For the archetypal fantasy castle, you have to visit the Antrim coast and seek out the ruins of Dunluce. Perched on sheer basalt cliffs, Dunluce appears to be on the verge of toppling into the water far below. And at times in the past, it has!
In 1639 the Earl of Antrim and his wife were startled by a loud crash; the kitchen had simply fallen into the sea, taking several servants with it. Only a kitchen boy survived, sitting quietly in the corner. Unsurprisingly, the lady of the house refused to live in the castle any longer, but it still stands today defiant in the face of gravity.
Sounds like an inspirational kind of place, doesn’t it? Dunluce’s romantic, desolate setting is said to have shaped C.S. Lewis’s descriptions of Cair Paravel in his Narnia books. Led Zeppelin also featured it on the artwork for the Houses of the Holy album. Who knows what Dunluce might inspire in you?