Where in the world can you see the city of York at a distance of 40 miles, weather being kind? Richmond Castle, situated in the midst of rurally stunning North Yorkshire, is one such place.
Richmond itself is an attractive market town that has grown up under the protection of a castle for nigh on a millennium, and sizeable parts of that castle remain standing under the stewardship of English Heritage.
Originally built so the ruling Normans could resist the troublesome northerners, the imperious keep still towers to this day – though the ‘troublesome northerners’ have now claimed it as their own.
With its entrance just off Richmond’s market square, the castle is easily found and easily enjoyed.
Enter through the gift shop, heed the advice to pop upstairs to the interactive exhibition, and you’ll find somewhere for kids (young and old) to get hands-on with a slice of Yorkshire history – they can even be locked up in a cell under guard of a stern-looking mannequin.
The scale of the castle is perhaps belied by the fact that only the keep is visible from a distance. The central grassy area must be acres in size, and the secluded Cockpit Garden at the far side of the grounds shouldn’t be missed. Even in the wind and rain, there’s no lovelier place.
Still, the castle’s keep is its showpiece. The journey to the top is a long one, but the length of the straight, stone staircases is punctuated by arrowslits that allow views increasing in splendour as you climb.
And from the very top, 360 degree views that can, weather allowing, stretch for 40 idyllic miles.
Prices: Adult £4.80, Child £2.90. Free for English Heritage members.
Opening Times: Saturday & Sunday, 10am to 4pm
Address: Riverside Road, Richmond
Car Parking: Paid-for parking in Market Place, Richmond
Attraction Website: www.english-heritage.org.uk/richmondcastle
Telephone: 01748 828742
Sat Nav: DL10 4QW
For more days out see www.yorkshire.com