Dun Dunbar Castle & ALL the Locations where 'A Castle for Christmas' was filmed

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A Castle for Christmas was primarily filmed in and around Edinburgh in Scotland. The fictional Dun Dunbar Castle is actually made up of two different locations.

The movie stars Brooke Shields as award-winning author Sophie Brown, a successful romance novelist who travels to Scotland after a disastrous appearance on the Drew Barrymore Show.

Dun Dunbar

The plot, and the film in general, seems to be a Hallmark Channel romantic comedy like Christmas at Castle Hart, which was released in the same week.

After a series of misunderstandings and some holiday romance, Sophie finds herself falling for The Duke of Dunbar (played by Cary Elwes), the owner of the castle where her father lived as a child.

Welcome to Dunbar and to the best guide to the filming locations of A Castle for Christmas that you can find.


Where was A Castle for Christmas filmed?

Dakota Hotel Edinburgh
After the aerial stock footage of New York, the scene at the talk show hosted by Drew Barrymore was recorded at the CBS Broadcast Center in Manhattan, at the real TV show studio.

Sophie's apartment, pictured, was filmed at the Dakota Hotel Edinburgh in Ferrymuir, Queensferry.

However, the shoot didn't take place in a suite of this luxury boutique resort, but at the Dakota Grill restaurant, dressed for the occasion.
(You can open all the locations on Google Maps by clicking on the links below in the captions ↴)
Image courtesy of Netflix - Map


Edinburgh Airport
Easy location to find: Once in Scotland, a taxi driver with a funny accent picks her up at the Edinburgh Airport.
Image courtesy of Netflix - Map


Where was A Castle for Christmas filmed
On her way to Dunbar, there is an establishing shot of the striking Inveraray Castle, the seat of the Dukes of Argyll, in western Scotland.

The origins of the fortress go back to the 16th-century, although the present Gothic-Revival style manor began construction in 1743.

The car passes over the spectacular Aray Bridge, a late 17th-century two-arch structure made of stone.
Image courtesy of Netflix - Map

The Dun Dunbar Castle

Dun Dunbar Castle
The Castle for Christmas is not actually a castle, but a Tudor-Gothic revival mansion located in South Queensferry, on the outskirts of Edinburgh, called Dalmeny House.

Completed in 1817, this imposing manor is the home of the Earl and Countess of Rosebery.

The building was outlined by William Wilkins, who also designed the National Gallery in London and the Front Court of the famous King's College in Cambridge.
Image courtesy of Netflix - Map


A Castle for Christmas location
The interior was also filmed on location at Dalmeny House, including the main hall, pictured, and the Dalmeny Library.

The mansion boasts an outstanding number of artworks and exquisite furniture, that include the Rosebery and Rothschild collections.

This private property is usually open to visitors during June and July, although, in 2021, it has been closed due to pandemic and repair works.


Barnbougle Castle Hall
However, when Myles is showing Sophie the house for the first time, they are actually visiting two different locations.

The section of the manor which according to Myles is the oldest part of the house was filmed at Barnbougle Castle.

Barnbougle Castle, a 13th-century fortress rebuilt in the late 19th-century, is located very close to Dalmeny House, on the same Earl of Rosebery's estate.
Image courtesy of Netflix - Map


Dun Dunbar Scotland
The Christmas ball was filmed at this sixty-foot long banqueting hall featuring the Minstrel’s Gallery, breathtaking views to the estuary, and the music of the Glasgow band Starsky and The Fox.

The gorgeous rooms of Barnbougle Castle were also featured as a filming location in the Netflix movie The Princess Switch 3, released in November 2021.

Film director Mary Lambert said in an interview that she scouted every castle within 100 miles of Edinburgh until she found the perfect locations.


Tantallon Castle
During the tour around Scotland, Sophie and Myles visit the stunning ruins of Tantallon Castle.

Situated in a strategic location at the entrance of the Firth of Forth estuary in East Lothian, this 14th-century fortress sits atop a sea cliff.

Ravaged by wars, the dramatic ruins of Tantallon have been featured in several period productions including the 2018 films Mary Queen of Scots and Outlaw King.
Image courtesy of Netflix - Map

Welcome to Dunbar

A Castle for Christmas Dunbar
A section of the tiny village of Dunbar, officially inhabited by 153 souls, was filmed at the picturesque town of Culross in Fife, with an actual population of 2,300.

The Royal Burgh of Culross is considered Scotland's most complete surviving example of a burgh of the 17th and 18th centuries.

The cobbled streets and historical buildings of Culross were also featured in the hit TV series Outlander.
Image courtesy of Netflix - Map


The Castle Inn
Dunbar is the name of a real Scottish town, population 9,030, located on the North Sea coast in East Lothian, just about 10 miles away from Tantallon Castle.

However, the main square with the post office is not located in Culross. Also, there is no information about the real location of The Castle Inn bed and breakfast, home of Dunbar's knitting society.

Can you help to improve this article about the filming locations of A Castle for Christmas? To complete and correct this report, any feedback, info, or images that you may have are more than welcome, thank you!

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6 comments:

1- Claire - Dec 5, 2021, 8:23 AM
Wonderful movie tour, thank you! This is the most wonderful Christmas movie in my life, with the breathtakingly amazing landscape, story, Scottish traditionally folk costumes, and pronunciation. It is like a real Scottish infusion with all of its warmth and heartwarming love. This is what we need in these covid times. Thank you everyone for making it.

2- Anonymous - Dec 19, 2021, 4:34 PM
I love the movie. Saw it about 12 times during the Christmas season.

3- Allyn - Dec 20, 2021, 5:55 PM
Appreciate the info. Would love to be a guest at the inn. I wish we could find out where it is. I've been to the Edinburgh area, so it feels like home. I keep playing the movie periodically. It's so beautiful and heartwarming.

4- Anonymous - Dec 27, 2021, 5:39 PM
Thank you. I'm interested in the holy well - any information on that?

5- Anonymous - Jan 4, 2022, 4:38 AM
This was my favourite Christmas movie this year. Think I have watched it a dozen times or more. It is a feel-good movie during these trying times. Scotland is a beautiful country and I think they managed to show that and the warmth of the people in the villages. Well done and hope you can make a new one for next year...maybe a continued story... Well done!

6- Fan - Feb 20, 2022, 3:27 AMbr /> I have watched this movie at least 50 times now. It’s my way to feel good. I would love a sequel. Perhaps a wedding at Dunbar.


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