Our least favourite travel experiences – and I am sure most people can relate – is visiting somewhere special or famous and jostling with the crowds, peering over heads and cameras, holding on tightly to children’s hands in fear of losing them amongst the sea of people. The downside of visiting places that are beautiful is how popular they tend to be with everyone else besides yourself! Fortunately we managed to have quite the opposite whilst visiting the famous Warwick Castle in England. We had booked Wayside Cottage in Somerset and just by chance when looking at the route to get there from Sheffield, I saw that Warwick Castle falls along the way. I have heard many wonderful things about this place and thought it would be perfect for our last English trip this year. We move to New Zealand next week 🙂
We went last week, middle of February and we went on a Friday early afternoon. We didn’t have the best of weather, it was quite grey and cold. Lot of the attractions were closed. But as you can see in the following pictures, there was plenty to keep us entertained for the many hours we were there.
There was plenty to see inside so we could stay out of the rainy weather outside. But the grounds were so lovely as well. I would definitely want to come back in Spring or Autumn (too crowded in summer) just to experience the grounds as well. The first thing we saw were the dark bits of history – the castle dungeons! There was a Castle Dungeon Tour which lasts an hour but you had to pay extra for that and tickets were already very dear as it is. There are some great deals and coupons on Cereal cartons (elsewhere too possibly?) where adults go free with each paying child, but we forgot to bring our coupons. They have other discounts which you can find on the website.
We then went to the Kingmaker Section where the scene is elaborately set for getting the army ready for battle. The year is 1471 and Richard Neville, commonly known as Warwick the Kingmaker gets ready to go war – the whole journey from what clothes they wore, what food they ate, what role the women had and much more is shown through both visual and audio means.
We then went on to the Royal Weekend Party exhibition which started in this elaborate Hall, with swords and armour lining the walls. There were 12 different sections to explore, some of them were so elaborate and gorgeous! Between the different wax figures, paintings, richly decorated rooms, audio and visual tours, the kids and us really got to experience and enjoy this journey of Britain’s historical heritage. We joined a guided group tour and learned lots of fun facts about the extravagant parties and all the royal people who have been in and out of this place.
The best part was being to do it without the crowds. There were only few other people about, we walked in leisure, experiencing the rooms we liked at our own pace. Very different then when we were at the Tower of London few months ago, SUPER CROWDED!
Outside there were these other things to see – The mighty Trebuchet, other towers to walk through, in the summer there are jousting events. There was also a great playground with wooden slides, swings and trampolenes. It was raining so we didn’t get to experience the grounds too much. I can imagine we would enjoy it in the summer when there are so many more things to do, but we absolutely loved being able to experience it like it was our very own place with few people around 🙂
Linked to #weekendwanderlust hosted by Justin Plus Lauren, #weeklypostcard hosted by Travel Notes and Beyond #wkendtravelinspiration hosted by Reflections Enroute #MosaicMonday hosted by Lavender Cottage and Weekly Photo Challenge: Off Season