Newark Castle - St Monans

Newark Castle - St Monans

This ruined castle is located on the outskirts of the town of St Monans along the A917 between Elie and Pittenweem and is also on the Fife Coastal Path www.fifecoastalpath.co.uk. There were several periods of building that took place since the first castle stood on the site in the thirteenth century. It is said to be the place were King Alexander III of Scotland (1241-1286) spent part of his childhood.  He was the last King of the House of Dunkeld (Scottish Gaelic: Dùn Chailleann), although succeeded by his granddaughter, Norwegian Princess Margaret, Queen of Scots. However, her status as Queen is disputed and she was not crowned. She drowned near the Orkney Islands in 1290 when traveling to Scotland from Bergen and her death left no clear heir to the Scottish throne.

The ruins of Newark Castle stand just off the Fife Coastal Path about half a mile southwest from the Old Kirk of St Monans Church in St Monans. There is a parking area outside of the church. The remains that stand today date to the 15th century. There are the ruins of the main block, vaults and defensive walls. It is wise to take care when exploring the site as the buildings are crumbling due to age and some coastal erosion. However, it stands on a magnificent location and has a very special atmosphere. It is a wonderful place to visit and when I visited on a dark brooding day it was framed by storm clouds of many shades of grey. At one point the clouds parted and cast a shaft of veiled sunlight over the castle. Quite breathtaking.

 

Newark Castle Fife
Newark Castle St Monans
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