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There’s something a little magical about castles. These fortified structures are more than just a way to keep peasant revolts to a minimum and defend against Norse invaders.

Bastions have an incredible ability to take on a life of their own, inspiring our imaginations and giving us romantic visions of what life must have been like for kings and knights in times of old. 

Because of this, many of us rather like the idea of visiting a castle. But where should you go? Well, lucky for you, you’re about to find out. This post describes the best castles in the UK to visit. 

Caernarfon Castle

Caernarfon Castle

Caernarfon Castle is one of the most popular in the country. This massive structure in northwest Wales is close to the Snowdonia National Park and a great place to visit if you’re in the area.

The fort itself is in Gwynedd and was used as a way to prevent invaders from southern Wales, Anglesey and Ireland from gaining a foothold on the maintain. The original castle was a wooden motte-and-bailey design.

But in the 13th century, King Edward I of England began upgrading it to make it more impervious to infiltration by invaders. The work took over a hundred years to complete, but the results are stunning, with battlements and crenellations all over the place. Caernarfon Castle is what people imagine when they think of a classic castle. 

Bamburgh Castle

Bamburgh Castle

Next on our list of top castles in the UK to visit is Bamburgh. This castle in Northumberland is now a Grade I listened building, with impressive, almost imperious battlements that overshadow the surrounding town. 

The fort sits on a natural defensive point, a small knoll and was used for centuries before the current stone castle. Previously, the Celts controlled the site, calling it Din Guaria, which may have been the capital of the civilization during the early Middle Ages. 

There are plenty of hotels in Bamburgh, so staying nearby is surprisingly easy. There are plenty of pubs and taverns to explore, too, making the location one of the best to relax and soak in the Englishness of the place. 

Bodiam Castle

a castle sitting on top of a river next to a forest Bodiam Castle

Bodiam Castle is not as well known as some of Britain’s most famous battlements, but it is enormously impressive. Sir Edward Dalyngrigge, a former knight of Edward III, created the fort in the 14th century close to Robertsbridge.

Originally built to guard against French invasion during the Hundred Years’ War. The fort was more a symbol of power and dominance over the local peasants. Its true purpose becomes evident upon visiting.

Edinburgh Castle

brown house on mountain Edinburgh Castle

Finally, you might want to pay a visit to Edinburgh Castle, one of the most spectacular in the country.

The structure sits on Castle Rock in the middle of the Scottish capital city. They served as a royal residences for many years before the merger of Scotland and England. Built in 1633, it was a sort of fort but its military significance after construction was minimal. 

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