Architecturally it is a building of high importance, containing the work of at least ten building periods ranging from the 1200s to the 1850s. Dunvegan Castle today has a unified design with Victorian dummy pepper-pots and defensive battlements running the whole length of the roof line. This romantic restoration was carried out by the 25th Chief between 1840 and 1850 to the plans of Robert Brown of Edinburgh at a total cost of £8,000. Underneath this outer skin however, there remains a series of five separate buildings each with its own unique character and story to tell.
The tone is set by the imposing land bridge leading to the colonnaded portico entrance built by John Norman (24th Chief) in 1814. From its impressive entrance hall to its ornately decorated State Rooms, the castle is a unique mix of building styles that reflect the requirements of the clan Chiefs who built them over the centuries. If you want to discover the authentic spirit of the Isles, you will find it at Dunvegan where the castle and its wonderful collection represent the very essence of all that Gaeldom represents in the Highlands and Islands. And this year it became the location where I asked Jen to marry me.