King Arthur. Camelot. Knights of the Round Table. These are the romantic images that often propel a person's interest to the ultimate region for castles: England. It is said that the proliferation of the classic stone castle that we are now familiar with in Great Britain began during the Crusades. Today, the remains of England's rich medieval history are alive and well. When you visit one of the many castles-turned-first-rate hotels available for your destination wedding or fairytale honeymoon, you discover why nowhere compares to England. We've hand-selected seven of the best.
I'll crolf to that. Say you don't know what we're talking about? That's because you've not yet visited Devon's Bovey Castle. Combining golf and croquet and with only nine rules to follow, it is the newest activity featured at this magnificent abode. Others range from clay pigeon shooting to a cocktail-making session in its Oak Bar. Besides the 64 bedrooms available in the manor house, Bovey also offers 14 three-story country lodges on its grounds that can sleep up to 8. Can anyone say destination wedding?
On 12-acres of land, in a wooded valley near a deer park, the newly restored award-winning Carr Hall Castle in Halifax West Yorkshire between Leeds and Manchester is the answer when you're seeking somewhere intimate for your destination wedding. This castle is only available for private rental with a max of 10 guests permitted so you'll feel like a king and queen while you're there.
Constructed in 1140 A.D. and overlooking the Essex countryside, the Hedingham Castle with its formidable 12th century keep (aka fortified tower) is actually one of Britain's oldest buildings. Today it is available for rental for up to 17 guests. If it looks familiar upon arrival, that's because it is often used in dramas like Ivanhoe, documentaries and Vanity Fair photo shoots.
Built in 1270, the claim to fame of the Hever Castle and Gardens in Kent is that it was the childhood home of Anne Boleyn. Now it can accommodate up to 120 guests in its 21 bedrooms. The best part of this venue? It still has so much 16th century Tudor objects on display from tapestries, paintings and furniture to two prayer books inscribed by Anne Boleyn.
Set on 200 acres, Swinton Park Castle in North Yorkshire is awe-inspiring. The property may have 31 rooms to choose from but it is the gardens, lake, and moorlands that will make it hard to stay indoors. And of course, all this exploring can work up your appetite. Luckily, Swinton Park has a restaurant with award-winning cuisine based on the properties very own four-acre garden.
When you fancy a destination wedding near the sea, consider Walton Castle, a property near Bristol in Clevedon, a picturesque Victorian seaside town. While the property isn't set up for a honeymoon, it is ideal for a one-time wedding visit with friends: the property happily organizes bespoke wedding arrangements. Set on a hilltop overlooking the Bristol Channel, it has a location that is hard to resist (and we haven't even mentioned its heated indoor pool).
Set near Birmingham, the amazing Warwick Castle dates back 1,100 years to 914 A.D. when it was built to protect its inhabitants from Danish invaders. Later William the Conquerer improved on its fortification in 1068. Today, the Warwick Castle aims to please bridal couples looking for a truly medieval experience, complete with entertainment inspired by the Middle Ages, for their "I do".