Dun Carloway, Isle of Lewis, Scotland
Dun Carloway is a broch. A broch, you might ask? A broch is a Scottish style Iron Age fort, structures that and found unanimously in Scotland. These are double-walled forts with narrow stairs following the contour of the fort in between the two layers of walls. The entranceway is low and narrow – in order to go force the invading enemy to get down and crawl into the fort, while the defenders pick them off one by one. Brochs date from roughly 100 BC to 100 AD, with Dun Carloway dating to about 1st century AD. Compared to other brochs, Dun Carloway is actually well-preserved. Located on the west coast of the windswept Isle of Lewis, Dun Carolway’s near-inhospitable setting is hauntingly beautiful and beautifully lonely. Amazingly, this Iron Age structure was in use through the 1600s – it wasn’t until the late 1800s that we know the building had become a ruin. That means Dun Carloway had 1,600 years of use! Not many buildings can claim a century, let alone more than a millennium! By 1882, Dun Carloway had become one of the first protected Scottish monuments. Today, it is a very cool site to visit while on the Isle of Lewis.
Pro tip: Nearby, you can also visit the amazing Callanish Standing Stones. If you’re into hiking, we recommend the lovely walk from Dalmore to Garenin (home to an interesting Blackhouse village reconstruction) – roughly 5km but over uneven ground, hiking boots recommended.
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