4 enchanting British castles for a magical Summer

Whether you’re a history buff or not, there’s something inherently magical about castles. Maybe it’s the romance of fairy tale and folklore, or the lure of dramatic stories of siege and battle – stepping into these slices of the past always seems to captivate both children and adults alike. Fortunately, Britain’s cities and countryside are jam-packed with these enigmatic monuments; so this summer, prepare to fall under the spell of our favourite enchanting castles.

Bodiam Castle, East Sussex

Mirror-like moats and graceful battlements where real knights once trod – if you’re looking to experience the romance of medieval splendour then Bodiam Castle should be at the top of your list. This 14th century fortified site possesses beautiful ruins along with an original wooden portcullis gatehouse, a rare sight to have survived in any ancient castle. Enjoy a taste of castle life in August with their Grand Medieval Weekend, which includes a jousting tournament and an impressive birds of prey display, or grab a picnic basket and unwind on the grounds.

Bodiam Castle

Highclere Castle, Hampshire

Take a trip through Hampshire’s rolling green to the exquisite Victorian castle of the Earl and Countess of Carnarvon, home of Downton Abbey. Get a taste of life as a Grantham as you swan through the immaculate state rooms before roaming the tranquil 1,000 acres of parkland. Summer also happens to be the perfect time to explore their Secret Garden in bloom, where colourful floral displays are scented with lines of heady lavender.

Highclere Castle

The Dunrobin Castle, Sutherland

Originally built as a summer house by the Earl of Sutherland, Dunrobin castle is fully deserving of fairy tale status with its soaring spires and grand turrets, resembling a French chateau. From its high terrace, the castle presides gracefully over a pristine Victorian garden, another jewel in its crown. Inspired by Paris’s Palace of Versailles, it brims with a diverse range of plants and summer brings a phantasmagoria of geraniums, lilies, dahlias and Mexican orange blossoms known for attracting butterflies – the kind of stuff fairy tales are made of.

Dunrobin Castle

Eastnor Castle, Herefordshire

Guarded by a majestic lake, its very own deer park and a well-kept arboretum of lush conifers and cedars; as far as enchanting goes, Eastnor Castle in Herefordshire certainly ticks all the boxes. As well as lavish interiors and romantic architecture fit for any prince or princess, the summer months also mean you can lose yourself in the spectacular yew tree maze, making it perfect for a magical day out for the kids. End with a traditional afternoon tea in the castle Tea Rooms or pick up some artisan ice cream from the on-site ice cream parlour. A blissful end to a spellbinding day.

Eastnor Castle

Nicole Harley is Editor at The Epicurean.

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Comments (2)

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  1. Clay says:

    Beautiful castles! I’ll be heading to Eastern Europe in May and seeing a few castles is a big goal of mine. Hopefully the next trip after that I’ll be able to see British ones :)

  2. Ed says:

    Damn…that last photo looks just like my living room! If you remove all the contents, lower the ceiling, add carpet and replace the walls with your standard dry wall that is…

    Anyway, Castles are just so drafty to heat…that is surely why I don’t own one. Still, thanks for the list as I’ll be in England next summer; some good stuff to add to my itinerary.

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