There is something wonderful about visiting castles. As you walk through the ruins, your imagination begins to fill in the blanks about the people who lived there, the history of the place and the architectural details that have been lost. But what if you didn’t need to use your imagination? Luckily, the digital age has given us the tools to recreate the complete picture by rebuilding these incredible castles without any heavy lifting.
1. Dunluce Castle (County Antrim, Northern Ireland)
Two years later, the small town that developed around the castle was razed by the Scots and abandoned. It has now become a valuable archaeological site and the historic footprint of this short-lived settlement is a haunting destination for visitors to the northern tip of Northern Ireland.
2. Dunstanburgh Castle (Northumberland, England)
The castle fell into disrepair after sustaining damage as a battle hotspot during the Wars of the Roses. Today, a walk along the Northumberland Coast in view of Dunstanburgh’s ruins offers a melancholy but awe-inspiring day out.
3. Bothwell Castle (South Lanarkshire, Scotland)
Architecturally, Bothwell is notable for its “cylindrical donjon” (a fortified refuge for the castle’s inhabitants), which was ruined in a series of sieges. Visit on Halloween and you may encounter the ghost of Bonnie Jean, a noblewoman who drowned crossing the River Clyde to elope with her lover.
4. Goodrich Castle (Herefordshire, England)
After the war, the ruined castle was partially dismantled and then abandoned. Thankfully, they’ve since installed a tearoom so visitors can recharge after enjoying the historical exhibits and spectacular views from the parapets.
5. Caerlaverock Castle (Dumfries and Galloway, Scotland)
But the ruins are awesome. Caerlaverock’s moat, twin-towered gatehouse and lofty battlements are supplemented by an exhibition honouring the castle’s turbulent history.
6. Kidwelly Castle (Dyfed, Wales)
The following years of peace diverted the focus to residential building and the grandeur of Kidwelly’s military fortress was allowed to fade. This means that although it’s considered a ruin, Kidwelly is actually one of the best preserved and most awe-inspiring castles in Wales today. Catch a view of it in the morning mist to truly feel you’ve been transported through time.