This post was most recently updated on June 27th, 2018
This post on the best English castles can be read as a single page here >>> The Best 20 Castles To Visit In England (single page)
The great castles of England have played an important role in the economic, military, and social development of the nation.
For centuries, these grand structures have graced Great Britain with their imposing stone features and large aristocratic and royal estates.
Let’s look at them in more detail, and list the best 20…
Many of the oldest castles in England date back to the Norman invasion in 1066.
In the centuries following the Norman invasion, castles in England continued to grow in sophistication and comfort.
By the 14th century, English castles not only provided superior defensive features, but they also boasted sophisticated, luxurious living arrangements, and beautifully landscaped formal gardens and parks.
Throughout the Renaissance Era, a small number of castles were built for the wealthy to enjoy extravagant feasts and grand celebrations. During the 17th century, widespread religious and civil conflicts meant that castles, and the defense that they offered England, played an important role in protecting the nation’s interest.
Today, the great castles of England pay homage to the past. The noble structures stand erect as a living memorial to the centuries that have passed, the battles that have been fought, and the people that have come before. Take a look at some of the most monumental castles in England and learn about the rich history of these awe-inspiring structures.
No 1: Dover Castle, Kent
The most iconic and oldest fort in England, Dover Castle has, even in recent history, played a vital role in the country’s defense against foreign powers. Originally, the castle was fortified by William the Conqueror in 1066. Prior to the fortifications, the site was a stronghold for Anglo-Saxon forces. Over the years, the fort was improved upon by several great kings, including Henry II and Henry VIII. Today, visitors to the white cliffs of Dover are able to uncover the secret tunnels, become immersed in its medieval interiors, or climb the Great Tower.