The coastal stretch of the A4 running from Peel to Kirk Michael simply offers some of the most beautiful views on the island. Sunset town Peel is where to discover one of the most stunning castles in the British Isles located on what must have seemed a particularly strategic natural miniature island – St Patrick’s Isle. The castle was originally a place of worship before being taken over as a fort by the Viking King of Man Magnus Barefoot in the 11th century.
The walls enclosing the castle complex contain not just the magnificent castle, but a mix of secular and religious buildings including St. Patrick’s Church and the Round Tower dating from the 11th century, the 13th century Cathedral of St. German, and apartments of the Lords of Mann built later. Climb up the Gatehouse Tower and explore the extensive island grounds surrounding the castle.
Major archaeological digs have been undertaken on the site since the early 1980s, revealing among other finds, the grave of a lady of very high social standing. Her jewellery and other belongings found in the grave can be viewed in the Manx Museum in Douglas. Peel Castle is free to enter, with free audio trail guides available – and look out for the ghostly Black Dog, Moddey Dhoo and the odd seal or two! Spectacular panoramic views of the west coast can be seen from the fortress!