Castle Varrich, Tongue, Sutherland, Scotland

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Caisteal Bharraigh, or Castle Varrich,  a small tower spectacularly located on the summit of a bluff dominating the Kyle of Tongue.  A small ruin compared to some of the previous castles we had travelled passed, but non are situated in such a wonderful location, quite breathtaking.  We had been travelling through some of the most awe inspiring scenery that I have seen in Scotland and then suddenly as you start to make you way into Tongue, there on a summit is Castle Varrich, English for Caisteal Bharraigh.


 The origins of the castle are unclear, some believe it could be the “Beruvik” mentioned in the Norse Orkneyinga Saga. Others believe it was built as recently as the 1500s by the Mackay clan and was their clan seat before the they moved to the newer tower house, the House of Tongue, which is located a little north of today’s village, when they dominated this part of Sutherland. The Mackay clan, Lords of Reay, had a large hand in the settlement of this village and the surrounding lands all the way to Cape Wrath, Scotland’s most northwesterly point.

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You can walk up to the castle from Tongue, but as we were on our way to John O’Groats in 2014 and there was no time to stop and have a trek up to see the view from the ruins of the tower.  Although now, I wished we had, it was would have been amazing, never mind next time.



7 Replies to “Castle Varrich, Tongue, Sutherland, Scotland”

    1. Thank you Pat, I actually got out of the car to have a look at the small church nearby and saw the castle in distance…. the rest were from the car, its such a beautiful part of Scotland 🙂

    1. It is a wonderful part of Scotland, you and Colin would love it. I have some landscapes to put on, the trouble is they are all so beautiful, its hard to know what to put on and what to leave off 🙂

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