Castle Rising Castle, Norfolk – One of The Finest 12th Century Castles

Last year we had a mini-break to Hunstanton in Norfolk. We stayed with our caravan at Searles leisure which you can read more about here – Searles Leisure Resort. During our days out we visited the nearby Castle Rising castle. The property is managed by English heritage so it was a great opportunity for us to use our English heritage annual passes. It was just a short 15-minute drive from the caravan park and is situated near Sandringham house.

About Castle Rising Castle in Norfolk – English Heritage

Castle Rising is a ruined medieval castle. It is located in the north-west of Norfolk in between Kings Lynn and Hunstanton. It was built in the early 12th Century by William d’Aubigny II, who become the Earl of Arundel. The castle lives up to its name and does indeed feel like it’s rising out of the ground. It’s surrounded by moat like baileys.

It has had a long and varied past. It was once used as a hunting lodge, a royal residence and it even housed a mental patient.

Castle rising fell into disrepair back in the 1950s and some archaeological and repair work was carried out. The castle is now grade 1 listed and managed by English Heritage as a tourist attraction since 1983. Lord Howard of Rising owns the castle.


Review of Castle Rising

We visited quite early on in the day and it was not at all busy. If you need the toilet upon arrival please note that they are located at the bottom end of the car park and not on the actual site itself. There is a small reception area with a shop. Nearby there is a café but this is not run by English heritage.

The landscape around the castle area is very green and reminded me of being abroad a little with the unusual trees.

Castle Rising car park

You enter via one of the many baileys which look very much like moats. Once you have paid your entrance fee or shown your passes you cross over a bridge that spans the main bailey and in through the entrance archway.

Castle Rising Castle

There are a few useful signs dotted around the place to provide you with a brief history and further information about the castle.

One of the informative signs

As you can hopefully see from my photos it is a very picturesque castle.

Although it is a ruin there is plenty to explore. The main structure itself isn’t too damaged and there are staircases, rooms and mor. There were a fair few children charging around with glee at the chance to be let loose and explore for themselves. Although the castle has been mostly secured with railings etc. we weren’t going to let Jamie out of our sight.

Castle Rising Castle, Norfolk - One of The Finest 12th Century Castles
Exploring inside the castle itself
The castle was a great place to explore

There are a few earthworks also to see outside of the main castle building. These are old churches and other old buildings.

Castle Rising Castle, Norfolk - One of The Finest 12th Century Castles
An Old chapel which pre dates the castle

We enjoyed our visit. It was a very intriguing castle and it was good fun looking around. Although it did not take long to visit this is reflected in the entry price. It makes it a perfect place to visit with an annual pass. We would certainly visit again.

Important information

The castle is open for most weeks of the year, however some months it isn’t open every day of the week. Please check their website for opening days and times.

Entrance is free if you are an English Heritage annual pass holder. Without a pass or gift aid, an adult pays £4.50 for entry. A child is £3 and a family ticket £14.00.

I have also written more about the area over here – 15 Things To Do in and Near Hunstanton, Norfolk – Family friendly

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Disclaimer – We were provided with a family annual pass for the purpose of this review. All words, photos and opinions are entirely my own.

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