Photo: Rob the moment

Built in the 13th Century, Caerphilly Castle is a stunning feat of architecture that boasts extensive water defences. It promises to astonish, with its 30 acres earning it the title of one of the largest Castles in Europe.

Originally built by the ginger-haired Lord of Glamorgan Guilbert De Clare who was descended from Norman gentry, the castle remained his residence almost entirely until his death.

In the ages since then it has changed hands a few times and was finally presented to the British government in 1950 by the 5th Marquess of Bute. Spending more than 4 generations in the Bute family prior to this, its history was extensively recorded by them and is now displayed in wonderful detail in several internal exhibitions.

Caerphilly Castle suffered relatively little in the way of battle ruin during the English Civil War, but Cromwell’s Parliamentary Army brought about huge demolition in 1648. Because of this it has and continues to undergo extensive analysis and renovation in the wake of human destruction and natural dilapidation. Visiting it now you wouldn’t believe that by the 18th Century its lakes had dried up so much that people had built their houses against the Castle walls in their stead.

Despite its age, the painstaking care that has gone into its face-lift means that it remains largely reminiscent of its original stature. In fact, Windsor castle is the only Castle in the UK that has the capacity to make it look small.

Standing at up to 21metres high in places, this medieval sandstone fortress is an impressive place to visit and an ideal place to go for a day trip or picnic. You can even go coarse fishing in its North and South Lakes. So why not hop in the car and march your way around the battlements.

 

Castle Street, Caerphilly, Mid Glamorgan, CF83 1JD

Tel: 02920 883 143

Opening Times: 9:30 – 5pm (varies throughout the year, please check website for full details)