Top 25 Castles in the UK

Caernarfon Castle

UK, renowned for its tea, rainy weather, and iconic red double-decker buses, is also a trove of historical treasures. Venture beyond the typical tourist trail and immerse yourself in the enchanting world of the best castles the country has to offer. From medieval fortresses to Victorian marvels, each castle unfolds a unique chapter of UK’s rich history.

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Castles in the UK

1. Bodiam Castle

Built in the 14th century by a British soldier turned wealthy landowner, Bodiam Castle stands as an iconic quadrangular castle surrounded by misty moats and imposing stone towers. While parts of the interior have succumbed to time, the exterior remains a stunning relic, making it one of the UK’s best castles.

Bodiam Castle

The Bodiam Castle in a lake under a starry sky with long exposure in the evening in the UK, Castles in the UK

2. Bamburgh Castle

Perched on a rocky plateau overlooking the Northumberland coastline, Bamburgh Castle spans nine acres and boasts a history dating back to 10,000 BC. The Victorian-era structure, home to the Armstrong family, offers visitors 14 public rooms, artifacts, and captivating coastal views.

Bamburgh Castle

Bamburgh Castle on the northeast coast of Northumberland, England. There have been defensive structures on this site since 420 AD. Vikings destroyed the original fortification in 993. Parts the present castle date from 1095 with many later additions. Castles in the UK

3. Warwick Castle

Originally constructed in 1068, Warwick Castle has evolved into a medieval attraction. Situated on a sandstone bluff by the River Avon, this stone fortress witnessed refortifications during the Hundred Years War. Today, it provides an immersive experience with entertaining stories and live historical reenactments.

Warwick Castle

Built by William the Conqueror in 1068, Warwick Castle is a medieval castle in Warwick, the county town of Warwickshire, England. It sits on a bend on the River Avon. Castles in the UK

4. Lindisfarne Castle

Rising from a basalt outcrop on Holy Island, Lindisfarne Castle has transformed from a Tudor fort to an Edwardian holiday home. The castle’s 16th-century vaulted passages, wood-paneled rooms, and Gothic elements make it a fascinating blend of history and architectural transformation.

Lindisfarne Castle

Lindisfarne Castle on Holy Island off the coast of Northumberland in northeast England. Castles in the UK

5. Raby Castle

Dating back to the 14th century, Raby Castle features medieval towers, turrets, and walls set amidst 200 acres of parkland. The castle’s interiors showcase Gothic vaulted ceilings, regency and Victorian influences, and rooms like the Octagon Drawing Room, transporting visitors through centuries of opulence.

Raby Castle

Raby Castle / barnyz Castles in the UK

6. Bolsover Castle

A 17th-century marvel in Derbyshire, Bolsover Castle offers spectacular views and lavishly preserved rooms. The Little Castle, romantic ruined terrace range, and medieval-style exterior with turrets make it a captivating destination. Explore the Fountain Garden and the restored wall walk for panoramic views.

Bolsover Castle

Bolsover Castle / bvi4092 Castles in the UK

7. Tower of London

A fortress, royal palace, and infamous prison, the Tower of London stands as an imposing structure with a history spanning centuries. Home to the Crown Jewels and captivating tales, this iconic castle offers various tours, including spooky Twilight Tours for after-hours access to its historic attractions.

Tower of London

Her Majesty’s Royal Palace and Fortress, more commonly known as the Tower of London, is a historic castle on the north bank of the River Thames in central London, England, United Kingdom. Castles in the UK

8. Dover Castle

Designated a military headquarters during World War I, Dover Castle boasts 2,000 years of history. Explore the Great Tower, medieval interiors, and underground hospital. Witness gun drills, descend into secret medieval tunnels, and discover the oldest surviving lighthouse in the country.

Dover Castle

Dover Castle / Jim Linwood Castles in the UK

9. Windsor Castle

Covering 5 hectares of land, Windsor Castle, the oldest occupied castle in the world, has been a royal residence since the 11th century. Visitors can witness the Changing of the Guards, explore St George’s Chapel, and stroll along the Long Walk. The castle remains a working residence for the British monarch.

Windsor Castle

Windsor Castle Castles in the UK

10. St Michael’s Mount

Situated 500 meters from the mainland in Mount’s Bay, St Michael’s Mount is a tidal island accessible via a causeway. The castle, dating back to the 12th century, has served as a priory, fortress, and private home. Visitors can explore the castle’s history, sub-tropical gardens, and enjoy the island’s unique charm.

St Michael's Mount

St Michael’s Mount off the Cornish coast near Penzance, Cornwall in the United Kingdom. The island is joined to the mainland by a causeway passable only at low tide. Castles in the UK

11. Leeds Castle

Surrounded by parkland and gardens, Leeds Castle rises majestically from its moat. Once a Norman stronghold, the castle has been a royal residence, palace, and Georgian mansion. Visitors can navigate the castle maze, witness falconry displays, and explore the Bird of Prey Center.

Leeds Castle

A drone view of the Leeds Castle surrounded by water in Broomfield, England Castles in the UK

12. Arundel Castle

Rooted in more than a millennium of history, Arundel Castle overlooks the River Arun. Home to the Duke of Norfolk, the castle showcases priceless art, antique china, and armor. Visitors can explore the walled gardens, Organic Kitchen Garden, and enjoy a guided tour.

Arundel Castle

Arundel Castle / Karen Roe Castles in the UK

13. Highcliffe Castle

Built between 1831 and 1836, Highcliffe Castle remains a spectacular sight despite fires and renovations. Nestled on the Romantic and Picturesque style, the castle offers guided tours, tearooms, and a stroll through its grounds and nearby beach.

Highcliffe Castle

Highcliffe Castle Castles in the UK

14. Highclere Castle

With a history dating back to the 12th century, Highclere Castle served various purposes, including a hospital during World War I. The castle, famous as the setting for Downton Abbey, welcomes visitors to explore its gardens, parkland, and experience the charm of this iconic English castle.

Highclere Castle

Highclere Castle / Richard Munckton Castles in the UK

15. Framlingham Castle

Steeped in history since the 12th century, Framlingham Castle has served as a stronghold, royal dwelling, prison, and workhouse. Visitors can explore the castle interior, walk the ramparts for breathtaking views, and delve into the castle’s exhibition to unravel its rich history.

Framlingham Castle

Framlingham Castle / Will Russell Castles in the UK

16. Alnwick Castle

Nestled in the picturesque county of Northumberland, Alnwick Castle boasts a rich history dating back to the Norman era. Known for its stunning architecture and beautifully landscaped gardens, this castle has been a backdrop for various films and television series, including the famous Harry Potter franchise. Delve into centuries of history and immerse yourself in the magic of Alnwick Castle.

Alnwick Castle

Alnwick Castle / Smudge 9000 Castles in the UK

17. Hampton Court Palace

Located on the banks of the River Thames, Hampton Court Palace is a magnificent showcase of Tudor and Baroque architecture. Originally built for Cardinal Thomas Wolsey in the early 16th century, the palace later became a royal residence for Henry VIII. Wander through the opulent State Apartments, explore the famous Tudor kitchens, and stroll in the exquisite gardens that reflect centuries of royal life.

Hampton Court Palace

Hampton Court Palace / David Stanley

18. Caernarfon Castle

Venture into the heart of Wales to discover the grandeur of Caernarfon Castle, a medieval fortress built by Edward I in the late 13th century. This UNESCO World Heritage Site, with its distinctive polygonal towers, played a pivotal role in Welsh history. Marvel at the castle’s strategic design and explore its formidable walls, offering panoramic views of the surrounding landscape.

Caernarfon Castle

Caernarfon Castle

19. Chatsworth House

While not a traditional castle, Chatsworth House is a stately home in Derbyshire that rivals the grandeur of any fortress. Set amid vast gardens and parkland, this residence has been the seat of the Duke of Devonshire since the 16th century. Admire the architectural splendor, peruse the extensive art collection, and wander through the landscaped grounds that make Chatsworth House a quintessential English estate.

Chatsworth House

Chatsworth House / Tony oldroyd

20. Edinburgh Castle

Dominating the skyline of Scotland’s capital, Edinburgh Castle stands as an enduring symbol of the nation’s history. Perched atop Castle Rock, this iconic fortress has witnessed countless events, from royal ceremonies to military conflicts. Explore the Crown Jewels, stroll through the Great Hall, and savor panoramic views of Edinburgh from this historic stronghold.

Edinburgh Castle

Edinburgh Castle / Gary Campbell-Hall

21. Conwy Castle

Travel to the picturesque town of Conwy in Wales, and you’ll be greeted by the imposing Conwy Castle. Built by Edward I in the late 13th century as part of his “iron ring” of fortifications, this UNESCO World Heritage Site boasts eight massive towers and a well-preserved curtain wall. Walk the battlements and marvel at the strategic genius behind Conwy Castle’s design.

Conwy Castle

Conwy Castle

22. Tintagel Castle

Nestled on the clifftops of North Cornwall, Tintagel Castle stands as a captivating historic site. The rugged coastal landscape, characterized by steep slopes, sheer drops, and uneven surfaces, adds an adventurous touch to the visitor experience.

Tintagel Castle

Tintagel Castle / Giuseppe Milo

23. Kenilworth Castle

Uncover Tales of Grand Sieges and Royal Intrigues at Kenilworth Castle.

Originally a formidable medieval stronghold, Kenilworth Castle underwent a remarkable transformation into a splendid Elizabethan palace by Robert Dudley, who sought to awe his queen with the opulent residence.

Presently, visitors have the opportunity to delve into the imposing medieval keep, ascend Tudor towers, meander through an exceptional Elizabethan garden, and engage with history in the family-friendly exhibition. Secure the best prices by booking online now and prepare for an extraordinary day of exploration.

Kenilworth Castle

Kenilworth Castle

24. Portchester Castle

Portchester Castle boasts a dual identity as both a formidable fortification and a residence with a rich royal history dating back to the 3rd century. Utilized by Norman kings during Channel crossings, the castle gained further significance when Richard II erected a palace within its walls.

Additionally, the castle played a crucial role as a rallying point for troops departing from Portsmouth on the expedition that culminated in the historic Battle of Agincourt.

Portchester Castle

Portchester Castle / Leimenide

25. Warkworth Castle

Warkworth Castle and Hermitage stand as a uniquely captivating duo among medieval monuments in Britain. Likely arranged in its current configuration around 1200, the castle served as the esteemed dwelling of the influential Percy family from the 14th to the 17th centuries.

In their roles as Earls and later Dukes of Northumberland, the Percys held substantial landownership in northern England, solidifying their prominence. Adjacent to the castle, nestled on the river Coquet’s banks and accessible solely by boat, lie the remnants of a chapel identified as the hermitage, skillfully hewn directly from the cliff rock.

Warkworth Castle

Warkworth Castle / Draco2008

Map of the Castles in the UK

Embark on a journey through time by visiting UK’s top 25 castles. From medieval fortifications to Victorian splendors, each castle narrates a captivating tale of the country’s past. Unleash your inner historian and adventurer as you explore these majestic fortresses, capturing breathtaking views and uncovering ancient secrets. For more great castles in the UK check this website: and for more great tips for visiting UK check this category:

Julius Szabo

Since 2010 I have created a lot of travel-inspiring websites, have written countless travel articles and made a hundred thousand pictures and videos. is the newest one, my other way to conquer the world! :)

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