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 Best Castles In England

 
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The Best Castles in England

Castles of England

Rocherster Castle was blocky but very defensible

Rochester Castle

Located between Dover and London on the banks of the River Medway, Rochester Castle dates from the early 12th century.

Known for its massive, tall stone keep, which was added in the 12th century, Rochester Castle was a dependable defensive bastion.  The castle  was besieged several times but the  most damaging attack was initiated by King John, during a two month siege.

The castle was later repaired and extended but fell into disuse by the 17th century.  It has since been restored and is one of many attractions in historic Rochester.  See this official site for more information on the castle.

Bodiam Castle

       Bodaim may be the most beautiful castle in the United Kingdom

Bodiam Castle, which dates from the late 14th century, is a stunning rectangular castle completely surrounded by a spring-fed moat.  Researchers believe that the “castle” was built for appearance, but not for defensive reasons, as its curtain walls are quite narrow.  Its look, however is gorgeous.  See the National Trust's official website for more information.

 

             

Dover Castle

Dover Castle was long considered the "Key" to England

Dover Castle in Kent is located on a historic site.   The location was once housed an Iron Age fortification and, then, a Roman lighthouse.  Later the location was the site of a castle built by William the Conqueror.  The present imposing structure was begun by Henry II and dates from the late 12th century.  Once called the “Key of England” the castle was enlarged and strengthened by King John and Henry III. Early in its history a tunnel complex was built and the tunnels  later served an important role during WWII.  See this site by English Heritage for more information on Dover Castle

Warwick Castle

Now a theme park, Warwick castle still exudes charm

Warwick castle was originally built by William the Conqueror and dates from the late 11th century. It has had numerous renovations and additions over the years. Warwick is a large castle and often compared to Windsor Castle.  It was owned by the Earl of Warwick and was symbolic of the his power. The Castle was purchased by the Tassaud Group in 1978 and is now more of a theme park rather than historical monument.  However, you might enjoy touring it, especially with your family.  See the official website for Warwick Castle for more information on visiting.

 

Windsor Castle

Windsor Castle is elegant within and without

Home to the British monarchs, Windsor Castle has been an official residence and fortress over the last 900 years.  It is regarded as the largest and longest occupied castle in the world.  The original castle was built by William the Conqueror, although that castle was torn down and rebuilt by Edward III in the 14th century.

The present edifice is the result of almost continual re-design, extension and modification over the succeeding centuries.  Most modifications enhanced the

Windsor Castle has many attractive sights

magnificence of the castle complex. although much of the beauty can be found in the interior of the castle. Although this is one of the principal residences of the Royal Family various parts of the castle are open to the public and can be toured.

For more information see the official website of the Royal Collection and the section of the official website of the British Monarchy on  Royal Residences .

 

             

Arundel Castle

Arundel Castle appears stately more than powerful

Arundel Castle dates from mid 11th century and the reign of Edward the Confessor, although  significant changes were made to the complex over the centuries.  The castle has been  the seat of the Dukes of Norfolk for 9 centuries. 

It was damaged in the English Civil War Both by the Royalists and Cromwell’s Parliamentarians, although restored at a much later date.  It has impressive interior collections.  Be sure to see the Gothic Fitzalan Chapel, burial place of the Dukes of Norfolk.

See official website of Arundel Castle for more information.

Bamburgh Castle

Bamburg Castle sits on an impressive site along the coast

Located in Bamburgh, Northumberland (near the border with Scotland) this castle sits on the shore of the North Sea atop an outcrop of basalt. Thought to have been fortified since the 5th or 6th century, the present structure was built by the Normans in the late 11th century.  The castle was the site of numerous battles and was the first English castle to be defeated by artillery in the mid-15th century.  The castle was eventually restored and is known for its unique coastal setting

For more history and information on visiting, see the castle's official website.  The castle is open only spring through fall, as it is a private residence of the Armstrong family, so be sure to check its availability for touring.

 

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