by Amy McPherson –
Want to stay somewhere truly special at Christmas time? Amidst the winter snow, castles in the UK offer the perfect setting. Stay in a castle and feel like royalty during the festive season.
The castle was built in 1350, during the reign of Edward III, and has been owned by some Lords and Ladies associated with the turbulent history of the Kingdom. Over time, the castle has retained its architectural integrity and is regarded as one of the few medieval fortified castle hotels in England.
Overlooking the Northumbrian Valley and set in its own woodland estate, a Christmas at Langley promises to be traditional and personal. Anton Phillips, the hotel’s general manager wants to express the traditional values he experienced throughout childhood, and has arranged a Christmas stay for guests that includes personal touches.
“I go around all the guest rooms after everyone has gone to bed and put a stocking on every door handle, plus a bag of chocolate money and Christmas nuts,” said Anton.
Thornbury Castle was once owned by Henry VIII who stayed here with Anne Boleyn on their honeymoon in 1535. This stunning country house offers guests a special opportunity to celebrate Christmas in authentic Tudor surroundings
Spending Christmas at Thornbury involves lavish feasts with all the trimmings. Guests can take part in the search for the rumoured lost jewel – ‘the heart of Jasper Tudor’ – and enjoy splendid falcon exercises.
Another Scottish castle near Edinburgh but of a different style is Dalhousie Castle Hotel & Spa.
The staff at this 13th-century fortress on the River Esk will provide the warmest Scottish welcome and they also enjoy a great party.
A Christmas at Dalhousie promises to be fun and exciting, and even if you don’t want to join in the disco, there’s always your luxury bedroom to retreat to, which will have beautiful views of the surrounding Scottish countryside.
This 18th century castle is located within 50 acres of woodlands on the outskirts of Edinburgh and at one time was Mary Queen of Scot’s hunting seat. Today, the castle has 32 rooms of luxury accommodation and hosts a warm and cosy Christmas filled with mulled wine, warm meals and shimmering decorations. Celebrate among guests in the impressive ballroom.
Guests can also enjoy activities such as clay shooting, horse riding and falconry to pass time. Stay at Melville Castle for some traditional Scottish flair!
The original Hever Castle was built in 1270, and in the 15th and 16th centuries was the childhood home of Anne Boleyn – famous for helping to bring about the English Reformation and for being the first English queen to be publicly executed.
Today, this impressive castle welcomes guests into its defensive walls and charming gardens. It boasts everything a fairy tale castle should feature – crenellations, a moat, (possibly) ghosts and lots of old armour to tickle childhood imaginations. Spending a day at Hever leading up to Christmas is a special affair.
The Magic of Christmas Past is an event that allows guests and visitors to experience a traditional English Christmas, and learn all about why we send greeting cards and sing carols.
Bovey Castle dates back to 1890 and this exquisitely decorated country house has the perfect backdrop for a Christmas break – the Dartmoor National Park. Each of the 64 bedrooms at the castle has been individually designed, some with sweeping views across the woodlands and beyond.
The two onsite restaurants dish up traditional British cuisine and offer guests a fantastic Christmas feast. And if you’re at the hotel in early December, the Bovey Castle Christmas Fair (Sunday, 7 December, from 12-5pm) will give you a chance to stock up on all those Christmas gifts before the big event.
This fairy tale castle has modern touches, but also 900 years of history which guests can discover during their stay. The castle is located in West Sussex – a region made up of rolling hills and splendid green fields.
The castle’s team of talented chefs will ensure Christmas is a culinary affair. Regular culinary packages are already popular with those seeking a traditional feast and at Christmas diners will be treated to a spectacular setting in the warm atmosphere of the castle walls.