MacLeod's Tower, Barra
MacLeod's Tower, Barra

This wonderfully atmospheric medieval tower occupies a small island in the centre of Loch Tangasdale, just north-west of Castlebay. The tower dates to the middle of the 15th century, though it stands on a much earlier Iron Age dun.

The tower was built by the delightfully named John the Rough in 1430. It was originally 3 storeys high but the crumbling walls are now only half that height.

Don't imagine a massive medieval fortress; this is a small defensive structure, albeit one in a beautiful location! The structure only measures 2.9 x 2.6 metres interior dimension, and the walls are 1.4 metres thick.

Unless you bring a boat with you, you won't be able to access the tower itself, but the view from the lochside and the road are well worth stopping for.

NB. The castle is sometimes known as Castle Sinclair, An Caisteal, Iain Garbh's Castle, or Castle St Clair.