This is a magnificent castle which stands guarding the entrance to Loch Sween, although built in the 12th century there have been some important additions such as Macmillans’s tower which was added to the north east corner in the 15th century and of course the excellent round tower about 100 years later. This castle is different from many in that there are no apertures in the walls which are about 7ft thick and 40ft high. There was a sea gate on the west side but it is now in ruins however the south entrance leads you through into the courtyard.
The castle was owned originally by an Ulster family who were called “Suibne” but who later changed it to MacSween and at that time they controlled the whole of the Knapdale peninsula. There are other reports that the name comes from a Dane named Sueno. In 1315 Robert the Bruce sacked the castle but there is little documentation of this event. Then Colin Campbell became the first earl of Argyll the castle reverted to the crown. In 1647 the castle was captured by the Montrose led by Alaistair Macolla Coitach or “Coll the left handed” (some reports say this actually happened in 1644) and some of the castle was ruined at that time.
The castle is only a couple of miles from the very well preserved Kilmory Knap Chapel. You should make the time to visit the chapel and perhaps the beautiful beach beside it.
The nearest villages are Tayvallich and Crinan