in the sixteenth century. However its history is ancient and goes back at least to the Vikings, built upon and early fort and lookout tower. In later years, the estate became the property of the clan MacKay who in the 15th century built themselves a stronghold.

History of Caisteal Bharraich

1100's ~ Clan Mackay, meaning son of Aodh (Hugh), decendants from the Royal Moray family of Macbeth, move their family home north to Strathnaver at the very northernmost edge of the Scottish Highlands.

1360's ~ Clan Mackey are now the controlling family in the area and upon a great headland build themselves a tower on the site of an ancient Viking fortress to command shipping, the main east-west road and serve as defense in times of local clan raiding parties. (more in the History section)

Castle today

The location for this tower is simply spectaular, with a commanding position looking north for any sails on the horizon and any movement on the east-west road. Best viewed away from the tower on the main road heading east, looking back where you will see the tower set against the mountains.

Text by Fred Vincent