St Andrews Castle housed some of Scotland’s most powerful bishops and archbishops, and hosted a laundry list of bloody battles, murders, imprisonments, and executions. The castle saw the immolation of reformist George Wishart and the murder of Cardinal David Beaton, both of which were instrumental in the Scottish Reformation.
The castle fell into disrepair in the 17th century, and its stones were borrowed to support construction in the growing town. Today, sections of the castle still stand—including the so-called bottle dungeon where Protestant prisoners were held. Even if you’re not a history buff, the castle offers a delightful day of exploring, with its location on a lovely secluded beach and some of the best coastal views in St Andrews.