The 10 most famous and beautiful castles in Great Britain
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Built by kings and queens to protect and rule their lands, the castles not only could withstand attacks, but reflected power and wealth for all to see. They were built in strategic and spectacular places at the mouth of the valleys, at the entrance to mountain passes - as they were thought castles in Romania to withstand army attacks - or on the shores of lakes. Add the weight of history, and these architectural wonders set among stunning landscapes make some of them to be the most beautiful castles in Europe.
The 10 most popular castles in the UK
When most people think of England, they probably think of tea, lots of rain and doubledecker buses. What they don't know is that England is a treasure trove of history with many beautiful attractions to visit. However, some of the island’s most beautiful sights are just outside of the well-known tourist trails. You can say that you visited Great Britain only after seeing the castles that stretch across the country.
With so many castles to choose from, you may find it difficult to narrow your search. Each castle has its own unique and rich history, making each of the castles listed below as fascinating as the next.
Bodiam Castle (England)
Bodiam Castle is one of the most famous castles in England. Built in the XNUMXth century by a British soldier who got married and managed to get rich through work - a disgrace to the aristocracy of the time - Bodiam Castle is a beautiful historical relic and one of the best preserved castles in Britain.
The iconic castle, with its many imposing stone towers and battlements, all coming out of a ditch, is one of the most photographed sights in Britain for decades. Unlike the exterior of the almost perfect, grand castle, sections inside the castle have unfortunately fallen into disrepair. Instead of exploring a ruined interior, visitors can enjoy exploring the battlements, large courtyards and towers of the castle.
Caernarfon Castle (Wales)
Caernarfon Castle is a medieval fortress located in the north-west of Wales and is often noted as one of the most impressive architectural castles in the country. Decorated with polygonal towers, the castle gives an air of authority, with its location linking the poorer part of North Wales to the "gardens of Wales", Anglesey.
Built by King Edward I as a symbol of English dominance, the castle is certainly a fortress, with its massive structure and the intimidating ten-sided tower, visible from the bay. Its surface and imposing architecture are reflected in the waters of the river Seiont and are particularly beautiful at sunset.
Warwick Castle (England)
Warwick Castle is a medieval castle built on the site of another castle dating from 1068. Located in Warwickshire, on a rock at the bend of the River Avon, the original wooden castle was rebuilt in stone in the 100th century. Reinforced later during the Hundred Years' War, the castle was used as a fortress until the early 1978th century. In XNUMX it was bought by the Tussauds Group.
With a vast and impressive heritage that stretches over the centuries, the Castle remains a favorite destination for curious tourists and history buffs. The castle itself is fascinating and there are always lots of shows and events that are organized around it, making it the perfect place to explore.
Edinburgh Castle (Scotland)
Edinburgh Castle is a historic fortress that dominates the skyline of Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland, from its position on Castle Rock. Archaeologists have determined that the site of the castle has been occupied since the Iron Age (1633nd century AD), although the nature of the early settlement is unclear. There has been a royal castle on the rock since the reign of King David I in the XNUMXth century, and the site sometimes continued to be a royal residence until XNUMX.
From the XNUMXth century it was used as a military barracks with a large garrison. Its importance as part of Scotland's national heritage has been increasingly recognized since the early XNUMXth century, and various restoration programs have been carried out over the last century and a half.
Hampton Court Palace (England)
Hampton Court Palace located in Richmond upon Thames, 19.3 kilometers from central London on the River Thames. Construction of the palace began in 1514, as the residence of Cardinal Thomas Wolsey, Chief Minister of King Henry VIII. In 1529, when Wolsey fell into disfavor, the cardinal gave the king the palace to be pardoned. The palace became one of Henry's favorite residences. Shortly after acquiring the property, he arranged for it to be enlarged so that it could more easily accommodate his group of courtiers.
Along with St. James's Palace, it is one of only two palaces that have survived out of the many possessions the king owned. The palace is currently in the possession of Queen Elizabeth II and the Crown. The palace is open to the public and is a major tourist attraction, easily accessible by train from Waterloo Station in central London and served by Hampton Court Station in East Molesey. The palace can also be reached by doubledecker.
Glamis Castle (Scotland)
Glamis Castle is an overwhelming arrangement of towers over towers, surrounded by the deep green of the Scottish landscape, somewhat resembling Hogwards - Harry Potter Castle. You will find yourself in a sublime setting, as if taken from a fairy tale with princes and princesses, while looking at the ostentatious exterior of the castle. The towers of the castle can be seen from afar and this feeling of grandeur will culminate throughout the visit.
Glamis Castle has been the ancestral residence of the Earls of Strathmore and Kinghorne since 1372, the inspiration for Macbeth of Shakespeare, the childhood home of HM Queen Elizabeth - Queen Mother and the birthplace of HRH Princess Margaret.
Windsor Castle (England)
Windsor Castle it is the largest and oldest inhabited castle in the world. Together with Buckingham Palace and Holyrood Palace in Edinburgh, it is part of the principal residences of the British monarchs in the House of Windsor. The castle is located in the center of Windsor, Berkshire, England. Beneath the castle building flows the Thames, which connects London with the water. Queen Elizabeth II frequently spends the weekend here, where she also receives an official or private visit from ministers or heads of state.
According to historical sources, the castle dates from the time of Wilhelm the Conqueror. The construction of the castle, the garrison, the fortress, the prison and the inhabited part being coordinated directly by some English monarchs. During the wars waged by England, the castle being better strengthened and defended, these strategic measures can still be seen today.
Conwy Castle (Wales)
Conwy Castle is colossal in every way - its huge, imposing towers next to each other create such a threatening image that you feel somewhat frightened as you approach. Built for King Edward I, the castle is one of the finest examples of a medieval fortification in Britain. Its tall towers enhance the grandeur of the castle and its exceptional architecture.
The interior of the castle has an exterior hall containing a large hall, rooms and kitchen, and the interior hall contains a royal chapel and several private rooms. Visitors are allowed to walk along the walls and climb all the towers. The view from the highest tower offers a panoramic view of the city, and when it is clear, you can see the mountains and even the sea.
Arundel Castle (England)
Over the centuries, Arundel Castle has been shaped and remodeled in an increasingly grand manner. Home to the Dukes of Norfolk and the Earls of Arundel, the castle and its gardens are amazingly landscaped on an area of 40 acres of extensive green land. Gardens protected by high walls can be visited, but such a walk can take hours.
The castle platform allows visitors stunning views of the River Arun, South Downs and West Sussex. The castle also has an extensive art collection of rare paintings by renowned artists, including Van Dyck, Gainsborough and Canaletto. Movie and TV lovers can recognize parts of the castle from the series "Doctor Who" and the movie "The Young Victoria". Before scheduling a visit, it is good to make an online reservation, as the castle closes in the winter months.
Dublin Castle (Ireland)
In the heart of Dublin, in contrast to modern architecture, Dublin Castle is now home to much of the Irish government. In 1921 it was ceremoniously handed over to the Provisional Government of Ireland after the signing of the Anglo-Irish Treaty. Despite the existence of a castle in the same place, even during the reign of King John, the current building dates from the eighteenth century. When Dublin was still a Norman city, the castle was built as a fortification, and in time Dublin became the official residence.
After being affected by numerous fires in the XNUMXth century, the castle was rebuilt from a medieval fortress into a Georgian palace. Above ground level, inside the castle there are no medieval elements left.