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Gaelic: Dùn Omhain
Dunoon Pier.jpg
Dunoon, looking north from Castle Hill
Grid reference: NS174764
Location: 55°56’48"N, 4°55’23"W
Population: 8,251
Post town: Dunoon
Postcode: PA23
Dialling code: 01369
Local Government
Council: Argyll and Bute
Argyll and Bute

Dunoon is a resort town situated on the Cowal Peninsula in Argyll. It sits on the Firth of Clyde to the south of Holy Loch and to the west of Gourock.

Ruins of Dunoon Castle, 1830 (William Miller)

Dunoon Pier, first built in 1835,[1] enabled the growth of the town. The current pier was built in 1895[1] and still receives a connecting Gourock ferry. Until the late 1960s fleets of paddle steamers brought holidaymakers doon the watter from Glasgow to the pier and to numerous other piers on the Clyde. The sole surviving sea-going paddle steamer PS Waverley remains a visitor attraction at Dunnon.

In recent years, Dunoon has returned as a 'doon the watter' destination for Glaswegians. The visitors of today are mixture of quieter, elderly passengers, stag parties and all-day 'booze cruisers'.

Tourist attractions

On Castle Hill stand the ruins of the 12th century Dunoon Castle, which in time became a royal castle held by the Earls of Argyll as hereditary keepers, paying a nominal rent of a single red rose to the sovereign. Mary, Queen of Scots, stayed at the castle around 1563 and granted several charters during her visit. The castle was destroyed during the rebellion in 1685.

The Queen's Hall at the pierhead is the town's major multi-function hall complex, with function suites and a large main hall that hosts concerts.

The arboretum at Benmore Botanic Garden 7 miles north of the town belongs to the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh. Formerly a private garden for the Younger family, it is now open to the public. Its 150 acres contain some of the tallest trees in Britain, including an avenue of giant redwoods, some of which are over 120 feet high.

Castle Toward]], built in 1820 and formerly owned by the Lamont clan, is 6½ miles south of the town. It is now used as an outdoor education centre.


Outside links