3 Breathtaking Castle Hikes in Britain

Hikers come from all over the world to take in Britain’s lush hills and forests, but they stay for the castles! Of course, many tourists go to take a look at the glitz and glamour of Buckingham Palace, but England’s best-kept beauties lie in the mountains and valleys, hidden among the rich history tracing back to Roman times. With the help of some well-maintained trails, hikers can experience all that the British Isles have to offer, especially the castles peppered all throughout its lands.

Hiking through Royal Trails

English castles have also been popular destinations in video games. The action-adventure game, Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla depicts an imposing, larger than life version of Burgh Castle in Norfolk. Another example occurs in Forza Horizon 4, a racing game that includes Bamburgh Castle in its North Sea backdrop. Even slot games have woven classic British legends in their plots, including the wizard Merlin, who guided King Arthur through his feats. Oddly enough, Merlin was most popular around Wales, which is known for its numerous castles. Of course, there are also dragons, and royalty about, like in Rise of Merlin, where players can unscramble mystical symbols to find Mediaeval treasures. Rise of Merlin is just one of many titles that offer exciting features including a sign up bonus for free spins to get started. In all of these titles, Nordic and Anglo-Saxon imagery pops up again and again, reminding players of England’s fascinating roots. 

Depending on the region, some castles date back to the Viking era. These castles are typically in the North and East of the country, while other areas house modern castles from the Romantic era, specifically in the Southeast. 


Wales is chock full of castles. In fact, Wales has the highest number of castles in the world. While no one is quite clear on why that is, experts suggest the Norman conquest and the Welsh geography’s mountains and valleys played a key role. 

In any case, there are loads of hiking trails that feature several castles along their path. For those who are looking for a simple trail that can be done in a few hours, the 3.5-mile trail around the Carreg Cennen Castle is surrounded by dramatic, lush green hills. Along the trail, hikers can find rushing creeks and impressive caves to explore. 

To get to the castle, hikers have to walk down a steep hill and cross the Cennen river bridge. There are some fantastic views from the bridge, but it only gets better as hikers approach the bank and make their way up to the castle and farm grounds. It’s possible to start in the castle car park, however, hikers should know that it is only open during the daytime. 

For anyone that loves a challenge and has a bit of time on their hands, the North Wales Castles Trail has lots to offer. It is certainly a challenging hike, but with a group of friends and hostels along the way, this walk across history will be more than memorable.

Wales is often called the Land of Castles and is home to some of Europe’s finest examples of Medieval construction


For Harry Potter fans, Northumberland is an excellent choice to see many of the filming locations. Alnwick Castle, which has also been featured in Downton Abbey and several other films and series, is one of many fantastic sites to take in while in this quaint, Northeastern land. There are also several historical sites to see such as famous battlefields and cemeteries. 

One of the most popular walks in the area is the Thirlwall Castle Trail, near the 73-mile, Roman-built Hadrian’s Wall. The castle was built with the ancient wall stones, making an interesting visual and historical metaphor for the English legacy. After a series of battles, the castle has been left in ruins. It serves as a reminder to hikers of the conflict that existed centuries ago, and how far the country has come since then. 

The hike itself is quite relaxing, with just a few slopes and a serene breeze to accompany the trail. If anyone is planning to try out Nordic Walking the entire Hadrian’s Wall or try out the sights at the Northumberland National Park, make sure to bring energy-packed snacks like nuts and fruits. 


Where the North is home to mostly ancient and medieval castles, most of the castles around the London area tend to be more modern and romantic. The London castle trails are an excellent choice for art history and modern architecture fans. 

The best place to start is Leeds Castle, which is to the south of London, in Kent. The castle is complete with a fun hedge maze, gardens, and a grotto that’s also considered “the underground castle,” which doubled as a dungeon. Beautiful, quilt-like patterns and sculptures grace the stone walls and are an impressive sight to see. 

From Leeds Castle, hikers can enjoy the majestic Maidstone trails, which are in the area. For any BMX lovers, these trails are great for taking a spin as they feature solid ground and towering trees.

Do you have a favourite castle in the UK?



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