Days out in Yorkshire: Bolton Castle

Bolton Castle.
Bolton Castle.
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These days, visiting a medieval castle is usually just a case of wandering around a pile of stones and using your imagination to picture how the building might have looked five centuries ago.

So a visit to Bolton Castle on the slopes of picturesque Wensleydale is something a bit different, since so much of the 14th-century stronghold is still standing.

The building was completed in 1399, and six centuries later it has become home to a great day out for all the family.

There’s a fantastic range of activities that take place on a daily basis at the castle, from a bird of prey display in the morning, to wild boar feeding in the afternoon.

And if you have a budding Robin Hood in your ranks, then the archery demonstration just after lunchtime is must-see. Not only can you witness a bowman in action, there’s also the chance to step up and give it a go yourself!

The castle was once a luxurious family home, and with so much of the medieval structure still intact, you can really get a feel for what living there would have been like centuries ago.

There are sights and sounds of medieval Wensleydale throughout, and rooms such as the old kitchen, dungeon and even Mary Queen of Scots’ bedroom all have incredibly real and authentic atmospheres. Hopefully you won’t see any of the ghosts!

Wensleydale itself is truly spectacular, and if you’d like to explore a bit more, places like the Wensleydale Creamery in Hawes or the Wensleydale Railway would be the perfect addition to a visit to Bolton Castle


Prices: Adult £8.50; conc £7; family £30

Opening Times: Daily, 10am to 5pm

Address: nr. Leyburn, North Yorkshire

Car Parking: On-site

Attraction Website:

Telephone: 01696 623981

Sat Nav: DL8 4ET

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