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

Hever Castle

Hever Castle

Kent

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 What's on this week at Arundel Castle & Gardens to your Itinerary

    What's on this week at Arundel Castle & Gardens

    Type

    Castle / Fort

    Location

    Arundel

    The towering stately home and fortified castle in the heart of Sussex by the Sea! Open April to October, Tuesdays to Sundays inclusive, Bank Holiday Mondays and August Mondays.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Add Royal Armouries  - Fort Nelson to your Itinerary

    Royal Armouries - Fort Nelson

    Type

    Historic Site

    Location

    Fareham

    Fort Nelson is a superbly restored Victorian fort overlooking Portsmouth Harbour. It is home to the Royal Armouries national artillery collection with over 350 historic guns on display.

  5. Add Redoubt Fortress & Military Museum to your Itinerary

    Redoubt Fortress & Military Museum

    Type

    Museum

    Location

    Eastbourne

    An impressive Napoleonic circular brick fortress which provides the perfect home for the largest military museum in the South East. New for 2010 come and enjoy a new exhibition of prints from the ever popular Eric Ravilious.

  6. 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.

  7. Add Broughton Castle to your Itinerary

    Broughton Castle

    Type

    Castle / Fort

    Location

    Banbury

    Broughton Castle is essentially a family home lived in by Lord and Lady Saye and Sele and their family. The original
    medieval manor house, of which much remains today, was built in about 1300 by Sir John de Broughton. It stands on an
    island site surrounded by a three acre moat. The castle was...

  8. 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.

  9. Add Dover Castle  to your Itinerary

    Dover Castle

    Type

    Castle / Fort

    Location

    Dover

    Discover 2000 years of history at Dover Castle! Step inside the Great Tower and immerse yourself in the medieval world and royal court of King Henry ll. Travel deep inside the White Cliffs and tour the Underground Hospital.

  10. Add Leeds Castle to your Itinerary

    Leeds Castle

    Type

    Castle / Fort

    Location

    Maidstone

    Set in 500 acres of beautiful parkland, Leeds Castle is the perfect backdrop to your day out. The historic castle, glorious gardens, attractions and programme of events awaits visitors.