30 September 2016

A sunny family day out at Dover Castle


Dover Castle is a gorgeous location. We spent a warm and sunny summer day there while  on our first family camping trip. We wandered around the grounds and inside the castle. As always, I have taken lots of pictures from Dover Castle to share here on my blog. 


the bridge over moat at dover castle

mummy and daughter looking at the view from dover castle tower

crenellations at dover castle

mummy and daughter at dover castle tower

view between crenellations at dover castle

view to the seaside from dover castle tower

looking down from dover castle tower at lots of tiny people on the yard

child sitting at dover castle tower floor

moats and outer ring of dover castle

mum and daughter near a moat at dover castle

mum and daughter picking flowers at dover castle

showing a flower to the camera


The rooms inside were decked out in furniture, and you could imagine what life must have been like in the castle back in the day. I was wondering out loud to a member of staff that it must have been freezing in these big, wide and tall stonewalled rooms. Apparently however, as Kings held court from their bedroom, the room would have an open fire and lots and lots of staff dealing with the court business, it actually got pretty warm, even on the coldest winter days. 

We had a picnic on the grounds, and grabbed a coffee from the cafe. And we walked around the moat, picking flowers. There was also a show, with actors, for the kids. A queen invited all the children to come and compete in medieval target shooting. It was quite good fun for the older children. We also had a look at some of the wartime exhibitions - although we did have to miss out on them as after hours of running around our toddler started to get quite unmanageable and we thought it would be best to call it a day. 

We enjoyed our visit to Dover Castle a lot. The staff were really friendly and knowledgeable, and the scenery breathtakingly beautiful. Lucky me also discovered that I have a corporate membership to English Heritage so we got off cheap this time. Due to the newly discovered membership I think we might visit lots more of castles this coming year! 



dover castle tower seen from below

glass window staining at dover castle

dad showing child a miniature dover castle model

inner room with swords at dover castle

central yard at dover castle

actors at dover castle


childrens activity target shooting at dover castle

child straddling a cannon at dover castle

children climbing a tank at dover castle

fence by dover castle seaside

seaside view of dover castle grounds




Top tips for Dover Castle: 

  • Pack a picnic. There are lots of nice places to eat outside, and you save a few precious pennies. 
  • Take the whole day - the grounds are huge and there is lots to see. 
  • Have chats with the staff minding the rooms- they are incredibly knowledgeable and can tell you loads about history and old customs. 
  • The Underground Hospital stages air raid simulations - this means the hospital tour is a bit too scary for the youngest children but should be thought-provoking for older kids. 
  • Consider a family membership to English Heritage - for two adults and two kids  (+5 years old) the yearly membership is not much more than one day tickets and you get to visit as many castles as you want for a year! 


You might also like: Our first ever camping trip as a family and Visiting Farnham Castle in Surrey






39 comments:

  1. What fabulous views and an interesting castle. We've had a English Heritage membership before and always love their sites. They make it easy for the children to enjoy the visit too. #CountryKids

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    1. They were so child friendly, I loved it. Lots of actors, lost of things to look and touch. It was really good. Would love to go again!

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  2. What an experience...and I didn't know that they held court from their bedrooms. Love little tidbits like that.

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    1. Yeah it was all news to me too - it is fun learning something like that :)

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  3. I love the look of Dover castle and what a wonderful day you chose to visit. The views look amazing and the wild flowers so pretty. I find the old courts and their proceedings fascinating and places like this really bring it to life. What a bargain discovering you have corporate membership. It does sound worth investing in anyway, we have lots of castles down here so I think we may splash out too.

    Thank you for sharing with me on #CountryKids

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    1. We were blessed with good weather throughout trip to Dover, and it is gorgeous location. Stunning views. The EH membership I think costs about £90 for a family (up to 6 kids) so it's not bad value at all if you have a big family or visit two castles a year. Good value I thought.

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  4. We visited Farnham Castle recently but Dover Castle's view look amazing! Sounds like a very pleasant day out #CountryKids xx

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    1. I've been to Farnham Castle too recently! It is really nice, and free (even better ha ha). I wrote a post about it too http://www.wavetomummy.com/2016/04/visiting-farnham-castle.html

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  5. I'm a teacher and we always do a school trip to Dover Castle - there's loads to see but you only get 2 hours as a free visit so it's always a mad rush. I must go back with the family one day and just take our time ! #countrykids

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    1. Ah ha - yeah two hours isn't much - you do get to see the castle grounds and the tower, but that's about it when you have to herd loads of kids around it takes a while... You should go back there and spend a bit of time, we could have easily spent the whole day there!

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  6. I loved Dover Castle - so much to see. We went on a freezing rainy day so I can vouch for the fact that it's actually pretty snug inside with the fires lit. Lovely to see it in sunshine too.

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    1. Oh they light up the fires inside - that's awesome! I hope it was nice and cosy inside :) The views are gorgeous when the skies are clear, well worth another visit for you I think :)

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  7. Castles are fabulous places for the whole family explore.We have National trust membership and I'm considering getting English Heritage too.

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    1. They are, aren't they, and kids love pretending to be princesses and knights. We haven't visited any NT locations, but once we start doing a bit more travel around we should check them out too.

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  8. Looks lovely here, what amazing views! Lovely pictures #Countrykids

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    1. They really are gorgeous the views!

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  9. We drove by Dover caste when we did a road trip to France and Belgium. I would've loved to have stopped, but we were pressed for time. Looks like you guys really enjoyed it! Lovely photos too :) #countrykids

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    1. Next time, next time! But I know what you mean about not having time when on a road trip - you are just so keen on getting to your destination, and it is always a bit of a hassle at the crossing especially if you have a scheduled departure to make!

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  10. What a stunning location for a day out - Dover Castle looks like a fabulous place to explore. I always love seeing some medieval reenactment at places like this and the target practice sounds like fun :-) #countrykids

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    1. It was loads of fun! It was a shame that our little munchkin was a little bit too small to participate, but her bigger cousins were in their element :)

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  11. This sounds like a great day out with loads on offer to do. I particularly like the sound of the underground hospital and the English Heritage membership sure sounds worthwhile.
    Potty Adventures
    #countrykids

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    1. The Underground Hospital sounded great, I really wanted to go, but you had to wait and the kids were getting tired and irritated (and irritating...) so we packed it up :D Maybe next time when they are bigger :)

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  12. This brought back memories of our visit a few years ago. It's a superb day out isn't it #CountryKids

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    1. It really is, especially when the skies are clear and weather is beautiful...

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  13. We had such a great day when we visited in May but you got the weather for it. Mich x #Countrykids

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    1. We were so lucky with the weather - so warm and sunny! Crisp autumn and spring days I am sure are glorious as well!

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  14. This looks a lovely place to visit - you certainly picked a beautiful day for it! Where were you camping? This would be a perfect distance for us to visit on a long weekend maybe and I really want to try camping with my family (though we may need to wait until the spring now). My mum has corporate English Heritage membership too - it comes in very useful! #CountryKids

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    1. We were camping in Folkestone, whch was about 30 minute drive away. We stayed in a seaside campsite, so that made it extra special. It is a good place to go camping, I would definitely recommend it. Go summer though, it is cold round the seaside :D

      I wrote a post about our camping trip too, and will soon post another one about Folkestone things to do :)

      http://www.wavetomummy.com/2016/08/our-first-ever-camping-holiday-as-family.html

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  15. Great photos. The views are amazing! My Nanna & Grandad took me to Dover Castle many years ago and I dragged them up as far as we could go even though they were getting on and had dodgy joints. They never forgot what I put them through! I haven't taken my children to Kent yet but I know they'd love Dover castle. Maybe we should plan a holiday there soon. #countrykids

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    1. The views are incredible aren't they! Ha ha with your grandparents, I think that would have been pretty tough on them! I was cursing the number of steps too by the time we got to the top :D

      Dover is gorgeous, and you have a lovely seaside town closeby where we went camping (Folkestone) so I would definitely recommend a trip round there!

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  16. Wow your photos are lovely and the views look amazing! Looks like a brilliant day out. #countrykids

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    1. Thank you - it was such a gorgeous location :)

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  17. This looks like a great way you spend thevery day. Oh and those views are simply splendid! I can't wait for the day we actually get our butt's into gear and visit a castle, as this is something I really want to do. Xx #CountryKids #Whatevertheweather

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    1. Ha ha I wish. Sadly I am usually stuck at the office :D Kids do really love going to castles it seems - we have only been to a few but I think we should visit more of them. They really stoke the imagination!

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  18. Such such a nice place to visit! And what a perfect day out! #whatevertheweather

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    1. It really is a gorgeous location. And we were lucky with weather too!

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  19. It looks an amazing place to visit and it really does look massive, I bet you could spend the whole day there and still not see everything! Castles are one of our favourite places to visit! Thanks for sharing with #Whatevertheweather :) xx

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    1. Ha ha well we spent a half a day there, and we saw about half of it! I think you can see the main attractions in a day but if you want to wander around the grounds and see the whole castle area you would probably need more time :) Thanks for hosting :)

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