Chapultepec has the rather dubious distinction of being the only castle within North America to ever house actual sovereigns. It was originally constructed in 1725 on the orders of the Viceroy Bernardo de Gálvez, and was meant to be a large manor house for the Viceroy, who was the commander-in-chief of the Spanish colony, New Spain.
Currently the castle is the seat of National Museum of Cultures, which was formerly known as the Museum of Natural History. It was established as such by Lázaro Cárdenas in 1939. In this capacity it is open to visitors who can come and tour both the castle itself and the various collections it now houses. Through the past decades it has become a favorite location of movie directors appearing in both Robert Aldrich’s Vera Cruz and Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo and Juliet.
Experience a guided tour of this 40-room Italianate-style villa built in the 1830’s on Burlington Heights; the former site of a fortified military encampment established by the British in 1813.
Once home to Sir Allan Napier MacNab, railway magnate, lawyer and Premier of the United Canadas (1854-1856) and his family, today Dundurn Castle tells the story of the family who lived above stairs and the servants who lived and worked below stairs to support their affluent lifestyle. Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cornwall is the museum’s Patron and the great, great, great granddaughter of Sir Allan MacNab.
Experience the elegance and splendor of the Edwardian era at Casa Loma, the only full sized castle in North America and Toronto’s premier historic attraction brought to you by the Liberty Entertainment Group.
Explore secret passageways, elaborately decorated rooms with authentic period furnishings or take in the breathtaking view of Toronto from one of the towers.
The five acres of lush flora surrounding Casa Loma showcase ornate sculptures and fountains as well as meticulously tended displays of perennials and a wooded hillside filled with wildflowers and decorative grasses.
More than a hotel, the Fairmont Le Château Frontenac is a Québec City icon. For over a century, it has perched atop Cape Diamond overlooking Dufferin Terrace and the St. Lawrence River.
You can come inside and admire the recently renovated lobby along with historical artifacts going back 400 years displayed in specially designed cases.
The Château was the brainchild of William Van Horne, president of the Canadian Pacific Railway, who wanted to build a hotel to draw travellers as a way to promote luxury train travel. Many famous people have made the Château Frontenac their residence during their time in Québec City. From Queen Elizabeth II to Céline Dion, via Princess Grace of Monaco, Leonardo DiCaprio, Paul McCartney and Charlie Chaplin, celebrities have made the Château Frontenac their home away from home.
Belfast Castle is located in the Cave Hill area of north Belfast. It was built in the 1860s and is one of the city's most famous landmarks.
For generations, Cave Hill has been synonymous with Belfast, with its imposing outline visible throughout the city. The landmark, named for the five caves located on the side of the cliffs, contains a wealth of natural, archaeological and historical features, including Belfast Castle.
Its most famous feature, known locally as Napoleon's Nose, is believed to have been the inspiration for Jonathan Swift's novel, Gulliver's Travels.
The park is home to the Cave Hill Adventurous Playground, archaeological sites, Visitor Information Area in Belfast Castle, eco trails, walking and orienteering routes.
The estate contains landscaped gardens and mature mixed woodland and offers superb views of the city from a variety of vantage points. It is home to many different species of wildlife, including long-eared owls, sparrowhawks and Belfast's rarest plant; the town hall clock.
Malahide Castle, set on 250 acres of park land in the pretty seaside town of Malahide,w as both a fortress and a private home for nearly 800 years and is an interesting mix of architectural styles.
The Talbot family lived here from 1185 to 1973, when the last Talbot died. The house is furnished with beautiful period furniture together with an extensive collection of Irish portrait paintings, mainly from the National Gallery. The history of the Talbot family is recorded in the Great Hall, where portraits of generations of the family tell their own story of Ireland's stormy history. Many additions and alterations have been made to this romantic and beautiful structure, but the contours of the surrounding parklands have changed little in 800 years, retaining a sense of the past.
A major feature of Malahide Castle Demesne is the beautiful Talbot Botanic Gardens. The gardens, as they exist today, were largely created by Lord Milo Talbot between 1948 and 1973.
A forbidding exterior conceals 12 authentic rooms charmingly furnished as though the family has just stepped out. Dig deeper and discover a turbulent past which echoes the story of Scotland over the past 400 years.
Built in 1628 by the Earl of Mar as his Highland Hunting Lodge, set alight by the notorious Black Colonel in 1689, used as a garrison for Hanoverian soldiers after the rebel Jacobite defeat at the Battle of Culloden and for the past 200 years, home to the Chiefs of Clan Farquharson. Now lovingly tended by the community of Braemar and gradually being restored to its full splendour.
With its calm, tranquil atmosphere, and stunning views across the Firth of Forth, Lauriston is the perfect place to escape from the bustle of the city centre.
Enjoy a woodland walk, a visit to award-winning Japanese garden, or step back in time and experience what life was like in an Edinburgh middle-class home at the beginning of the 20th century.
Discover the people, environment, history and wildlife of Broughty Ferry in this amazing 15th-century coastal fort, which houses a fascinating museum. Enjoy stunning views of Broughty Beach and the Tay estuary. Entry is free.
This 15th-century coastal fort has faced many battles and sieges and was rebuilt in the 19th century as part of the River Tay's coastal defence system.
It now houses a fascinating museum featuring displays on the life and times of Broughty Ferry, its people, the environment and the wildlife that lives close by. In 2019, the Castle celebrates its 50th anniversary as a museum!
Don't miss the Orchar Gallery, featuring a selection of paintings from the amazing Orchar Collection. Enjoy the spectacular views over the River Tay from the observation post. You may even be able to spot a dolphin or two.
Haverfordwest Castle dominates the small riverside town of Haverfordwest. The wife of Edward 1 (Queen Eleanor) acquired the castle in 1289 and extended it on a large scale, but it was derelict by the 16th century. During the Civil War it was refortified and was occupied successively by Royalists and Parliamentarians, changing hands four times.
Part of the castle was converted to a prison in the 18th century. This building now houses the County Archives.
Perhaps the most spectacular Castle in the area is Picton. The original castle was probably built during the 12th century and over the years has been extended and altered into the building we see today, a half fortified manor house and half fully developed medieval castle.
Besides the actual castle visitors can visit the gallery along with the extensive gardens and restaurant.
Llawhaden Castle is situated about 10 miles east from Haverfordwest. The current castle occupies the site of a previous wooden structure and was built by the Bishops of St Davids between the 12th and 14th century.
Stroll across the granite causeway where a legendary giant once walked and follow the footsteps of pilgrims. Boat hop to an island where modern life meets layers of history, discover a medieval castle, a sub-tropical paradise and a close-knit island community. Delve into the history of a fortress, a priory, a harbour and a home.
Stray from the mainland on foot or by boat and get up close to the beguiling beauty of the castle-topped isle standing proud in Mount’s Bay. Come ashore for a family outing, a tour of the castle or a garden visit. Scale the fairytale turrets for dazzling views. Listen to live music on the village green and tuck into fresh local food in the Island Café or the Sail Loft Restaurant.
Infuse your senses with colour and scent in the unique sub-tropical gardens basking in the mild climate and salty breeze. Clinging to granite slopes the terraced beds tier steeply down to the ocean’s edge, boasting tender exotics from places such as Mexico, the Canary Islands and South Africa.
Welsh castle and solitary guardian of Snowdonia’s Llanberis Pass
Occupying a lofty, lonely spot overlooking the waters of Llyn Padarn, native-built Dolbadarn Castle was once a vital link in the defences of the ancient kingdom of Gwynedd. Most likely constructed by Llywelyn ap Iorwerth (Llywelyn the Great) in the late 12th or early 13th century, it stood to watch over the strategic route inland from Caernarfon to the upper Conwy Valley.
Today the site is dominated by the sturdy round tower, very different in style to the unmortared slate slabs which make up the castle’s curtain walls. Standing 50ft/15.2m high, the tower’s design was probably inspired by that of similar fortresses built by Llywelyn’s rivals in the borderlands of the Southern Marches.
The castle stands at the top of a hill and was built as a defensive fortification for Shrewsbury, which was otherwise protected by the River Severn. Founded by Roger de Montgomery in 1074, the castle has undergone many transformations, the last one being by Thomas Telford who 'modernised' the building in the 18th century.
Climb the walls of the castle for amazing views and some people watching from high above the town. The grounds are free to visit and perfect for picnics too.
The Castle houses the spectacular collections of the Shropshire Regimental Museum Trust including pictures, uniforms, medals, weapons and other equipment from the 18th Century to the present day. One of the prize exhibits is the baton of the German Admiral Doenitz, captured by soldiers of the King's Shropshire Light Infantry at the very end of World War II. Doenitz had been nominated as Hitler's successor. There are also stories about the British burning down the White House in 1814. The displays include a brief history of the castle through the centuries.
These 10 acre walled gardens (listed Grade II) are a rare example of formal English garden design.
They are being restored as near as possible to the period 1680 to 1762 when the Bridgeman family moved to Weston Park. The house was built in 1599 by Sir Edward Devereux and extended by Sir John Bridgeman I about 100 years later.
The Gardens were developed by several generations of the Bridgeman Family (later to become the Earls of Bradford) reaching peaks of excellence around 1760 and 1900. The Gardens fell into decline during the middle part of the twentieth century until they were rescued by the Trust in 1985.
The Holly Maze is a distorted mirror image of the one at Hampton Court Palace designed by George London and Henry Wise.
Bagot’s Castle, in the village of Baginton on the outskirts of Coventry, is believed to originally been built in the 11th century, at the time of King Henry I. It was rebuilt around the late 14th century by Sir William Bagot, a distinguished nobleman of his time. All that remains are the ruins of this historic castle.
Come and explore the 1,000-year history of Oxford Castle and Prison. Step back in time with our costumed guided tours and see fascinating stories come to life. Hear the great tales of Empress Matilda or the fate of Mary Blandy, one of the prisons’ most famous criminals. Step inside our padded jail cell and meet the notorious ‘Black Panther’, a vicious prisoner held here in the 1970s.
Find gorgeous views atop of St. George’s Tower and then descend into the atmospheric crypt of St Georges Chapel. Here you can touch the stones were Oxford University was rumoured to begin and stand in the birthplace of King Arthur. Explore the austere confines of the prisons’ D-Wing and debtors tower, here you can wander the cells and learn about our youngest inmates.
After your guided tour, you can climb the mound, the remains of a motte and bailey castle. Explore the attraction at your own leisure and dress up like a prisoner in our exhibition space. Sit down with a nice cup of coffee in our café, spread out your map and plan where to go next in Oxford.
In the summer, we have Knight School, a medieval-inspired workshop which trains children into becoming little warriors. Our Shakespeare Festival is an Oxford summer staple whilst Ghost Fest is sure to give you a scare over Halloween.
No trip to Windsor could possibly be complete without a visit to amazing Windsor Castle, the family home to British kings and queens for over 1,000 years.
The size of the Castle (5.3 hectares/13 acres) is breathtaking, in fact, it is the largest and oldest occupied castle in the world and it’s where Her Majesty The Queen chooses to spend most of her private weekends. You might even time your visit when she is in residence! Look at the flag flying from the Castle’s Round Tower; if it’s the Royal Standard The Queen will be there too.
Over the past few years, the Royal Collection Trust has been busy transforming the experience of visiting Windsor Castle, and visitors are already enjoying many improvements to the visitor experience.
The Moat Room, a new introductory space, now tells the story of the Castle’s 1,000 years of history. Windsor Castle’s Inner Hall, created by George IV in the 1820s as a space to receive official guests, has been restored and opened to the public. Now, for the first time since its closure by George’s niece, Queen Victoria, the Inner Hall serves its original purpose as a magnificent welcome area for visitors to the Castle. The medieval Undercroft has now been transformed into the Castle's first permanent café.
Situated on the banks of the River Medway, this attractive turreted castle is set in a picturesque village area backed by rolling, wooded hills.
Upnor Castle was originally built on the orders of Queen Elizabeth I in 1559 as a gun fort to defend her warships at anchor in the reaches of the Medway and Chatham Dockyard.
Although the castle was an important link in the defence line, it was not well maintained and proved ineffective when the Dutch, under the command of Admiral de Ruyter, sailed up the Medway in June 1667 to attack the dockyard. The enemy fleet met very little resistance and when it left two days later, it had destroyed or captured a large number of the Royal Navy ships anchored at Chatham.
Featuring never-before-seen archives and artefacts from Norwich Castle’s 900-year history, including a wealth of new research uncovered by the Norwich Castle: Gateway to Medieval England project to transform the Keep, the exhibition shows this majestic landmark in a fascinating new light.
Standing atop the largest man-made mound in the country, Norwich Castle has dominated the City’s skyline ever since the 12th century; but what is the story of Norwich’s iconic and much-loved square box on the hill? Built as a royal palace, Norwich Castle was a Norman showpiece with lavishly-decorated interiors fit for a king. By the 14th century, it had become the County Gaol confining Norfolk’s prisoners within its walls. With the opening of the new prison at the end of the 19th century, the Castle’s fate was uncertain, until its conversion into a public museum, which it remains to this day.
The Square Box on the Hill illustrates this rich history through a stunning mixture of prints, models, paintings, architectural plans and memorabilia, many of which have never been on display before. Supported by headline sponsors Brown&Co, the exhibition also showcases the latest exciting plans for the Castle’s future as part of the Norwich Castle: Gateway to Medieval England project, supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.
Monte Urgull is a natural area in the centre of San Sebastián that affords fabulous views of the sea and the city.
Witness to the wars suffered in their long history by the people of San Sebastián, a structure of ancient paths and fortifications can still be found on Monte Urgull today, including the splendid La Mota Castle.
In times of Sancho the Great, King of Navarre, the first defencive lookout point and San Sebastian's early walls were built. The date was around 1150. That first castle was a classic rock top construction, square, with a tower of each of the four corners and a keep to the rear. It was suffered numerous transformations over the years, just like the other fortifications on Monte Urgul.
Take a fresh look at history in the ruined castle of Picquigny. All year round escape game rooms in total historical immersion help you understand fragments of the history of this castle. In summer Picquigny castle is open to the public in the afternoon. Use our well written, illustrated guide to exploring the many facets of this site at your own pace. Treasure hunt for youngsters. In summer there are unusual torchlight tours on Friday evenings or at other times for groups (book ahead). School groups and school holiday leisure centre groups are welcome from April to August for a full or half-day - group workshops (heraldry, illumination, calligraphy, treasure hunt). escape game or torchlight tour. Team building and other private events can be organised with medieval meal and activities and/or escape game. Standing high above the Somme valley for many centuries, the ruins of Picquigny castle are both imposing and picturesque. Climb up to the barbican gate, once a drawbridge, to get a real idea of the castle's past greatness. The tall imposing façade of the main building is truly striking. Then walk along the fortifications to the Gard gateway, the Renaissance style Sévigné wing and the collegiate church open in summer. The Sévigné wing was so named in honour of Madame de Sévigné, a famous woman of letters, who stayed for four days in Picquigny castle in April 1689. When writing to her daughter, Mme de Sévigné compared the castle to that of Grignan and mentioned the river Somme. "After dinner, we arrived here at a mansion that displayed all the pride of the heiress of Pecquigni. It is an old house built on an eminence above the town, like Grignan; a fine chapter, as at Grignan, a dean and twelve canons: I know not whether the foundations be as handsome but there are terraces on the borders of the river Somme which winds in a thousand meanders through the fields, which indeed are not to be found at Grignan.
Remains of a medieval castle and church, with UNESCO World Heritage status due to their connection with the Santiago de Compostella pilgrim way. The church houses the striking tombs of the Lords of Folleville in Carrara marble, an example of the Italian Renaissance having spread as far as Picardy. Below the castle is a village where traces of its past and its setting are reconstituted.
A weekend trip to Ghent is simply not complete without a visit to the mysterious ‘Castle of the Counts’. This important sight in Ghent is a castle with a very turbulent past, closely intertwined with the complex—often stormy—political and social history of the city. It is the only remaining mediaeval castle with a moat and largely intact defence system in Flanders. Your visit to the Castle of the Counts will give you a complete picture of heraldic culture in the 12th century. The gatehouse, ramparts, keep, count’s residence and stables are open to visitors.
The Castle of the Counts boasts a unique collection of torture equipment. What used to be the pantry now features the torture equipment, which is displayed in a suggestive executioner's cabinet. The former courtroom features the collection of judicial objects. The Castle of the Counts also hosts all kinds of cultural activities, events and activities, for example during the Ghent Festivities. It is also a popular place to get married for Ghent’s locals.
Let’s not forget the time the Castle of the Counts was occupied by protesting students in 1949! Explore the castle during your weekend trip in Ghent and find out all about the ‘Battle of the Castle of the Counts’.
Trazegnies was the seat of a powerful seigniory and the cradle of one of the most illustrious families in Europe. Trazegnies' family possessed a castle worthy of her. Over the centuries, the castle has undergone a great many transformations. The splendid main building is a jewel in Belgium’s crown and is almost unique in the country, displaying architecture in the style of Louis XIII. The Romanesque cellars still survive today from the primitive manor, a rare testimony of the 11th century.
Today, part of the castle is available for hire for different events: seminars, buffets and much more.
Vianden Castle was built between the 11th and 14th Century on the foundations of a Roman castle and a Carolingian refuge. This Castle-Palace bears the Hohenstaufen characteristics and is one of the largest and finest feudal residences of the Roman and Gothic eras in Europe.
Until the early 15th Century it was home to the powerful Counts of Vianden who could boast of their close connections to the German Imperial Court. The greatest of them, Count Henry I (1220 -1250) was even married to a member of the Capetian family, which ruled France at the time. In 1417, the castle and its lands were inherited by the younger line of the German House of Nassau, which -in 1530- also acquired the French principality of Orange. The castle's most remarkable rooms; the chapel as well as the small and the grand palaces were built in the late 12th and the first half of the 13th Century.
In 1890 the castle became the property of Grand Duke Adolphe of the elder line of Nassau and remained in the hands of the Grand Ducal family until 1977 when it was transferred into state ownership. It has been painstakingly restored to its former glory and today ranks among the most significant historical monuments of Europe.
The name Luxembourg was first mentioned in 963 when count Siegfried exchanged lands for a small fortified castle by the name of Lucilinburhuc. Throughout the Middle Ages, the House of Luxembourg considerably extended its territory and power. Between 963 and 1443 Luxembourg was independent, at first as a County, then since 1354 as a Duchy. In the 14th Century and the first half of the 15th Century, four Holy Roman Emperors and four Kings of Bohemia came out of the House of Luxembourg.
Thanks to its strategic position in Europe and its formidable fortress - referred to as “Gibraltar of the North” - Luxembourg was much coveted. Thus -between 1443 and 1815- the castle of Siegfried had to endure a succession of Burgundian, Spanish, French and Austrian rulers who each shaped the fortress and the surrounding countryside.
After the defeat of Napoleon, the Powers of the time gathered at the Congress of Vienna in 1815 to reorganise Europe. Due to the importance of the fortress they decided to create a new country around the fortified castle on the Bock: the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.
The Vauban Circular Walk, named after the French fortress builder Sébastien le Prestre de Vauban (1633-1707), leads the visitor through one part of the fortifications of the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries. Guided visits for groups up to 25 people on request. Circular walk also accessible without guide.
A royal hermitage set in the King’s Garden in the heart of Copenhagen, Rosenborg Castle features 400 years of splendor, royal art treasures and the Crown Jewels and Royal Regalia.
Rosenborg Castle was built by one of the most famous Scandinavian kings, Christian IV, in the early 17th century.
Among the main attractions is the Knights’ Hall with the coronation thrones and three life-size silver lions standing guard. Tapestries on the walls commemorate battles between Denmark and Sweden.
The interiors are well-preserved and invite you to take a journey in time. You can experience the king’s private writing cabinet, his bathroom, and see wax figures of former royal inhabitants.
Rosenborg also houses an exquisite collection of Flora Danica and one of the world’s finest Venetian glass collections, both set in tower chambers.
Stjärnorp manor ruins are ruins of a 17th-century manor of the northern shore of Lake Roxen. The manor burned down in 1789 and the main building was never restored.
Stjärnorp's castle was erected in 1655–1662 (in the parish of Vreta monastery ) by the Count and Field Marshal Robert Douglas (1611–1662). The castle and terraces were designed by Nicodemus Tessin. According to a story, it is said that when the war comrades and arms brothers Robert Douglas and Axel Lillie came home from the Westphalian peace, they entered into an agreement to build their respective castles, Stjärnorp's castle and Löfstad castle, so high that they could see and send greetings from the top floor to each other.
All buildings were destroyed by a fire on May 12, 1789, but the castle chapel was restored already that year. The wing buildings were also rebuilt soon but financial resources were lacking for the main building, which is still a ruin.
Sturefors Castle by Lake Ärlången belongs to the Bielke family. It is a three-storey building with wings, constructed in 1704 by Tessin the younger for Carl Piper. The castle is known for its 1700s interior.
You can only see Sturefors Castle from the outside, but it is worth a visit for the fine English Park that was created during the 1700s with a magnificent mirror pond, and the nature reserve which lies in the grounds of the old castle.
Wik Castle is located in a scenic area close to Lårstavikens strand. In the Wik Castle area, you will find lovely walks, well-kept green areas, a beach for swimming, hotel buildings, as well as the beautiful mediaeval castle – perfect for a day trip and a cup of coffee in their summer café. Here you can book your banquets, conference meals and eat a delicious lunch in Sigrid’s dining room. Wik offers an atmosphere out of the ordinary and you can also book various experience packages. Why not try the popular wine and chocolate tasting or a cooking class? At Wik the 1400s meet the present day in a unique combination that creates the very best conditions for an excursion, conference, hotel weekend or wedding reception.