1 Dumbarton Castle
Dumbarton stood at the heart of an ancient kingdom covering the area now known as Strathclyde. The castle was captured in 1296, during Edward I’s first campaign in Scotland, but fell back into Scottish hands after Wallace and Moray’s victory at Stirling Bridge in 1297. There is myth that Dumbarton may possibly have been used to imprison William Wallace after his capture in 1305, but there is no evidence of this. Bruce died nearby in his manor at Cardross in 1329.
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2 Glasgow Cathedral
Visit Glasgow Cathedral, the spot the where Scotland’s largest city first began to take shape. The Cathedral was the seat of Bruce’s key ally, Bishop Robert Wishart, who helped arrange the lifting of his original excommunication.
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3 Dundonald Castle
The second castle at Dundonald was destroyed around 1298, possibly by Bruce while still Earl of Carrick. The castle’s owner, Walter, the 6th High Steward, fought with Bruce at Bannockburn. The following year he married Bruce’s daughter Marjorie; their son became King Robert II, founder of the Stewart line, the UK’s most enduring royal dynasty. You can now visit this mighty hilltop castle, which also stands on the site of Bronze and Iron Age remains.
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4 Bothwell Castle
Bothwell Castle was hotly fought over during the Wars of Independence. It was captured by Edward I in 1301, and remained in English hands until June 1314. In the aftermath of Bannockburn, many of Edward’s senior knights took shelter here. Bruce sent his brother Edward Bruce to Bothwell, where he captured some very valuable English prisoners. The Bruces were able to exchange their hostages for Bruce’s wife Elizabeth and daughter Marjorie, as well as Robert Wishart, Bishop of Glasgow.
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