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My Itinerary

Build your own itineraries by clicking the Add to Excursion button to add an item to your Itinerary basket.

Leeds Castle

Leeds Castle

Maidstone

Best Historic Castles

Of the 100 or so castles in England, more than 30 are in the South East due to the fact that historically this region of the UK has always been vulnerable to attack from foreign shores.

It is no surprise therefore, that castles in Kent and castles in Sussex dominate our guide as Kings and Queens throughout the ages turned South East England into the fortress of Britain, by building some of the most impressive, imposing and famous castles in England. Built to last, the castles make fascinating places to visit and the South East has them in abundance.

10 of England's finest castles

  • Hastings Castle, East Sussex
    Famous for the Norman conquest of 1066.
  • Windsor Castle, Berkshire
    Official residence of HM The Queen & Britain's best loved castle.
  • Dover Castle, Kent
    One of Britain's most iconic fortresses & home to King Henry II.
  • Leeds Castle, Kent
    One of England's best preserved castles with 500 acres of parkland & gardens.
  • Guildford Castle, Surrey
    Recently improved access & panoramic views of the Guildford countryside.
  • Broughton Castle, Oxfordshire
    Dubbed the original medieval manor house, surrounded by a three acre moat.
  • Carisbrooke Castle, Isle of Wight
    Home to a stunning new Edwardian-style Princess Beatrice Garden.
  • Bodiam Castle, East Sussex
    Archetypal 14th century moated castle with ruined interior.
  • Arundel Castle, West Sussex
    Commanding location with magnificent South Downs views.
  • Hever Castle, Kent
    Romantic castle & childhood home of Anne Boleyn.

Castles Near Me

Whether you live in South East England or are visiting from elsewhere in the UK or abroad, find which castles are near you by using the 'map view' button below. Many of our featured castles double up as wedding venues and have a selection of seasonal events suitable for all the family dispelling the myth that castles aren't fun places to visit for kids too!

In this section

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British Airways i360

British Airways i360

Take to the skies to see Brighton and the South Coast as you have never seen them before! Glide up slowly to 450ft to enjoy breathtaking 360°...

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  1. Add Rochester Castle to your Itinerary

    Rochester Castle

    Type

    Castle / Fort

    Location

    Rochester

    One of the finest keeps in England. Also the tallest, partly built on the Roman city wall. Good views from the battlements over the River Medway.

  2. Add Southsea Castle to your Itinerary

    Southsea Castle

    Type

    Castle / Fort

    Location

    Southsea, Portsmouth

    Built in 1544, Southsea Castle was part of a series of fortifications constructed by Henry VIII around England's coasts.

  3. Add Upnor Castle to your Itinerary

    Upnor Castle

    Type

    Castle / Fort

    Location

    Rochester

    This attractive, turreted castle is set in a picturesque village area that is backed by rolling, wooded hills. The castle is fronted by a water bastion jutting out into the River Medway.

  4. Add Walmer Castle & Gardens to your Itinerary

    Walmer Castle & Gardens

    Type

    Castle / Fort

    Location

    Deal

    This castle was built in 1540 as part of Henry Vlll's chain of coastal defences. See the Duke of Wellington's room, the reception rooms and magnificent commemorative gardens of HM Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother.

  5. Add Odiham Castle to your Itinerary

    Odiham Castle

    Type

    Castle / Fort

    Location

    Hook

    Known locally as ‘King John’s Castle’, Odiham Castle is located within a tranquil site adjacent to the Basingstoke Canal.

  6. Add Deal Castle to your Itinerary

    Deal Castle

    Type

    Castle / Fort

    Location

    Deal

    Deal Castle is one of the finest artillery works in England; this fortress once carried 119 guns. Now in the care of English Heritage, this castle offers exciting battlements, dark passages and a huge basement to explore.

  7. Add What's on this week at Bodiam Castle? to your Itinerary

    What's on this week at Bodiam Castle?

    Type

    Castle / Fort

    Location

    Bodiam, Robertsbridge

    One of the most famous and evocative castles in Britain

  8. Add Portchester Castle to your Itinerary

    Portchester Castle

    Type

    Castle / Fort

    Location

    Portchester

    A Roman-Saxon shore fort with Norman additions. A near-perfect keep and Norman church within the walls.

  9. Add Chiddingstone Castle to your Itinerary

    Chiddingstone Castle

    Type

    Historic House / Palace

    Location

    Edenbridge

    Chiddingstone Castle, whose history can be traced back to the early 16th Century, is a unique country house located in the historic village of Chiddingstone in Kent. 

  10. Add Guildford Castle to your Itinerary

    Guildford Castle

    Type

    Castle / Fort

    Location

    Guildford

    Guildford Castle features 2 model displays, and a viewing platform offering panoramic views of Guildford.